Records tumbled during the latest heat of the popular UK Carp Cup when the ten-man field hauled out almost 3,000lb of fish in less than two days of hectic action.
The talented field of specimen anglers made their way to the prolific Chestnut Pool to try to seal their place in the big money final and it was bagging machine Mark Bartlett that grabbed pole position at the Bedfordshire complex by recording an arm-aching total of 769lb 3oz.
Backing weights were equally strong, with Christopher Daniels in second with 525lb 15oz and Nash’s Alan Blair completing the frame with 489lb 15oz.
Overall, the competitors netted 427 carp to a best of 24lb 11oz to break the previous record for the highest combined weight by over 350lb.
Fox and Matrix-backed angler Mark is no stranger to landing big weights in specimen carp events and admits placing his faith in both traditional match and specimen tactics proved key to pulling away from the rest of the field.
“Small in-line Method feeders and the pellet waggler were vital during the weekend and I caught well over half my fish while sat on a seatbox as opposed to sat in a bivvy!” he explained.
“It was a case of switching tactics and the areas you were fishing regularly as the fish were in a fickle mood. I even wound my rods in on the second night to get some sleep and if I hadn’t done that I’m confident I’d have done a much bigger weight,” he added.
Organisers of the event were on hand to watch the high quality bagging on show, and Ian Poole told Angling Times: “The venue produced a lot of fish in last year’s qualifier but after the patchy weather we never expected such an epic event. I think the fishery is capable of breaking the record yet again in another heat but fisheries such as Barston Lakes also hold enough fish to take their place in the record books.”
Although most onlookers have been shocked at the quantity of fish landed in the allotted time frame, venue boss Pete Wilson isn’t surprised at all. He said: “We know what the fishery is capable of when anglers of this calibre are on the bank. The lads at the top never stopped catching and I’m sure they were exhausted after putting in such fantastic displays!”