17lb 8oz Nene Barbel

Martin Gray set a new personal best after landing a huge barbel from the River Nene near Peterborough.

Martin Gray holding his new personal best barbel.

After moving into his fifth swim of the day, Martin baited the central channel with a few boilies before making his first cast. Using a double 12mm boilie hookbait mounted on a hair tied to a size 6 wide gape hook and 20lb Anchor Braid.

“The bite was a really tentative one, met with solid resistance. The fish then moved off upstream, and from experience, I knew that I was hooked into something special. After catching a glimpse of it I had to dip the rod under the water to allow a huge raft of streamer weed to pass over without snagging the line. That’s when the panic set in. Knowing that I was attached to what looked like a huge fish any mistake could cost me dearly. 

“Thankfully, moments later the fish slid over the eagerly awaiting landing net. The scales settled on 17lb 8oz. I had finally beaten my old personal best! After 5 years of trying to up my PB, I had finally done it. I was completely overwhelmed, to say the least!”