Simon Skelton is no stranger to competition finals, but he will be competing in his first ever Fish’O’Mania this July, where he will face the Sky Sports cameras and the best anglers for the £50,000 prize.
Skelton picked up his qualifying berth at the Woodland View Fishery complex in a tight qualifier event late in March. However, after struggling for the first three hours of the match, Skelton will feel lucky to have come through. So lucky in fact he may fancy his chances and will certainly be hoping his luck and form stay intact for Fish’O’Mania in July. With an Energy casino promo code, you can test your luck as well.
Despite the slow start the carp started to stir and a rich seam of fish allowed Skelton to secure 114KG overall, a weight the Melton-based angler did not expect.
“The venue was fishing hard and 100lb was going to be a mega weight so I set my stall out to catch 70 to 80lb,” he said.
“I thought I had between 95 and 100lb at the end and when it was weighed at 114lb I knew that was going to be there or thereabouts.”
Skelton drew peg 7 and made the most of the warming water to go down the edge of his peg and find a god vein of carp. After that slow opening three hours, Skelton found some luck and feeding micro pellet while fishing with the expander pellet, he reeled several fish consecutively, with maximum weights up to 8lb.
Skelton says his decision to wait out the poor early fishing paid off.
“Halfway through the match I probably had 25lb to 30lb and some people were packing up, but I put a bit of bait down the edge and in 15 minutes I saw the tails coming out of the water.
“I took 80lb in the last two-and-a-half hours. Never give up, that’s my motto.”
Now Skelton will compete at Fish’O’Mania for the first time, a challenge he says he is relishing. Describing the event as the most prestigious, Skelton says reaching Fish’O’Mania surpasses his previous final positions.
“It’s massive. I have qualified for Maver Match This a few times which is a major final and you feel on top of the world, but to get into Fish’O’Mania, I’m absolutely buzzing… I enter about half the qualifiers and I’ve come second and third, but never before had the luck you need to win one.”
Skelton was pushed all the way at Woodland View, with Jack Danby following in second place with 108-10. Placed on the High Pool and in peg 12, Danby found consistency by fishing caster up on a long pole. During the day he was catching F1 carp weighing up to 8lb. Danby may have felt he was on his way to victory before Skelton’s late show run of fish.
John Whincup used his peg 31 position to finish in third and fished 101-0.
1st Simon Skelton Dynamite Baits 114-0
2nd Jack Danby Dynamite Baits 108-10
3rd Jon Whincup Frenzee/Baitech 101-0
4th Andy Pollard Woodland View 93-10
5th Andy Christie Woodland View 85-1
Fish’O’Mania qualifiers will continue through, May, and June with 18 events still to play before the Fish’O’Mania final on Saturday, July 13.