Wednesday 13th May: The sun shone brightly on Fermanagh today as the 233 anglers fishing the 40th Anniversary Waterways Ireland Classic cast their lines into the sparkling waters of Lough Erne.  After the wind and rain of Monday the spring-like conditions were very welcome and overall catches were quite respectable.  The traditional Classic sections came to the fore today, with the top weights coming from the Rossahilly and Cornagrade sections.

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Today’s winner was Norman Thewlis from Middlestown, whose catch of 30kgs 230gms from peg 9 at Rossahilly earned him the top daily prize of £500.  This superb catch propelled him from 144th to overall first place on the leader board.  Young angler, Cameron Hughes, from Little Eaton, came in second with 20kgs 350gms caught on peg 32 at Cornagrade.  Third place was taken by Nigel Truman from Nottingham with a catch of 16kgs 880gms from peg 8 at Rossahilly, and in fourth place was Matthew Hall, also from Nottingham, who took 15kgs 50gms from peg 28 at Cornagrade.  Top local angler today was Wayne Fuller from Lisbellaw who landed 10kgs 680gms from peg 10 at Inishmore Viaduct.

Local angler Phil McCaffrey from Lisbellaw is still in the top ten at seventh overall and Fergal Smith from Balliniagh, County Cavan has moved up into second place.  Third overall going into the final day on Friday is young English angler, Cameron Hughes, who is a member of one of five father and son teams fishing the Classic this year.

All eyes will be on the draw box at the Lakeland Forum when the anglers line up for the final day of the 40th Anniversary Waterways Ireland Classic.  Lough Erne is a wild fishery and every angler knows that he has the chance of drawing a peg that could produce a net of bream that could win him the competition and the coveted Crystal Chalice, not forgetting the £5,000 prize money.

Full results are available on the Classic website at

The Classic is sponsored for the thirteenth year by Waterways Ireland, with additional sponsorship from DAIWA, and is organised by Fermanagh and Omagh District Council, in conjunction with the Inland Fisheries Division of the Department of Culture, Arts and Leisure.

For further information please contact Norma Herron, Waterways Ireland, on 028 6632 3004 or Eddie McGovern, Fermanagh and Omagh District Council, on 028 6632 3110.