Monday saw the commencement of the 2019 Waterways Ireland Classic Fishing Festival in County Fermanagh.  Two Hundred and five anglers lined the sun drenched banks of the Erne, each one hoping to net the week’s winning haul of fish that would land them the top prize of £5,000 and a crystal chalice, or some of the many other cash prizes up for grabs during the competition.

Following day one of the competition, one angler has laid down the gauntlet to his fellow competitors with an impressive first day catch of 23kg 800gms. Fishing on the fancied Portora section, Wigan angler and Classic Regular Gary Whalley netted £500 and a slight lead over second placed David Revill, Nottingham, with 20kg 180gms, caught at the Ely Lodge Section.

With the Ely Lodge and Portora sections fishing well, they have also produced the third and fourth spots on the results table. Another English visitor, Paul Boothby lies in third with 20kg 040gms from peg 18 at Ely Lodge and Rory O’Neill from Newry is fourth with 19kg 230gms from peg 4 at Portora. Top local angler, young James O’Doherty currently sits in fifth, with a first day catch of 18kg 810gm from the Inishmore Viaduct section.

Heaviest Daily Weights

  • 1st Gary Whalley – Wigan G 3 23.800kg  £500
  • 2nd David Revill – Nottingham E 15 20.180kg  £350
  • 3rd Paul Boothby – Penkridge, Staffordshire E 18 20.040 £250
  • 4th Rory O’Neill – Newry G 4 19.230kg £150

Full results: Full results by section fished and Angler positions

Team results: Just the team results

The bright and sunny weather over Lough Erne were not ideal for fishing, but the organisers are delighted with the first day’s catches. Expectations will be high for day two of the competition when anglers gather for the draw at the Lakeland forum in Enniskillen on Wednesday morning at 10am.

The Classic is sponsored for the sixteenth year by waterways Ireland and is organised by Fermanagh and Omagh District Council, in conjunction with the Inland Fisheries Division of the Department of Agriculture, Environment and Rural Affairs.

Find out more

For information contact Katrina McGirr, Waterways Ireland on +353(0)71 95 50560 or Eddie McGovern, Fermanagh & Omagh District Council on 0300 303 1777.