Preston Feeder Masters coverage
Day One catch sets O’Driscoll on road to £12k Bough Beach victory
JOHN O’Driscoll has been crowned the first-ever Feeder Masters champion and walked away with the £12,000 prize after victory in the final at Bough Beech Reservoir.
The Manchester angler weighed in a two-day total of 45lb 5oz of skimmers and bream to get the verdict over Gareth Lambert and Eddie Bridon in the Preston Innovations-backed event.
John was on the front foot from the off, winning the first day outright with a 35lb 9oz catch from peg 19 on the dam wall.
He then held his nerve to add 9lb 12oz to his tally on day two from peg 51 on One Tree Point.
“Winning hasn’t really sunk in! Although the money is nice, it means more to me to win in this company. Most of the England Feeder team were fishing, as were a lot of very good sponsored anglers,” he said.
“It’s the biggest thing I’ve ever achieved and I might never do it again! Feeder fishing has taken a back seat for a while but now it’s re-emerging with great competitions such as this.
“It was a 500-mile round trip for me, and with work commitments I didn’t get a chance to practise until the day before. I had a bit of a disaster, but thankfully the first match day went like a dream!” he added.
Casting a 40g Zippla feeder 54m out into 30ft of water, John stuck to his guns all day on this single line, feeding 1kg of worm and two pints of casters. After a few skimmer bream, a purple patch mid-match saw several fish between 2lb and 4lb added, and a real bonus slab of 6lb-7lb.
With only two other weights over 20lb, that left John in a strong position for day two.
“I didn’t panic, but the point of the lake where I’d drawn had been tough the day before. I set myself a target of 10lb,” he said. “Bigger fish were at a premium and I had four skimmers to 1lb. The rest of my catch was made up of fish from 2oz-3oz. My weight was 9lb 12oz, just short of my target.”
John’s main threat came from Gareth Lambert on the other side of the venue, who blitzed the second day with 34lb 13oz.
However, his 8lb 5oz from day one meant that he fell just short with 43lb 2oz and had to settle for second place and £4,000, with Eddie Bridon just behind him taking third and £2,500.
Event organiser Lee Kerry, of Preston Innovations, said: “The results were very close and most of the field still had a chance of making the overall frame going into day two.
“We had finalists from ages 17 to 70, from England, Ireland, Wales and Germany! I can’t thank Richard Taylor of Medway Tackle and the team at Bough Beech enough and we intend to have the final here again next year.
“We’ll also be starting a Feeder Masters Super League, a teamsof-four event which is the first feeder-based team competition in the UK.” revealed Lee.
“Although the money is nice, it means more to me to win in this company”
Winner John O’Driscoll goes full stretch for a Bough Beech bream. The top three line up after the match with their cheques and trophies. (All photos courtesy of Preston Innovations)