The 2013 3 Rivers Carp Cup is over but apparently the work associated with the tournament is not. I'm still busy writing thank you notes and stuffing packages with 3RCC shirts to our sponsors. To say the the Cup was success would be putting it mildly. Not only was it a success, it was also an unmitigated blast. The Cup drew 22 teams composed of 55 anglers in the Team Division and an additional 13 anglers in the Individual Division giving the total participation at 68 anglers from as far west as California and as far north as Vermont. I'll not bore you with excessive self-congratulatory ramblings and instead get back into the meat of it so I can get back to writing those thank you notes.
Participants began calling the shop about two weeks out seeking advice and secret locations. On the Friday before the shop was inundated with anglers hunched over laptops dilligently studying Google Earth and strategizing over the different weather scenarios while drawing up plan A, plan B, and in some cases plan C. With around 140 river miles to fish, having multiple plans is a necessity.
Saturday morning dawned cool and overcast. Not particularly welcoming weather for the afflicted carp angler but given the weather we've had this summer better than we could have hoped. Anglers were lining up to check in during the predawn hours with a noticeable shift in the quality and quantity of watercraft from the previous year's Cup probably owing to the influx of anglers from the coastal states around the southeast.
Fish pics began flooding my phone almost as soon as the last angler left the lot at the Outdoor Knoxville Adventure Center, a good omen for a tournament director consumed with a plethora of natural fears.
At the end of the day, with all anglers accounted for, the final tally looked something like this:
The competition in the Individual Division was particularly tight this year with a single inch separating the first and second place anglers. In the end, Andrew Smalling took the top spot with five fish measuring 132 inches. In second, Chad Fairbanks, last year's winner, scored five fish at 131 inches. Not too shabby at all.
The team division was significantly more competitive this year as well with four teams actually scoring five or more fish. Not surprisingly, Shock and Awe, composed of Brent Golden (last year's Carp King) and Jeff Keith again took the top spot recording 13 fish with their top five measuring 146 inches. A close second, the Fudd Brothers, composed of Greg Marret and Matt Myers, scored 11 fish with the top five measuring 137 inches. Perhaps the most surprising showing came from team S.C.O.F. composed Steve Senberg (SCOF's art director) and Alan Broyhill (SCOF's Intern). The two managed to throw up an impressive 122 inches divided between 5 fish while angling only on the prestine flats of Fort Loudoun. The pari choose to eschew marina fish claiming that anglers that fish marinas are pedestrian mouth breathers (some would say winners!). Given Steve's visual handicap and the fact that the intern is completely unpaid and over-abused, I think we all need to give this team a collective pat on the back. Steve even managed the second largest fish of the day, a 34" (very questionable, more like 33" maybe even 32") black buffalo. Congrats to Steve and Alan!
Finally, and with much fanfair, the 2013 3 Rivers Carp Cup crowned a new Carp King this year. Greg Marret of team Fudd landed an impressive 35" common carp to ascend to the loftiest postion in the most prestigous fly only carp tournament in the southeast!
What follows is a few of the more choice pictures from this years event. If you'd like to see more please check out the Cup's Facebook page. Many thanks to all of our sponsors, volunteers, Outdoor Knoxville, and, of course, the participants.
3 Rivers Carp King Greg Marret
2013 Individual Division Winner Andrew Smalling
2013 3 Rivers Carp Cup Team Winner: Shock & Awe
2013 Smallest Fish Winner: Bill Armstrong
2013 Stangest Catch Award: Bryan Matthews (14" Rat)
2013 3RCC Gross Feet Award (Tie: Kyle and Dave)