John Beaven of Parksville shows off his gold medal after coaching the Canadian Fly-fishing team to victory at the World Commonwealth Championships in Mt Tremblant

John Beaven of Parksville shows off his gold medal after coaching the Canadian Fly-fishing team to victory at the World Commonwealth Championships in Mt Tremblant

Local legend coaches Canada to fly-fishing gold

Parksville angler picks up medal with winning team in Commonwealth Fly-fishing Championships in Quebec

Parksville’s John Beaven added to his extensive collection of fly-fishing awards last week when he guided Canada to the gold medal in the 2016 Commonwealth Fly Fishing Championships in Mont Tremblant, Quebec.

Beavan, a retired sales executive who moved to the Island with his wife Laurie from Ontario, is a veteran of multiple world, commonwealth and national competitions. He holds the distinction of having caught the most fish in all four of the national championships in which he competed from 2003-06. Beaven, a director on the Fly Fishing Canada Board, has competed in eight international fly-fishing competitions, including world and commonwealth championships.

Last week in Quebec, Canada’s White team collected 90 fish in the five fishing sessions and amassed 61,520 points to top runner-up Scotland Men and third-place Australia Gold.

Canada’s Red team, which led after two sessions, finished seventh in the 14-team competition.

The 17th Commonwealth championships, which are held every other year, drew 76 world-class anglers from the commonwealth countries of Canada, England, Wales, Scotland, South Africa, Australia, New Zealand and Ireland.

Competition took place on three lakes and one river in the Mont Tremblant region.

Colin Huff of Quebec was the top individual finisher, scoring 16,000 points on 23 fish caught. J.F. Lavallée of Quebec matched Huff with 23 fish caught, and two more Canadian anglers, Sorin Comsa (second overall) and Keefer Pitfield (fourth) reeled in 22 fish each.

The event is considered the second-most prestigious in the world of fly-fishing competition, after the World Championships, which are scheduled for next week in Vail, Colo. The Canadian National Championships come to B.C. this year, Oct. 4-8 in Merritt.

— Submitted by Fly Fishing Canada