David George (Browning Andover MG), a Projects Manager from Andover was the latest winner to qualifier for a place to compete in the Fish ‘O’ Mania final in July at Cudmore Fisheries.
David had a good day’s fishing with his catch consisting of carp, barbel and F1s taken on corn pole fished in the margins. He fed pellet and corn and his best fish was a carp of 8lbs to net a winning weight of 144lbs 4ozs from Peg 90 on Lake 2.
David George stated “I am still feeling a little numb at winning the qualifier at Monk Lakes yesterday. When I got there I drew an end peg in a corner and a lot of fish were spawning, but the bailiff came up and said that it could be good but it hasn’t been unfortunately recently. I have fished at Monk Lakes previously for Angling Times matches and thought everyone yesterday organised a good match. I applied for four Fish ‘O’ Mania tickets this year but only got one which was for Monk Lakes in the top 130 so I was still listing a long way down on the other reserve lists. I have not actually watched any Fish ‘O’ Mania finals and had to look on the internet to know where Cudmore Fisheries was as never fished that particular venue. I will be hoping to do some practice and I am optimistic not to come last in the final.”
Weather conditions facing the anglers at Monk Lakes Fisheries, Marden, Kent on Wednesday 11th May 2011 were not ideal with very bright sunny conditions early on, but as the day progressed it became overcast and catch rates increased. Two of the top five anglers could possibly have won if they hadn’t fallen foul of the fishery keepnet limits and had one net each cut back to the 50lb mark. It will never be certain but both had nets bottoming the scales at 64lbs thus losing a minimum of 14lbs each. The venue fished fairly evenly with 9 weights over the ton and only two 10 peg sections winning with less than 50lbs.
In second place was Zoli Lari, a Heating & Plumbing Engineer from Ipswich who caught a runners-up bag of 135lbs14ozs of barbel, Ide and carp from Peg 77 on Lake 2. Zoli fished worm and caster in close for his catch which included a carp of 6lbs. Steve Clarke (Maver Image VDE) was one of the anglers on the day to fall foul of the fishery keepnet limits to therefore weigh in with 126lbs 12oz from Peg 147 on Lake 4. Steve, a former Division One National Champion caught carp of all sizes taken on method feeder fished tight to an island. In fourth place with 121lbs 10ozs was Andrew Ashington (Stevens Tackle) from Peg 91 on Lake 3, who was the other angler to fall foul of the net rule. Mark Harrington (Yorkshire Bait Apollo) ended the day in fifth place with 113lbs from Peg 46 on Lake 2.
The next Fish ‘O’ Mania qualifier takes place on Saturday 14th May 2011 at The Oaks Fishery, Sessay, North Yorkshire with another angler hoping to join David George in the final.