With temperatures up in the high twenties, a low and gin clear River Trent at Besthorpe, South Clifton, North Clifton and Laughterton, and conditions no-one wanted greeted the 12 teams of 10 anglers that had qualified for this, the Final of the Angling Trust Winter League series on Saturday 6th July 2013.
Much had been said about the low tide conditions that would prevail on the day of the match and make it even more difficult, but no-one could legislate for the very low river level and heat wave that prevailed considering the very wet and cold spring that the country had seen.
Many of the anglers struggled to get a bite in the conditions and those that did secured very valuable points for the team. There were also many anglers that sat it out on the feeder in the hope that that elusive bonus fish would decide to take their bait, but sadly for some it never happened. It was never going to be an easy match to win and knowledge of how the river was fishing since the season opened was key to the result.
Browning Quaker, from Cleveland in the North East were the eventual winners, a side whose philosophy for this event was to get as many of the team as possible to fish the opens which resulted in the team spending time fishing the opens and obtaining local knowledge in order to formulate a plan that would see them through and get points in every section. Feeder, running line, whip or pole was used by them in order to put a fish in the net. The team finished with an impressive total of 82 points, having 2 section winners, 1 second and 3 third placed anglers. The team consisted of Martin Robson, Johnny Maddison, Peter Close, Andy Dargue, Andy Nelson, Neil Nicholson, Mala Dunlop, Louis Mackintosh, Scott Lister and Chris Gowling.
In second place were Leicester Sensas, 7 points behind on 75 points, a side that had a history of river fishing and fishing hard venues and they used tactics much the same as Browning Quaker. Third place went to Team Daiwa Dorking on 73 points.
Individual winner was Liam Bradwell, Preston Innovations Thatchers, drawn on peg B 12 on Iron and Steel AC waters with a winning weight of 9.75 kilos made up of three barbel to 6 lb and 2 chub. The peg has form as a barbel peg and taking notice of information given to him by locals he set his stall out to fish for barbel and was rewarded by winning the match. Second place went to Jamie Grainger, Preston Innovations Delcac, drawn on peg K4 at Laughterton with a net of bream caught on the feeder for a weight of 8.220 kilos.
1st Browning Quaker 82 points
2nd Leicester Sensas 75 points
3rd Team Daiwa Dorking 73 points
4th Kamasan Starlets 69 points
5th Preston Innovation Thatchers 68 points
6th Drennan North West 66 points
7th Garbolino Blackhorse 63 points
8th Preston Innovation Delcac 61 points
9th Drennan Banbury Gunsmiths 61 points
10th Chambers Champs 56 points
11th Maver Midlands 54 points
12th Garbolino Ossett 48 points
Top 10 Individual results
1st Liam Bradwell (Preston Innovation Thatchers) 9.750kg
2nd Jamie Grainger (Preston Innovation Delcac) 8.220kg
3rd Neil Machin (Chambers Champs) 6.700kg
4th Peter Close (Browning Quaker) 4.430kg
5th Lewis Mackintosh (Browning Quaker) 3.740kg
6th John Shellard (Leicester Sensas) 3.700kg
7th Darren Bickerton (Kamasan Starlets) 3.580kg
8th Mark Wainwright (Garbolino Ossett) 3.500kg
9th Graham West (Garbolino Blackhorse) 3.400kg
10th Martin Harper (Maver Midlands) 3.130kg