TONY GIBSON kick-started 2019 with three different personal bests in an amazing run of form.

In five sessions around the country, the specimen fishing maestro bagged a PB 142 lb sturgeon, 3 lb 8 oz perch, 16 lb 12 oz PB brown trout, 10 lb 5 oz river bream and, finally, a superb 7 lb 13 oz PB chub.

The 54-year-old semi-retired IT consultant from Northampton explained: “The sturgeon was caught on a mackerel chunk after being invited by a mate to fish for them for the first time ever. Sorry, I can’t publicise a photo – I promised I wouldn’t.

“It adds to my list of different UK freshwater fish that I’ve had over 40 lb having already had carp, catfish and grass carp.

“And I’ve now had two different UK freshwater species over 100 lb, as I had a 104 lb catfish in 2016.

“It was a spectacular fight, as they really do pull and early on in the fight it jumped out repeatedly at 100 yards out in the dark.

“Hearing this ‘thing’ that I was attached to jump out and smash back into the water several times was very memorable.

“The perch was a very plump example caught three days later on the Great Ouse on lobworm.

Specimen fishing ace Tony Gibson displays his giant brown trout.

Specimen fishing ace Tony Gibson displays his giant brown trout.

“The big brownie was a bonus catch while pike fishing on one of the big midland reservoirs caught on a small whole herring.

“I’ve had a few big bonus trout while piking including a couple of doubles, but I’m pretty sure this is the largest I’ve had.

“The bream was another bonus catch. It was the only fish of an otherwise unproductive evening session on the Great Ouse while targeting chub with a boilie/paste and quivertip approach.

“The big chub was caught after swapping to a different stretch of the Ouse after dark, after spending an unsuccessful afternoon on another section of the river targeting perch.

“I switched tactics to present a 12 mm Dynamite CompleX-T boilie tipped with a buoyant piece of Enterprise plastic corn soaked in green-lipped mussel flavour and then wrapped in CompleX-T paste.

“The stretch fished produces very few fish, but I had a feeling that it could throw up a big fish.

“I’d moved swims a couple of times without any action whatsoever, but the bite came within ten minutes of moving into the new swim,” concluded specimen fishing ace Tony Gibson, who is chairman of the Predation Action Group.

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