The 2011 World Carp Classic took place on Lac de Madine, France, from the 5th — 11th September and, true to form, still more records were to be broken in the race for the much coveted title.
As we have all come to expect, the event drew a massive field of anglers from around the world and this year was no exception with 27 countries represented by 260 anglers and over 100 team runners. Some of the finest exponents of carp angling congregated in one place to contest the most prestigious title there has ever been, and they were obviously followed keenly by worldwide angling media.
The familiar buzz of excitement preceding the draw for pegs inspired winning thoughts for all participants and the tension mounted still further as the peg draw progressed. Title sponsor JRC had provided 260 XL Hi-care carp Mats forming a fantastic stage backdrop for the opening ceremony and greatly appreciated by the competitors. Of course, after the draw there were mixed emotions amongst competitors, just as there is in any competition… some were delighted with their draw and others not so delighted, such is the predictable randomness of such occasions.
With very few of the most favoured pegs being drawn by English competitors, the trophy seemed destined to be inscribed with the names of anglers of a different nationality for the first time in five years on Madine. If the first few days were anything to go by, that was certainly going to be the case, as the lead was being keenly contested between Romanian pair Emilian Paraschiv & Nelu Capitanu in peg PV-TV 16, and German pair Jens Gassen & Thomas Muller in peg SBS 10. Then, on the 3rd and fateful day, with the Romanian pair clinging to the tenuous lead they had established on day 2, they were disqualified for continuous infringement of several rules.
The benefactors were in no mood to relinquish their newfound leadership, and on day 4 they established a convincing and unassailable lead with an amazing 10 fish haul for the day. With the weather conditions changing dramatically later that night, it was entirely possible that the final run-in could have swung in favour of other competitors in other areas of the lake and indeed, the PV-TV and Ultima sections began to benefit from this change.
However, it was far too little far too late and although not ultimately needed, two more fish in the last two days were caught by the German duo to seal their victory in fine style. Congratulations go to new World Carp Classic champions, Jens Gassen & Thomas Muller of Germany who, on their way to the title set a new World Carp Classic record catch weight of 377.6 kg.
The winning catch placed them more than 250 kg ahead of their nearest challengers, Dan Moorcroft & Colin Gray of England, whilst Gabriel Popa & Ion Nitu of Romania were a further 21 kg adrift in third place.
The incredible and record breaking catch ensured Team Deutschland1 victory in the Team Event also, with a total of 409 kg. An emphatic 208.8 kg separated the first two teams as Team CC Moore claimed 2nd spot ahead of 3rd placed JRC1 who had a total of 89.4 kg.
On the Friday, Aivars Rudzinskis of Latvia caught a fantastic 25.3 kg mirror to claim the biggest fish of the event award; this fish came amid a veritable haul of 20kg plus carp caught around the lake and was one of many that ensured the average weight would yet again surpass that of previous years. Another year passes and still more records are broken!
There were 123 fish caught 38 of which were 40lbs and 6 over 50lbs . The average of all fish caught was over 30lbs.
The exciting news for 2012 is that the event will be changing locations, and for the very first time in its history moving away from France. The amazing Lake Bolsena in Italy, with its surface area of some 113.5 km2 (43.8 sq miles), and its width 11 km (6.8 mi) and length 13 km (8.1 miles) will be the scene where the World Carp Classic 2012 is played out. With it’s stunning vistas appealing to the senses and its large head of huge fish gracing our nets, Bolsena will ensure that this is a time and place where friendships are forged, dreams are fulfilled and great memories will be created. For full coverage with videos and photographs and event results along with details of 2012 event visit the event website www.worldcarpclassic.com
Picture: Winners Jens Gassen & Thomas Muller of Germany