Victory At The Airflo Anglian Water International

Iain Barr recounts how Team Costa claimed victory at the Airflo Anglian Water International….

After not reaching the Airflo Anglian Water final for four years as a team we were determined to give it our all. Iain Barr Fly Fishing team Costa has three new recruits this year, 18, 24 and 28 years old respectively, with one established angler at just 28 also. It’s a young squad led by myself and the hugely successful and experienced John Buchanan of Scotland.
Practice was tough but slowly we developed a method and it was all coming together – only to be interrupted by very strong winds the day before.

It’s a two day event and the wind looked more settled albeit still a little breezy. We had two methods working using Airflo Super-Dri 3 and 6 foot mini tip fly lines with Iain Barr Fabs, red nemos or my infamous cut throat crunchers.

Red nemo fly

Iain’s Red nemo fly.

The other option, favoured in the strengthening wind was the Airflo ridge clear fast intermediate or the Di3 with a Two Tone Coral Booby on the point, two of my black flash dabblers in the middle and a pink two tone fab on the point. The same one I used to win the brown bowl on Mentieth! (More on that story here.)

Both the very  top of the south and north arms were not producing and fish seemed concentrated from the north tower to the basin and from New Zealand point to the basin.

I drew a friendly Irish man who opted to take me up the north where it was grim. I managed 3, short lining a Di3, ensuring the booby plopped on the surface to draw them up. I took 2 on the booby and one on the dabbler.

Five of my six man team were either in the basin or around the sailing club and none had ventured north, so at 12 o’clock when I had control of the boat we made the short trip to Normanton where a host of boats were gathering. I saw three team mates there with one on 3, one on 7 and another had just finished but it had gone hard. Typical! I stuck with the Di3 using my impressive Airlite V2 fly rod. Fish were strong and having had several double ups and hearing of treble ups in practice I toughened up using 13.1lb G5 fluorocarbon. Difficult to beat for its diameter a day superb strength.

I ground it out ensuring I had fresh water in front of my boat and by 16:20 I had my 8 fish limit. The booby, fab and dabblers taking all my fish. A long slow draw was imperative as we found fast pulling or short stabby pulls resulted it too many hits with the fish not sticking. The long draw allows the fish to get a proper hold.

At the scales we had 4 limits backed up by a 3 and a 2. The lower positions had their chances but failed to convert them.

John Buchanan after just two fish on the first day.

John Buchanan after just two fish on the first day.

Day 2 dawned and Iain Barr Fly Fishing team Costa sat just 3lb 14oz behind Gateside Fly Fishers from Scotland. Hot on our heels were previous winners Team Change of Scotland – It was all to play for.

After a team debrief the night before it was agreed for all of us to fish between the lodge and the dam and grind it out. We knew the fish were there and opted for more subtle tactics following a pasting of lures the day before. We kept a boobies or fab on the point and fished dabblers and red nemos on the droppers.

It was a slow start for me having had four offers before finally connecting with my first fish on the clear intermediate and dabbler. Boats were tightly packed so myself and boat partner for the day decided to fish in front of the sailing club in the open water, as it was very apparent that the fast limits from Tuesday were not going to happen on day two.

It often pays to fish open fresh water and for four hours or so we did just that picking up 6 fish each which was very respectable indeed for day two. We should if had our 8, but we dropped several fish each. A plopped boobie with dabblers fished right in the surface and two Fabs and two nemos fished at short range on the 3 foot tip did the damage. My partner had almost all his fish short lining an Airflo slow glass and all took nemos, whereas mine all ignored my nemos and took the brightly colour fab or booby. Very strange!!!

The bright FAB

The bright FAB

The boats headed in and I was looking for my team members to see how they had fared. Leaving them at appropriately 13.30 they had 0,2,2,3 and 5 respectively. We gathered in the car park with what I considered a great achievement with 32 fish, just 5 less than the day 1 total. Richard Cooper came in with 8 on the tougher day, managing 3 when it seemed easier. This proved his grit with local knowledge certainly paying off for him. Being an out and out confessed puller it left us bemused how he caught 6 on nymphs, all red nemos! John Buchanan, Graham Hayward and myself weighed in 6 each followed by Ben Race with 4 and Paul Runec with 2, both bagged up the previous day.

Gateside had admitted defeat with 22 for the team and Team Change had 25. We sat comfortable until team Airflo came to the scales with a very impressive 3 limits and also 30 fish!

Weigh in time...

Weigh in time…

A relaxing, enjoyable presentation dinner went by, as we shared tables with Team Airflo – either of us not knowing the final results! What seemed like an eternity it was finally results time.

With four lads under 28 and one just 18, we had the taunts of Iain’s Youth Club etc. which was quite entertaining but we had the last laugh as the famous quote of football pundit Alan Hanson once said ‘You don’t win anything with boys’ was put to bed as Iain Barr Fly Fishing team Costa were announced the new 2017 Airflo Anglian Water Champions!! Airflo were 10lb behind in weight with Gateside staying in the medals in 3rd place.

I was absolutely delighted to have won this championship for the 3rd time, but this was special to have done it with three new youngsters in the team, with two of them also getting their first England Caps with us this year too.

Next year we’ll be out to defend our title with my youth club.

Three of Iain's youth club!

Three of Iain’s youth club!

Airflo Anglian International Fly Fishing Final 2017

The Airflo Anglian International Fly Fishing final took place on Rutland Water on 3rd and 4th October.

After a total of 12 nationwide heats and finals, 144 anglers found themselves raring to go on match day.

Day one of the 2017 Airflo Anglian water international

Day one of the 2017 Airflo Anglian water international

The first day was hard fought – met with cold and windy conditions, anglers with the most adaptable tactics made headway after calm and obliging practice days.

Gateside Flycasters led the pack, followed closely by FlyFishing Costa A. Things were very tight between the teams from 3rd to mid table…. It was all to play for on day two!

Day one results

Day one results -Gateside Flycasters leading the way!

Day two was also windy – with some anglers comparing the main basin to the North Sea. However, some cracking fish were caught, including a superb double figure brownie by Cameron Neil.

Cameron Neils double figure brown

Cameron Neil’s double figure brown (Image: David Hoppe Fishing)

Results were finally in, with congratulations in order for Iain Barr’s Flyfishing Costa A team who emerged as the winners, followed by Team Airflo and Gateside Flycasters in third position.

Scott Graham of team Airflo claimed the heaviest bag, at a whopping 37lb 4 5/8 oz.

Results day two - the winner is.....

Results day two – the winner is confirmed!

Here are Iain’s post match statements from his Facebook pages:

”Iain Barr World Champion Choices Flies deliver another knock out punch by winning this years Airflo Anglian Water Championship at Rutland Water. Another victory using my Airlite rods from Airflo!!! Not a bad season with my new toys!! Thanks Airflo and Gareth Jones.”

Team Costa Flyfishing A

Victorious Team Costa Flyfishing A

”Well my luck continues after winning the Airflo Anglian International team championship yesterday with Iain Barr Fly Fishing Team Costa – Ben Race, Paul Runec, John Buchanan Graham Hayward and Rick Cooper. Proud to win this championship with a core of young anglers with a couple of older heads to pass on their experience. Sitting pretty in 2nd after day 1, we continued to catch steadily on day 2 to take the title. Teamed with Iain Barr World Champion Choices Flies fishing a fly line range from Di3, slow glass, fast glass and midge tip we fished mostly the basin, and the mouth of the north and south arms.”

”Combos of Iain Barr new Jelly Blobs, Fabs and Boobies tied with FNF FRITZ from Kevin Porteous and nymphs done the business. Well done to all other medalists and Airflo Gareth Jones for sponsoring the event and the great prizes, and all at Anglian Water for running a great team competition.”

We would like to offer our congratulations to all the anglers who took part, and especially to Cost Flyfishing A, on their superb performance Individually and as a team.

If you want to be part of it next year 2018 dates are set and entries are OPEN. Get your teams together and be part of the AWAI 2018.

The Battle of Britain – Lake of Mentieth 2017 Autumn International Report

England captain Iain Barr reports from the recent lake of Mentieth home international fly fishing competition. Read on to discover the techniques that led England to victory and won Iain the coveted brown bowl trophy!

Lake of Mentieth is known as a fortress in Scotland as their international fly fishing team defend it with all their might. The four home nations were to descend on the lake from 11-15th September for the battle of Britain in the fly fishing stakes.

The lake of Mentieth

The lake of Mentieth.

Scotland boasted a very strong team with previous brown bowl winners, top Scottish internationals as well as a host of local knowledge. It was a force to be reckoned with.

However, as England captain, I was confident with the squad I had and with good practice backed by a solid strategic game plan we could come away victorious.

It’s a team event and has to be planned as such. I set different boats with different techniques often putting anglers out of their comfort zone to prevent complacency with the same methods they’re used to.

I arrived 3 days late due to a family emergency and assessed the two previous days practice with vice captain Ed Foster. It was as I expected, dries and an assortment of washing line techniques and flies.

Wednesday was the perfect dry fly day and the fish responded well to dries as big as a size 10 Midas to size 14 shuttle cock owls. I put myself as a roaming boat whereas all others were set areas and techniques to try. It was whilst moving from the heavily fished Lochend to cages bay that I cracked the method.

Using the Airflo Di3 and Di5 fly lines I tried the depths, something that hadn’t been mentioned in our team debriefs. I used a couple of boobies, a standard cat booby and a lake special candy booby. The lake is the king of fishing static venues so I cast out the flies and just kept the tension and no more. 3 fish in 3 casts had us moving out quickly.

Thursday I wanted to try the same area but leave the flies anchored deep for longer so using an Iain Barr new Fab, tied with FNF Jelly Fritz, a couple of nymphs in the middle and a blob I decided to drop through the layers and fish deep with Airflo 3 foot and 6 foot tips.

I was using Airflo G5 fluorocarbon in 11.2lb. Very thin for its strength which is definitely needed on Mentieth. The lake had a tinge of green so I decided to to fish as heavy as I could get away with. The fluorocarbon also has some stretch which absorbed the aggressive takes that were to come.

Several times the line would shoot away on the drop which I estimated to be about 4 to 6 foot down, but most were coming vertical on the hang.

A rapid 7 fish came to my side of the boat, I then switched to a Di5 with two boobies to get to the depth quicker to see if I could speed up the catch rate. A quick hat trick and I was putting of there.

A fully finned Mentieth bow'

A fully finned Mentieth bow’

My partner for the day bounced a lot of fish on the hang. I was using the amazing new Airflo Airlite V2 fly rod. These absorbed the aggressive snatches at the fly where as my partners rod was far too soft and simply wasn’t setting the hook. Rod balance is critical. Too soft and the hook won’t set, too stiff and you’ll bounce fish all day long. The Airlite V2 was just the perfect tool for the job!

The boys were struggling as I shared my info, but I banned all bar one boat from checking out the area and using the method until later in the day, to minimise being spotted. They caught and caught well.

I brought the flies, leader set up and exact map markings to the meeting and set the plan out to try and win the gold medal.

The toss for the engine was kind to us and 8 of us had control so I sent our two strongest dry fly anglers to Otter Bay and 6 to follow me to cages bay.

Airflo Di lines were banned from the car park to avoid showing our intent to fish deep. Midge tips in various guises were set up ready to go.

I drew a Scots man for the day as we headed to my choice of cages bay. He hooked into a fish almost immediately and I was shocked it took 3 casts to go tight as my line zipped away to a red Nemo almost vertical. Another quick fish followed and it became extremely congested and I felt I wanted to get deeper quicker due to boat pressure. I switched to the Di5 and two boobies and first cast the rod bent double and a stunning Mentieth rainbow of about 8lb came to the net having taken a sparkler booby, again vertical. Sport was slower that the Thurs and the 18 of the day before seemed some distance away!

A stunning Mentieth rainbow

A stunning Mentieth rainbow.

A short move to Stable Point had been get two more quick fish, both to the 3′ tip and new fab pattern. My partner decided he wanted to move and we moved around behind dog island where I hadn’t caught in 2 days!

He was soon into his 3rd  fish as my line tightened into my 6th, again on the tip and fab but much higher in the water.

I persisted with my method to go deep and soon my tally started to steadily climb as fish came deep almost all absolutely static on the hang. Some would hit the fly 5-6 times and it was crucial not to strike but wait for the rod to bend over into them!

As the wind increased the control in the tip lines was lost so I switched to the Di lines taking 1 on the Di 5 and 4 on Di 3 fishing two boobies. Again, I cast them out and simply let them drop through the layers. It was in cages bay that all went tight after about 10 seconds and a magnificent Mentieth double put up one hell of a fight before being safely returned after a quick photo. That was number 15. Two more quickly followed and it was time to head in with a respectable 17.

Martin Burgess of England matched my 17 and Tony Fox came in with 10. They came to dog island with 6 and 3 respectively and I shouted across to switch to my method and they did the rest!

It soon became clear that England’s long await for victory on Mentieth was over as we blew the other countries away with a 36 fish margin over 2nd place Wales, 37 ahead of Ireland and 38 ahead of last placed Scotland. Fish were measured and released but with an average of of over 2lb per fish this was possibly the biggest margin in the history of the event.

Iain Barr with the brown bowl trophy

Iain Barr with the brown bowl trophy.

With the team scores settled it was down to the UK individual title of the brown bowl and having taken my first 3 fish deep, they were bigger than Martin Burgess of England’s 3 so my second brown bowl in Scotland was secured having won it on Loch Leven too.

My 64cm rainbow on the sparkler, 3rd fish, also took the biggest fish.

It was a clean sweep of the trophies as I took captain gold,  top England rod , top individual and best fish. I couldn’t have been more proud of a resounding victory and of the solid team performance by a great bunch of lads.

Next stop Airflo Anglian Final, see it here!!

Silverware galore for Team England

Iain’s’ huge haul of silverware!

The Llanilar Airflo Classic – Llyn Brenig 2017

Results for the 2017 competition are now in!!

Congratulations to the winner Malcolm Edwards! Malcom bagged an impressive 9 fish tally in order to take first spot – on what was an incredibly tough day.

Airflo Llanilar classic 2017 results

Airflo Llanilar classic 2017 results

Welsh fishing tackle company Airflo are sponsors of the ”Llanilar Airflo Classic” for the second year running.

Once known as the ‘‘Llanilar Ty Nant” this prestigious international fly fishing competition will be held at Llyn Brenig on Sunday 6th August 2017.

There are 96 anglers taking part at this years Llanilar Airflo Classic. With competitors from Wales, Ireland, Scotland and England this is a truly international field of top quality fishermen for all over the UK – and beyond.

The match will be fished to international fly fishing rules from 10am to 5pm.

Prizes to the value of £3,500 are up for grabs, with a generous Airflo goodie bag being included for each angler – plus a meal at the end of the match.

Spaces are all taken at this time, with the possibility of additional boats or cancellation slots becoming available.

Watch this space for updates – including results and a full match report!!

llyn brenig

Llyn Brenig – The home of the Airflo Classic

 

Iain Barr World Bank Masters – 2017 Farmoor Fishery

Fancy your chances of winning a massive cash prize? Then enter the 2017 Iain Barr Bank Masters at Farmoor Fishery!

For 2017, a singles and pairs event will be hosted on Farmoor Reservoir Fishery with a prize fund of up to £15,000 available for the winners! We feel this is going to be THE event of the 2017 competitive fly fishing season – not only for the UK, but also Europe wide.

farmoor-promoWhat’s the deal?

There are no heats – the first 200 entries fish the finals, simple as that. Everyone has a great chance of taking a huge prize pot, and of catching tagged fish for additional cash and tackle prizes. 100% of entry fees make up the cash pot!

When is it?

The singles event will take place on Saturday 11th March 2017, and the pairs Sunday 12th March 2017.

How much?

Singles – Entry Fee £50, Fishing Fee £25. Limited to 200 anglers.
Pairs – Entry Fee £50 per pair, Fishing Fee £50 (covers two anglers). Limited to 100 pairs.

How to apply?

Click HERE to download an application form. Fill it in and send to the address on the bottom of the form with payment. If you have any trouble downloading, you can contact Iain by email: iain_barr2000@yahoo.co.uk

The rules?

This is a catch and release competition with points scoring on rotational pegs. No size limit on fly dressing, barbless or de-barbed hooks only. Any type of fly line allowed including shooting heads. Check out the rules in full HERE.

Sponsors

Leading UK fly line manufacturer Airflo will be supporting the event as the main sponsor for the sixth consecutive year!!

bank-master

For full details visit: www.iainbarrflyfishing.co.uk

The Llanilar Airflo Classic – The Results!!

The Llanilar Airflo Classic fly fishing competition took place on Sunday 7th August on Llyn Brenig. Conditions began well, but by 1pm the competitors were faced with very gusty winds and bright sunshine, extremely difficult conditions to say the least!!

At the jetty on Llyn Brenig

At the jetty on Llyn Brenig.

The Winner

Kevin McCabe took the no.1 spot, with a staggering 17 fish. We would like to congratulate Kevin on this amazing result, which given the conditions was a truly astonishing haul.

Kevin is pictured here with the Llanilar Airflo Classic trophy, together with an Airflo rocket Rod, Airflo switch pro reel & fly line prizes. Kevin we salute you!

The Llanilar Airflo Classic winner - Kevin Mcabe.

The Llanilar Airflo Classic winner – Kevin Mcabe.

2nd spot was taken by Gareth ‘Gazza’ Dixon with 11 fish, with his brother Aled coming in at 3rd position. A great performance from both.

Here are the full results:

Llanilar AIRFLO Classic 2016 Page 1

Llanilar Airflo Classic 2016 results Page 1

Llanilar Airflo Classic 2016 results Page 2

Llanilar Airflo Classic 2016 results Page 2

We would like to thank all who attended the competition. A more detailed match report and specifics of next year’s event to follow!

Two Titles One Champion – Iain Barr’s Winning Tactics

Unstoppable fishing machine Iain Barr keeps on winning UK fly fishing competitions! He recently bagged the Bank National Champion title and then followed up this mean feat by winning the Bob Church Classic – for the third year running! In this blog post Iain shares the tactics that won him these two prestigious titles. Enter the mind of a champion fly fisher…

Competition pro Iain Barr in action

Competition pro Iain Barr in action

English National Small Water Championship – Farmoor

Farmoor reservoir hosted the English National Small Water Championships with a field of 48 strong anglers hoping to make the 7 man squad.

Hot sunny weather greeted us and this has a impact on the methods to use. This time of year sees plenty of warm weather and the fish behave differently. In these conditions you will often find two layers of fish and Farmoor was no exception. There was a layer in the top 3-4 feet and and another layer approx 12-15 foot down.

I deployed 3 rods, Airflo Di5 and new JELLY Blobs. Airflo Di3 with a mix of cats Blobs and damsels and a Super-dri floater with nymphs and buzzers.

I fished the Di3 first on each peg, switched to buzzers and nymphs before fishing the last 10 mins of the 45 minute pegs to search for bonus fish that were lying deeper.

The first peg yielded a cracking 6lb fish, the only 1 I landed. I had 2 off my next 2 and a blank off a tricky corner peg which didn’t produce all day although I did miss a take whilst applying more suncream!!

The afternoon saw more fish nearer the surface so I pulled the Di3 with a blob and a cat switching the cat to a damsel mid way through the 45 mins. The Airflo sixth sense Di3 is the perfect pulling line if the fish are high.  It cuts through quickly and can.be fished fast and high or slower and deeper if they drop.

I landed a 1, 2,2 off my first 3 afternoon session pegs with many coming on the ‘hang’ about 10 yards off on the infamous Farmoor ledge.

During the last peg a thunder storm circled in the distance and despite 2 quick fish high in the water they stopped taking. During this changes in air pressure many say the fish stop feeding when really all they tend to do is drop deeper to acclimatise to the change in pressure.

I let the Di3 and Tungsten beaded cat lure drop for 30 seconds before a slow retrieve and I landed my final 3 giving my maximum of 5 in a few casts.

Scores were calculated and the Bank National Champion title was mine.  The top 7 will not represent England at Garnffrwd Lake in Wales in November.

The national bank champion trophy being awarded - top angling!

The national bank champion trophy being awarded – top angling!

Bob Church Classic – Grafam water

June saw the 29th Bob Church Classic held at Grafham Water.  Having won it the previous 2 years the hatrick was on. I’d had a tough practice landing just 2 but that was above average! Grafham was sulking with high and low pressure dominating and mixing through the week. Late Saturday saw a steady change in pressure with some rain and wind which we hoped we would stir them and boy did it!!

I took an evening boat Friday just to motor round to see where fish were moving and this played a key part in my day. I tried a couple of areas briefly and went for a quick look to where I had seen a few moving late Friday before my plan to move to the open water.

I arrived at the dam with it to myself and the fish were there in droves almost smutting like on midge but I’m convinced they were gorging the clouds of daphnia.

I was using an original Airflo slow intermediate with a booby on the point,  2 nymphs and a cat on the top. With fish so high the booby pulled across the top will certainly draw the fish in and it did. Usually I’d catch more on the nymphs but they just kept engulfing the sparkler booby pulled across them on the top.

Soon I was spotted and the armada arrived which inevitably slowed the sport down. I stuck with the same method but just fished it almost static. The majority of my remaining fish took the nymphs. Many may have taken the booby off but it allows the flies to descend much slower and more naturally.

I soon had my 16 fish limit and it was now a waiting game to see if i had done enough to complete an incredible hatrick of wins. All anglers were still fishing around me but there was a splattering of boats dotted in other areas.

17:30 saw the competition end and I heard of 2 other limits and it proved incredibly close!!

With a slightly earlier finish then Gus Armor of Scotland I managed to complete an unbelievable hatrick in wins!  Next year sees a special 30th year of this prestigious event to be held at Rutland where I’ll be aiming to bring it home for a 6th time.

Iain Barr with Bob church classic cup

Iain Barr with Bob church classic cup.

This time of year you can be fishing the top with dry flies or deep with lures.  Try dries like Big Reds, Shipmans and CDC owls. For deep lures boobies on fast sinking Lines, or cats whiskers and blobs fished deep – these will always catch.

See Iain Barr Fly packs available from Fishtec, such as:

Essential Dries
Harry potters
Essential Boobies
Blobs
Damsels

Tight lines, Iain.

2014 Rivers International Report

Welsh Rivers International Team with TrophyVenue: River Ure North Yorkshire – 27th June

With 2 gold medals from the last 2 Rivers Internationals, the Welsh Team was really hoping their winning run would continue there on the wild upland River Ure. In reality though this was never going to be an easy job! The English Team were on a real high after a Bronze World position, and a Silver in the Commonwealth. “Facebook” talk was all about England claiming the one colour missing! Making the task even more difficult was the fact that most of the English Team were local to the River Ure, with one Team member being a past Season ticket holder on the actual Competition beats! Did I have any doubts? Yes I did, I’ll be honest! This would be no walk in the park, this was going to be tough – Super tough.

We knew we would have to prepare like never before for this contest, and preparations began around Christmas Time, with Terry Bromwell (the Captain) calling the lads together for a number of training days on the Rivers Taff & later the Ebbw. The ultimate preparation we felt we needed was a visit to the actual Match venue. And so it was that over the late May Bank Holiday weekend all 6 of us travelled  North, to check out the River Ure. Dean Kibble, and I had both fished the River 12 years previously as our very first Rivers International, so we had some idea of what to expect. The commitment shown by all Team members, including the Reserve (Robert Bending) was magnificent to behold. This was the BIG one, the one we REALLY wanted to win, and even though I could see that the financial costs were soaring, no-one complained – we wanted it that bad!

Actual Match week started for us on Saturday June 21st, when we left Wales in the early hours, arriving around breakfast time ready for a full days practice. What we found when we arrived was that the River had shrunk ! it was now a fraction of the size it had been back in late May. Being low and clear, the fishing was now much more difficult, but throughout the next few days, we managed to find a few methods that would catch fish fairly consistently. We covered the entire Competition beats (more than once) and we often bumped into old friends from the other 3 Nations during our days on the River.

Eventually, Match day (Fri 27th) arrived. – We had fished, thought, fished some more, drunk a few beers, tied flies, and mulled things over among ourselves. But now this was the real thing, now was the time to finally put all our plans together. I could sense the optimism amongst the guys, they (and I) really believed we could pull this off!

And so it was that at 09:45 the first session started. The sweaty palms disappeared as soon as the first casts were made, and the guys settled into doing what they do best.

I knew I had had a fairly good morning, with a 1st and a 2nd  but how had the others done?

We met back at the 3 Horseshoes pub for lunch, and it became clear that we were right “up there”with the English. Scotland and Ireland had a few poor results and we felt must have been some way behind. We started the afternoon final 2 sessions with renewed energy, knowing that this was there for the taking! The Match ended at 17:45, and arriving back at the car, I was informed that after the morning sessions, Wales were 2 points ahead of England. This was great news indeed, but had we kept it going?

Normally, asking around, you would get a feel for how the Teams were doing before the results were calculated. This was different; this really appeared to be too close to call!

On arrival back at the teams Hotel, I was invited (with the other Managers) into the room where the final results were being computed. The Team (totally fished out) were at the bar biting their nails! The 3 rd session results were announced! Wales had slipped from being 2 points in front, to being 2 points behind! The doubts were back, had we blown it? We were so close! Then the last session results were announced ! After a good last session, we had come back and we had actually tied on points with England. This meant that now, to separate the 2 Teams, the total fish points would have to be added up. This took a little time, adding to the agony but finally we were announced the winners having beaten the “old enemy” by the smallest of margins (8 fish points) or 8 cms in other words!

In fairness the other 3 Nations warmly congratulated the Welsh Team on a fantastic performance, and we celebrated well into the early hours.

I would like to thank the Captain, Terry Bromwell, for the sterling work he did from late last year all the way through to the after dinner speech! Dean Kibble, Simon Barton, Kieron Jenkins and Robert Bending – Thanks Guys you were magnificent!

I would also like to thank the members and Committee of Islwyn & District A.C. for allowing the Welsh Team use of the River Ebbw for practice sessions – This has proved to be invaluable!

Written by Paul Jenkins – Welsh Team Manager.

Written by Kieron Jenkins

Fishtec/PSM League Match – Final Results 2013

It doesn’t seem like a minute ago when Paul Jenkins, Gareth Jones and Bob Mayers first started talking about setting up a League in South Wales to help develop anglers in the region to International level.

Well, seven years on and the league has just finished another very successful season, with 13 four man teams competing across four competitions on Chew Valley lake, sponsored by our fly fishing tackle supplier Fishtec, and PSM sportswear.

The fishing this year on Chew Valley has been phenomenal between 52 anglers over four competitions, a total number of 1542 fish caught and returned with a rod average of a staggering 7.43 per angler for the whole competition.

The numbers of anglers who have used the league as a springboard to the International scene has been specifically pleasing to see and long may it continue, with a lot of anglers gaining great experience and knowledge from some of the top anglers in the country, in what is a very friendly competition.

Kieronchew1

Some Match Stats from 2013

The league is fished catch and release, with results based on a points system, so consistency throughout the year is the key to success. When the fourth fish is recorded, the time is taken to the minute, in case of duplicate fish numbers.

Match 1 : 52 Anglers Caught 343 Fish – Rod Average 6.6
Match 1 : 52 Anglers Caught 273 Fish – Rod Average 5.25
Match 1 : 52 Anglers Caught 526 Fish – Rod Average 10.2
Match 1 : 52 Anglers Caught 400 Fish – Rod Average 7.7

Quickest 4 Fish – Nigel Evals – 20 Minutes

Teams

This years winners were team Airflo! Accumulating just 184 points between four anglers over four matches. Second, reigning champions, the Nymphomaniacs, who accumulated 303 and close on their tail, Cwmbran Drifters, with 321.

League Team

Individuals

This year the Individual trophy went to the ever consistent Phil Cotton of Team Airflo with an impressive 27 points. The competition has been running for 7 years, Phil has won the individual trophy twice and finished second and two occasions. Second with 32 place points, another Team Airflo angler, Stuart Watkins, yet another former winner of the Fishtec League shield. Third saw Andrew Banner of the Cwmbran Drifters with 49 place points.

League Individual

A huge thank you must go out to Bob Mayers for his organisational skills, without him none of this would happen! Full results here : http://www.llandegfedd-ffa.com/

Anglian Water Airflo Fly Fishing International

SEIGHFORD SHARKS FIRST PLACE

Picture by http://fishypics.co.uk/

After a week of outstanding fly fishing at Rutland Water, The Seighford Sharks were the conquerors of the AWAI. The Anglin Water Airflo International is a two day event with 22 team competing from all over the UK along with 2 overseas teams. Two days fishing at Rutland water produced a great rod average of just over 5 fish per angler, with many bag ups being recorded.

Day one saw a fleet of 66 boats leave the harbour and just 6 of those headed to the North Arm. The rest headed South towards Gibbets and Manton, with not one boat venturing to the main basin. Most anglers wouldn’t remember a match on Rutland where not one boat went to the dam wall!

The first day on Rutland water saw the first boat heading back to the harbour at just 1.30pm! Both anglers, Airflo Consultant Iain Barr and boat partner Mike Dixon catching each of their limits in just over three hours! Other boats closely followed. Fish were high in the water and keeping your flies close to the surface proved effective. Slow glasses and fast intermediate fly lines seemed the way ahead, with a selection of boobies and blobs spaced around 12 feet apart.

Results Day 1

Seighford Sharks looked to be comfortably in the lead with a total of 45 fish for 129lb 6 3/8oz – nearly 20lb ahead of second placed Blagdon Fly Fishers Cortland with 42 fish for 110lb 6¼oz.  History shows that very few teams have led from the front to take victory on the final day…  Only a few pounds separated 3rd placed Hanningfield on 108lb 15¼oz, 4th Welsh Hawks 106lb 11½oz and 5th Menteith Ospreys on 104lb 15 3/8oz.

Highlights Day 1 

Graeme Steel, member of the Grizzle Cats, managed to land the best rainbow on day one, weighing 5lb 11oz. Tim Joyce of Hanningfield fly fishers took top bag with a staggering 26lb 13 3/8oz, along with the best brown trout of 5lb 15 7/8oz.

Statistics

Number of Anglers: 132
Fish Caught: 720
Rod Average: 5.45
Total Weight of Fish: 1847lb 85/8oz
Average Weight: 2lb 9oz
Average Bag Weight: 13lb 16oz

Results Day 2

Top rod of the entire match was Mike Dixon of Seighford Sharks with 16 fish for 48lb 13 ¾oz. 

Team Airflo had an excellent second day coming out top with 44 fish for 109lb 11 3/8oz with Seighford Sharks in second with 38 fish for 105lb 9 1/8oz and Blagdon Fly Fishers Cortland third with 35 fish for 99lb 12 1/8oz. Conditions were far from perfect at the start of the match and tested everyone’s fly fishing clothing!

Seighford Sharks performance was well and truly phenomenal, keeping their 1st place position with a great performance on both days.  Team members Craig Barr, Gary Owen, Mark Harrison, Phil Longstaff and Phil and Mike Dixon received gold medals along with the prestigious silver Salver.  Team Airflo’s second day performance was enough to bring them from 11th to 3rd position, with Blagdon fly fishers holding their place in second as well.

Highlights Day 2

Wullie Simpson fishing for Menteith Ospreys landed the best Brown of day two weighting 5lb 10 1/8oz. Unfortunately for Wullie, a one brown limit led to the return of an even bigger Brown estimated at around 9lb later on in the day. Nick Long fishing for Blagdon Fly Fishers Cortland slipped the netted under the best Rainbow at 6lb 7¼oz – Nick’s fish was the best fish of the match overall.

Mark Harrison of Seighford Sharks had the best bag on Day Two with 8 fish for 26lb 9 5/8oz. Mark put in an outstanding performance, managing to net his 8th fish at 10:38! It takes a good 10/15 minutes to motor to Manton where he was fishing, he must have only been fishing for 25 minutes! Good Angling Mark.

Day 2 Statistics

Number of Anglers: 132
Fish Caught: 693
Rod Average: 5.25
Total Weight of Fish: 1791lb 2oz
Average Weight: 2lb 91/2oz
Average Bag Weight: 13lb 9oz

Overall Results

1. Seighford Sharks – 83 fish – 234lb 151/2oz
2. Blagdon Fly Fishers Cortland – 77 fish – 210lb 23/8oz
3. Team Airflo – 77 fish – 192lb 141/2oz
4. Fish Hawks – 75 fish – 189lb 35/8oz
5. Welsh Hawks – 72 fish – 186lb 103/4oz
6. Menteith Ospreys – 71 fish – 185lb 91/8oz
7. Hanningfield – 66 fish – 177lb 137/8oz
8. Change Flyfishers ‘A’ – 67 fish – 174lb 137/8oz
9. G.Loomis Team Belgium – 63 fish – 170lb 131/4oz
10. Harvey Angling Margam – 66 fish – 164lb 137/8oz
11. Thalassa AC – 65 fish – 163lb 7oz
12. Nymph-A-Maniacs – 63 fish – 162lb 135/8oz
13. Rio Masters – 65 fish – 162lb 17/8oz
14. The Renegades – 66 fish – 160lb 27/8oz
15. The Corrib Hoppers – 66 fish – 159lb 31/4oz
16. OTFA Kirkwall – 60 fish – 149lb 23/8oz
17. Shetland Anglers – 59 fish – 144lb 121/4oz
18. Grizzle Cats – 57 fish – 142lb 93/8oz
19. Froggies Fly Fishers – 56 fish – 142lb 87/8oz
20. Saltire Flyfishers – 51 fish – 135lb 47/8oz
21. Stock Barracudas – 45 fish – 114lb 131/8oz
22. Bewl Chingly Chompers – 43 fish – 113lb 123/8oz