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By Camo

If I had to choose a team to win this years Carp Championship it would have to be the team, Mid Kent, Ian Day and Dean Marshall.

I know both these anglers and have fished with Ian on many occasions.
They are both equally matched and make a formidable duo.
Ian only lives a short distance from me so I asked if it was possible to interview him shortly after the qualifiers, held at the infamous "Chilham Mill"

Listening to Ian it felt as though I had gone through it myself.


CAMO I believe that you turned up at the venue on Thursday, why was that ?
IANJust to have a scout around the lake to see if any fish were showing, but as the weather forecast for the day and the day previous the wind was Easterly with a few snow showers. There was not a lot seen plus Mid Kent laid on a pre-competition barbeque in the evening then back home and heads down ready for the morning.
CAMOWhat time was the draw ?
IANThe draw was at 09.00Hrs with 12 pairs of anglers picking out of a hat. We came out 14th in the draw
CAMOSo what swim did you both decide on and why ?
IANWe chose "Shooters". The main reason was because we had both fished the swim the previous weekend for one night. The fish were in the area and we caught 9 fish between us up to 26lb. We thought the fish might still be in the area so it was our first choice.
CAMOHow did you go about setting up your swim ? What was your baiting strategy ?
IANBasically we were given 2 hours to set up our bivvies etc. then at 11.00am the horn sounded and we were allowed an hour for baiting up and plumming up etc. We did not do anything until the last half hour when we put roughly 30 to 40 baits in the areas we were going fish. Everyone was issued with a map of the lake which had been marked off with areas that you could fish to. If you were seen crossing your chosen boundry then you were "yellow carded" so to speak and obviously another infringement and you were out of the competition. So we made sure we stayed inside of that.
CAMOThat makes it nice and fair Ian
IANYes very much so
CAMOOK then Ian, swim choice has been made, you have baited up then I presume at 12.00 the horn has gone for the start
IANYes 2 blasts of the horn of the fishery managers car in fact, obviously the signal to commence fishing. One other good thing was that the swims for the competition were numbered 1 to 14 giving the last one out of the hat a choice of 3 swims
CAMOI know you and Dean have fished a lot together and on occasions shared many takes that you had. Did you opt for this situation in this competition ?
IANYes depending on who had the first take. So after this we were basically sitting on 4 rods, but if the fish landed was a tench etc. this was not included.
CAMOIan, the swims on Shooters are not that big, did you both have to fish out of one swim or could you utilise the next swim ?
IANYes on Shooters we could use the 4 swims, as the swims are so small and give us an even area with the rest of the swims. Although we had the choice we decided to fish out of 1 swim and cast across to our designated area trying to keep less lines in the water, also cutting down on the noise etc. as the fish were coming in and out of the bay.
CAMOYes I see why this meant less lines over the water and attacking from an angle instead of fishing straight over their heads ?
IANApart from this tactic we tried to fish as we normally would a day session.
CAMOThat I think is the best attitude to have on this sort of competition otherwise you start going out of your head.
IANWe were both a bit out of sorts with the changeable weather, we were both suffering with colds etc. and the first morning was actually minus 4 degrees and due to the cold Easterly wind we were just fishing for a take.
CAMODo you know who caught the first fish ?
IANI must admit that I thought the island rod where I had about 60 baits was going to go as there were fish all over it, as it is shallow fins and tails were waving at me, but after approximately 90 minutes, peg 11 "One Tree Island" had the first take which was a 13lb - 4oz mirror.
CAMOWhat thoughts were going through your head then ? You were expecting a take then One Tree Island had a take, what was you thinking ?
IANAs it was not a big fish and "The Statue of Chilham Mill", I was not worried.The average fish is over 20lb, plus I knew there were a lot of fish still in the area.
CAMOThe next fish came from where ?
IANI had been sitting on my hands as I was expecting a take then at 2.30pm....WHAM.....the left hand rod just tore off which produced a 22lb - 0oz Common. Then nothing until about 6pm when the lads in the bay had a take.They had a 22lb - 4oz Mirror so were back in second spot and the fish had stopped showing in our areas and were now showing in the bay, this made it a bit tense
CAMOWas anything out that night Ian ?
IANWe heard or saw no action that first night.
CAMODid you sleep at all that first night ?
IANAs we were both a bit under the weather we decided to get our heads down, but we were on edge all the time. I woke up just after 3am and every where was white. I got up to have a look around then got my head down again and got up at 6am. The rod that was at the reeds roared off producing a 10lb - 4oz Common. Putting us back in the lead.
CAMOThats twice you have been in the lead, you both must have been feeling good at this point.
IANYes but where we had the wind pushing towards us, a south westerly, it then turned easterly again.
CAMOYou said earlier that the fish were in the bay, I have noticed on previous sessions on there that the fish tend to stay in the bay in a simular situation, where the wind was from the south then swung around to the east.
IANYes there must have been over 100 fish in the bay. I think if the lads in the bay had been a bit more carp wise they could have had a lot more fish than the one so far. The next fish out came from one pole which was a 31lb - 15oz Mirror.
CAMONice fish
IANYeah but we were still in the lead by a couple of pounds, but as he was photographing that fish, his other rod went off giving him a 10lb - 4oz Mirror.I think that put them in the lead, then again about midday they had a 22lb - 0oz Common. That put them well in the lead.
CAMOThats put a smile on your faces and pushed you back into second place.
IANYeah but then the bay swim had a 16lb - 0oz fish shortly followed by One Tree Island who had a fish over 20lb, so we were now lying 4th. One pole had another fish and the bay took another 2 fish.
CAMODid you have any fish on the last night ?
IANNo, the bay swim had another couple and one tree island had another fish.
CAMOSo what happened on the last morning to put you from 4th place to come second with just a few hours to go ?
IANWe were woke up at first light putting fresh baits out trying to maximise our chances. Then at 7.15am I had a take which produced a 17lb - 0oz Mirror which was very welcome.That fish then put us in 3rd place by just a couple of ounces so we really needed a fish of over 14lb - 0oz to secure 2nd place by just a couple of ounces. When 10am came and no other fish were landed we knew that we were in with a chance as this end of the lake can produce at any time of the day.
CAMOIt must have been very tense that last morning.
IANYes we were pacing up and down a bit. Then the kettle went on, sat down for a much needed cuppa, and we said "Oh well, what will be will be!"
CAMOIf I know the water as well as I think I do, I would estimate that one of you had a take at approximately 11am
IANIt was 10.45am actually. The rod to the reeds went off and Dean was in and this time there were about 10 people behind us watching. Then I saw the fish roll about 35 yards out and I knew Dean had a good 20 on.Dean thought it was a little pastie but it weighed in at 23lb - 3oz. A nice Common, we were elated. Especially when the horn sounded. We packed up and we were both on a high, it was a real buzz and the atmosphere at the presentation was brilliant.
CAMOWell done to both yourself Ian and Dean...Congratulations...tight lines for the final