Happy New Year everyone! We all know 2020 was a year to forget, so let’s make 2021 a year to remember.
I’ve been off the radar a little bit lately, but sometimes we just need a break from everything that’s going on. I know I’ve got a bit of catching up to do and more than a few messages to reply to, but I’m back on the case now!
On a personal note, I missed fishing countless big events, but did manage to win the Daiwa Masters as a highlight of the year, plus some PBs along the way.
2020 started off great with a 104lb match win at Packington on the first weekend, which was 20 fish from peg 5 on Little Gearys.
My first fish of the year was a perch while lure fishing on the canal with my dad. Loved getting on the bank with all my family and friends. More of that please!
In February I got a team bronze medal with Oxford in the Angling Trust Team Champs Final, held at Decoy Lakes and the Fens. My Team Dynamite quartet were also 3rd out of 22 teams on the Tunnel Barn WL. We’re right up there so far in the 2020-2021 event, too… but who knows when or if that will ever get finished!
In March I qualified for the Golden Rod Final at Larford and two weeks later fished the 2-day feeder-only event at the same venue. I felt I did reasonable off two very average draws. A noticeable reduction in end peg draws for me this year…
April was no match fishing, but I managed to get some nice sessions filmed for my YouTube Channel, which also broke the 10,000 subscribers that month. Thanks everyone for that!
In May I had a nice 4-page interview in Angler’s Mail, but that publication is sadly no longer with us. Hope it wasn’t down to that article…
Fish of the year was a 20lb 5oz ghostie from Lake Two at Makins, on the feeder. I also had a PB 7lb 10oz F1 from Packington. Next target is an 8lber…
In August I was involved with the Target Sports Stars Fishing Champs held at Tunnel Barn Farm, televised on ITV4. Mark Eves and I helped the pro darts team (including world champs Phil Taylor and Adrian Lewis!) catch loads of fish. An amazing experience!
The same month I had a match of a lifetime, winning Rd3 of the UK Champs at Decoy Lakes with 62 carp for 477lb 14oz… a new PB I doubt I’ll ever top!
The final round of the UK Champs was an anticlimax, but it was nice to stay behind for a photo with Tommy Pickering and Andy Power, a new member of the exclusive 3x UK Champions Club!
I never got on the river half as often as I wanted, but made the top 10 in the 3-day Thames Festival. Definitely want to fish more river matches in 2021.
I was also pleased to work with Bob Shone and Pablo RWC Floats to help perfect two brilliant patterns: Tanks and Hulks. Hopefully we can get a few more designs out this year…
My matches ended on a high, winning my very last competition of 2020 just before lockdown. A nice day catching 68lb of F1s on maggots.
In between lockdowns I’ve been chockablock with coaching and the 2021 diary is rapidly filling up, so it’s already going to be a busy year. I’ve met some truly fantastic people and all the repeat bookings mean I must be doing something right. The snacks have been impressive too!
It’s been another great year as a Matrix consultant. The passion and enthusiasm behind the brand is clear for everyone to see. Things are certainly getting bigger and better year on year. Dynamite have been very supportive on the bait side of things as well. I’ve also enjoyed all my freelance work and getting behind the cameras on numerous projects.
My last fish of 2020 was a 1lb+ skimmer, caught yesterday while filming my third Q&A session… in the freezing fog! That vid’s already up on my Jon Arthur Angling YouTube Channel, so enjoy watching me freezing my balls off! The channel is doing great and I’ve got lots more planned over the next 12 months.
So that’s a quick recap of a bizarre and eventful year. Keep smiling and enjoy your fishing. Hopefully see you all on the bank soon!