The secret is to set the float low in the water so that the bristle rides through the ripple and not bouncing up and down. The extra long bristle helps here (research Wave Base for the technical explanation). Then you get used to the rhythm of the float appearing and disappearing through the peaks and troughs. Strike at any deviation.
As for shotting patterns I would use a bulk (olivette?) if the tow was strong or a strung out pattern if not. But that is personal choice. I would also lay a couple of inches more line on the deck.
I used a 1 gram Guru wire stem pinger yesterday. Water about 5'deep, bulk shot 18'' above hook link, then two number 8s 6'' from the hook. Slightly over depth maybe 2''. Windy with a tow, worked well enough for 9 nice big carp? I did not fish too far out however maybe 3-4 meters.