The world record carp has been broken by Martin Locke: "The only way I can describe the shock of this capture is to compare it to sitting alone in a dark room and then have someone hurl a brick through the window."
These are the words of Martin 'Lucky' Locke, who last week smashed the world carp record with this huge mirror weighing 94lb.
The giant, known as 'Briggs' Fish', beats the previous record by 3lb and was taken by the Kent-based Solar Tackle boss when a week-long trip to Rainbow Lake in France produced a single 'life-changing' bite.
His bait had been sitting over a light scattering of mixed seeds, hemp and crushed boilies for four days until a rod-wrenching take in the early hours of the morning saw him jump into a boat and prepare to do battle with the same fish that set his previous personal best of 84lb back in September 2008.
"Imagine experiencing the most ferocious barbel bite you could ever get, striking into what felt like a brick wall and then doing battle with a 94lb carp that's living in a minefield of sunken trees. I went through a rollercoaster of emotions during the fight," said an elated Martin, who took the fish from swim 12 on the 110-acre venue.
"Once I'd got the boat over the fish I honestly thought I'd hooked a snag because it was so heavy, but then my heart nearly stopped when the beast rolled over on the surface. My landing net was frozen and not laying open properly, so I drew the head and the shoulders of the fish over the net then I dropped the rod in the boat, lifted with both hands and luckily the fish dropped to the bottom of the mesh.
"I will probably never catch a bigger fish in my life, but when I get home I'll be happy catching doubles at my local runs water because I just love catching carp."
Martin used an ultra-tough rig comprising an 85lb Kryston Ton-Up hooklength, a 12oz lead and a size 1 Solar hook sporting a long hair carrying three Solar Club Mix boilies.
The capture means that Rainbow Lake, situated close to Bordeaux, has wrestled back the world record venue crown from fellow French water Les Graviers, which produced the former record carp caught by Andre Komornicki in 2008 at 91lb.
One man who knows first-hand the challenge presented by fishing at Rainbow Lake is Rob Hales, the UK fishery boss who himself banked 'Briggs' Fish' at 90lb 4oz last May.
"Many people have no idea of just how challenging the place is. You can go weeks without a bite and trying to locate where the fish will feed in a huge lake that has a bottom like an underwater jungle is the ultimate test for any angler."