17lb Derwent barbel misses river best by just 4oz

A simple groundbait feeder rig has accounted for the capture of one of the biggest barbel of the season in the shape of this 17lb specimen.
Weighing just 4oz shy of a venue record, the huge fish was caught by Eathan Waddington during a short evening session on the River Derwent in Derbyshire.
The 24-year-old from Chaddesden arrived at the Earl of Harrington’s controlled stretch of the waterway in Derby, where he set up an open-ended feeder rig incorporating 15lb mainline and a braided hooklink tied to a size 10 hook.
Filling his feeder with Bait-Tech’s new Poloni groundbait, Eathan had to endure two hours without a bite before the rod-tip wrenched around as the specimen made off with his hair-rigged 14mm halibut pellet hookbait.
“I knew the fish was a big one as it nearly took the rod out of the rests and then stripped loads of line off the reel throughout the fight,” he said.
The capture comes just two weeks after Eathan banked his previous personal best, a specimen weighing 15lb 5oz from the same waterway and again featured in Angling Times.
The current venue record is held by Wayne Hopkinson with his 17lb 4oz specimen caught from the same area of the waterway back in 2013, but despite not taking the honour of catching the Derwent’s biggest barbel, Eathan is still delighted with his prize.
“After catching the 15-pounder I thought it would take me a good few years of hard fishing to beat it, but how wrong I was,” he continued.
“I am over the moon with this fish. It just proves that hard work and dedication to my fishing at least three nights a week has paid off handsomely.”