Keen to strike while the iron is hot, Angling Trust RiverFest creator Dave Harrell is already planning the 2014 event and is appealing for interested parties to come forward and put their local waterways into the melting pot for next summer’s qualifiers.
Basking in the glow of what was unanimously voted a hit, Dave has exclusively revealed to Angling Times that a number of new rivers will host eliminators in 2014 including the River Don, Warwickshire Avon and River Weaver as well as the likes of the Thames that hosted matches this year being lined up for another heat elsewhere on its length.
However, nothing has been finalised and Dave is all ears to any venue as he strives to achieve the right demographic to allow as many anglers around the UK as possible to take part.
“The event surpassed even my expectations so I want to get next year’s competition underway and that means appealing to match organisers and clubs that control rivers to put their waters forward,” Dave explained. “While I was happy with most of the venues used in 2013 there are some I’d like to replace simply to provide anglers with better fishing and to spread the matches around a bit more. I’ve already had enquiries but with so many rivers to consider I think we can make next year’s River Fest brilliant.”
Dave is also hoping to secure more sponsorship for the final, upping the prize for the winner from an already substantial £10,000 and putting the match on a par with Fish O’Mania and Maver Match This in terms of money on offer.
“I’m sure we can secure more sponsorship as RiverFest goes from strength to strength but from talking to a lot of the finalists last weekend, they were more than happy to see river fishing get the same big match treatment that commercial carp waters get. The cash was secondary really.”
**Any organisations or water owners interested in running a qualifier on their stretch of river should email: firstname.lastname@example.org**