News & Articles

 

Glasgow 2013

Posted by mikeh On September 16th, 2013

For the first time in living memory we held a meeting without the presence of Mike Marshall who was unable to make the trip. This presented a unique logistical problem because Mike usually drives to all the events and transports all of our equipment with him. This year meant getting it there by other methods which was personal luggage, delivery service and local assistance. As it turned out it all arrived, with the exception of cast markers which we improvised. For once the weather seemed kind to us, no torrential rain and no prelude to a hurricane, as in previous years, but the sting in the tail was some very ‘heavy’ air and a fickle breeze which caused the majority of the casts to dump short of where they might have gone in kinder conditions.

Despite this we still had a very good competition that had some new faces in the leading positions. Scott Louden and young James Hek are certainly names to watch out for in the future. It was great to see Andrew Toft taking an interest in single handed fly rods and trying out the double handed tournament gear for the first time.

James Hek improved the J17 #5 record to 116’1” and set the J17 benchmark. Tracy Thomas continued her advance through the women’s records by adding the T120 event to her list of achievements.

I would like to thank everyone who helped with all the work needed for the event to run smoothly, so that’s all of you. And special thanks to Ben Dixon and Alberto Laidlaw for all their help in making sure all the equipment we needed was delivered and returned.

So, not a lot to report really. It all went well and everyone enjoyed themselves. ‘Nuf said’.

The next meeting is the last of the season at Shenfield (Brentwood) so see you there.

Mike

OSWESTRY MEETING SUCCESS FEATURES IN TROUT FISHERMAN MAGAZINE

Posted by david On August 24th, 2013

 

Learn to cast the fun way.

THE British Fly Casting Club (BFCC) puts on a series of annual meetings around the UK – see: www.thebfcc.co.uk under Calendar, where any casters can expect a friendly welcome and to improve their casting.

At the meeting at Oswestry on June 15, member Nigel Rogers achieved a superb result by casting his 7wt outfit 87ft 8in from his wheelchair and won himself a 25-yard badge. But perhaps, more importantly, he vowed to return again to achieve the 30-yard badge he so nearly won.

igel receiving tuition from CFCC Coach John Reynolds

Chairman Mike Marshall said: “This is an example of the BFCC working at its best and exactly as it was originally envisaged.”

Can anyone help?

Posted by mikeh On August 18th, 2013

Hi guys,

A situation has arisen where Mike Marshall will not be able to attend the Glasgow meeting on the 8th of September. As you all know Mike usually drives to each event bringing all the rods, reels and other equipment necessary. On this occasion it is proving difficult to make alternative arrangements, especially for the heavier tournament rods. If any of you can offer either help or a useful suggestion could you please email or phone Mike and let him know.

Many thanks,

Mike H

Alnwick 2013

Posted by mikeh On August 13th, 2013

I have heard it’s quite grim up north but from what I saw as I drove up the A1 wasn’t grim at all, quite lovely in fact, and Alnwick is quite a picturesque little town. I normally turn left at Scotch Corner so when I didn’t I was in entirely new territory. This was the first BFCC event in the North East so it was a bit of a shame that all Peter Thains efforts to get a good turnout didn’t quite materialise but we had the benefit that because we were so far north we had the pleasure of a few of our Scots friends making a trip south so all in all we had quite a good event.

The wind might have been a bit kinder. The direction was steady but varied from zero to gusty  in the space of one false cast to another but generally blew  quite strongly all day, it was a real rhythm breaker, you thought you had set yourself up for a decent cast and then a gust would blow your back cast out or it dropped away just as you hit the delivery. Despite this there were still some creditable casts and Peter did increase the ST 27 record to a more respectable 161+ft. Not out of sight so still all to play for. In fact the only events Peter didn’t win was the #7 (me) and the B100 which was won by Mike Barrio, who seemed slightly disappointed he hadn’t come last. Better luck in Glasgow Mike.

That is the bare bones of the meeting but there is a slight sub text in that all the members who had driven up from down south were generally so busy that we didn’t have much of a chance to meet and socialise with the locals which is a great shame because we do pride ourselves on being a friendly club. Surprisingly one of the places we do get to know each other and can have a bit of banter is marking the lanes. The event can’t happen without markers and it’s a great place to look at how the different casters cope with the conditions, offer the odd word of encouragement or take the piss. At all our other events this isn’t normally an issue because everyone chips in but for some reason I can’t put my finger on it was an issue here. I appreciate this is a new area for us and this was the first event so no-one knew how we operated on the day. We do rely heavily on the people attending all mucking in and sharing the workload where they can. It makes the event come alive.

Well done Tracy for taking the five and seven women’s records and to Wendy for extending her S50 women’s record.

Really well done to Peter Thain for nearly getting a clean sweep and for getting us to Alnwick in the first place.

Mike H

ALDERMASTON SUN. 14 JULY 2013

Posted by mike On July 17th, 2013

We should be very grateful to Tracy Thomas and James Evans for organising our meeting at Aldermaston, because the new venue provides all the facilities and space we need to function really effectively. This was so clearly demonstrated on Sunday, a day when it seemed the Carribean came to Berkshire and the air-conditioned club house was hard to leave! In fact it was by far the hottest casting day I have ever experienced and says much about the BFCC’s tenacity of purpose, that our programme was completed, but how, goodness only knows? The only downside was that the hot weather caused a depleted turn-out.

On the coaching front we were very lucky when Brian Wickens passed on his knowledge of double handed speycasting on grass, which was fascinating to see and for Members to try. Also, on the single handed front, I was kept fairly busy throughout the day.

The competitions started with Accuracy, which was won by Tracy Thomas with 95 points, who showed the men how it should be done! This was followed by other events, of which the following were worthy of special note: James Evans won the #5 distance using a new AtomSix rod built for us by Steve Parkes; David Fisher won the new B110 class with 4 inches more than Mick Copeman; Steve Parkes won the T120 with an excellent 189ft 7ins, considering the conditions.

There is no doubt we will return to Aldermaston in 2014 and it is now time to look forward to Alnwick on Sun. 11 August.

Mike M.

Oswestry 2013

Posted by mikeh On June 18th, 2013

With deep foreboding I drove north. The forecast gave dire warnings of storms,  heavy rain and wind. Deep joy. Even Wendy’s  App proclaimed heavy rain about lunch time. Pretty much none of it happened, yes, the wind was a bit blustery on occasion and we did get a few spots of rain, but that’s all. We did not have to drop our rods and run for cover once.

The wind did cause a few problems for those that CAN’T FORM A LOOP on their back cast (you know who you are) but generally the standard was as good as ever and some good distances were achieved. Wendy Bath proved her womens record from our last event was no fluke by consistently getting into the ninety foot plus bracket. Andrew Bagshaw could be up there with the best if he practiced a bit and Ni Rogers proved you don’t have to have two good legs by hitting some pretty impressive casts from a wheelchair. Tracy Thomas and I increased our respective ST27 records. John Reynolds hit an S60 record in the seven event, nice to see the old boy can still cast a bit.

I would like to mention everyone as they all contributed to a really nice day so please all give yourselves a pat on the back, you deserve it. As do our hosts who once again excelled themselves by providing us with great refreshments as usual.

Well done those of you that achieved your distance badges and welcome new member Steve Parkes.

Unfortunately I will not be at the Aldermaston event because I will be on holiday and enjoying the benefits of inside information from John Dunmall who has just come back from the same place. Thanks John and well done on your 25yrd badge.

Mike H

I Remember When

Posted by mikeh On June 7th, 2013

Yes indeedy, I do remember the day’s when a BFCC meeting consisted of two men and a dog, and sometimes even the dog didn’t turn up. This was one of those rare days for the new and revitalised BFCC when overall turn out was only twelve, which would have been classed as a red letter day five or six years ago. It just goes to show how far we have come in recent years. However the benefits of a relatively small turnout was that it turned into a very relaxed day where several records were broken. For instance; Wendy Bath achieved her ambition of getting into the record books with a cast of 94′ 4” in the five weight, which just pips Sue McNivens  previous record. Tracy Thomas is the Women’s record holder in the new ST27 (27g head event) class. Mick Copeman not only blitzed the B100 class but has recorded V70 bests in the #5, 7 and ST27 events and I managed to pop the ST27 just a bit further than anyone else and get the record for that. I don’t expect it to last long so I will enjoy it while it’s mine.

There were some other notable casts but the one that impressed me (because I had to leap out of the way of it) was Brian Szukala getting the T120 to 195′ and it’s the first time he has cast it. God help us if he actually gets good at it. He was only just beaten by Mike Marshall who, uncharacteristically, didn’t quite get over the 200′ mark.

There were badges for Wendy Bath (30yds) and Brian Szukala (35yds) and Brian also qualified for his 65yd badge.

Surprise of the day was to see Mark Surtees compete in the T120 and T50 D/H events and, seemingly, enjoying it.

You may notice we did cast the T50 event but there isn’t a class for it yet. We have yet to finalise the rules and equipment, mainly the line, yet. Once we do it will become part of the competition.

Many thanks to all those that helped out with marking and timing. Special thanks to Alan Bath for taking over the timing, it’s nice to see him recovering so well from recent illness.

And finally thanks to Willesborough Cricket Club for hosting us and Bobby Ades for providing us with superb refreshments.

We will book the event again for next year so all of you who missed out on some really good casting can come along and see what you missed.

 

Cullumpton 2013

Posted by mikeh On April 14th, 2013

After the most miserable winter I can remember we were blessed to have some decent weather for the first event of the year. A chance to blow away the cobwebs, try to remember which end of the fly rod to hold and catch up with friends old and new while lamenting the passing of Tom Hill who was instrumental in helping us set up Cullumpton as a venue. We had a really good turnout and considering the lack of practice some of us have had over the last few months there were some very creditable casts laid down. The wind did get up a bit but couldn’t decide which way it wanted to blow and the turbulence that was created by the big tree in the corner made for some bizarre back casts on occasion, but that’s fly casting. One of the few who have braved the elements this winter to practice was James Evans who is going to threaten some of the outright records this year, if we get the conditions right on the day. After a fantastic 136′ during #7 competition he decided to have a crack at the record and pipped Paul Ardens senior record with a cast of 139′ but just failed to hit the outright record. Better luck next time James. I, on the other hand was informed I had the dubious honour of extending the S60 (I know, I don’t look it…do I?) #7 record to 129′ 9”. Later Tracy Thomas extended her #9 record to 114’9” and was also the first (I think) woman to win the B100 class. Rob Doyle proved to be a natural with the Monster (T120) and after a brief master class from Mike Marshall promptly stuck it out 190′, which is mighty impressive for a first attempt. Toby Merigan could be a serious contender as he was there or thereabouts in all the events he took part in before he had to leave. Get serious Toby and actually practice! It was great to see Alan Bath well on the way to recovery after his recent illness and Wendy back in the old routine of making sure everyone handed over their cash. Many thanks to Alan, Wendy and Tracy for helping the competition run so smoothly and everyone else for helping out on the lanes. I think it was the most enjoyable comp I have had for quite a while. Mike Marshall did his usual sterling job of taking care of all those that came just for tuition and our host and hostess, Bryan and Sue Reeve, in the pavilion did an outstanding job of keeping us all refreshed and fed. Thank you all so much. See you all next April. Mike Heritage

Shenfield 2012

Posted by mikeh On October 10th, 2012

I haven’t looked back at the write-ups for our previous meetings this year but I seem to recall writing a lot about wind and rain. Well, not this time. We had the first heavy frost of the year, light breezes and blue sky. The frost melted away quite quickly but it left the grass very wet and it didn’t really dry out until quite late in the day. Even so it was a pleasure to cast in decent conditions and not have to move the tapes around to follow the wind.

The club is starting to invest in some new rods and the first one was the new MSX Black Diamond 9′ 5 weight. Mike has had one made up with lined rings and I used it to good effect to win the five event. It got a very positive response from everyone who used it. 117′ isn’t a huge distance but concidering the wet grass and non existant breeze, plus it was the first time I had cast the rod, it wasn’t to be sniffed at.
James Evans won the #7 with a very nice cast of 126′ 4”. He insisted I went first to give him a target distance and he pipped me by just under a foot so that’s the last time I pathfind for him!
I had my revenge in the #9 and John Reynolds thrashed the rest of us in the T38 with a very nice 176′ 1”. MM only had a couple of casts with the T120 and ‘dink, dink’ it sailed effortlessy out to 185+, much to Mikes chagrine, he usually goes well over 200!

The B100 was a hotly contested with David Fishers’ aggrigate of 199’7” just winning from Tracy Thomas and Mick Copeman. Tracy has hit a rich vein of form and topped 100′ in three events one of which extended her #9 record to 111’10”.

It was a contrast of styles in the accuracy with my hover and drop thoroughly thrashed by John ‘Machine Gun’ Reynolds style of rapid fire and never mind the arm ache. The accuracy is a nice way to end the day as it involves nearly everyone and is quite light hearted.

The club welcomes Yvonne Webb and John Frank who achieved their 25yrd and 30yrd badges respectively.

So, that’s another year gone. There have been some

Glasgow 2012

Posted by mikeh On September 18th, 2012

Sorry about the lateness of this report but I have just not had the time having been away two weekends on the trot.

This has been a frustrating year weather wise. If it wasn’t raining it had just stopped and we were casting on a marsh, or, it was windy. Glasgow proved just as frustrating because the wind was very fickle, none early on but as it picked up later it couldn’t make up it’s mind which way it wanted to go and we had to alter the casting lanes several times.
Because of the lack of wind at the start we decided to cast some of the heavier events first in the hope that we might get some decent distances in the full line events but, as you see from the results, it didn’t quite work out. Some of us got lucky with the breeze, others weren’t so lucky. But that’s competition casting.
The turnout was very good. Thanks to everyone who made it.

There were some exceptional casts such as Peter Thains 241′ 6” and young James Hek who created a new J17 T120 record with 186′ to add to his new T38 record of 153’2”. The ladies were not to be left out and Sue Macniven created a new womens record of 140′ 11” in the T120 as well. Ally Bremner wasn’t far behind with 137’7”

Peter McCallum won the B100 and won the #7 event outright. No more B100 for you then Peter!

As you can see from the results Peter Thain has brought some serious expertise to the show and many of us will have to get in some practice if we want to give him a run for his money in the future.

Some of you may see an event on the list that is new to you, the 27gram shooting head. We trialed it and it seems to have been very popular. This is a world championship event and has the potential for huge cockups and massive distances, in other words, great fun. It also gives some lattitude to those that like to tinker with their tackle. There are rules though and we are looking into it.

One side note. We mislaid an Orvis Access 9′ #7. If anyone finds an odd rod in their kit and wonders where it came from please let Mike Marshall know.

Sorry I can’t mention all of you but we sincerely thank everyone for making it such a good day.

See you in Shenfield.

Mike H