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Paul Bick crowned RiverFest 2016 Champion


Paul Bick winner RiverFest 2016 x550px

After 24 hard fought qualifiers all over the country, 72 anglers converged on the city of Hereford for the fourth RiverFest final. With the river at a decent level and producing very big weights in the previous few weeks, hopes were high for good catches.

A big temperature drop of 5.5c over the week leading up to the final threatened to slow things down, especially for those anglers on the upstream sections and, as expected, it was a slow start for many on Day One.

Spectators were treated to some excellent displays of float and feeder fishing though and the man way out in front after the first day was Shakespeare Bait-Tech team man Paul Bick.

Paul drew Peg 101, the last but one swim on the Tennis Courts section and put in a solid performance of feeder and float fishing to take top spot with 46-4-0 of chub and barbel. This weight put him 18lb clear of the field.

Runner up on the first day was Paul Downes at Peg 61 with 28-8-0 of dace, small chub and roach, all taken on long whip and flat float tactics.

In third position was Deron Harper who switched between running line and pole approaches for a 25-1-0 total at Peg 65.

DSC_1082 Riverfest competitor x550px

A slowly rising and very cold and coloured river greeted the competitors on Day Two and the big question was, could anyone catch Paul Bick? The big temperature drop affected things badly but there were still some very respectable weights taken.

Leading the field on the second day was Nick West who fished long pole tactics with a very light rig at Peg 97, the top upstream swim on the Tennis Courts section. This brought him a run of quality chub for a 37-12-0 total, a weight that put him more than 20lb in front of his nearest challenger and catapulted him up the leaderboard.

Upstream at Peg 46, Paul Downes produced another great runner up performance, this time with two barbel on maggot feeder tactics for a 16-7-0 total. Third place went to Lee Harries with 15-4-0 of roach and dace from Peg 87.

While all this was going on, Day One leader Paul Bick was working hard at Peg 74 in the Railings section to take an excellent 8-14-0 of mostly perch.

After the two-day totals were added up, it was Paul Bick who held on to his first day lead to finish with 55-2-0, a total which won him £12,000 and the RiverFest Champion coveted trophy.

Runner up position and a cheque for £6,000 went to Paul Downes with 44-15-0 and in third spot, picking up £3,000 was Nick West with 42-4-0.

A total of £34,000 was paid out in prize money, the biggest river fishing prize pot in the world.

The Angling Trust would like to say a big thank you to event sponsors Thames Water, Severn Trent Water and Bait-Tech as well as all the organisers, clubs and associations who hosted qualifiers during 2016. A big thank you also goes to the Hereford and District AA for the use of their water for the final.

Work will start on RiverFest 2017 very soon and qualifier dates will be published on the Angling Trust website and on the dedicated Angling Trust RiverFest Facebook page.

DSC_1093 RiverFest competitor 2 x550pxRESULTS

1. Paul Bick 46-4-0
2. Paul Downes 28-8-0
3. Deron Harper 25-1-0
4. Simon Willsmore 24-4-0
5. Steve Hemingray 23-4-0
6. Sean Ashby 21-12-0
7. Ben Roberts 20-5-0
8. Tom Noton 18-2-0
9. Darren Frost 17-6-0
10. Steve Clark 16-15-0

1. Nick West 37-12-0
2. Paul Downes 16-7-0
3. Lee Harries 15-4-0
4. Tom Noton 15-0-0
5. Kevin Hall 13-3-0
6. Michael Nowicki 13-2-0
7. Sean Ashby 12-1-0
8. Anthony Avery 11-7-0
9. Will Raison 10-12-0
10. Ian Exley 10-8-0
10= Hadrian Whittle 10-8-0
10= Adrian Reynolds 10-8-0


1. Paul Bick 55-2-0
2. Paul Downes 44-15-0
3. Nick West 42-4-0
4. Sean Ashby 33-13-0
5. Tom Noton 33-2-0
6. Steve Clark 26-7-0
7. Deron Harper 25-1-0
8. Simon Willsmore 24-4-0
9. Steve Hemingray 23-4-0
10. Anthony Avery 22-13-0

Contact: Angling Trust Eastwood House, 6 Rainbow Street, Leominster, Herefordshire HR6 8DQ
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