The 2010 Forrest Wood Cup took place on Lake Lanier near Atlanta, Ga. But the story of this championship event centered around west-coast angler Kevin Hawk. Hawk originally hailed from Ramona, Calif., but after qualifying for the Forrest Wood Cup packed his bags and moved to Buford, Ga., to be close to the lake. All of his days of practice paid off, and Hawk walked away with the Forrest Wood Cup. Complete coverage of the event will air Oct.10 from 1-2 p.m. ET on VERSUS as part of the weekly FLW Outdoors program.
Hawk became a master of fishing for spotted bass on Lake Lanier, targeting 45 to 50 brush piles a day in order to find the five largest keepers each day. Hawk focused the majority of his efforts on the south end of Lanier between Browns Bridge and the dam. The brush piles he fished, which he did not plant, were located in drop-offs in approximately 25 to 30 feet of water.
The 2010 Cup was not a diverse tournament in terms of tackle. Nearly everyone in the field threw some form of a drop-shot and finesse worm. But the key difference for the top finishers was the 6-inch Roboworm. And one color in particular stood out – morning dawn. Thats the only color Hawk threw when he was drop-shotting. When he saw suspended fish on his graph, he would use a 1/2-ounce Fish Head Spin with a white Super Fluke Jr. as a body.
Hawk hauled in a four-day total of 20 bass that weighed 50 pounds, 14 ounces. Hawk, who would have earned $500,000 for his Forrest Wood Cup victory, was pleasantly surprised when T. Boone Pickens, a new equity partner in FLW Outdoors, personally contributed an additional $100,000 to the first-place purse. With that, the 31-year-old took home $600,000 for his victory.
In second place with 48 pounds, 8 ounces was Grass Valley, Calif., pro Cody Meyer. Meyer had a few productive brush piles outside of Six Mile Creek, but most of his water was on the dam side of Lake Lanier Islands and out front of the Three Sister Islands. Using 6-pound Trilene 100% fluorocarbon, a 3/16-ounce weight and a No. 1 ReBarb hook, Meyer fished his drop-shots vertically with either a Jackall Cross Tail Shad or a Roboworm (again in morning-dawn color). Meyers second-place finish earned him $100,000.
Chevy pro Larry Nixon of Bee Branch, Ark., took third and earned $85,000 with a total weight of 47 pounds, 3 ounces. While most of the other finalists fished the main lake, Nixon worked creek arms – in particular Six Mile Creek and Young Deer Creek. But he still probed the deep brush on vertical breaks (27 to 30 feet) with a drop-shot. Nixon went as far back in the creek as he could until it shallowed up. This allowed him to have water to himself, a rarity in a tournament dominated by hopping and rotating.
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