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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Nasty wind making casting difficult.
Willie Gunn is the best drsssed observer.(and was sober then)
Ian Gordan has best cast of 50 yards 150ft Steve Choate close second. Two days to go.

I
 

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Thanks for the update. If I'm not mistaken, I'm pretty sure Steve is using an 18' Burkie that Kerry delivered to him less than 2 weeks ago. Keep us posted. Any report on Way's casts?
 

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Discussion Starter #3
In testing conditions, downstream wind, the following six have made it through to the final on Sunday.
Ian Gordon Speyside
Scott McKenzie. Inverness
Way Yin
Steve Choate
Brendan ??? Ireland
Young English laddie from Cornwall.

Ian Gordon has had the best so far with 50yds but tomorrow the slate is clean and these six go up in reverse order. The longest cast wins.

Wrke Yes it looks like an 18ft Burkie
Malcolm
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Musto 2003

Musto 2003
The Musto Speycasting Champion of 2003 is Scott McKenzie from Inverness in a tense cast off this afternoon Scott put in a cast of 51yds. Ian Gordon from Spey side casting last could not match his 52 yds from the heats and had to settle with a 49 for second place for the second year running.. Way Yin from USA was third again with a cast of 46yds.
Both Steve and Way had trickier winds but,as the gentlemen they are will not accept that as an excuse.
Scott was using a Bruce and Walker 18ft 10/11 (The same rod as Fred Evans, so what’s your excuse Fred?) With a XLT 10/11 that Way lent him this morning!
Brilliant sportsmanship all round.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Matthew who is only 18 was using a 18'B&W Norway with a XLT
Brendon had a Clan 18ft with a XLT? i think
Steve Burkie 18 and XLT
Way 16' Scott (slightly under gunned)
Ian had his Carron 16ft and his Carron line
Scott 18ft B&W and XLT

I am sorry I have not got Steve's distance 40+ but I cannot remember, it was very exciting and hot. I am sure Musto will post the distances soon.
 

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Scottish Cup?

Should we create something along the lines The America's Cup. Winners take the trophy home, losers have to come visit the following year? We'll just call it The Scottish Cup.

Just a thought? Would be fun.
 

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Musto 2003

For any that are interested:

Just returned from the CLA Game Fair and 2003 Musto International Open Spey Casting Championsips, held at Harewood House near Leeds, UK.

This year's results (please pardon any misspellings!):

Scott McKenzie, Inverness, 1st (51 yards) using a 17' 11" Bruce and Walker with my own 10/11 XLT line;

Ian Gordon, Speyside, 2nd (49 yds), using a custom 18' Carron and a prototype long belly (~90 foot) Jetstream line;

Steve Choate, Kalama WA, and Matthew Tonkin, Cornwall, England tied for fourth (42 yards). Steve used an 18' custom Burkheimer and an XLT 10/11, and Matthew an 18' B&W with an XLT 10/11;

Brendon Begley, Ireland, finished 6th (34 yards) using an 18' Clan rod owned by Gary Scott, and a prototype Airflo line. [Brendon did take first in the salmon distance (two hand overhead) competition at 41 yards - well done Brendon!].

I finished 3rd (46 yards) using a 16' Scott A2 prototype and an XLT 9/10.

The competition was held on a lake, and the wind made casting difficult (side-onshore, into the right shoulder), and the angle change turned out to be about 60-70 degrees (or more, depending on how windy it was), there were obstructions as well waiting to snag the backcast loop. As the heats were only 2 minutes long (including the finals), the wind was an uncontrolled variable that had an effect on most casters (but apparently not Ian or Scott!).

The event had quite an international flavor, as two gentlemen from Japan joined the Yanks, Scots, English, and Irish contingents. The best cast during the two and a half days of qualifying was made by Ian Gordon with a monster 52 yarder, the next best were by Brendon Belgley (49 yards) and Scott McKenzie (49 yards).

Equipment-wise, everyone (except me, it seems... length DOES matter!) used an 18 foot rod. Short head lines were not competetive, although Saijo from Japan managed a 43 yarder with what looked like a regular Mastery Spey. 4 of the 6 finalists were using the XLT, despite the wind.

The championship, although keenly competetive, brought out the best sportsmanship among the various contestants, and everyone was happy for the winner.

From a competitor's standpoint, I learned a great deal. The still water, wind, and angle changes required (about 60-80 degrees, depending on the wind) combined with the obstructions (trees, chains, casting platform) and other factors (pressure, standing on your shooting line, etc.!) made for interesting observing. As we (me and Steve anyway) would seldom use the single spey under those conditions, we both found our technique lacking. Personally, I felt completely outgunned by the 18 footers, and simply outclassed by both Scott and Ian's great casting.

Scott's unique casting style lent him incredible consistency, and he forms the most powerful V loop backcast I have ever seen. Ian is the best "pure" spey caster I have ever seen, and his casting stroke is the epitome of efficiency and generates seemingly effortless power. Both Scott and Ian's timing and technique are perfect.

Sincere thanks to Andy Murray, "the heart of Hardy" for putting us up and letting us fish the Sprouston/Henderside beat on the Tweed and Till, and his lovely wife Becci and daughter Harriet. His son, Hamish, will be kicking everyone's butt in about 3 years (at 12, he can already cast 40 yards overhead)!

The funnest ghilles in town deserve a special thanks, Gavin, Pud, Catch, and Johnnie, and not to forget Gary Scott, one of the nicest guys around - thanks for the shandies!

Thanks too to all the "Hardy boys"- The Gang of Andrews, Howard, Tony, John, Charlie, and to Edgar and Kirin for the venison steaks and tenderoin!

Thanks also to the boys at Alltmor (David, Stephen, Stuart, etc!), and of course Brian, Aline, David, and Julie at Musto for their support and kindness!

Special thanks to Peter Andersen, who at 77 years of age, is the best all around caster I have ever had the priviledge to see (in his 60 years of tournament casting, he has forgotten more about casting than I will ever learn!).

Hywel Morgan, the great entertainer and Emcee par excellence... we must get you over to the states to do one of your patented demonstrations!
 

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Junkyard Spey
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Howdy Way, Thank you for posting this info. I really enjoyed this update and Willie Gunn's reports. It is much appreciated. I think all the casters did a great job. I sounds like a great time was had by all. Take care, MJC
 

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Discussion Starter #13
Re: Musto 2003

spey_bubba said:
The championship, although keenly competetive, brought out the best sportsmanship among the various contestants, and everyone was happy for the winner.

As we (me and Steve anyway) would seldom use the single spey under those conditions, we both found our technique lacking. Personally, I felt completely outgunned by the 18 footers, and simply outclassed by both Scott and Ian's great casting.

Way,
Glad you arrived home safely, I enjoyed meeting you and Steve from the USA. Thanks for the lessons I realy learnt a lot I hope I can remember all I was told. For someone who was "simply outclassed" I wish I could be outclassed with 46 yds. As an unbiased observer I thought that if the wind stayed as it was the Scots would do well but if it dropped the Yanks would probably retain the trophy. I feel you put your finger on it when you say
>> As we (me and Steve anyway) would seldom use the single spey under those conditions>>
For Scotland that was a still day and I think that both Ian and Scott would continue to use the single spey. Both the Spey and the Ness have predominately downstream winds.
If you were fishing, what cast would you have been using?

Great meeting you both and I hope you come back to challenge next year, I need lesson 2.

Malcolm
 

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Coast2coast Flyfishaholic
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Congratulations to Scott McKenzie and Mr.Gordon for first and second, and Way glad you could keep the stateside boys in the top three again! Steve, I think it's safe to say we all know "you'll be back".

Thanks for posting that awesome report Way. It's easy to see that the event was stellar and I hope I'll have an opportunity to attend it someday soon - although with such herculean casts happening it will be as an observer at best! :eyecrazy:

Cheers
 

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A picture is worth a thousand words

Way,

Thanks for a fascinating report. I wonder: was the event filmed or videotaped? If so, it would make a great teaching tool. If not, those awesome casts will just fade into history.
 

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Thanks fellas.

As with all fly casting, there is always so much to learn. Even thought the casting physics don't change, the myriad stylistic variations are wonderful to explore.

The most fun was had by contestants who stuck around until the evening, when the wind calmed, and we all had great fun casting each others' equipment. Under these more ideal conditions (and with a day's worth of beer on board), switch casting and less acute angle change casts of 170+ feet (linear distance, not line out the rod) were routinely made by Ian, Steve, Scott, and myself with the big rods. With a 16 foot rod, I believe the maximum attainable distance was a good 12-15 feet less than that from the 18 footers, despite the higher tip speed generated by the smaller stick. Very close to Grant's theorum, even though we were shooting lots of line (even with the XLT's).

Incidentally, Peter Anderson, at 77 years of youth, cast 47 yeards in competition with a two hander overhead. We spent a lot of time casting together, and once, with an 18 footer, I saw him cast a 10/11 XLT ~160 feet with a slight tailing wind. Amazing, as I will likely be in diapers when I'm 77.

Personally, I took home a great deal of new information on casting technique, and hope to pass on some of these observations at the Great Lakes Ontario Clave in October.

Jon Allen, who filmed last year's championship, also filmed this year's. It would definitely be educational viewing of the 1st and 2nd prize casters (my and Steve's casting could be used as blackmail!). Incidentally, Jon took 2nd prize in the Trout distance (single hand overhead) casting championship - congratulations!

Malcolm, yes, we must make time for lesson 2! It was great meeting you in person. In those conditions, I (and Steve, I think), would use a backhand snake roll as our first choice (downstream grip).

I don't know if Steve or I will be making the trip back next year. It is quite expensive, and (at least for me), this is a busy time of year for work related meetings. On the other hand, I would be interested to see how some of the other projects I have been working on with lines and rods will stack up...

Thanks for your support and interest; I believe the event has had a very beneficial effect on product development, and has rekindled keen interest in Spey casting.

Thanks again to Musto for sponsoring such a unique event. Musto makes some absolutely fantastic fishing vests, fishing jackets, and foul weather gear!
 

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I do believe that perhaps the biggest winner at the Musto Spey casting competition is Way Yin. What admirable sportsmanship to help another compeditor in the way that he did. Obviously a true gentleman and sportsman.

Brendan Begley is a long time friend and one of three Anderson trained fly casters in Ireland. He used a better line to qualify than he used subsequently in the final. Peter Anderson is without doubt one of the greatest casters and Spey casters of all time.

Hopefully I will manage to get over there next year myself and have a go.
 

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Curious absence of the Grandspey at the competition. I wonder if anyone used it at all, and if not ,why not.
 

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the equipment used by competitors in qualifying and in the finals included prototype airflo lines, ian gordon's prototype long belly jetstream, a couple of standard mastery spey lines (the gentlemen from japan), and the xlt. the xlt was used by roughly half the competitors, and two-thirds of the finalists.

rods (alltmor) and lines (mid-spey) were provided by the organizers for competitors who did not bring their own gear.

the serious competitors were extremely gear conscious, dialing in leaders, shooting line, and other factors to maximize distance, and all the finalists were certainly keenly attuned to individual line performance characteristics.
 
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