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In 2019 an incredible event happened – a pair from Russia won a tournament in the World Carp Classic series (hereinafter — WCC) for the first time ever! Alexey Tretyakov and Evgeny Kiselev finished ahead of more than 100 pairs who participated in the tournament!
Carptoday.ru interviewed the guys, and they were talking about boilies, tactics, and hookbaits that brought them success. We also talked about the tournament itself (for those who don’t know, World Carp Classic is without exaggeration the world’s premier carp fishing forum).
Without getting too much into personal details, we just asked the guys to say a few words about themselves. So here we go:
Evgeny Kiselev was born in Saransk, where he got into carp fishing. Later he lived for some time in Saratov and then more than seven years in Samara, where he became engaged in carp fishing sport for real. At the moment he lives in Mytisshi, a Moscow suburb. He is radio engineer by profession and has been working in the telecommunications industry all his life. His partner Alexei Tretyakov was born and raised in Samara. He is married, has three children and works as an entrepreneur.
World Carp Classic
— I know that after your victory (we will definitely talk about it later) you headed for a tournament in Czech Republic, if I remember correctly. Tell us how is the situation in the sport, not in general terms, but if we speak about boat fishing. How long is duration of such tournaments, how frequently are they held, how often do you participate in them?
Evgeny Kiselyov: “The first time we decided to participate was in 2017. It was Aleksey who got this idea and I was happy to join him. World Carp Classic has been held since 1998. Therefore, we can say that this is definitely a mature sport — fishing for carp from a boat. Competitions are from Monday to Saturday morning. Their duration is 114 hours.»
Alexey Tretyakov: “You know, after such results there’s only one way to go – back home, too much energy and emotions were spent in the tournament, so we didn’t go to Czech Republic.
Boat fishing is very popular in Europe, and there are several reasons for that — on the one hand, there’s large fish, on the other hand – there’s “big water”, i.e. circumstances that don’t allow successful fishing without a boat. I’d like to dwell in more detail on the competition. Such tournaments last 5-6 days and enjoy a great popularity. In order to get to any significant tournament you need to register 6-8 months prior to the start. People switch to this kind of sport, as a rule, from casting, when you get bored of beating, running and surrounding the goals)) Here you need to think differently, I would compare it to chess.
There are two main main events — World Carp Classic (autumn) and International Balaton Carp Cup (spring). The best from the best from around the world is there, and we feel the shortage of few tournaments in winter and summer)) There are also less significant, but no less interesting tournaments in Slovakia, Czech Republic, Hungary, Romania and Turkey. World Carp Classic counts more than 20 years of history, traditions, with big names in its line-up of participants and is certainly the most prestigious of them. IBCC is a fairly new tournament, this year it was held for the 5th time, but its potential is absolutely colossal, everything organized at the highest level and the number of participants is the largest: this year there were 250 teams. Lake Balaton is a place of stunning beauty! «
— Do we have competitions like this in Russia?
Evgeny Kiselev: «We haven’t heard about them.»
Alexei Tretyakov: «In Russia, there are no such tournaments, or I haven’t heard of them, but I think such a tournament should be held in our country in the nearest future.»
— How did you learn about such tournaments, in particular, World Carp Classic, and how long were you thinking about going to this tournament?
«We learned about it from the Internet in 2017. We’ve always participated in it since. It took us a minute to make the decision, we actually spent more time on collecting and preparing our equipment.»
— Was this your first experience of participating in World Carp Classic? If not, then tell us about the previous one.
“Before this success we participated in four big tournaments: two WCC and two IBCC, and it was an invaluable experience. In 2019 we participated in World Carp Classic for the third time. The previous two times we couldn’t catch carp at all. In 2017 the only fish we caught was catfish weighing about 12 kilogram. In 2018 we caught two catfishes. The latter was caught already after the final whistle and its size was larger than our boat (2.9m). «
— What preparations do you make before going to competitions of this kind?
«Well, everything here is probably done in the same way as for any other competition. Preparing equipment for fishing, studying articles and magazines about who and how has been catching — collecting information. Developing tactics.»
— I am new, but I believe in myself and want to participate in the World Carp Classic, what should I do?
Evgeny Kiselev: «First you need to register and apply for it at the official website.»
Alexei Tretyakov: «If you are a beginner, I would advise you to give a try to Balaton, and if you like it, then go for World Carp Classic.»
— I have registered, paid the fee and appeared at the pond at a specified time. What happens next?
“After your arrival in the tournament camp you need to go through the registration procedure, where a special bracelet will be fastened to your hand as a testimony for your participation in the competition. Then you draw your line number and go to check the boats or the referees’ boat (they are called Marshals). After that you’re waiting for your sector (peg) to appear in the draw. This exciting moment always happens before the flag parade and the opening ceremony, where the previous winners are honoured (during the parade they are driven in a little train sitting at the place of honour). «
— How long does the tournament last?
«114 hours, 5 days.»
— When did you realize that you are world champions? What is your personal record? What does your team name mean?
Alexei Tretyakov: “We haven’t realized it yet! This time the stars did come together: we had both the experience and the knowledge of the pond, the right strategy and tactics. In addition, we were doing things very carefully. This is very important when you deal with a very big fish that floats faster than your boat. When I was chasing our first carp, I was 100% sure that it was a catfish and already reached for the scissors to cut the line, but then it flashed its golden flank. It was truly one of the happiest moments of my life — a carp weighing 19 kg. Then came the finest hour for my mate, he caught one by one with an interval of 3 hours his PB (personal best) 22,6 and 24,4 kg. You should have seen how much happiness there was in his eyes!».
— What was the main prize for the winner?
Evgeny Kiselev: «The prize for the first place was 15,000 UKP apart from prizes from sponsors (echo-sounders, camping refrigerators, etc.).»
— What was your tactic in this tournament (if it’s not a secret)?
Evgeny Kiselev: “Our task, and apparently not only ours, was to catch carp and not to catch catfish, which is the dominant species there. It is everywhere! Therefore this time we decided to feed the fish just a bit. I’d even say just a tiny bit. For the whole tournament we spent only 8 kg of boilies and about the same amount of tiger nuts. And this was at 4 spots. In general it turned out 10-2 in favour of carps! «
— Which hookbaits were you using for the fish (if it’s not a secret)?
Evgeny Kiselev: «Homemade boilies 24mm».
— Boat fishing requires a certain amount of time. Many would like to get involved in such a trophy fishing, but don’t have enough time. How do you manage to solve this problem?
Evgeny Kiselev: «One of my bosses said — it’s not about time, it’s about priorities.»
Alexey Tretyakov: «If you’ve got a goal, there’s no obstacles!»
— For beginners in carp fishing the biggest problem is to find a wild reservoir with big fish in it. Tell us how to look for such ponds. Nobody talks about them.
Evgeny Kiselev: «I won’t tell either, because I’ve never done fishing on them myself. We participated in tournaments at World Carp Classic, as well as in Hungary on Lake Balaton, where a tournament in carp boat fishing takes place in April.»
Alexei Tretyakov: “That’s right, unfortunately the main problem is not with the reservoir, but with people on the land! That is, there are no circumstances when you could spend time on a wild pond comfortably and safely for yourself. This is one of the reasons why I stopped going on casual fishing trips. It’s not interesting to go to commercial farms and conditions are not good at the big water.»
— Have you ever tried rolling boilies on your own? Or are you using ready-made boilies?
Evgeny Kiselev: «Since 2018 we have been fishing using our own boilies. We never use ready-made ones.»
Alexey Tretyakov: «Competitions in boat fishing and homemade boilies are one whole, it will not work another way, and everything here must be very finely selected.»
— Do you prefer a small or a large hookbait? In sport carp fishing there’s an opinion that a small hookbait with a small hook has more chances to get into the fish’s mouth.
Evgeny Kiselev: “I think this opinion is correct, but we haven’t used small hookbaits in such tournaments yet. It’s too likely that some white fish like roach or bream will take it away. They’re really big there)) «
Alexei Tretyakov: “This is an interesting question, and rather philosophical. I think here that everyone catches fish with what they believe in. Everyone is probably more concerned with the question of what the big carp prefers, of course, if you can put it that way)) One time at IBCC we met a team from Hungary, who told us a whole theory of how to catch carp 5-10, 10-15, 15-25, and it was interesting. Looking ahead, I will say that these guys turned out to be great specialists in their field, they were successful with catching 5 large fishes twice and today they hold the officially registered record of Lake Balaton — carp at about 30 kg. So anyway, they said that “the big one” is caught from 30-50 meters’ distance from your bait spot and the hookbait should be small and naturally looking without any liquids or dips.»
— Just out of formality, do you carry the rig system along with the rod on the boat, put the rig (say, install) and then go back? Or are you pulling the rig from the land from the rods on the banksticks? And after you answer this, another question: why do you do it namely this way?
Evgeny Kiselev: “We definitely don’t pull it from the land)). The process looks the following way — you are sailing in a boat with a fishing rod and the rig system. You approach the marker that is already installed and carefully put the rig system near the marker — 1-2 m. You feed the fish a little and then start sailing back. The first meters I do everything with a weakened brake, without opening the coil so that there is no release of shock leader, then I open the coil and go to the land relaxed. On the land we put the rods on the banksticks, and that’s it. We have no other ways of doing it. All sportsmen do it this way. It seems to me that to pull it 500 meters away through waves in a pond the size of Moscow (that’s the size of Lake Balaton) in a different way is simply unrealistic. In my opinion there will be a huge arc at least.
— What rigs do you use? Or do you have any one single proven option that you use anytime, anywhere?
Evgeny Kiselev: “We never prepare hooklinks in advance. We do everything on the pond depending on the situation. There is no one single option. Normally we use the classic version with coated hooklink. This time we were fishing with the composite one — fluorocarbon, along with the soft part up to the hook and soft hair. «
— Do you use liquids, dips and other liquid stuff? And if yes, then why, if not, then again, why?
Evgeny Kiselev: “Yes we do. But we use only one thing at a time. We don’t pour it all at once. It’s hard to say why.
Alexei Tretyakov: «We use it, but very carefully. You can easily get the opposite effect.»
— Do you prefer to be fishing from a gravel pit, or silt doesn’t bother you? In general, can you talk about the principles of choosing a fishing spot. It will be very interesting to our subscribers.
Evgeny Kiselev: “In fishing we use a number of tools to determine the location of catching: an echo-sounder, an aquascope and so-called prodding stick (this is some sort of an extensible tube with a metallic plate at the end for tapping the bottom). Prodding stick is the main tool for finding a place. This is a metal composite pole with sections of 1.5 meters and various hookbaits, ranging from all kinds of nozzles to rake and saw, without which you won’t understand anything! And the choice is yours, silt doesn’t bother us anyway.
There’s probably a few principles here:
We try to find any kind of bottom change for sure, sometimes it just doesn’t peck on a solid one, but does quite a lot on silt.
We take into account how the neighbours put their stuff.
The hookbait should not be in the weed.»
— How long does it take you to find a fishing spot?
Evgeny Kiselev: «Usually, competitions start at 14.00 and somewhere around 20.00 we’ve done with the search for all the 4 spots from which we start catching.»
Alexei Tretyakov: «Usually we have an area of 100 by 300 meters, it takes us 4-5 hours to find a place on it.»
— What are your records in the terms of caught fish?
Evgeny Kiselev: «Now my record is 24.4kg.»
Alexey Tretyakov: «Carp 23 kg, caught in 2006.»
— Do you place the rods around one large baiting area or put each rod on its own place and a small amount of bait on top of it?
Evgeny Kiselev: “The last time we were fishing we put one fishing rod per spot. The rig system in the fishing spot and a handful of boilies is usually thrown over it.”
Alexey Tretyakov: «Depending on the situation, but not more than two rods per spot.»
— What’s your longest bite-free session, which was successful in the end?
Evgeny Kiselev: “For two years in a row we had zero carp bites. Each session was 114 hours. At the same place, Lac-de-Madine.”
— How much time a year do you spend fishing?
Evgeny Kiselev: «At tournaments — twice a year (in spring and autumn).»
— A few tips for beginners who want to try trophy carpfishing, but cannot afford purchasing expensive equipment immediately. Boat — what are the main requirements for a boat?
Evgeny Kiselev: “You don’t need a big one. 2.8 — it’s enough if you sail alone. It’s always one of us sailing alone at a time. You can also go for 3.2 — I think a bigger size is not needed. We have an inflatable floor — which is convenient. There are no special requirements. Only reliability!»
Alexey Tretyakov: «The main thing is reliability, your life depends on it! Of course, a good boat is not cheap, but you shouldn’t be sparing on it! You understand it pretty well when you’re sailing alone 300 or even 500 meter away at night in a little breeze. Apart from the reliability of the boat I’d like to mention some simple but important safety rules: 1. always wear a life jacket when out on the water; 2. in the dark a lamp (or just headlamp) should always be on, if there are underway lights, it’s even better. 3. there must always be a walkie-talkie in the boat, it’s not just lying there, but should always be turned on.»
— Echo-sounder — what are the main requirements for an echo-sounder?
Yevgeny Kiselev: “A convenient screen — so that it can be seen in bright weather. Reliable, without fails. The most important thing is the multi-stick. Without it it’s impossible to understand anything going on on the bottom.”
Alexey Tretyakov: «The main thing is to understand what this miraculous device is showing to you! It doesn’t help much with choosing a fishing place, but at least it gives some idea. For example, it can draw a map. Everything else is the prodding stick.»
— Based on the day, how much bait do you use in 24 hours? Let’s say you’re fishing 10 days and spend 100 kg – it gives 10 kg of bait per day. How much do you use on average? Many people are interested to hear how many boilies are needed for a successful fishing.
Evgeny Kiselyov: “It depends on the conditions under which you’re fishing, as well as its pace. In the beginning we used 350 kg. But then we realized that it makes no sense. The last time we spent 8 kg of boilies. The more the pace of your fishing is, the more you need. «
Alexei Tretyakov: «There is no definite answer to this question, there’s a lot of special conditions. We can use 30 kg per day, but we can also do 10 kg per week.»
— Do you agree with the idea that it’s only heavy nutritious boilies that are suitable for trophy fish. Many people in Europe successfully catch with the same Monster Tiger Nut from Dynamite Baits, but you can call it neither nutritious nor heavy. It is rather a sweet, less nutritious boilies.
«We forwarded this question to Igor Agafonov, who is the man responsible for our bait program.»
Igor’s answer: “Heavy, nutritious boilies” is a high protein boilies. I want to add that the European carp and the Russian carp are different, since half of the year in our place is winter, which adjusts the structure of the bait program. In England there are supporters of certain programs, including supporters of bait made out of birdfood, fishmeal as well as supporters of high protein (HNV) boilies, the so-called heavy boilies. Each of these supporters would say that their chosen bait is the right one. I will put it this way: everyone is right. All this people either keep something from us or misunderstand that one of the main criteria for these baits is their DIGESTIBILITY. It means that those components that are included in the given bait must be highly digestible, in that case the bait will work, whether it is bird food, fishmeal or HNV. Many producers of carp nutriment are silent about this. The bait must compete with natural food and with that of neighbours. It should be understood that the carp needs minimal energy for digesting the bait, and it must satisfy its needs. In the best case it should eat it quickly and quickly defecate it in order to eat further, and so on. So to speak, the circular flow of the nature. If it gets to the spot and starts eating, then there will be much more bites.
Nevertheless, there may be exceptions, such as Tiger Nut boilies. But this exception is due to the high content of sugars in the bait, which are necessary for carp’s metabolism. After all, the fish eats not only baits, but also natural animal foods: bloodworms, shells, etc., and for the assimilation and digestion of protein sugar is needed, which is contained in these boils from Dynamite. In addition let me mention the exclusion of bites for unwanted fish such as bream or catfish. Catfish is Europe’s scourge. If it has reached a spot, you can give up on fishing carp in this place. However, you can exclude any weed fish or at least minimize its bites not only by the right size of the hookbait, but also by the composition of the mix, the strategy and tactics of feeding. In nature, everything is interconnected.
Personally, I am a supporter of a balanced diet, that is, the boilies should contain proteins, carbohydrates, fats, vitamins in a fairly digestible form. What is the use of boilies if it contains 40% protein, and the digestibility of this protein by fish is only 20%? Consequently, the fish should spend energy on the assimilation of this protein, while it is easier for it to float away and eat a shell or bloodworm, in which there’s more protein with higher digestibility, and it’s possible to spend less energy or float to the neighbour’s sector (laugh). This also applies to carbohydrates, oils, etc. Therefore, I don’t understand many manufacturers who are chasing increase of proteins in baits. Of course, everything must be taken into account. For each pond you need to select the bait, taking into account the forage base of the pond, the presence of weed fish, predators, water temperature, season, etc., since the forage base of the carp and its needs for one or another food are changing. As someone famous said: «He who owns information, he owns the world.» Nevertheless, making a boilie is a very interesting science, with many unknowns. You can write a lot on this topic. But I always say that the main expert and connoisseur of your bait-hookbait is not some world-famous expert, but His Majesty CARP.
— How many days can the minimum session for trophy fishing last in your opinion?
Eugene Kiselev: «5 days seems to me enough.»
Alexei Tretyakov: «If you choose the right place, then one day is enough!»
— How to keep calm and believe in success when there is no bite at all. Have you ever been visited by negative thoughts during such biteless periods?
Evgeny Kiselev: «Play chess). There were no negative thoughts. Although there’s been cases when we couldn’t even go out onto the water for days because of a storm.»
Alexei Tretyakov: “You know, the question is more about whether you are in your place and whether you are doing the right thing for you, and if so, then there can be no such thoughts whatsoever. I used to think about one question, it would arise during casting competition, and it didn’t matter which sector was picked up (good or bad) at the draw, I always asked my partner — “Zhenya [Evgeny], tell me, what am I doing here?” Now such questions no longer come to my mind! ”
— Tell us about your most unforgettable fishing trip, if any. Well, or about any outstanding fishing session.
Alexei Tretyakov: «The first fish caught in boilies, carp 23 kg, before this three months without a bite, still haven’t caught a bigger one!»
— What is more important, tactics or technics?
Evgeny Kiselev: “Tactics”.
Alexey Tretyakov: «The understanding of what you’re doing and for what reason is more important!»