After a bacon sarnie it was off to Summerhayes to see if I could break my jinx on Longs. I got to the draw just in the nick of time and there was a good turnout including some stars, Bob Gullick, Tom Thick, Gary O Shea, Steve Tucker and Alex Murray to name a few. I pulled out peg 12 which put me further down the lake than I'd ever been before. I had Scotty to my right and the owner Pete on my left.
It was a very wide peg and 16 metres was required to reach the far bank (pretty much uncharted territory for me!). I set up a dibber for the far bank and a Carpa 2 for down the middle at 10 metres. Scotty had very kindly done some expanders and some paste for me (cheers bud) and I had some micros and 4mm's for feed. Pete blew for the all in and I cupped in some micros at 10 metres and some 4mm's at 16 (God, my pole is heavy at the length). It was also raining and a fairly strong wind was blowing down the pond just to make things more uncomfortable.
Both Pete and Scotty both started across while I went down the middle with a 4mm expander on the hook. I had a bite straight away and netted a decent roach - good start. The chap next to Scotty was into carp straight away and then Pete started catching as well. I was toss potting in micros every put in and was getting bites but missing most of them! Scotty was getting a few silvers, I then had a lovely little golden tench and followed this up with a skimmer and a crucian. I did lose a small skimmer and was still missing bites. After an hour I had six fish and there wasn't much between me and Scott although Pete was ahead with several carp.
After two hours I had 12 fish, including more skimmers and a nice tench but I had lost what felt like a better skimmer. Pete was still catching across so I fed my 10 metre line again before going across with a 6mm banded pellet on the hook. I was firing some 4mm's over and started getting indications, my first strike saw me attached to the far bank! Next put in I've hooked a carp which shot along the far bank and went behind a partly submerged tree stump, it was solid and I pulled and pulled before coming back with a little bit of line, no hook and just the eye of the float - great! I put another rig on and lost the next fish too and that was enough of that, the wind was making holding my heavy pole very hard work.
I decided to concentrate down the middle as I was already a long way behind Pete and the bloke next to Scott on carp and as Pete was paying three in the silvers, I thought this was my best chance of a brown envelope. I had a couple more skimmers and a couple of small carp but I'd get a few bites and then it would go quiet for half an hour. Scott was getting odd fish but I didn't think he was too far ahead. The wind was making it hard to present the bait properly even at 10 metres. I did try paste once but the rig wasn't right for it and I just kept wondering if it was still on the hook!
Going into the last hour, I'd added another small carp and some decent skimmers but Scotty was now on the paste and bagging with carp and good skimmers. I only added three more fish in the last hour to give me 23 fish and I thought I must have 10lb or so. 15lb odd won the silvers in yesterdays match so I thought I might have a chance of sneaking into third in the silvers pool. Pete started the weigh in and it had been a struggle for quite a few anglers and some had even packed up early. Tom Thick was the first angler to put a good weight on the scales at over 43lb, Alex Murray came close with 42lb odd. There were several 11lb and 12lb silvers weights with the top weight 16lb 9oz so far.
Pete stuck a high 30lbs on the scales and then it was my turn, my three small carp weighed a rather embarrassing 3lb 1oz and then my silvers went 11lb 2oz. I still wasn't sure if I'd sneaked in or not because Pete doesn't pay double bubble so some of the anglers with better silver weights might have framed. Scotty then came close with a silvers weight of 16lb 8oz and his 41lb odd total put him in third place with a few left to weigh. Bob Gullick proved he is mortal by weighing 25lb plus, which was a good weight on the day but not good enough.
Back at the results and Martin Heard was called out as third place in the silvers with 11lb 12oz - bugger, ten poxy ounces. Still I wasn't too far away but still haven't broken my duck on Longs. Next week it's on Sellicks so maybe I'll do better then.
1 - Tom Thick - 43lb+
2 - Alex Murray - 42lb+
3 - Scott Russell (TackleUK) - 41lb+