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My best-ever Evesham Festival… so far!

(Part Two – The Abu Garcia Wychavon Championship)

The Abu Garcia Wychavon Champs is always fished on the Sunday, In went the golden drawing hand and out came Peg 29. Result! This was easily one of the most in-form pegs on the river this season. Historically Peg 30 is better but for some reason the big roach that live here seem to have pushed up a peg. These pegs also hold big barbel so even if the roach don’t feed there’s something else to target. I could have done without Spud Murphy drawing Peg 30 below me as he’d just won the previous day and was obviously on top form but I still had a job to do.

This part of the river is the narrowest, shallowest and fastest bit. The colour had really dropped out put the pace was absolutely tanking through. The wind was also really blustery and would make presentation a nightmare so I stuck to the 13m line again rather than risk fishing 14 metres.

Again, a two-pronged attack was all I wanted to do. Bloodworm at 13m (feeding identically to the day before) and a big-fish choppy swim close in. Both swims were around 4ft to 5ft deep. I found a clear spot close at seven metres and needed a 4g Cralusso Torpedo flattie to hold the bait still. I never had a bite here but I only tried it two or three times. The rest of the day was spent constantly running and running a rig down the peg at 13 metres. I swapped between five rigs from a light 0.6g Jean Francois up to a massive 4g Abbeville just so I could vary the presentation and speed of the rig going through. I’d probably only get a bite every 20 runs through but when I did the fish was worth catching – the best roach must have gone a pound and the rest were two and three to the pound! Each rig caught a fish but if I had to pick one it was a 1.5g Jean Francois shotted with three No8 droppers, doubled-up No3 elastic and a size 18 or 20 PR311 hook. Pretty positive stuff!

I ended up with about 20 roach, two small dace, a 3oz hybrid, four gudgeon and eight minnows. Not many fish I’m sure you’ll agree so I guessed I had about 6lb tops. Wrong! My catch went an unbelievable 8lb 4oz, enough to win the section AND the match. I lost a £1 bet to Chris Vandervleit, though, who reckoned I had more than 7lb before the weigh in – but I still ended up £2,999 better off at the end of the day. I’m obviously crap at guessing my weight but who cares. Wahoo!

1st Jon Arthur, Pole Fishing/Shakespeare Superteam, Peg 29 - 8-4-0
2nd Pete Jayes, Quorn Van den Eynde, Peg 5 - 8-0-0
3rd Danny Ashington, Sensas/Kamasan Starlets, Peg 16 - 7-13-0
4th= Rich Reynolds, Shakespeare Superteam, Peg 6 - 5-13-0
4th= Dave Harpin, Drennan/Daiwa Dorking, Peg 2 - 5-13-0

Jon Arthur

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