Shore Championship of the British Isles
The Welsh Section hosted this year’s Championship which included participants from Ireland, Scotland, England and of course Wales. The part of the Welsh coastline selected for the competition was in the South West with beaches within easy reach of the picturesque town of Carmarthen which was the Championship HQ.
There were International teams from England , Ireland and Wales along with a number of individuals but numbers were unfortunately down, due possibly to a need to move the competition from the original planned date. Nether the less the organisers worked hard to produce a well planned and friendly competition, sharing their local knowledge to all those able to keep up with a late hour at the bar!
Day 1 was from an angler’s point of view a disaster with most struggling to find a sizeable fish. The organisers were mystified as the weeks leading up to competition the catch rates had been fantastic. The old “you should have been here yesterday” line comes to mind but our very own Dave Lovelock had practiced on the beach recently and had done very well. However some of our anglers did get something on the scorecard and Budge Booker, Dave Lovelock, John Campbell and Reg Clough did well to winkle something out. When the organising committee added up the scores Wales A had capitalised from the poor fishing and England was 7 points behind in 2nd place with Ireland A in 3rd place.
Day 2 and with the benefit of some timing changes from the organising committee, was slightly better with more anglers catching. In the main Flounders and small Bass made up the catches with the odd Weever to keep us on our toes. All the English anglers managed to weigh in with Budge leading the way. All the English team members did well and when the results were posted we had overhauled Wales A and were leading by the slenderest of margins – 1 point.
Day 3 was on Pendine Beach where the anglers drove a few miles along the beach and the fishing was done chasing the water a long way out! The first hour of the match saw many anglers catching LSD’s, good Bass, small Bass and Flounders. Once this bit of action was over the fishing was patchy but some anglers, notably our own Section old boy Budge Booker, consistently caught throughout the match easily winning the section and providing the gossip up and down the beach. Dave Lovelock, Reg Clough, Pete Campbell, P’Nuts Flack and myself all did well with either section wins or seconds which meant that we had increased on our overnight lead.
The presentation was at the very comfortable Ivy Bush Hotel which had been the competition HQ. After a lovely meal the organisers presented the prizes and pins to the successful anglers. It was great to see our anglers featuring so well and back into winning ways.
Budge Booker was the Championship and Gold Pin Winner.
Michal Quinn ( Eire ) was in second place and Silver Pin.
Dave Lovelock came in 3rd place and received the Bronze Pin.
The rest of the team members and individuals did very well with Pete Campbell using his local knowledge to good effect in his first outing as a Section Team member. Most of our Section members benefited from the fantastic prize table that the EFSA Wales organisers had put together with the help from their sponsors.
The International Team results were:
1st – England
2nd – Wales “A”
3rd – Ireland “A”
The English Section results were:
1st Budge Booker
3rd Dave Lovelock – Team
4th Reg Clough – Team
6th Pete Campbell – Team
10th Paull Curtice – Team (Captain)
12th John Campbell – Team (Reserve)
15th Brian “P’nuts” Flack – Team
20th Dean Hilton
The competition was fished in a competitive but friendly atmosphere and our thanks go to the organisers who did everything they could to put on a successful Championship and were only undone by the dreaded “Easterlies”.
And finally………..I couldn’t finish without mentioning the quote of the Championship’s from one of our new members Dean Hilton who walked off the beach at the end of a very hard first day and described it as the “Great trolley dash”!! You really needed to be there to understand it but a number of people had new trolleys on the beach the next day!