Fishing: Broughton High School pupil Oscar Chalmers wins lure league in his first year
Rookie Oscar Chalmers won the junior section of the Daiwa Prorex Lure League run by the Pike Anglers Alliance for Scotland (PAAS) and the Broughton High School pupil is in his first year of competition.
Indeed, the first leg of the league was the Edinburgh teenager's first, proper, piking trip and Oscar hooked into his first pike after five minutes on the Lake of Menteith using a Rapala Super Shad Rap in firetiger colour.
The look on his face when the fish struck was priceless, a mixture of shock and excitement, according to his father, Bryan. The 13-year-old went on to catch several more pike that day, easily beating his dad, and spurring him on to do well in the rest of the events which were held at the Black Loch, Linlithgow and then back on the Lake of Menteith.
It was a real surprise when Oscar learned he fought off 15 other junior members to top the section an even bigger shock when a huge box of prizes, courtesy of he sponsors, turned up on his doorstep. The spoils included a lure bag, a large selection of both hard and soft lures, a 300m spool of J Braid, tackle boxes and long nosed pliers.His father, Bryan, said: "Daiwa should be applauded for encouraging the youngsters to such an extent. It really worked as Oscar can't wait for May, when the 2022/23 league starts again.
Daiwa Prorex are once again sponsoring and have already published the prize list which includes trophies, rods, lures, luggage and terminal tackle.
Meanwhile, the final PAAS events of the 22/23 season take place in February and March with weekends on Linlithgow and the Lake of Menteith but, in the meantime, the club are offering members free tuition in the art of boat handling and basic boat angling technique as education is a key area the club will be focussing on in the coming year.
They have also bought a new set of trophies, including Pike Angler of the Year, Grand Slam and the Dave Turley Memorial Trophy, for the largest lure caught fish. There will also be junior sections in each of the events. And they are gearing up for their annual meeting, called The Gathering, on Saturday, April 15 at Beefeater, Newhouse, Motherwell, from 10.30am. It will feature a talk by Welsh piking maestro, Dale Turner, and tackle stalls, raffles and competitions will be available on the day. Anyone wishing to join PAAS can do so from April and details can be obtained from [email protected]
On to sea fishing and David Cooper won the inaugural Edinburgh Winter Shore League by only two points from Gordon Lyall to take the £100 prize voucher from sponsors, Edinburgh Angling Centre and the Fishing Megastore.
Stevie Souter was third with 36 points but he wins the second place voucher of £60 as Lyall is a member of staff at the Edinburgh Angling Centre. Mike Kyle was third and won a £40 voucher and Ian Campbell, the organiser, said that the event proved a great success. The only woman competing, Edinburgh-based Buffy McAvoy, a member of the Scotland women's sea fishing squad, was 15th.
A total of 23 anglers fished the eighth and final leg at Newhaven and there were no blanks. Midlothian-based Kyle topped the podium with 23 fish with Lyall second on 20 fish and Campbell third on 13 fish. The longest fish was recorded by Kevin McNeish, a 28cm codling.
Overall, the top 20 were: 1, David Cooper 39 points; 2, Gordon Lyall 37; 3, Stevie Souter 36; 4, Mike Kyle 35; 5, Chris Cooper 34; 6, Stevie Burns 28; 7, Steven Barrett 27; 8, Stewart Falconer 19; 9, Ian Campbell 18; 10, Chris Barrett 16; 11, Ryan Venters 16; 12, Gus Brindle 13; 13, Dave McKervail 11; 14, Chris Anderson 9; 15, Buffy McAvoy 8; 16, Lindsay Bell 8; 17, Barry McEwan 7; 18, Cameron Cunningham 6; 19, Kevin McNish 6; 20, Alan Haggon 5.
Only the top five scores of the eight legs counted for final placings and Campbell thanked Arbroath-based Stewart Falconer, David Cooper and Kyle who helped organise the matches.
He said that 40 different anglers took part in the league, some only attending a match or two, and others grinding their way through most legs and he added: "It has been great to see so many new faces and hopefully some have caught the match bug and we will see them again."
He added: "A wee special mention to guys like Chris Cooper, Chris Anderson, Steven Barrett and Ryan Venters who are either relatively new to competition fishing, or had never fished a match in their lives, but fished most legs and picked up some fantastic results along the way. Hopefully, they are the future of match angling in Scotland.
"And a special mention to the only lady to enter, Buffy McAvoy, who turned up and competed with the men, ending with a very respectable top half finish."
He added: "There were a couple of hard matches in there but, generally, the fishing was pretty good and over the eight legs there were 1,062 counting fish caught, an incredible number."
Elsewhere, Grant Olesky (North Berwick) landed a 2lb 11oz fish to win the eighth round of the Bass Rock Shore Angling League's winter series fished in the North Berwick area. The weather was not what was forecast and there was only a gentle roll on the water, but fish were hard to come by.
Willie Stafford from Edinburgh was second with a 2lb 1oz fish and they were the only two anglers to weigh in. Shaun Gardner (North Berwick) leads the chase for the title with 36 points followed by Scottish international Barry McEwan (Port Seton) on 32 points with Jimmy Green (Musselburgh) third, eight points adrift. Dunbar-based Chris Empson, another Scottish international, is fourth on 20 points with Steve Biskup fifth four points behind and James Ogilvie (Haddington), one of the organisers, is sixth on 12 points.
Olesky and Stuart Fairbairn (Haddington) are joint seventh on ten points with Stafford next best two points behind and Alan Brown (West Barns) is ninth with six points.
Elsewhere, Mike and Chris's winter heaviest cod league moves into the fourth round today (SAT, February 4) with fishing from 15.00 to 20.00. Registration is at the Victoria Car Park at Arbroath from 13.30 to 14.00 and all leave at 14.00. Low water is at 19.08.
Meanwhile, Cramond Angling Club officially open their season today (SAT) with their traditional event near School Brae at Cramond from 9am. All are welcome.
Finally, onto coarse fishing, and Dave McAuley won the Del's Fresh Produce winter silver series at Magiscroft with Gus Brindle second and James Woodrow third with another member of the Scottish international squad, Colin Hart, fourth. Derek Brady, the organiser, was fifth.