Casting Sport growing.

Casting Sport growing.

Post Number:#1  Postby Paul Arden » Fri Jan 11, 2019 11:44 am

It’s great to see the sport growing. In Italy two years ago there were four casters. This week I met 11 and they have groups in three parts of the country. (Also very interesting for me because two of the casters will be competing fishing in Tasmania).

In Malaysia we have a team forming. In Singapore they are starting. In Netherlands Bart is starting a team. This is great stuff. And the reason it’s come about? IMO it’s because those of us competing in the games have watched the Swedes and the Norwegians grow their teams and we want to do the same.

It would be nice to see more youngsters. I still haven’t worked out yet why it is that we can be top of the game
In our 50s - Steve, Tor, Chris, Lee etc - and if that’s because experience and knowledge are more important than strength, or if we are getting stronger, or if it’s simply because there are few youngsters!

I suppose coming into a sport such as 5WT you have the advantage nowadays that you don’t have to work it all out. But that’s also a disadvantage too.

The future is very bright I think.

Cheers, Paul
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Post Number:#2  Postby John Waters » Sat Jan 12, 2019 4:04 am

It will be interesting to see how it looks in 10 years time. I too hope to see more casters and particularly, juniors and women. Taking it to schools is the key.

I applaud what is happening in Italy, the Netherlands and Scandinavia. More power to all who participate in the sport and all who wish to see it grow.

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Post Number:#3  Postby Paul Arden » Sat Jan 12, 2019 10:41 am

If a county manages to get youngsters involved let me know the formula! From what I can see nowadays is most people want the life of a robot :p

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Post Number:#4  Postby Torsten » Sat Jan 12, 2019 11:16 am

BTW I was elected last year as manager of our casting sport club here in Berlin (we have 23 members in that club).

Fly casting is a bit difficult to establish here, because we cast already the 9 ICSF disciplines. Still I'm trying to "stay on the ball" - at least I'm doing always now fly accuracy when we're training plug accuracy indoors too.

We have planned at least one small fly casting tournament in Berlin (first 4 fly casting disciplines) in August.

It would be nice to see more youngsters. I still haven’t worked out yet why it is that we can be top of the game
In our 50s - Steve, Tor, Chris, Lee etc - and if that’s because experience and knowledge are more important than strength, or if we are getting stronger, or if it’s simply because there are few youngsters!


That's in my opinion a problem here - I think our national team is overaged - demotivating for the youngsters because they can't compete at the ICSF WC!
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Post Number:#5  Postby John Waters » Sat Jan 12, 2019 11:49 pm

It is always a conundrum for a sport, do you make some allowance for inexperienced youth vs experienced older casters in selection criteria, or not. I support the latter, unequivocally. Germany is a typical example in casting. Champions like Heinz Maire Hensge have been selected, on merit, in the national casting team for world championships since the late 90s if my memory serves me correctly. Heinz and others of similar age, are selected because they cast the highest scores in German selection tournaments and have justified their selection by winning world championships eg Heinz in 2018. The ICSF have a world Championship for under 18 aged casters, male and female but it is a challenge to youth to make the transition in casting. The problem to overcome by new casters is gear, availability of time to train and coaching. I see other countries with large numbers of young people casting, and although their national team representatives are in their 40’s and older, many have come up through junior ranks. In our sport, gear is the major impediment in my view.

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Post Number:#6  Postby John Waters » Sun Jan 13, 2019 10:01 am

Something I have been thinking about for some time is for nations to expand their national teams by two, the last two positions have to be filled by the best under 21 year old male and the best under 21 year old female in the nation. It could be an under 25 years old cutoff, does not matter, the point is to reward younger casters and help address the issue Torsten has identified.

The other is that each national representative has to show evidence that they are actively mentoring young casters in their region, in order to represent their nation. Bit out of left field and has a major problem,that being the adult who has no young casters in their region to mentor, why should that adult be disadvantaged because of a factor he/she has no influence over.

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Post Number:#7  Postby Paul Arden » Sun Jan 13, 2019 11:06 am

I don’t think that’s the problem John. I think that there are simply not many young fly fishers, let alone casters which is even more niche. This is nothing new. I started fly fishing at the age of 10 or 11. Grew up fishing a reservoir and started work in the fishing lodge at 15.

For many years I fished that lake 7 days/week. I’m not kidding but in all of that time I remember seeing 3 anglers under the age of 25 - that’s in decade and a half! (And one of them drowned, but that’s another story).

That’s on a public fishery near London which had very cheap junior tickets. I’ve come to the conclusion that to be a fly fishermen takes a certain sort of mad person.

Cheers, Paul
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Post Number:#8  Postby Boisker » Sun Jan 13, 2019 11:41 am

I think the key part you raise Paul is also how niche distance Comp casting is, as you say it’s a very small subset of fly fishing and just not something that will ever appeal to a high percentage.
There’s also the time it takes, ‘Young people’ have a huge range of activities to chose from and compared to when I was young travel is so much cheaper... given the choice of devoting lots of time to practicing distance enough to be competitive and then travelling to comps or travelling around to fish, the majority will choose the latter.

Although not young, I think I am probably a reasonable example of many who routinely practice their fly casting... I do practice distance, certainly compared to usual river fishing distances, but certainly not enough to ever be considered a distance caster, it just doesn’t motivate me.
For instance if I’d travelled from across the world to Cumbria this summer I’d much rather be fishing the Eden, Eamont and Lowther than stood on a platform casting for a couple of days :closedeyes:
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Post Number:#9  Postby Dung Fly » Sun Jan 13, 2019 9:27 pm

The rise of casting events around the globe is a good thing, however the number of youngsters coming in to the sport ouside of the mid/eastern european countries is very few, there is the exception in Maxine McCormack (USA) who is one of a kind.
I see the increase of the ICSF 'City' events is almost double to hat it was just 4 years ago, these events focus on the smaller format events (fly & plug accuracy and single handed distance).

Equipment might be the big issue for people gettign in the sport, day to day equipment will struggle, whilst kitting yourself out with competitive setups could put people off. (Rods, reels, lines etc.) This applies for both the Fishing and CastingSport events.
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Post Number:#10  Postby Lee Cummings » Mon Jan 14, 2019 7:54 am

Did you guys get to meet Blaine Lyon and Jordan Grant from the U.K., both were 15 years old when they competed here last year.

Blaine placed 21st out of 61 trout casters, 21st out of 63 Sea Trout casters and 18th out of 34 18ft Spey, with Jordan comjng 17th in the 18ft.

Their key is having supportive parents who are prepared to invest the time in getting them to events where gear can be lent to them until such a time that they can source their own.

Blaine recently cast 73m with his own 55g at the Open Challenge 2, alongside this he is one of our best performing athletes in nearly all events.
Blaine has a determination to win which from what I have see can only described as unrivalled.
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