About me

My first notable accomplishment came when I won the first of my two World Junior Championships at the age of 17 in Ford, Norway. It was my first big competition and is indelibly etched in my memory - not only because I took home a gold medal, but also because of the experience I gained there. Some of the stories and experiences from these competitions will be described in this book. The second milestone in my fly-fishing career came the following year when I attended my second World Junior Championship as the defending champion, but this time on home soil. I wasn’t familiar with the waters of South Bohemia at the time, so fishing on the Vltava River was another great opportunity to learn something new. Fortunately, we had a team of experienced fishermen around us who helped us and showed us crucial things that led the junior team to victory, and me to the defence of my individual gold medal. Two world championships by the age of 18 wasn’t bad for a boy from Olšava.

It took me three years to move from the junior scene to the adult world. It was 2008 and the European Championships were held in Torrelavega, Spain. This event was one of the most challenging, as intense rain raised river levels and training was no more than a scrap for a few fish. After four winning rounds, I caught my “golden fish” of 32cm in the final round, which confirmed my first senior gold medal and with it the record of being the youngest European Champion at the age of 20.

The title of World Champion in the adult competition eluded me for several years, although I came close a number of times. After a few years of winning medals in team events, the 2014 World Championships were held in the Czech Republic, again on the Vltava River. It was 9 years since I won as a junior on this water, and the memories were so strong it felt like yesterday. In the days that followed I felt like I was guided by a higher power, and literally caught fish everywhere. There were moments when I was just sure I was going to catch a fish. And so, after a wonderful championship, with my family in attendance, I was able to step onto the highest podium of world competitive fly fishing and fulfil my dream of winning a full set of gold medals in all the FIPS World Federation categories. The Czech team stood on the podium with me as we also won gold in the team event for the third straight year.

This journey of a lifetime has taught me a great deal about all sorts of fly-fishing methods and gifted me with countless experiences. In this book I would like to bring together everything I have learned from the competition scene and share and describe the journey. I will recall stories and events and share the information and insights that came out of it all.

Ing. Luboš Roza