Roach spe­cial!

Angling Times (UK) - - NEWS - IAN JONES News Edi­tor

Huge 3lb-plus redfin leads in­cred­i­ble week for spec­i­men roach

ASLIGHT tem­per­a­ture drop has sent shoals of big roach into a feed­ing frenzy in what has been a phe­nom­e­nal week for catches.

De­spite a com­bi­na­tion of blus­tery winds and frosty con­di­tions, rav­en­ous redfins have been on the feed across the UK.

The largest roach banked fell to James Brown, the sea­son’s best so far at 3lb 14oz.

It took a washed-out pink More­takes Pro­matein Liver pop-up boilie pre­sented on scaled-down carp tackle, prov­ing that some­times big­ger baits are needed to get through to the larger roach. The NHS para­medic from Suf­folk told Angling Times: “I had been en­joy­ing a Fri­day af­ter­noon to Mon­day morn­ing carp ses­sion at High­bridge Fish­eries in Nor­folk, but by Sun­day all I’d had was a low dou­ble.

“I no­ticed quite a few roach top­ping on the shelf line on Sun­day morn­ing where I had been bait­ing up all week­end, and de­cided that if it was a quiet night for carp I’d have a go.”

By Mon­day morn­ing the roach could still be seen break­ing the sur­face over James’ spot 25 yards from the bank, so af­ter in­tro­duc­ing more corn, pel­lets and More­takes Pro­matein Liver boilies he cast out his free-run­ning pop-up rig. “I spoke at length to one of the syn­di­cate spec­i­men roach hun­ters about my in­ten­tion to get the feed­ers, mag­gots and quiv­er­tips out, but he sug­gested that boilies were more ef­fec­tive on a run­ning lead for these fish,” James added.

“Af­ter fol­low­ing his in­struc­tions it wasn’t long be­fore I had a twitchy take which I knew was a roach, but be­cause I was us­ing gear in­tended for 40lb carp the fight was fairly sub­dued.

“Con­sid­er­ing I hadn’t ini­tially planned on fish­ing for the roach I was very happy with the re­sult.”

A huge piece of bread­flake was key to the next roach cap­ture – a chunky 2lb 10oz redfin for spec­i­men hunter Si­mon Da­ley.

The 42-year-old roofer trot­ted the en­tic­ing bait along a far­bank crease on a stretch of the Hamp­shire Avon, and re­ceived a pos­i­tive bite just be­fore night­fall. He said: “I had a take about 30 yards down the run and I knew when I set the hook that it was a big fish.

“It sur­faced half­way up the run and my legs just turned to jelly.”

Ar­ron Seder was next to cash in on the recent roach form with a 2lb 4oz spec­i­men. It was a new per­sonal best for Ar­ron, who tar­geted a south­ern chalk stream with mag­gots and hempseed.

A sin­gle white mag­got proved to be the down­fall of the fish, as well as a 5lb chub, a bag of grayling and two small perch. Just a cou­ple of weeks af­ter

catch­ing a 3lb 2oz roach in the an­nual Avon Roach Project match, Mark Ever­ard vis­ited a stretch of the Bris­tol Avon to take an­other redfin, this time weigh­ing 2lb 4oz.

Mak­ing the most of a tight 20-minute feed­ing win­dow, Mark leg­ered bread­flake over liq­uidised bread to take the fine fish along with a string of oth­ers to 1lb 12oz.

Fi­nally, Andy Childs rounded off the list of spec­i­men roach catches when a 2lb 1oz fish picked up his hookbait dur­ing a cru­cian fish­ing ses­sion on Go­dalm­ing AS’s John­son’s Lake in Sur­rey.

James Brown’s 3lb 14oz roach, best this sea­son.

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