The Coach £70,000 Match This Champ Jon Whincup’s pellet feeder tips
THIS WEEK: Set up a pellet feeder rig and bag up on carp
“Once you have cast your feeder into the perfect spot you want it to stay there”
JON Whincup last week bagged the biggest ever payout in UK match fishing when he took victory in the Maver Match This final.
The Bait-Tech and Frenzee-backed star got his name into the history books by amassing 233lb to scoop the £70,000 cheque.
Although his win was secured on the pole, Jon is equally skilled at rod and line tactics and has won countless events on the feeder.
This week he reveals his top five feeder tips to help you put more fish in the net...
1 Don’t think of the feeder as a tactic solely intended to catch on the deck. Set your rig up appropriately and you can often get bites as the rig drops through the water.
When I think I will get bites off bottom I use a cage feeder with a 2ft hook-length, using 0.20mm line when double-figure carp are expected. Pellets work well on the hook but maggots are even better.
This is because they are very light and fall slowly through the final stage of the water column where most of the shoal is likely to be sat waiting to be fed.
2 People often ask me how long your feeder should stay in the swim before you should reel in and start again. I always say three minutes at most.
The commotion of the feeder going into the swim drags fish in from elsewhere, but once everything has gone quiet again your rig loses its full effectiveness.
Commercial fish stocks are now feeding up for the cool months ahead and so they have a rather large appetite right now. Fail to keep topping the swim up with the feeder and the fish will soon drift off and bites will cease.
3 It’s important to work out fairly early in the session what the bottom is like in the area you are casting to.
If there is a steep slope you are going to need to use a larger feeder than you might expect, as a light one will simply roll down the slope and into a zone you aren’t intending to fish.
If you tighten the line up once you have cast but it instantly slackens off, that probably indicates the presence of a slope the feeder is slipping down.
If I am fishing a commercial with a 30 yard chuck to the island and there is a flat bottom I will use an 18g Frenzee Accu-Cast Cage Feeder, switching to a 24g, 30g or even 36g on a slope.
4 Once you have cast your feeder into the perfect spot you want it to stay there. Any movement on the rod or reel could easily dislodge it, emptying the contents and leaving you with a hookbait and empty feeder that is sat away from a feeding shoal.
To stop your feeder moving once it hits the deck, have the rod at just a slight angle, pointing almost directly at where you have cast.
Keep a little bit of tension in the rod tip and you won’t miss a proper bite – the rod will practically be pulled off the rest!
5 Although I like to keep the bait tight and cast down the same hole every time, I know that taking the clip off and chucking a couple of feet further can make a difference, especially when fishing against islands.
The water in front of any reeds is likely to be a little deeper than that against any bare bank you can get up against.
As the day goes on and the water warms, fish are likely to push into that shallow water, and casting among them can instantly step up your catch rate.
A long hook-length can bring bites from fish feeding up from the bottom.
Carp are already feeding up for winter.