Archive for Irish Pairs

Jan
30

IRISH PAIRS – A BRIEF HISTORY

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The Irish Pairs Sea Angling Competition was originated by Gerry Flynn of the Irish Tourist Board (ITB) in 1980, when Gerry promoted a UK competition, which saw one pair out of every 30 who competed around the UK qualifying for an expenses paid trip to the Dingle Peninsula in South West Ireland.

The first final was based at the Skelligs Hotel in Dingle and saw some 18 pairs of anglers competing. The event took place over a long weekend. First winners of the championship were Harry Gill and Gerry Horsefield from the Hartlepool area.

The concept of the competition co-incided with the emergence of the Sea Anglers Match Federation (SAMF) and many members of this new organisation were keen to qualify for the event.

Clive Richards, new chairman of SAMF, saw potential to help build up SAMF’s reputation by becoming involved with the running of the event. The first final was run by the ITB with input from the Irish Sea Fisheries who allowed Norman Dunlop and Peter Green to attend and do the pegging and results.

SAMF had discussions with the ITB and outlined plans to make the event an open one, lasting a week, with competitors paying their own way instead of winning a place in the final. It was thought that this would help the ITB as instead of just some 40/50 anglers competing there would be many more UK anglers who would like to attend, thus boosting tourism figures etc.

ITB encouraged the idea, and at the same time SAMF approached Diawa Sports with a view to obtaining sponsorship for the event. Sales Director of Daiwa, John  Middleton attended the second final and agreed to future sponsorship. This sponsorship is still in place and is the longest running sponsorship that the sport has ever had. Daiwa’s contribution is exceptional, not only do they contribute tackle but they also allow us to purchase other items at very preferential rates. This explains why the event consistently boasts a prize table of cash and tackle worth more than £ 7500 each year.

Coming up to the 3rd year of the event John Amery had been added to the organising committee and at Easter time Clive Richards and John took their families over to look at beaches that could be fished with an entry of 150 anglers. It was during a session on Inch Strand that they met up with a group of Dublin anglers and got into conversation. This led to an entry from an Irish contingent which continues to this day, and even led to the formation of the Irish Match and Surfcasting Association (IMASA) which was to play an important part in the development of the Irish surfcasting competition scene.

That trip also dramatically changed the course of the event because when Clive and John visited the Skelligs to confirm the booking for September they were told that the new management had not confirmed the booking and had in fact booked 3 coaches of French tourists for that date !!

PANIC…….entries were flooding in but we had nowhere to accommodate them. Fortunately a knight in shining armour arrived in the shape of Matt Britton who ran the Dun an Oir complex out at Ballyferriter to the west of Dingle. The complex consisted of an Hotel with rooms, restaurant and bar, together with some 20 self catering cottages in its grounds. We were able to do a deal with Matt and in reality this was the start of the Daiwa Irish Pairs ( as it had now become known) saga. The Dun an Oir became legendary, this was in the days  of “ when does the bar close ? …..when the last man leaves”

scenario, and with all the competitors based in one central location it became a very social occasion.

Most opted for the self catering cottages and as all were no more than 100 yards from the hotel no one needed a car to get to the bar….many took advantage of this.

On the fishing scene it had been necessary to expand the venues to cope with the greater numbers, and in many cases two beaches were used, with one from each team fishing separate beaches. Venues used were Ventry Harbour, Ballyrannig, Beal Bawn all local to the headquarters and Inch and Brandon Strands which were about 30 miles away. Inch and Brandon could accommodate all the competitors.

First names on the Pairs Shield which SAMF provided were Nod Farrell and Barry Graves from Southend.

By the 4th year we were getting concerned at having fish killed by weighing in at the end of the match and we therefore resolve to instigate a “catch and return “ policy into the competition. Weight was to be the deciding factor so what happened was that we encouraged wives, girlfriends, family members etc to attend the event, then sat them under a brolly on the beach with a set of scales, and when an angler caught a fish he went to them, they weighed and recorded the fish and then immediately returned the fish to the water.

The initial format of the competition was to have 2 days of pegged competition and the rest of the week given over to a specimen fish competition, where the biggest fish of 10 nominated species would pick up a Daiwa reel as a prize. This was to encourage anglers to travel around and enjoy the excellent rock fishing which is available but which cannot be pegged for a match. We had to see and weigh these fish but anglers were only allowed to return their biggest fish of a particular species, and a board in the headquarters listed the current biggest fish so that people knew what they had to beat.

Initially some of the Irish contingent only came down for the weekend, so a competition was arranged on the Sunday, to be based on teams of 4 to be pegged on either Inch or Brandon so that all competitors were on the same beach. The Irish also obtained sponsorship from Semperit Tyres who provided a trophy and a cash input to the event. This sponsorship ran for some 6 years.

By this time the Irish competitors were joining for the week so in the early 90’s it was decided to make the pegged matches over 3 days and they have continued as such since then.

Despite a general conception the Ireland was an angling mecca we found that like the UK if you put 150 anglers on a beach they are not all going to catch 20lbs of fish each. In an effort to get better results we consulted with the Irish Sea Fisheries who agreed that as we were returning all fish caught then we did not have to fish to their size limits ( limits which had been instigated for boat angling as shore fishing at that time was not very prominent) .

Suddenly beaches like Brandon and Inch, famed Bass beaches, were turned into flounder venues as the anglers learned to target them in order to do well.

By the late 80’s the input from Central Fisheries was withdrawn, as they quite rightly stated that the event was a success and the SAMF committee were quite capable of running it.

By the mid 80’s John Amery, who had become SAMF secretary, had been organising the event and in those days SAMF booked Ferries, Accomodation etc. as well as running the competitions.

The event had continued to receive some financial support from the ITB but in the late 80’s they wrote to say that they were going to cease this support. John  took it upon himself to write to the then Irish prime Minister, Charlie Haughey, who had close ties with Dingle ( he actually owned one of the Blasket Isles) and point out the input that the event made to the Irish economy at no cost to the ITB, and at Charlie’s instigation support continued, and that year he sent his Minister of  Tourism to present the prizes !

Support continued in a limited way right into the early 2000’s.

Catch and release remained our mantra, but one problem we had was that it needed woman/man power to attend the 8 sets of scales on the beaches and the number of assistants available gradually declined. So we took our next major step and introduced “measure and return”. Each competitor had to have an official SAMF measure and had to act as steward to the adjacent angler. The fish was measured, recorded, returned. Strange at first but quickly became accepted. To stop anglers targeting small fish a block minimum size of 18cms and smallest hook size of No 4 was introduced.

In the mid 1990’s we had the disappointment of losing the Dun an Oir headquarters. Many of the cottages were sold off to private buyers who did not want to let them out and the hotel was closed, later to be converted into luxury apartments.

This meant a change of headquarters and we moved to the Smerwick Harbour Hotel, owned by Brendan Houlahan who also had Wine Strand Cottages a couple of miles away and which we had always used as overspill for the Dun an Oir cottages. We therefore lost part of the social aspect as the headquarters needed to be driven to.

1995 was a tragic year as we had one of the competitors, Nigel Robinson of Hemel Hempstead, killed when he fell down a cliff face on one of the specimen hunts. Nigel had equipped himself with ropes and harness but unfortunately something went wrong and he slipped to his death. SAMF runs an annual Nigel Robinson Memorial Match and funds raised go into a special fund that can be used to assist families etc in emergencies. Fortunately we have not needed to utilise the fund.

In 2003 John Amery stood down as organiser, having done 20 years in the job, and the task was taken on board by Nick Haward, who by co-incidence had taken over from John as secretary of SAMF for a short period in 1994 to 1997.

Nick decided to move the headquarters into Dingle town and established Paudies bar as the headquarters and utilised some of the many self catering cottages that had sprung up over the years. The advent of the Internet meant that it is nowadays much easier to book ferries and accommodation so these are now left to the competitors.

Nick has expanded the match venues by adding Rosbeigh, which is opposite Inch, and Cappaclough beach into the programme. Continuing this idea saw Banna Strand fished in 2008.

Nick is a fervent catch and return enthusiast and the advent of digital cameras and then phone cameras enable him to introduce photo evidence of fish caught. The fish is placed on an official measure and photographed. It can then be returned safely to the sea.

Measure and return just using the length of the fish had its detractors, as one 36cm cod, which would weigh about 11/2 lbs would be beaten by two 18 cm whiting, weighing about 2 oz each, and Garfish because of their length became a target species. SAMF has further developed the system by producing a length to weight chart to convert the given length of a certain species to a weight which overcomes this problem. To keep things simple a modified chart is used at the Pairs, and all fish count.

Categories : Irish Pairs
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Jan
30

THE 2010 SAMF DAIWA IRISH PAIRS

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‘The Angling Week of the Year’

—————————–

Year 29 of this prestigious event – the competition dates are:

Saturday 25th. September – Thursday 30th. September 2010

We have seen the Pairs grow into what has become an ‘annual pilgrimage’ to the Emerald Isle for most participants – it is your week – ‘the week of the year’ and once again, on behalf of SAMF, I invite you to enter, participate and enjoy beautiful Ireland.

The general format of the Pairs will be pretty much as 2009 – no major changes; the exception being the moving of the event one day earlier in the week, so the first pegged match will be Saturday 25/09 & Presentation Night on Thursday 30/09. The reason for this is to conclude our week before the Dingle Annual Food and Wine Festival, which would give a clash of dates on the Friday Night 01/10 at Match HQ – The Dingle Bay Hotel. I am expecting to be back to full capacity for 2010 and will be capping numbers at 72 Pairs and am leaving entry costs for this 2010 at £180 per pair which will maintain a very generous prize table as previous years.

As usual I confirm I have reserved some cottage availability and anglers can book through me: 12 at Harbour Lodge Cottages and 8 at The Courtyard. Trident homes, have held rates at 2009 levels, and the rates offered in this invitation are substantially cheaper than their published rates for the week…so if you want a cottage get your money back in full ASAP – bookings will be taken on first-come first-served as usual. I have reserved some accommodation with extra nights [1, 2 and 3 extra nights]. Please indicate your requirement on the booking form. Extra night availability will be sorted fairly on a ‘date order’ receipt of full payment! Ie. the quicker you pay your cheque – priority you will get!

Just a couple of reminders before I set down the information details for the week.

Only bookings made on the issued booking forms [or photocopies of the forms] will be accepted. Your returned booking form must be accompanied with the your PAYMENT IN FULL to cover your requirements which must include the Competition entry fee of £180 per pair.

Competitors will be booked-in on a ‘first come-first’ served basis, so to be sure of getting the accommodation you require, do not delay in returning your booking form – numbers will again be limited to 72 pairs for this 29th. Anniversary Year!

Confirmation of format for 2010

Providing numbers are similar to last years the main pairs pegged event will be split into eight zones.

As usual we will be operating a card system for registering specimen fish. It is the anglers responsibility to have these completed if a specimen is caught within the pegged events and hand them to the organisers – not the organisers responsibility to check every match card! Alternatively, should competitors wish to provide photographic evidence as an alternative to 3 signatures needed on the card system, this will be accepted on the basis the evidence is clear and concise. We have lap tops on hand for digital cameras. . Specimen cards and/or photographic evidence should be handed in to the Competition Recorder, Darren Smith, at the appropriate times for recording.

SPECIMEN HUNT TO RUN FROM START OF THE MATCH ON SATURDAY TO 4PM ON THURSDAY.  DETAILS FOR SUBMISSION OF SPECIMEN CARDS WILL BE PROVIDED AT REGISTRATION.

As far as the most species competition is concerned within the specimen hunt, minimum sizes [length in cm] will be issued for all nominated species in the Final Itinerary.

AS 2009: GARFISH: I will continuing with the rule for the use of fine wire hooks only for ‘garring’. We must continue to do our best to get these ‘beauties’ back in the water alive – they have indeed been a saviour for getting a result over the last couple of years!

Whilst we did not suffer from many reports on that ‘age-old’ problem of litter, please be reminded that anglers will be harshly penalised if they are reported to have left litter where they have fished – you have been warned!

It is a prerequisite of Kerry Co. Council, who grant us consent and vehicular access to the beaches that we ensure litter is not an issue!

Lastly, in a change from previous years, invitations are being sent to all previous entrants by way of a single page ‘flyer’ inviting interested anglers to visit our Web-site to download this Information Pack and Entry Form.

Please complete your Entry Form, clearly and completely and return by post to me:

Nick Haward, Competition Organiser

SAMF Daiwa Irish Pairs

The Priory,

Priory Road,

Blythburgh,

Suffolk

IP19 9LR

The Daiwa Irish Pairs

The competition has become one of the major events in the national match calendar and with your continued support will continue to do so. Many of you have fished the event in previous years and know the general format, but for those of you who are enquiring for the first time the following is a general précis of the week.

Location

The beautiful Dingle Peninsula in County Kerry is sited on the northern-most of the primary south western peninsulas of Ireland, located south of Tralee Bay and north of the Valencia Peninsula. The fishing is varied with estuary, rock and surf angling in close proximity to one another. The rocks can produce good quality Pollack, Wrasse and Conger, whilst the beaches can produce Bass, Flounders and Rays, with the estuaries producing some clonking flounders!

SAMF adopts a conservation approach to this angling event and the three pegged matches are fished on a measure and return basis. Similarly the Specimen Hunt is also operated on a measure only basis.

Sponsors and Prizes

The main sponsors for 2010 are Daiwa Sports, however the event also receives considerable assistance from , Trident Homes, the Dingle Bay Hotel & SAMF. 2009 saw an extensive prize table with over £7500 of prizes and assuming numbers of competitors remain similar to last year the prize table can be expected to be as impressive. In addition cash prizes are paid to the top pairs placings and for section results. A full list of prizes will be issued prior to the event once numbers are known. The event, of course, is non-profit making and will be 100% payout. SAMF Masters Qualifiers are also run in tandem with the pegged matches during the week.

General Format: NB specimen Competition is a ‘no-boundary’ roving competition and this year runs from post match Sunday – 4pm Thursday

Friday             Registration and Draw from 5-7pm at Match HQ

Saturday        Pairs Pegged Match Day 1 -Venue and times TBC

                        Specimen Competition runs from post match Sunday – 4pm Friday

Sunday           Specimen Day [optional]       

Monday          Pairs Pegged Match Day 2 – Venue and times TBA

Tuesday          Specimen Day [optional]

Wednesday    Pairs Pegged Match Day 3 – Venue and times TBA

Thursday       Specimen Day [optional] finishes 4pm Thursday

                        Prize Presentation at 9pm at Match HQ

[All anglers are expected to attend].

The Euro

As last year I have pitched the rates for your benefit in £Stirling with a small allowance for the obvious ups and downs. I have worked the costs @1.15 to the £. If for any reason there is a significant change the Organisers reserve the right to impose a levy or decrease the prize table accordingly. Obviously, if the rates are to the competitions benefit I will expand the prize table.

Accommodation :

Self-catering cottages/houses for 2010 are the Harbour Lodge Cottages, The Wood, Dingle [located centrally between Milltown and the Main Harbour, Dingle – just down the road from Paudies/Murphy’s Bar] and The Courtyard [up the hill]. Whilst they are mainly 3 bedroom and well appointed they are ideally suited to 4 anglers. The accommodation at Harbour Lodge and The Courtyard at £420 per week; which is as offered last year, and is some £60 cheaper than their published rates. We appreciate the ongoing sponsorship offered by Harbour Lodge and The Courtyard to support the event. Any extra nights which may be available will be charged at £55 per night.

Booking terms for both accommodation cottages are generally on a weekly basis only, however to cater for early arrivals, should extra nights not be available, Harbour Lodge can offer anglers B&B rates in twin, triple and dormitory rooms. So if you wish to arrive early contact Kevin at Harbour Lodge on 00353 669 151 577. If anglers wish to book cottages for a second week I will need an earliest notification to organise.

Match Fees

The competition fees for the week are £90 per person to cover the weeks events. Optional pools for the ‘Teams of 4’ and individual Section prizes will be available at Registration on the Friday.

Reservations for the Competition

Accommodation etc. will be booked on a first come, first served basis so please do not delay in sending off your Booking Form and requirements for the week and Payment in Full.

Cheques payable to ‘Nick Haward – SAMF Daiwa Irish Pairs. SAE for receipt if required.

Click here for the Booking Form

Categories : Irish Pairs, Latest News
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[Presentation Night Speech 25/09/2009]

“Whilst there are many of the ‘old regulars’, it is always good to see some new faces and to those of you at The Pairs for the first time – a very special welcome.

It never ceases to amaze just how fast the days pass during Pairs week; bait collecting, looking at the venues, trying new spots, notching up a new species or two, trying some new tactics or just chilling in the bar; the week just roars by!

It is noticeable many of you are now taking a few extra days to compensate, but there is simply never enough time and with The Week again at a close, more’s a pity, it is another 50 or so before we do the whole thing again!

Looking back through the 2008 Report, it seems we are only a few Pairs down on last year. Against a backcloth of a weak Stirling against the Euro, and a pretty severe recession, The Pairs has faired much better than I had feared back in the Spring, when entries were only a trickle. Whilst I always try and make room for late entries, I do have to close the books and sort the draw, in reasonable time to close affairs and prepare to leave for Ireland. This year it was clear from entry levels the draw would be best set at 60 – i.e.: 6 even zones of 20. With the draw completed, Mick Dixon, rang in at the end of August to see if there was room for another Pair. No problem: that made Pair 58 of 60. A few days later, a letter addressed to the Pairs Organiser drops through the letterbox: two late entries: Dave Hutchinson, Steve Nicholson, Ian Joyce, Graham Stones. The draw had been closed: What if Mick had rang and booked 2 or 3 pairs? I day say our regulars would not have been best pleased if I had no room!!!!

A Narrow Escape I fancy! Next year please, don’t leave it too late.

Whilst, I would never wish to disappoint, please understand I do not have limitless time on my hands to do unnecessary tasks concerning Pairs administration and event preparation; I certainly would not be very happy to have to re-do the Draw at such a late stage! Grumble over!

You may recall last that in my report last year I reported that having kicked some ideas around with Jim, Ian, Darren and Alan, we were strongly of the view the Pairs needs it’s own web site. This would have a number of significant gains for the competition, by way of providing information, promotion and advertising. It would also give something back to our sponsors, by way of our promotion of their involvement [with, of course, links to there own sites]. It would also give us the ability to post pictures and material relating to specimen catches and match reports.

I am pleased to report Darren got the web site up and running by Xmas 2008, and to date it has had some 5000 hits. I am sure most of you have visited the site and I hope you share my view that Darren has done a first class job! We would like you observations and thoughts and we would like some new pictures of your specimen catches. So if you have any ideas or suggestions please get in touch or grab any of the Committee at the bar!

As a footnote, I would add, the creation of the web site has made the circulation of competition Info, much easier at my end. Thanks Darren.

Before I move on to my annual story and round up of the week, I would like to take a few moments out and invite you all to raise your glasses and remember a few past entrants of The Pairs no longer with us: I’ll mention a few, but by no means is this an exhaustive list:

Alistair Craig, Nigel Robinson, John Browning, Mick Tierney,

Terry Rothery …

Toast:                   ‘To Passed Pairs’:

Tales of foolishness and tomfoolery have, again, been in short supply [or more likely kept under wraps and well away from my ears], but as usual there is always some-one prepared to drop themselves into the mire for the sake of a yarn.

For the purposes of my story I have tried to keep only loosely to the facts and any similarities to persons or facts known or unknown are merely co-incidental:

A Narrow Escape

Lurking about in a supermarket car park without intent to shop is indeed questionable activity.

Two men behaving suspiciously in a supermarket car park around waste bins would seem an even more questionable activity.

It is worrying that suspicious and odd behaviour may only be a stones throw away and is potentially lurking just around the next corner and with

Terrorism and the threat of terror splashed all over the media, no wonder we all have become vigilant.

In this tale, local mother of 4, Martha Righteousness, spotted some very suspicious activity and extremely odd behaviour, in her local supermarket car park!

What started out as the usual exiting start of another great holiday week soon spiralled into a bleak and worrying start for Burgess ‘the Hunter’, Peter ‘Crackshot’ and their comrades the ‘NotsoWellfares’?

We all know about not carrying penknives or sharp instruments or indeed flammable material on planes, so why should ferries be any different?

Burgess ‘the Hunter’ never gave it a thought:

What harm is a fistful of used shotgun casings going to be in a cargo hold full of fuel-laden vehicles! 

Unlike ‘the Hunter’, Comrade ‘Crackshot’ and the ‘NotsoWellfares’ were somewhat uncomfortable with the prospect of booking in to the ferry terminal with used gun cartridges and its residue of gunpowder on-board! 

A solution needed to be found and fast!

A quick left turn before the terminal and a dash into the supermarket car park to off-load the explosive cargo into the nearest bin was considered as their only alternative!

—-

Now, Martha Righteousness had just finished her weekly shop at Tesco’s for her 4 lovely children, Matt, Mark, Luke and Cornelius and as she was loading her car, she saw a Land Rover draw into the car park and pull up to a waste bin, engine left running. Out stepped a couple of unsavoury and somewhat rough-looking characters who seemed to be gathering up what looked to be shotgun cartridges.

What were they doing, she thought?

Careful not to be spotted she watched as the men put the cartridges into a bag, then look around to see that nobody was looking; the bag was placed carefully and discreetly into the waste bin. Odd, Martha Righteousness thought, and the men climbed back into the Land Rover and sped away…but not before Martha had made note of the number plate.

Consciences cleared and their journey back on track and Ireland bound, the Hunter, Crackshot and the NotsoWellfares felt much better and headed enthusiastically to the Ferry Terminal.

There seemed to be a lot of security activity at the Ferry Port…’strange’?

The Hunter said to Crackshot, ‘must be a terrorist alert’…

…’Crackshot’, why is that security guard pointing his gun at us’.

…The Pairs week had started!

And 4 Dick’s already!

Just a couple of points about the week in general:

Day 1 saw more dogs over the match length than we have had for a number of years at Ventry, even though the conditions seemed almost too fair and the Harbour seemed to drain very quickly on the extremely large tide. As expected, the flood did not produce as well as the ebb and gars were very much in short supply. Cappa was dropped due to weed issues and Brandon Strands: Gowlane and Stradbally were used as the replacement venues. Brandon fished well with a mixture of fish including a fair smattering of rays from the lower numbers.

Day 2: The stiff SW winds which moved in overnight Sunday and Monday caused the Match Committee to rethink Tuesday. After much consideration of potential venues and various weather forecasts, RossBeigh and Cappa were selected. Disappointingly, both venues held much of a head of fish and it proved a very tricky and frustrating day for many with the odd bonus fish influencing substantially the overall outcome and Day 2 result.

Day 3: Finally this year, we got on Inch and conditions were near perfect for the day 3 Match, which included the John Browning Memorial Trophy and Teams of 4 event. 120 anglers in one long match stretch covering the best part of 2 miles – it is always a great sight. We left plenty of room for the other beach users and at 25 paces between Peg 1 just made it round the corner to the first lagoon. There was a reasonable head of flatfish right through the beach and there were only one blank amongst some pretty respectable bags of fish.

Pegs and Match Cards.

Whilst the majority of you do make every effort to hand in your match cards at the end of the match there are still a small minority of you who simply forget. Please remember if we have no card we can do little other to assume a blank. Pegs are a problem and around 10% are lost or left in tackle boxes at the end of every match.

For 2010 we will be accepting match cards only with accompanying peg returns. 

On the subject of match cards, whilst in the minority it never ceases to amaze me just how far some anglers go to keep the cards clean and blemish free. Two of our Irish friends and regular attendees at the Pairs even went as far as not writing any fish on the cards; probably because they didn’t catch any! But they did write a note:

Mick Dixon’s and Tony Byrne’s match Cards:

MD – “The biggest fish so far is the piece of cod I got in the Dingle chipper!”

TB – “Very sad; some angler took my fish from my peg. Enjoyed the day; the sun was shining”

In response I have a little limerick for our Match Card Comedians:

Two keen fisherman from Dublin,

Caught now’t, so were never to win,

Tony’s pair: Michael Dixon,

Suffered the same affliction,

And did threat to throw his rods in the bin!

Dick Award.

Most Species in Pegged Matches:

This has caused The Committee increasing problems over the last few years caused primarily by questionable fish identification. Subsequently, we will be dropping this prize from next year’s event. We will replace the prize with: Organisers selected Specimen Fish caught in the 3 Pegged Matches. This may or may not be a species nominated in the existing Specimen Competition.

As usual before I get to the actual presentation of prizes there are a few thanks to individuals, organisations and businesses who assist in making the Pairs a great week.

Firstly, our main sponsors Daiwa, who supply a considerable amount of tackle for the Prize Table – this year, we have from Daiwa Sports over £8,000 retail value of quality tackle and prizes.

Dingle Harbour Lodge and the Courtyard, through Trident Homes provide us quality accommodation at very favourable rates.- again we pass on much of this discount to the anglers and the rest is donated to the prize fund. Whilst on the subject of accommodation: it is important for me to fill the block bookings, so if you can please book Harbour Lodge and the Courtyard through me – you will get it cheaper and it does enable additional funds to be channelled into the prize fund.

SAMF again have sponsored £300 worth of prizes and provide the Insurance for the event.

This year, as the average entry age becomes ever higher, we see the introduction of a veteran’s prize or better [and now commonly known] as ‘The Old Git’s Comp. And was sponsored, not surprisingly, by an Old Git [presumably in the hope of increasing his chances of winning a prize]. Seriously, thanks to Dave Himsworth for putting up two rods for the best performance for the Best Veteran Pair with an aggregate age of 115 or greater.

Many of you I know have been enjoying the hospitality at our Headquarters Paudies and Kathleen and crew have done a fabulous job in keeping anglers fed and watered or allowing them to drown their sorrows as the case maybe – thanks Kathleen and everyone at Paudies.

A special thanks for duties above and beyond to SAMF’s own ‘Knight in shining white armour and Vehicle Recovery Unit’ Mr. Paul Molyneaux, for his stirling efforts pulling cars out of the beach and running those less able to theirs pegs and back!

Thanks also to John and Jean Amery for their general help during the week and to John who helped with the draw preparation over the August Bank Holiday weekend.

Moving on to your all-important Match Committee: Jim, Ian, Alan and Darren; they do give up a lot of their week to vet the week’s venues and to ensure the beaches are pegged. The results are sorted and posted.

Make no mistake: they are indeed a first class team.

Thanks lads – without your help the week would simply not happen.

Lastly, on a personal note I would like to thank my wife Susan for her support throughout the year and the competition week for simply keeping my back free and putting up with my often frazzled temperament!

Thank you Sus’l

——————

Moving on to the formal Presentation:

SECTION POOLS

See sheets on Full Results Tables.

As is customary we have some special prizes to give away in the form of some more phallic sweeties for those of you who seem to take conservation in matches to the limit by not catching fish. This year I am awarding the dicks only to the ‘favoured’ and the only double blanker: Justin Hawksley!

—–

Thanks to Bob Sherman for donating the Dicks…and to the Scots for awarding yet another dick or two to their brethren!

SAMF Qualifiers:

Dave Hutchinson [2009/2010?], Graham Stones [2009/2010?],

Steve Nicholson [2009/2010?], Richard Burrows [2010],

Andy Young [2009/2010?], Alan Smith [2010]

PAIRS DAY WINNERS:

Trophy plus £200 for winners, £150 for Runners-up & £100 for 3rd. placing

DAY 1

                                                          Pts.    Ozs.            No.Fish

3rd.     Nick Haward/Dave Wright      8        274             17

2nd.    Alan & Darren Smith              6        363             12

1st.     Darren Bond/Colin Carey       6        424             18

DAY 2

3rd.     Baz Barrett/Ray Foster           4        187.5          19

2nd.    Darren Bond/Colin Carey       3        243.5          19

1st.     Eamonn Foggerty/Paul Whelan        2        277.5          16

DAY 3

3rd.     Paul Stevens/Chris Snow                           6        160             24

2nd.    John Dixon/Mark Armstrong           6        165             23

1st.     Dave Hutchinson/Steve Nicholson    5        215.5          21

JOHN BROWNING TROPHY

For the best individual performance at Inch:

Steve Nicholson   133.5 points – 10 fish             wins Memorial Shield

MOST SPECIES IN PEGGED MATCHES collects £100 donated by SAMF

10 species – Jason Wellfare

LONGEST FISH CAUGHT IN THE PEGGED MATCHES collects £100 cheque donated by SAMF

Noel Foggerty – Conger – 95cm Ventry

BEST INDIVIDUAL PERFORMANCE, sponsored by, Trident Homes and DAIWA Sports. Prize table for top five placings.

                                      Pts.    Ozs.   Fish   Prize

5th.     Colin Carey                   10      453.5 30      Surf Carrying System Bag

4th.     Darren Smith       9        343.5 21      Grandwave Surf 1403M

3rd.     Steve McAdam     8        358    27      TDXS129PM

2nd.    Nev Charlesworth          6        371.5 24      TDXS133PM      

Overall Winner: Jason Wellfare – 5pts  – 240 – 25 fish

wins free cottage for 1 week for 2010 event sponsored by Trident Homes

OLD GITS’ COMPETITION – or the ‘115+ Club’ for the best veteran performance: Each wins Isla Cougar Grange 3 piece 13’ spinning rod

Ray Hornby & Barry Critchley 36 points and 634 ozs, narrowly beating Billy Lindfield and Gordon Thornes on countback of fish points.

TEAMS OF 4 – Inch

4th.     John Williams, Richard Burrows, Bill Lindfield            24 points

          & Gordon Thornes wins 160 euros                               238.5

3rd.     Jim Gross, Ian Hewitt, Darren & Alan Smith                         24 points

          wins 320 euros                                                              283.5

2nd.    Darren Bond, Colin Carey, Paul Stevens &                            22 points

          Chris Snow wins 480 euros

1st.     Nick Haward, Dave Wright, Dave Himsworth &          13 points

          John Amery wins 660 euros

DAIWA SPECIMEN COMPETITION

Most Species – Tony Royall – 4 species on countback on average %                                                                                               94.7%

Collects £100 donated by SAMF

SPECIMEN COMPETITION  Each wins either 7HT or SL20SH

Dab                                30cm                    Tony Royall, Gary Falk

Pollack                           77cm                    Andy Young

Flounder                        45cm                    Eugene Farrelly,

Tony Royall, Derek Jackson

Mullet                            63cm                    Darren Bond

Wrasse                           50cm                    Gary Calderwood

Bass                               63cm                    Kevin Barber

Bullhuss                         106cm                  Colin Carey

Thornback Ray              59cm                    Scott McNicol

Painted Ray                             62cm                    Ken Williamson

Conger                           157cm                  Pete Cracknell

Best Flatfish of Week – wins STS 115 bass rod

Flounder 47cm [104.4%] to Paul Stevens

———————

Best Roundfish of Week – wins STS 115 bass rod

52cm Wrasse to Alec Bell [115.6%]

———————

Organisers Fish of the Week

Wins a STS 115 bass rod and Caldia Plus 3000X Specialist FS reel

Wrasse 56cm [124.4%] to Neil Tyrell

MAIN EVENT – SAMF DAIWA IRISH PAIRS top 25 placings

                                                          Pts.    Ozs.   Fish   Daiwa Prizes

                                                                                      [in pairs]

20th    Bill Newham/John Grey          51      314.5 33      Jackets/Caps

19th.   John Williams/Richard Burrows 51  355.5 43      Smocks/Caps

18th.   Peter McGroary/K. Barber      51      509.5 30      Smocks/Caps

17th    Nev Charlesworth/Simon Drayton 50        450    30      Brollies/Caps

16th.   Tom Whitehead/Steve Smith   50      517    40      R’sacks/Rig W.

15th.   Paul Tuck/Tony Lewthwaite   46      393.5 27      7HT/Rig W.

14th.   Steve MaAdam/Gary Lawson 45      486.5 39      SL20SH/Rig W

13th.   Paul Molyneaux/Dave Roe      44      446    45      7HT/Rig W.

12th.   Nick Haward/Dave Wright      44      479.5 46      SL20SH/Rig W.

11th.   Peter Cracknell/Jason Wellfare         40      362.5 41      WS Jackets/Rig W.

10th.   Dave Hutchinson/Steve Nicholson 39        471.5 41      GW Surf Rods

9th.     Paul Stevens/Chris Snow                  38      494.5 52      7HT Mags/Line

8th.     John Dixon/Mark Armstrong  36      401.5 45      STS13M/Quiv

7th.     Ian Hewitt/Jim Gross              36      515    52      STS13PM/Quiv

6th.     Bill Lindfield/Gordon Thornes          36      570.5 49      TDXS133PM/Quiv

5th.     Ray Hornby/Barry Critchley   36      634    50      £700 Sw.Shirts

4th.     Baz Barrett/Ray Foster           33      490.5 47      £800  Polos

3rd.     Alan & Darren Smith              29      559    37      £900 Cool Bags

2nd.    Darren Bond/Colin Carey       25      777.5 53      £1200 Cool Bags

This years winners:

Winning £2000 plus TDXS133PM/Caps plus as a special prize for this years winners The Dingle Bay Hotel has also donated 2 nights B&B and a complimentary meal. 

1st      Eamonn Foggerty/Paul Whelan 23   647.5 41     

Next years dates:

Tides will be around one hour later next year, so you can look forward to some comfortable match times!

Sunday 26th. September – Friday 1st. October 2010, limited to 72 pairs and as usual I will be taking entries and requirements on a first come-first served basis.

Safe Journey Home”

Categories : Irish Pairs
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‘A Story’,  ‘Ideas and Observations for the Future’ and Results:

“Whilst there are many of the ‘old regulars’, it is always good to see some new faces and to those of you ‘first timers’ – a special welcome.

Yet again, it seems the Pairs week is the fastest week of the year – and this year, tales of foolishness and tomfoolery have been in short supply. I am not sure if this seemingly good behaviour demonstrates a genuine effort by all concerned to avoid being the protagonist of my story or more likely, self-protection kicking in and simply keeping ‘stum’

Fortunately, in times of famine, and with the absence of Andy Steele [who is generally good for a yarn] there is usually something to be found if you look hard enough, although I am somewhat disappointed my partner and I are involved. This is the tale of the Ranger in the Mire.

I arrived with Susan at our cottage Saturday week ago; full of the usual enthusiasm – the truck was brimming with fishing gear, boots and bags – you know the sort of thing – everything crammed in, barring the kitchen sink – just in case. Now, where stay at The Courtyard, there is a well maintained grass area in front of the cottage between the cottage and the road, and over the years [when the owner isn’t looking] I have often reversed the truck over the grass to the back door of the cottage to unload on arrival.

Not that I was disbelieving of the local tales of only 5 days of summer and wall to wall rain, but I simply did not consider just how waterlogged the ground can get in our beloved emerald isle.

So, to carry on my story, I put the truck into reverse and slowly drove over the pavement and onto…and into the grass…oops. I had that sinking feeling – you know – the one where you are slipping into a hole and it could be tricky to get out of it!

I looked around – phew – no owner, and no-one had seen me; even more luckily I had reversed or at least tried to reverse to the wrong cottage. I slipped the van into 4 wheel drive and slid out of the mire leaving some very deep ruts behind. Whoops – a narrow escape.

The days went by, and the ruts filled with rain – still no decent forecast. No matter – plenty of peat on the fire and plenty of wine from SuperValu.

Saturday: My partner in the Pairs, Dave Wright, was due to arrive later in the morning and with harbour rag in short supply I had gone out with my fork when he arrived. I had arranged with darling Els for David to stay in the next door cottage, the self-same cottage with the rutted grass. I had also forgotten to warn him of the mire below the grass!

Sure enough, David also thought it would be a good idea to reverse over the grass to unload.

So, with his Ford Ranger in reverse and the cottage back door in the mirror he slowly mounted the pavement and found the self-same ruts I had narrowly escaped from; only this time the mire won, and the Ranger sank ever deeper. Hi range; low range, reverse gears; forward gears – it was hopeless and rescue was the only option.

Fortunately, but somewhat embarrassingly for David, help was to hand in the form of a Ford Focus and with the rope attached, the Ford Focus heroically tugged the Ranger free. With the Rangers pride a little dented and with the grass outside the cottage resembling the Somme as a reminder the Pairs week had started.”

IDEAS & OBSERVATIONS

“In a diversion from my usual report, I would like to put forward some observations, thoughts and ideas on the future of the Pairs.

2008 for a number of reasons has seen Pairs numbers down to 60. We know a number of regulars who are not here this will be back next year, but it is important to keep the pairs in the upper 60’s if we are to continue to maintain the substantial prize table which has become synonymous with this prestigious competition.

One noticeable change in the competition is the number of competitors who seem to be coming for the specimen fishing. Whilst catching specimens is undoubtedly every bit as challenging as ever [as the area is under immense pressure from commercial fishing] the efforts made by those ‘specimen hunters’ are producing rewards and I know all of you are pleased and proud of our 100% catch and release policy. I am also extremely pleased to hear our conservation approach to angling is becoming more and more popular ‘back home’.

With the affects of the recession beginning to bite, lack of money has not just affected numbers of entrants. It is with regret that I have to report that one of our sponsors ‘Undaras Na Gaeltacha’, have had their budgets cut and cannot provide sponsorship for the competition next year. We appreciate their support over the last three years, but it is an indicator as to how self-supporting we have to be if the Pairs is to maintain it’s kudos. With angling generally in a state of flux administratively and decline generally on the match circuits, we have to remain extremely positive in our focus, goals and ambitions for the future. 

Having kicked some ideas around with Jim, Ian, Darren and Alan, we are strongly of the view the Pairs needs it’s own web-site. This would have a number of significant gains for the competition, by way of providing information, promotion and advertising. It would also give something back to our sponsors, by way of our promotion of their involvement [with, of course, links to there own sites]. It would also give us the ability to post pictures and material relating to specimen catch and match reports. And probably, most importantly, we can control information and promotion of the event without relying on the traditional Angling Magazines and Reporters who seem to have their own agenda!

Operationally the Pairs has sufficient funding to get the web-site up and running. So, once we have got things in place, I will be writing to all entrants requesting information, pictures etc. for potential inclusion on the site. What this space!”

Just a couple of points about the week in general:

All venues seemed to produce reasonably well this year. Day 1 saw more dogs than we have for a number of years at Ventry and whilst conditions were wet and a little breezy both Ventry and Cappa held up well with a fair mixture of species.

Day 2: Brandon, and with the exception of one area of weed which gave a few of you an extremely frustrating day Brandon fished very well and whislt it is a pity not to get onto Inch, we have had, over the years, many more difficult days for the Team of 4 Event.

Day 3 saw our first visit to Bana Strand as a match venue and, despite having to peg all zones to the south of the central Bana Mountain car-park it produced a mixture of turbot, flounder and a few small plaice on the flatty front and a number of bass and rays, on the bigger fish front!. Having listened to anglers comments post-match it seems the general consensus is that is was well worth a visit and Bana will be included in future years as part of our venue ‘pool’. Ross Beigh, produced some quality fish as usual, and sufficient small stuff to make a match of it.”

THE ALL IMPORTANT THANKYOU

“As usual before I get to the actual presentation of prizes there are a few thanks to individuals, organisations and businesses who assist in making the Pairs a great week. Firstly, our main sponsors Daiwa, who supply a considerable amount of tackle for the Prize Table – this year, due to the slightly reduced entries we have from Daiwa Sports over £8,500 retail value of quality tackle and prizes.

Dingle Harbour Lodge and the Courtyard, through Trident Homes provide us quality accommodation at very favourable rates.- again we pass on much of this discount to the anglers and the rest is donated to the prize fund. Whilst on the subject of accommodation: it is important for me to fill the block bookings, so if you can please book Harbour Lodge and the Courtyard through me – you will get it cheaper and it does enable additional funds to be channelled into the prize fund.

SAMF again have sponsored £300 worth of prizes and provide the Insurance for the event.

Many of you I know have been enjoying the hospitality at our Headquarters Paudies and Kathleen and crew have done a fabulous job in keeping anglers fed and watered or allowing them to drown their sorrows as the case maybe – thanks Kathleen and everyone at Paudies.

I would also like to thank the match committee Jim, Ian, Alan and Darren, they do give up a lot of their week to ensure the beaches are pegged – and that the results get done and posted. They are indeed a first class team. Thanks lads – without your help the week would simply not happen.

Thanks also to Mark and Carolyn Pinder and John and Jean Amery for helping me put sort and put together the prize table on what is always a fairly intensive Friday pre-presentation.

Lastly, on a personal note I would like to thank my wife Susan for her support throughout the year and the competition week for simply keeping my back free and putting up with my sometimes frazzled temperament!

——

RESULTS OF THE 27th. ANNUAL DAIWA IRISH PAIRS COMPETITION WEEK:

SAMF Qualifiers:

I. Hewitt [2009], G. Dugdale [2009], D. Smith [2009], D. Hutchinson [2009], M. Hutchinson [2008/.9?], D. Bond [2009], S. Drayton [2009], A. Young [2008], N. Haward [2008 and 2009]

PAIRS DAY WINNERS:

Trophy plus 250 Euros for winners, 200 Euros for Runners-up & 130 Euros for 3rd. placing

DAY 1

                                                          Pts.    Ozs.            No.Fish

3rd.     D. Roe/P. Molyneaux              5        263.5          8

2nd.    R. Hornby/A. Hornby             3        240             15

1st.     N. Charlesworth/S. Drayton   3        311.5          12

DAY 2

3rd.     P. Cracknell/J. Welfare            4        178             14

2nd.    N. Haward/D. Wright              3        288             20

1st.     D. Falk/G. Hazelgrove             2        108.5          9

DAY 3

3rd.     N. Charlesworth/S. Drayton   5        173             21

2nd.    T. Foggerty/N. Foggerty                   5        185             14

1st.     D. Bond/C. Snow                    3        263.5          20

JOHN BROWNING TROPHY

For the best individual performance at Brandon:

Dave Wright         166.5 points – 10 fish             wins Memorial Shield

MOST SPECIES IN PEGGED MATCHES collects £100 donated by SAMF

10 species – D. Bond

LONGEST FISH CAUGHT IN THE PEGGED MATCHES collects £100 cheque donated by SAMF

Mick Hutchinson – Bull Huss – 84cm CappaClough

BEST INDIVIDUAL PERFORMANCE, sponsored by, Trident Homes and DAIWA Sports. Prize table for top five placings.

                                      Pts.    Ozs.   Fish   Prize

5th.     D. Bond               10      289    20     

4th.     E. Foggerty          10      317.5 23     

3rd.     P. Cracknell                   9        351.5 24     

2nd.    D. Roe                  8        485.5 21     

Overall Winner: S. Drayton – 7pts  – 367 – 23 fish

wins free cottage for 1 week for 2009 event sponsored by Trident Homes

TEAMS OF 4 – Brandon

1st.     N. Marshall/D. Hart/P. Banks/M. Banks                       12 points

          wins 600 euros

2nd.    G. Burgess/G. Welfare/P. Cracknell/J. Welfare              13 points

          wins 440 euros

3rd.     T. Royal/R. Dimmery/D. Falk/G. Hazelgrove                18 points

          wins 240 euros

4th.     B. Lindfield/R. Burrows/D. Roe/P. Molyneaux             20 points

          wins 120 euros

DAIWA SPECIMEN COMPETITION

Most Species – T. Whitehead – 4 species on countback on average %                                                                                             100.7%

Collects £100 donated by SAMF

SPECIMEN COMPETITION  Each wins either 7HT or SL20SH

Dab                                33cm                    G. Hazelgrove

Pollack                           70cm                    P. Smith

Flounder                        44cm                    M. Grossman,

Mullet                            54cm                    A. Hornby

Wrasse                           49cm                    N. Charlesworth

Bass                               67cm                    T. Foggerty

Bullhuss                         103cm                  T. Whitehead

Thornback Ray              61cm                    T. Whitehead,

                                                                   R. Foster, K. Smith

Painted Ray                             58cm                    M. Banks

Conger                           150cm                  S. Smith

Best Flatfish of Week – wins SB13 3 piece  bass rod

Thornback 65cm [108%] to I. Hewitt

———————

Best Roundfish of Week – wins SB13 3 piece bass rod

50cm Wrasse to T. Whitehead [111%]

———————

Organisers Fish of the Week

Wins a STS 115 bass rod and  Exceler Plus 3500E FS reel

Wrasse 51cm [113%] to N. Foggerty & S. Littlewood

MAIN EVENT – SAMF DAIWA IRISH PAIRS top 25 placings

                                                Pts.    Ozs.   Fish   Prize

20th    A. Bell/M. Graham        45      311    37      Windproof fleece

19th.   M. Pinder/S. Durrant     45      337.5 19      Coastal Smocks

18th.   C. Barnes/K. Hewitt      44      368    23      Coastal Smocks

17th    B. Newham/S. Glynn     42      238    22      7HT x 2

16th.   T. Thomas/R. Able        42      300    27      7HT x 2

15th.   J. Ryder/P. Parsons       41      272    26      SL20SH x 2

14th.   M. Groves/K. Harrison  40      476.5 37      SL20SH + line x 2

13th.   N. Marshall/D. Hart       39      334.5 31      SL20SH + taperleader

12th.   A. Smith/D. Smith                   38      436.5 42      SL30SH + line

11th.   T.Foggerty/N. Foggerty 38      452.5 38      SL30SH + taperleader

10th.   B. Lindfiels/R. Burrows 37      301    34      Super w’stopper fl.

9th.     M. Fox/A.Young           34      390    30      STSB13 bass rods

8th.     E. Duff/P. Forrester       33      384    31      Badger Smoothies

7th.     J. Flemming/J. McAllister28    479.5 36      Emblem 5000FS x 2

6th.     D. Falk/G. Hazelgrove   27      288.5 27      Emblem FS+line/caps

5th.     D. Bond/C. Snow          27      611    42      £600 plus line/caps

4th.     R. Hornby/A. Hornby    24      417    31      £700 plus leader/quiv.

3rd.     P. Cracknell/J. Welfare  24      485.5 36      £800 leader/quiv/polo

2nd.    D. Roe/P. Molyneaux    21      645    37      £1000 leader/quiv/sh.

1st.     N. Charlesworth/S. Drayton17         593.5 46      £2500 plus TDSB116s

As a special prize for this years winners The Dingle Bay Hotel has also donated 2 nights B&B and a complimentary meal. 

NEXT YEARS DATES:

Tides will be around two hours later next year, so you can look forward to some not-quite-so-early starts!

Sun 20th. September – Friday 25th. October 2008, limited to 72 pairs and as usual I will be taking entries and requirements on a first come-first served basis.”

Nick Haward – Competition Organiser

Categories : Irish Pairs
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Top 20 Pairs Overall

    Points Weight No. Fish
1st E Duff & P Forrester 18 361 42
2nd P Stevens & C Snow 20 463 56
3rd J Gross & I Hewitt 21 373 35
4th J Amery & D Himsworth 24 499.5 41
5th P Molyneux & D Roe 26 807.5 48
6th S Dewhurst & A Steele 29 329.5 38
7th D Ryan & S O’Dea 32 296 42
8th A Smith & D Smith 34 561.5 68
9th R Hornby & T Barnett 35 328 41
10th D Able & T Thomas 36 396.5 40
11th J Wellfare & P Cracknell 37 395 36
12th B Barrett & R Foster 39 278.5 26
13th K Smith & P Smith 42 298 36
14th M Graham & A Bell 42 252.5 33
15th T Fogarty & M Waters 43 510 26
16th S Dunn & A Wilson 43 260.5 31
17th J Ryder & P Parsons 43 258.5 30
18th G Falk & A Booth 43 247.5 27
19th C Carey & D Bond 44 337.5 36
20th T Whitehead & S Smith 44 304 32

 

Top 3 Individuals over 3 days (Penn Points)

    Points Weight No. Fish
1st Eoghan Duff 6 228.5 28
2nd Dave Roe 7 604.5 25
3rd Darren Smith 8 369.5 43

Other Zone Winners (Penn Points)

George Dugdale Dave Himsworth Stuart Dewhurst Chris Snow
Jim Gross K Hewitt T Whitehead Alec Bell
Ray Foster David Falk Jason Wellfare John Gray
Martin Sherwin D Jackson Trevor Barnett  
Paul Stevens Scott McNicol Baz Barrett  
D Hart Tommy Fogarty Alan Smith  

 Biggest fish in pegged matches

Dave Roe, Conger, 85 cms

Most species in pegged matches

J Wellfare, 9 species

4 man team winners (Inch)

J Gross, I Hewitt, A Smith, D Smith – 12 points

Specimen Hunt

Best Fish – M Graham, Wrasse, 51cms

Best Round – J Dixon, Wrasse, 50cms

Best Flat – J Fleming, Dab, 38cms

Categories : Irish Pairs
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