Howard Kelly from Cheshire booked his place in the final of Fish ‘O’ Mania, braving stormy conditions at the Oaks Fishery last weekend.

Competing in horrendous conditions including heavy rain, hailstones as well as a thunder storm, the 130 anglers braved the elements with Howard coming out on top.

Thankfully the fishery which is situated in North Yorkshire has not experienced any problems with the recent downpours, so the 13th qualifier was able to take place and was once again an occasion not to be missed. By the final claxon, the sun was shining for one angler when Howard Kelly became the 13th angler to book his place in the Fish ‘O’ Mania grand final at Hayfield Lakes on the 21st of July.

Howard, a catering manager for a local college from Stalybridge in Cheshire and fishes for Ted Carter Preston drew peg 79 on Cedar Lake. He fished shallow (2ft) with worm and caster across to the far bank to take carp, F1’s and ide ending with a winning weight of 33.900kg.

Following the match Howard (pictured above) commented; “I was absolutely chuffed and somewhat speechless to have won. It has always been one of my ambitions to get through to the final and my best mate who now lives in Canada is a big follower of competition. They have nothing like this out there and he even has his own Fish ‘O’ Maniac t-shirt which I sent to him. Hopefully he will be able to get time off and come over and join me at the final.”

Kieron Rich one of last years qualifiers must be wondering what he has to do to get to this years final as once again he had to settle for second place. So far this year Kieron has finished second twice and has also come in third on two occasions. Kieron was fishing peg 52 on Cedar Lake and took a mixed bag of carp, F1’s and ide on maggot to finish with 32.670kg. When asked about his continued near misses; “I have almost lost count of the number of times I have been second this year and with only 3 rounds still to go I must try harder for one of these last three places.”

A relatively local angler David Webster from Pudsey in West Yorkshire took 3rd spot with 28,820kg again fishing from Cedar Lake. He was closely followed by Tommy Pickering in 4th who was the only angler in the top five who did not fish on Cedar with a final weight of 28.800kg from Maple. Finally, 5th spot went to bricklayer, Stephen Richards with a weight of 28.300kg again from Cedar Lake.

Howard is pictured with the NFA’s new, ‘I’m a Fish O Maniac’ t-shirt which is available for only £9.99 by calling the NFA directly on 0115 981 3535.