41lb 9oz Holme Fen mir­ror carp be­fore GCSEs kick in

Angling Times (UK) - - CARP NEWS -

SCHOOL­BOY Oli Cooper used his last sum­mer hol­i­day be­fore start­ing GCSEs to knuckle down and find a new per­sonal best.

Hav­ing searched for a suit­able venue, the 15-year-old set­tled on Mead­ows Lake at Holme Fen in Cam­bridgeshire, and was re­warded for his hard work with a 41lb 9oz mir­ror.

The teenager told An­gling Times: “I had six weeks off so I de­cided I should do some­thing spe­cial be­fore I needed to start work­ing re­ally hard for my GCSEs.”

Pounc­ing on a can­cel­la­tion at the book­ing-only venue, Oli ar­rived mid­week for a 48-hour stay and de­spite com­ing last in the draw for swims man­aged to se­cure Party Point, the peg he wanted.

Af­ter find­ing a cou­ple of spots in the weed, Oli baited heav­ily with pel­lets, crushed boilies, corn and whole boilies.

“I wasn’t feel­ing too con­fi­dent,” he said. “I had only seen one good fish jump which, although it was on my spot, was much ear­lier on in the day, and I hadn’t had any lin­ers or any­thing in hours.

“The lake hadn’t pro­duced a fish that week so I knew it would be hard, but I ate my din­ner, set my alarm for just be­fore light and went to sleep.”

Af­ter wak­ing to thick mist, Oli got out of his bivvy at 6am as vis­i­bil­ity im­proved.

“Af­ter watch­ing the slick off my spots for an hour-and-a-half I sat on the grass verge think­ing ‘if I get a bite now, how will I get to my rods?’. And, as I was think­ing that, I had a sin­gle bleep – it screamed off and straight away I knew I was into a very good fish.”

The fish ploughed through a suc­ces­sion of weedbeds, but even­tu­ally Oli led it into the mar­gins and, though a crowd had gath­ered, he opted to net it him­self. He said: “The shoul­ders on her were the thick­est I have ever seen!”

The fol­low­ing morn­ing Oli banked a 26lb mir­ror to round off a mem­o­rable ses­sion.

Oli with his hard-won 41lb 9oz mir­ror from Holme Fen.

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