Airflo Spring Invitational 2018

So the dust has finally had a chance to settle after what has probably been
the most enjoyable weeks fishing I have ever had.
The FNF Falcons of which I'm a member were fortunate enough to receive an
invite to the new Airflo Spring Invitational 6 man team competition. This
tournament was to be held on Rutland water in May when the fish would be
well spread through the system feeding hard on buzzers. This competition
boasted 21 of Europe's top teams all desperate to get their hands on the
new Trophy.
The whole event was played out with a relaxed friendly atmosphere but there
was no hiding the fact that everyone was there to win and a lot of practice
was put in by the teams.
Rutland was the perfect host providing gin clear water and a good head of
feeding fish that were very well spread out feeding on buzzers as they swam
through the water column. For the most of the practice and competition the
fish would hold on the deck in the morning slowly moving up to mid level by
the afternoon. The water clarity was so clear it was like fishing in an
aquarium.

Over the two days competition Rutland continued to be on great form despite
the calm and bright conditions. The fish kept coming despite the huge boat
pressure. At the final weigh inn on day 2 it was evident that it was going
to be a close run thing with 4 teams in contention for the trophy. After an
agonising wait while all the results were double checked FNF Falcons were
announced the Airflo Spring Invitational Champions 2018.
1st FNF Falcons
2nd Iain Barr Costa
3rd Flash attack Reservoir Dogs

Tactics
To win a competition of this magnatude and against the calibre of angler
competing tactics had to be spot on.
Over the 4 days fishing it was evident fish could be caught using various
methods including the bung, straight lining buzzers, pulling and washing
line. Leader choice was critical in the clear water, It came down to
chosing a clear strong Fluorocarbon that we were confident with, I opted
for the new Fulling Mill Masterclass while the rest of the team used Grand
Max Soft Plus.
When pulling we used either a Di5 Sweep or Di5 40+ and a single Sunburst
Block Jelly Booby on a 12' leader. This was either used early in the day or
out over open water.
When fishing the washing line the team either used a Fire Prawn/Blushing
Sunburst Jelly FAB or Tequila Slush Jelly blob if we wanted to get a bit
deeper. Despite most of the field buzzering blobs accounted for a large
percentage of our total bag. The Airflo 12' slow tip fished slowly was
achieving the prefect depth and presentation when fishing the washing line.
Buzzer patterns didn't have to be to specific, getting them to the correct
depth quickly felt more important. Either using a bung or straight lining
to achieve the correct depth baring in mind the fish were coming up in the
water through the course of the day. Black and red buzzers seemed to be
popular with the team and would occupy at least one dropper on everyone's
cast.

Conclusion
The new Airflo Invitational match turned out to be exactly what Airflo's Gareth
Jones had dreamed up all those months ago. Rutland water proved an
excellent venue married with an excellent field of anglers.
A special thanks has to go out to Sponsors FNF and particularly Airflo who
have once again hugely supported competition fishing.
I'd also like to give a special mention to the FNF Falcons, James Bews
(captain), Alan Porteous, Campbell Morgan, Scott Reith, Sean McCaffrey and
myself. Thanks lads for making a dream come true.
I would also like to congratulate FNF Nymphomaniacs coming a very
repectable 7th despite a Day 2 injury.

Kevin Porteous


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