This year’s Anglian Water Airflo International held recently at Rutland Water ended with the winner walking away with the ‘biggest competition on the trout fishing calendar’, by the narrowest of margins – Team Elinor 139lb 55/8oz; Ospreys 135lb 61/2oz.
The winning team: consisting of team captain Ed Foster, Richard Slater, Brad Gifford, Paul Haskey, Ian Donaldson and Mick O’Farrell put in an excellent and consistent performance against the 22 other top teams: where they boated 68 fish for their gold medal-winning weight in the two-day event.
The silver medal went to Ospreys – captained by Hywell Morgan, where the team landed 62 fish over the two days, which ensured the final outcome went to the wire, and placed them well ahead of third-placed Welsh Hawks, who were ensured the bronze medal with a 57-fish catch of 127lb 11/8oz.
The top overseas prize went to G.Loomis Shimano Belgium.
The top individual rod was local angler Paul Wild, fishing for Orvis Team Rutland. Paul took eight fish on both days for a combined weight of 36lb 15oz, which put him just ounces ahead of Team Airflo’s Steve Winstone and Renegades John Hardy who took second and third spot respectively.
The best fish of the match fell to Seighford Sharks team member Phil Longstaff who took a superb 5lb 11/2oz rainbow. John Braithwaite, fishing for Blagdon FlyFishers, caught the best brown at 4lb 11/4oz. The best bag of the match went to Frederick Schmitt fishing for Froggies Fly Fishers – an eight-fish catch for 21lb 21/2oz – including time bonus.
All the prizes were awarded at the Gala dinner following the second day of competition, where Team Elinor were presented with their gold medals, the coveted silver salver, £1,500 cash and tackle prizes. It was a bittersweet event for last year’s winners the Seighford Sharks, as they sportingly accepted their 2014 prize - the wooden spoon awarded for 23rd place.