The 2022 EFSA European Species was held out of Olafsvik, Iceland, on the 27th and 28th of May. The target species this year were Cod and Coalfish.
All the 19 English anglers that fished this Championship, travelled out on the 25th of May so most could go out for a half day practice on the day before the event. For Gary Geoghegan it was his first-time fishing Iceland, so he was well pleased to catch his personal best Cod and Coalfish, both fish over 30 pound in weight. As most of us were self-catering this also allowed us to take some fresh Icelandic fish to dine on that evening!
On the evening of the 26th May the anglers attended at the Community House Klif, venue for the opening ceremony and presentation. After a few words from Kristinn Jonasson, Mayor of the Municipality of Snaefellsbaer, Thorir Sveinsson then said a few words on the Championship before declaring the Championship officially open. This was also a good opportunity to meet up with the anglers from the other Sections most of whom we have not met for 2 years due to Covid restrictions. This Championship was due to be run in 2021 but had to be deferred to this year.
Day 1 of the Championship and 14 boats put to sea at 0700. There should have been 17 boats but there were mechanical issues with the other 3 boats. So, at a meeting the day before it was decided that the crews from the 3 boats missing would fish the afternoon into evening, going out when 3 nominated boats returned from the morning fishing, a long day for those skippers. As with all competition it is dependent on the boat skippers to locate the fish before the angler’s ability is put to the test. Some boats located a lot of smaller fish while others a good number of fish over 1 metre.
We were fishing for cod and coalfish only to score in this Championship, all fish were measured and scored either 1 point for the fish under 35cm and for longer fish 4, 15 points and 50 points for fish over 101 cm. some boats found up to a 100 smaller fish while other boats the anglers had many fish over 101 cm to make their total score. So, after the scores were recorded obviously there were 17 boat winners on 100%, so it was then down to fish points. So, day 1 and Scott Yuille of Scotland was top with 819 fish points, with Kim Bowden second on 671 and Richard Russell third with 527.
Day 2 and the format as yesterday, but with all anglers fishing 5 hours instead of the 6. This was to allow the afternoon boats to get back in and the anglers to get off and change in time for the presentation that evening. Also, the results had to be entered to determine the overall winners. At the end of day 2 and 6 anglers had won their boats on both days so all on 200%, so it was all down to the fish points and countback to determine the overall placing.
During the 2 days of fishing by the 64 anglers that attended, the total catch of cod and coalfish was in the order of 6000 quality fish, so great fishing.
So, it was a return to the Community House Klif for the presentation and Gala dinner. First the gala dinner. which was a good buffet with plenty of choice and with wine on the tables to accompany it.
Then it was all down to the awards for the top anglers. Day 2 was not so good for the top English anglers as yesterday, but just outside the honours the 2 English anglers on 200% were Cliff Newbold in 5th and Rod Adamson in 6th, with Matt Osborne in 7th on 199,51%. Closer than Matt realised, as one fish of 4 points or more on day 1 and he would have been 1st as he had the most fish points in the Championship with 1165 fish points. Hard luck Matt! Can’t mention myself for much else but I (Kim Bowden), had the second most fish points in Championship on 1027. Also, worth a mention Matt had the longest coalfish of 124cm. The longest Cod went to a local, Skarpheoinn Asbjornsson, with a fish of 134 cm. See pictures below of these mighty fish
Overall winners were 1st Scott Gibson, Scotland, winning the gold pin. Second and Silver pin to Saevar Guomundsson, Iceland and third and bronze pin to Francois Beukes from South Africa.
In the National teams it was Scotland A 1st, Gibraltar A 2nd and South Africa A 3rd
Kim Bowden was given the time to address the anglers and inform them that the 2023 European Species is for bream out of Weymouth. All Sections other than England had a brochure for the event in their welcome pack given at the opening ceremony.
Thorir closed the event by thanking all the boats involved in the event and to the anglers for coming to Olafsvik.
Links to the full results are below.
- Individual Overall
- Senior Overall
- 2 Man Open Overall
- 4 Man Open Overall
- National Team Overall
- Longest Fish – Tagged Fish