One of the most sought-after carp in the country fulfiled a long-held dream for Craig Banks.
The 48-year-old snared Cambridgeshire’s elusive Caravan Park Linear at 48lb 9oz.
The fish, which has been targeted by many top anglers and has weighed over 50lb in the past, is the jewel in the crown of the Maxey syndicate.
Staffordshire carper Craig caught the fish on Friday morning [April 20] not long after arriving at the venue from a night shift.
He said: “The fish were cruising around, especially over my favoured spot in the middle of the pit.
“I just put three hookbaits on the spot at 90 yards with no freebies so as to keep the disturbance to a minimum. I planned to add a few boilies later in the day if nothing occurred.
“I put the rods out about 8.30am and had a vicious liner and swirl on the middle rod about 11am.
“I considered re-casting it but thought it best to not do any more casting while the fish were there.
“Half an hour later the same rod was away with a very fast take and the fish found a weed bed shortly after connecting.
“The power of its first run made it obvious to me which fish I was connected to so my legs went!
“The fish was solid and I tried pulling it. Having left it for a while, eventually just sheer force got it moving very, very slowly.
“It released from the weed suddenly and I thought I’d lost it for a second but then it went on an unstoppable run.
“It then must have got some weed over its head and it allowed me to pump it most of the way in. It then just plodded around, stopping occasionally and using its weight to hold its ground.
“Eventually I scooped it up as it was trying to swim away from me into the margin snags!”
Craig added: “I’ve admired this fish for years. I didn’t think I’d be holding it myself one day! Dreamy!”