Once again the Angling Trust British Pike Final took place on the Twenty Foot and Glassmoor Bank Drains on Saturday.
Close to 200 anglers lined the banks coming from all over the country to take part in what has become one of the biggest and best predator matches in the country.
Not only is the coveted title and silverware up for grabs but for the winner there’s almost £1,200 to be had.
Unfortunately competitors were greeted by driving, heavy rain and the awful conditions were reflected by the absence of sport in some areas.
However, there were some good double-figure fish taken early in the match with David Cantrell and Mick Garner scoring with samples of 15lb and 14lb 4oz respectively.
Another highlight on the bank was a 6lb pike taken by Ramsey AS evergreen lady piker Joan Cole, who was rewarded with the ladies title.
This year’s winner was Bob Goodwin, who took a superb 25lb 8oz specimen on a deadbait, which was more than enough to take the title.
Sadly this event will be the last final that will see Ann and Ted Rowe as organisers. Ann in particular has been involved with the running of all aspects of the finals for almost 30 years and her involvement will be missed by many.
EAST MIDLAND LEAGUE
On Sunday there was a good turnout for the practice match for those fishing the East Midland Winter League.
The venue was split between Cock Bank Drain and Factory Bank at Ramsey. Neither has been fished heavily since the start of the season so expectations were not that high, although everyone still wanted a draw on the Factory Bank.
It was no surprise to hear at the draw that the match would in fact become two mini matches as those drawn on Cock Bank would have little chance of competing with Factory Bank.
It turned out to be a wise move as Factory Bank produced some cracking weights topped by Anthony Watling. He put a fine 18lb 13oz net of roach to the scales to claim the top spot, closely followed by Colin Oakman, who weighed in 17lb 8oz.
Over on Cock Bank, Kevin Wadge made the most of an end peg draw topping this part of the match with three tench and a few small fish for 9lb 12oz.
Runner-up was Dale Stones, who had one tench and some small roach for 5lb 9 oz.
This weekend’s round of the Winter League will be split equally between the two venues.
I think it was fair to say that only the brave turned up to fish the Whittlesey AA winter series event on Saturday on the fen drains.
Despite the match being fished on the usually productive Carrott Wash section of Bevills Leam, few were keen to take it on.
Considering the conditions John Taylor put a very respectable net of small roach to the scales taken on the pole with squatt for a match-winning 6lb 2oz.
Match organiser Jeff Tuttlebee came second with 5lb 9oz followed by Richard Cook with 4lb 1oz.