One man who is very well qualified to comment on the capture, is Korda ace Damian Clarke. He is all too familiar with the monstrous fish, having banked it once before in 2011, at a weight of 88lb. He explained: “Etang la Saussaie is a bit of a one-off; it’s a very small lake with a good head of decent-sized fish in it. The big fish is what I’d call a freak of a nature – I don’t think any of the other stock will grow to that kind of size. It’s a huge, huge framed fish and my capture involved a very long fight, with it charging around the lake with its back out the water. It was clear to see exactly what I was attached to! I can imagine Colin had a very nerve-racking ordeal.
“It’s a very special carp. In the picture I’ve seen it looks like it’s a little fatter from my capture but, let’s be honest, 12lb over a frame like this can easily be lost.
“I wouldn’t be surprised if that fish got bigger, but before we all get too carried away, let’s wait and see what size the next capture is. It would be great to see the World Record back in France at a lake anyone can fish.”
Advanced Carp Fishing columnist, fish farmer and Sparsholt college lecturer, Simon Scott agreed with Damian, adding: “There is no reason why the fish won’t continue to grow – afteralll, it is in an environment where there is no shortage of very high-protein bait.
“As the selective breeding of carp progresses, and more and more high-protein feed is introduced to venues holding our biggest fish, I fully expect to see the record continue to grow in the future. In many ways, carp are well likened to dogs – if you think that the smallest lap dog and the biggest great dane all descended from wolves, their destiny is in our hands in terms of how we choose to breed them.
“In terms of the age of a fish of this size, it is very difficult to say. I would expect it to be around 20 years old, but it could be a few years either side of that number. In Japan, some carp are reported to have lived over 100 years, and the famous UK fish ‘Raspberry’ is said to have been over 70 years old. Generally, though, the really big fish don’t tend to live as long as the moderately sized ones, simply because there is so much strain on their organs.”
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Or, to find out more about Damian Clarke, check out his profile here