The Italian Club Azzurro

Our overseas correspondant, Matteo Maggi, reports back from the latest  feeder team qualifier which would decide who represents Team Italy in 2015.


The first Italian Club Azzurro to decide who would represent the Italian feeder team for the World Championship in Holland in 2015 has just been held on the Bianco Canal in Bergantino. This competition was held during the second weekend of June on three consecutive days.

Initially, the destination was supposed to be the wonderful venue of Ostiglia; a place with good fishing for bream and carassio. Two weeks before the Club Azzurro it was decided to change the venue. Honestly, few were happy about this decision!

The Bianco Canal in Bergantino has a depth between 5 and 6 metres, with slower flow up to 10 metres out before it noticeably increases. Up to 30g bullet feeders are required 20 metres away, with 50 grams needed to hold a feeder still on the opposite bank, at around 40 metres.

club-azzurro2There are mostly bream between 10g and 3kg, carassio from 100g to 1kg and many wels catfish. There are also American catfish (Ictalurus punctatus), roach and carp.

On Friday, the fish were spread out, with an average catch of around 2kg per angler. It was fairly difficult fishing, however, catching small bream between 50g and 200g and small carassio up to 500g. Catching better fish was essential to move up several positions in the two 13-man sectors.

After the first heat, the two sections were won by Angelo Pizzi (Team LBF Italia Preston Innovations) and Massimo Vezzalini (Lenza Club Mogliano Preston) with more than 5kg.

This first match took place under hot, muggy 32°C conditions. The next day the same conditions faced the anglers but, as expected, the fish were less abundant.

club-azzurro1Once again, certain pegs made a difference, with the bonus wels catfish starting to be captured with greater consistency and affecting points. Anglers avoided the rain… until the weighing in, when a veritable storm was unleashed with winds over 100km/h and hail!

Victory on the day went to Marco Mazzetti (Castelmaggiore Maver) with over 7kg, caught on the edge of the flow.

Rain heavily coloured the canal for the last session on Sunday but the flow remained the same. Fishing was extremely hard, however, with many people struggling for bites.
Most of the anglers tried to catch a catfish from the beginning, to be able to climb positions in the overall standings. Some fared well while others never caught a thing. Victory on the day went to Marco Mandrelli (Club Fario Italica) with five wels catfish and a 21kg total. Sector B was won by Andrea Berzacola (Lenza Emiliana Tubertini) who won with more than 3.5kg.

This Club Azzuro had disappointed many people, with some excellent anglers excluded for next year (unless they win this year’s Italian Championship). The venue wasn’t ideal for this kind of competition because the fishing wasn’t so technical and it was affected too much by wels catfish. Anyway, the Team Italy for the World Championship in Holland will still be very interesting and competitive!

club-azzurro4At the moment there are three names selected: Angelo Pizzi, the winner of the Club Azzurro 2014, Massimo Vezzalini and Fabio Cappelletti.

Next month, two more names will join them. They will be decided by the forthcoming 2014 Italian Championship!

Report by Matteo Maggi –