Vinter shows smooth moves

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Mark Vinter won the individual prize in round six of the Solent League at Browndown beach, Gosport.

The Portsmouth angler landed a 91cm catch-and-release smoothhound of 6lb from peg one in zone A to pocket the top cash prize of £130.

Weather conditions were superb for the match but it was far from easy as the curse of the summer Solent angler has arrived.

Weed is here – showing the weather is hotting up.

It’s never easy to fish through the smelly red stuff but 37 anglers battled for prizes.

Vinter’s main competition on the night came from Bristol angler Russell Preston who took second spot from peg 55 in zone C.

Preston retained his place at the top of the table thanks to his zone victory.

He leads overall on 26 points, ahead of Nick May who is second on 33 points and 8lb 1¾oz.

The final podium place is currently held by Darren James with 36 points.

High tide was set at 4.5m, perfect for the venue.

The match was fished in three zones, from the entry fence at Browndown, around the Point to Elmore.

A total of 57 fish were recorded at the scales for a total match weight of 58lb 6½oz – 142lb down on last year, with a smaller attendance.

The sizeable fish total was represented by five bass, 21 dogfish, one flounder, 18 pout, two silver eels and four smoothhounds.

There was a nice summer flounder of 1lb 8oz, landed by Isle of Wight member Matt Brook on peg 34.

A bass, of 2lb 6oz, was reeled in by Nigel Thorns, from Worthing, on peg 25.

Six top-ups (undersized fish) were represented by two bass, one ray and three smoothhounds.

Meanwhile, Portsmouth angler Phil Jasper boated his personal best undulate ray that tipped the scales to 17.5lb while out on Andy Snow’s boat Sea Fox.

His impressive catch shows the rewards will come for those who are determined enough to fish through the weed in the area.

Bumper catches of mackerel have been landed on almost every beach – from Hayling to Lee-on-the-Solent.

You don’t need any bait to catch them, only a set of shiny feathers.

The charter fleet have also been busy with reports of plenty of black bream on the reefs with fish to over 4lb common.

Those fishing the Nab area have reported big catches of smoothhounds as well as some hefty tope, along with rays, bass and dogfish.