Seven Of The Best

We asked seven Drennan-backed aces where they would pick to fish on the opening week of the river season.

Wayne Swinscoe – 
River master

head-Wayne-SwinscoeWell I certainly wouldn’t be straying too far from home! Living in Nottingham I’d head for my local River Trent. Fishing is always a bit iffy at this time of year, especially trying to catch roach, so with the conditions we have at the moment, a few inches of extra water and a tinge of colour, I’d be looking to catch some big bream from the Clifton and Beeston stretches just upstream of Nottingham. It’s quite shallow and streamy and the bream congregate here after spawning, so you can expect some real quality fish. Groundbait feeder with chopped worm and caster down the middle should be the boss method. You could also tangle with the odd big barbel!

Darren Davies – 
Former England international

head-darren-daviesThe River Thames at Canbury Gardens, near Kingston. I’d fish the groundbait feeder at around 30 yards. You could potentially catch 100lb of bream this early in the season!

Roger Marlow – 
England Veteran

head-roger-marlowI would go on the River Soar and fish around Barrow and Mountsorrel. It averages about 4ft to 6ft deep and I’d expect to catch roach, skimmers and perch with maggots, casters, hemp and pinkies over plenty of Sensas Lake and Roach & Silverfish groundbait.

Dean Barlow – 
England Feeder team ace

head-dean-barlowI would have to say the Nottingham Embankment on the River Trent, as it’s always worth a few fish on opening week. The fishing has changed considerably over the years, though. Now I would be targeting bream and barbel fishing mid river with a groundbait feeder.

Jon Arthur – 
Top all rounder

head-jon-arthurI would have a day’s hemp and tare fishing on the River Avon on Evesham’s Crown Meadow stretch. You might not get many fish but they run to 1lb so are worth catching. I wouldn’t expect to catch immediately, so I’d also feed a much closer swim with chopped worms and casters to hopefully catch a tench or two. Even without the tench you can expect a decent bag of perch, eels and maybe even a barbel.

Chris Vandervleit – 
Southern match ace

head-chris-vandervleitIt would have to be the River Yare on the Beauchamp Arms stretch. If there is colour then I’d expect 50-70lb of bream and skimmers on the feeder. If there is less colour then roach will be the target, balling in a heavy groundbait mix containing casters and topping up with small balls on a regular basis. Roach bags up to 50lb get caught here with lots of 12oz to 1lb fish amongst them!

Stu Conroy – 
England star

head-stu-conroyIt would have to be Jazz’s Peg on my local River Mersey in Warrington, a platform I built on there and named in honour of my dearly missed dog. I would expect a double-figure bag on the pole or a slightly lower weight on the waggler made up of around 50 fish. Mostly roach and perch and a really nice day’s fishing as the roach are always in great condition on this stretch.