Sunday, 9 March 2008


It has a been a busy weekend at our HQ here at Exe Valley with the Troutmasters fish off yesterday and then the best fish of the year so far caught today by Alex Rogers. I am really pleased for this guy who I have taught a couple of times now. At close to 80 Alex gets out there in all weathers and really puts the effort into practicing his casting which had proved troublesome in the past. I have been tweaking this during a couple of hourly sessions in recent weeks and it looks like the extra distance is paying dividends. Alex proudly strolled into the shop with this huge 9lb 5oz Rainbow in perfect condition! Stocked a while back in readiness for the Troutmasters that took place yesterday the jumbo fish avoided 13 anglers during the match but succumbed to Alex's home tied Black Taddy. It is entered into the Trout Fisherman Troutmasters comp for this month and has a great chance of winning. Good luck Alex!

Now down to the results. The match was fished over the course of 6 hours and each contestant had to move 3 pegs each hour. For those lucky enough to catch their 5 fish limit early there is the reward of 1lb per hour that they are unable to fish. Neil set the anglers off with a horn and within moments rods were bending. Within half an hour the first anglers were weighing in. But with a strengthening wind and sudden squalls of rain the fishing slowed. Even so all but one of the 13 strong gathering weighed in 5 fish taking the rod average to 4.8 per angler with an average fish weight of 2.0lb Best fish of the day went to Gary Lovering at 4.4lb with the top honours awarded to Chris Hodge who will fish the final at Grafham later this year. Good luck Chris!

1st - Chris Hodge : 5 FISH: 13.3lb + 5lb Time Bonus = 18.3lb

2nd - Rhys Roberts : 5 FISH: 14.0lb + 2lb Time Bonus = 16.0lb

3rd - Gary Turl : 5 FISH: 10.5lb + 5lb Time Bonus = 15.5lb

4th- Will Parfitt : 5 FISH: 10.3lb + 5lb Time Bonus = 15.3lb

5th - Jeff Hawke : 5 FISH: 12.3lb + 2lb Time Bonus = 14.3lb

6th - Ben Roberts : 5 FISH: 9.4lb + 4lb Time Bonus = 13.4lb

7th - Lee Liddle : 5 FISH: 11.9lb + 1lb Time Bonus = 12.9lb

8th - Gary Lovering: 5 FISH: 11.9lb + 0lb Time Bonus = 11.9lb

9th - Jayne Shoulders: 5 FISH: 11.5lb + 0lb Time Bonus = 11.5lb

10th - Mike Sherwin: 5 FISH: 8.9lb + 2lb Time Bonus = 10.9lb

11th - Clive Vincent: 5 FISH: 8.3lb + 0lb Time Bonus = 8.3lb

12th - Anita Winter: 3 FISH: 6.2lb + 0lb Time Bonus = 6.2lb

Unfortunately there was 1 disqualification!

Amongst all these anglers we have been fielding huge interest in the Hardy Demon range which is one of the most exciting products on the market today. The reel features a patented spool system and represents remarkable value for money in a product of this quality. Meanwhile I have been hard at the keyboard penning a few more features for Trout Fisherman and this week is set to be busy. I am especially looking forward to Thursday as it is the Chew Valley lake opening day and I will be heading off with good mate Andrew Hedger for the first boat session of the year. Before then I will need to set up all my kit ready for the NEC Go Fishing Show
this coming weekend and on Tuesday I will out shooting a feature with Henry while quizzing him on his seemingly amazing trip to South America. Find out more about that here. Oh and by the way river junkies ... less than a week to go!

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