UPCOMING EVENT: TOYOTA SERIES - 2020 - Lake Erie

Hudson’s heroics

Hudson’s heroics
Co-angler David Hudson of Jasper, Ala., shows off his first-place trophy after winning the 2008 Forrest Wood Cup title on Lake Murray.

COLUMBIA, S.C. - From 1996 to 2007, David Hudson of Jasper, Ala., pulled off a feat almost unrivaled in the sport, qualifying for the Forrest Wood Cup every single year with the exception of two seasons - 2002 and 2005.

During that span, he recorded an astounding four top-10 and seven top-20 finishes - making him one of the most highly regarded co-anglers in FLW Tour history. However, despite that stellar track record in Cup competition, he never could quite pull off a victory when it mattered most.

That was ... until today.

On the strength of a final day catch of 7 pounds, 15 ounces, Hudson finally walked away with the tournament title that had eluded him for more than a decade.

"Words can't really explain what I'm feeling right now," said Hudson, who took home $50,000 in winnings for his efforts. "This is by far my biggest win. This is my 11th (Cup) championship, so it feels great to finally get the win. I thought I was going to win it last year. I was leading after the first two days. But on the third day I only caught three fish. If I'd caught that fourth fish I would have won. So to finally get the win is just amazing. This is one of the biggest moments of my life."

Heading back to the marina after today's competition, Hudson was once again hopeful that he could pull out a tournament title. But after so many near misses, he didn't dare get his hopes up too high.

"You never really know how things are going to turn out," said Hudson, on his prospects before weigh-in. "But I knew the fishing was really tough out there for everyone. I fished a flawless tournament - I don't think I missed one keeper bass all week. And that's all you can ask for. So I was hopeful, but you just never really know."

In the end Hudson's perseverance paid off, finally eking out a win by a mere 12 ounces.

For winning the 2008 Forrest Wood Cup on Lake Murray, co-angler David Hudson earned $50,000."To win one of these tournaments, the stars really have to line up," he said. "I practiced four days for this event with Jay Yelas - and that never hurts. And then I drew three great partners. On the first day I got to fish with George Cochran. On the second day I drew Larry Nixon. And today I got to fish with (TBF National Champion) Brian Travis. All of those guys were great and put me on fish."

Hudson, who fished with a spinning rod and jig-head worm all week, said the key was being patient and taking advantage of what his pros gave him.

"I fished shallow water about 80 percent of the time," he said. "Basically, I was keying on shade areas. If there was a piece of wood with the sun shining on one side of it, I'd fish the other side. Wherever I found cover, I just fished the shady side of it.

"But this was a tough tournament," Hudson continued. "Bites were at a premium. And any bite you did get, you had to capitalize on it."

Although Hudson said he was going to cherish this win for a long time, he also waxed philosophical on the part-time profession that has been so good to him over the years.

"Fishing is all about having a good time," said Hudson. "There are a lot of times when you go out there for hours and hours in the hot sun and it's not exactly fun. But you have to make the best of it. And today, we made it fun."

Today, Hudson made a little history as well.

Tidwell comes up just short

Co-angler Brian Tidwell of Seneca, S.C., weighs in his catch en route to a second-place finish at the 2008 Forrest Wood Cup.Although Brian Tidwell of Seneca, S.C., fished the tournament of his life, in the end he couldn't quite pull off the victory. Bolstered by a final-day catch of 7 pounds, 3 ounces, Tidwell ultimately had to settle for second place.

"I had a great week and today started out so well," said Tidwell, who took home $10,000 in winnings. "I caught a 2-pounder right away and a 3-pounder not long after that. At that point it was about 10 a.m. and I was feeling pretty good about my chances."

And it was hard to blame him. With the co-angler field struggling all week - not one co-angler was able to muster a double-digit stringer the entire event - it appeared that Tidwell was well on his way to a tournament title. However, when it comes to the sport of fishing, any veteran will tell you that there are no certainties come tournament time.

"But then things really slowed down for me," he said. "I caught two small fish over the next couple of hours. And I don't think I caught anything after 1 p.m. I knew if I could just catch a limit I would win this tournament. So, in the end, it was kind of disappointing."

Tidwell landed the majority of his catch fishing a Zoom Ol' Monster June bug, targeting bass on shallow wood in 2 to 3 feet of water.

But while South Carolina native was indeed disappointed that he didn't come out of the Forrest Wood Cup with a tournament title, he said there were plenty of things to be thankful for.

"This was a great opportunity for me," he said. "I had my family here, got to fish with some great pros and had a really good time. And this was my best finish in a big tournament by far."

Hults title hopes fade in heavy cover

Chris Hults of Vancleave, Miss., finished third overall in the Co-angler Division at the 2008 Forrest Wood Cup.By the time weigh-in had concluded, Chris Hults of Vancleave, Miss., knew that his three lost fish during the final day of competition were the difference between third place and a tournament title.

"I'll be honest with you. I lost three big fish today and any one of those three fish would have put me over the top," said Hults, who ultimately netted $9,000 in prize money. "But at least I know I didn't miss those fish because I did anything wrong. That's just what happens when you fish the way we're fishing today."

Specifically, Hults said that his boat's decision to fish in heavy cover naturally resulted in a high-risk, high-reward strategy.

"I was flipping a trick worm in really heavy grass cover," said Hults, who recorded a final-day catch of 6 pounds, 7 ounces. "And when you do that, you're going to lose fish from time to time. I just had a couple of fish get off before I could get to them."

Although Hults would have like nothing more than to have walked away with a tournament title, he said that he had few regrets.

"I had a good time," he said. "This was my first tournament of the year and I got to fish with some great guys. I learned a lot and had a really good time fishing all week."

Day-two leader falls to fourth

Co-angler Pat Wilson holds up his biggest bass from SaturdayPat Wilson of Penngrove, Calif., parlayed a 5-pound, 14-ounce catch into a fourth place finish and $8,000 in winnings. But while a tournament title was definitely on his mind after leading the Co-angler Division for two straight days, Wilson said he fished about as well as he could have during today's competition.

"I fished really hard today and didn't miss any fish," said Wilson. "I had a great time this week. It's just awesome to be here."

Best of the rest

Brandon Hunter of Benton, Ky., who caught exactly zero fish on the first day of competition, managed to storm back for a fifth-place finish in the finals. His final-day catch of 4 pounds, 4 ounces, earned him $7,000 in prize money.

Rounding out the top-10 co-angler finalists at the 2008 Forrest Wood Cup:

6th: Doug Weiser of Springdale, Ark., 3-12
7th: Todd Lee of Jasper, Ala., 3-0
8th: Andy Scholz of Reno, Nev., 1-5
9th: Bill Scharton of Oakdale, Calif., 1-2
10th: Teddy Bradley of Mishawaka, Ind., 1-0

The fourth and final day of Forrest Wood Cup action in the Pro Division continues at Sunday's takeoff, scheduled to take place at 7 a.m. (Eastern Time) at the Lake Murray Marina & Yacht Club, located at 1600 Marina Road in Irmo, S.C.

Tags: gary-mortenson  co-angler-headline  2008-08-14-forrest-wood-cup 

Co-angler Lewis Wins at Eufaula

Co-angler Lewis Wins at Eufaula

Co-angler Blake Lewis followed the lead of pro Josh Stracner at Lake Eufaula today, coming from behind to earn the Toyota Series Southeastern Division tournament win. Lewis, of Pace, Fla., caught a three-day total weight of 44 pounds, 4 ounces to win by just 11 ounces. He came into the final day in fourth place. READ MORE »

Lockard Locks up Pickwick Win

Lockard Locks up Pickwick Win

At the day-three weigh-in of the FLW Toyota Series at Pickwick Lake, the biggest five bass limit of the final day wasn’t caught from the front deck – it was caught from the back deck. READ MORE »

Co-angler Farage Gets Win No. 5

Co-angler Farage Gets Win No. 5

If you weren’t already aware, you need to be paying attention to the name Jack Farage. This week, the Discovery Bay, Calif., co-angler won his fifth Toyota Series Western Division tournament since 2013 by catching 43 pounds, 3 ounces at Lake Havasu. For his latest win, Farage earned a Phoenix 518 Pro with a 115-hp Suzuki outboard. READ MORE »

Niles Goes Back-To-Back

Niles Goes Back-To-Back

Hailing from Ocean Springs, Miss., Andy Niles has now won on Okeechobee two years in a row. In 2019, he picked up the win in the Southeastern Division event on Okeechobee, and this year he got the win in the second Toyota Series Southern Division event of the year. Weighing a total of 44 pounds, 7 ounces, Niles takes home a new Phoenix bass boat for his efforts. Friday was Niles’ son Cooper’s 8th birthday, and though he’s probably not going to get the boat for a present, he’ll at least get a very happy dad. READ MORE »

Williams Grabs Hartwell Co-angler Victory

Williams Grabs Hartwell Co-angler Victory

Versatility and preparation are two of the key factors that make a good co-angler. Having those traits paid off for Khris Williams of Mount Holly, N.C., whose three-day weight totaled 32-7 and amounted to a win in the Toyota Series Eastern Division season opener at Lake Hartwell. READ MORE »

10-Pounder Lifts Myers to Co-angler Title

10-Pounder Lifts Myers to Co-angler Title

Derrick Myers, co-angler in the 2020 Toyota Series Central Division tournament on Lake Chickamauga, says he has had a “dream week.” By bringing in a final-day bag of 9-13 for 32-12 total, Myers beat out Kevin Jones, who went into the final day in first place and was actually Myers’ roommate during the tournament week, earning the co-angler championship at Lake Chickamauga. READ MORE »

Bartlett Gets Revenge on the St. Johns

Bartlett Gets Revenge on the St. Johns

Edwin Bartlett fished the Phoenix Bass Fishing League presented by T-H Marine event on the St. Johns River in January, an event at which he fished as a boater and blanked after pre-practicing for five days. Today, he got his revenge. READ MORE »

Kessler Takes Co-angler Title

Kessler Takes Co-angler Title

Any co-angler worth their salt knows that having faith in finesse presentations is a must, no matter the lake. Robert Kessler went all-in on that this week and it paid off with a win in the Toyota Series Southwestern Division season opener. READ MORE »

Co-Angler Fernengel Finishes Strong

Co-Angler Fernengel Finishes Strong

He got bumped from the top spot by an ounce on day one, and slipped the third on day two. But Erick Fernengel of Lake Waukomis, Mo., finally ended up on top when it mattered most.  READ MORE »

Meador Repeats Co-Angler Win on Grand

Meador Repeats Co-Angler Win on Grand

Defending his title as co-angler winner in the Costa FLW Series Southwestern Division finale, which was presented by T-H Marine, was impressive enough, but the way Steven Meador did it was truly remarkable. After earning the 2018 win on Grand by 3 pounds, 6 ounces, the Bentonville, Ark., co-angler repeated the victory with a three-day total of 27-15 for a much slimmer winning margin this time around – just 10 ounces. READ MORE »

Farage Earns Fourth Co-Angler Win

Farage Earns Fourth Co-Angler Win

Weighing 14 pounds, 2 ounces on the final day of the Costa FLW Series Western Division event presented by Power-Pole on the California Delta, Jack Farage totaled 37-2 to edge ahead of Cesar Laguna for the co-angler win. The win is Farage's fourth as a co-angler at the FLW Series level and he took home a brand new Ranger boat because of it.  READ MORE »

Short Tops co-anglers

Short Tops co-anglers

Weighing a limit on day one and two bags of just four fish each over the next two days was enough to earn Jim Short the co-angler title in the Costa FLW Series Northern Division presented by Gajo Baits on the Potomac River. Weighing 9 pounds, 15 ounces on the final day for a total of 29-9, Short took home a new Ranger Z175 and $5,350 in cash. READ MORE »

McKee Takes Co-Angler Title

McKee Takes Co-Angler Title

Weighing in 16 pounds, 2 ounces on day three, Henry McKee beat out co-angler superstar Gary Haraguchi for the win in the Costa FLW Series Northern Division on Champlain. With a 47-8 total, McKee won a $1,050 and a brand-new Ranger Z175 with a 90-horsepower outboard. READ MORE »

Co-angler Crown Goes to Freeman

Co-angler Crown Goes to Freeman

Three solid draws and three solid days of adjusting to different areas of the lake helped Arkansas co-angler Zack Freeman earn his second FLW win and his first at the Costa FLW Series level this week at the Sam Rayburn event, which is presented by Mercury. READ MORE »

Co-angler Dacey Wins Wire-to-Wire

Co-angler Dacey Wins Wire-to-Wire

Winning the T-H Marine Bass Fishing League (BFL) All-American is a feat in itself, but to win wire-to-wire from the back of the boat is a whole different level. With 11 pounds and 11 ounces on the final day, Ben Dacey of Chesterfield, Va., closed out his win with a total of 38-2. For the win, Dacey earned $50,000 and also qualified for the Costa FLW Series Championship this fall. READ MORE »

Huntze Closes Door for Co-angler W

Huntze Closes Door for Co-angler W

Logan Huntze, the youngest competitor in the co-angler field, showed that age is just a number, as the 19-year-old earned a convincing Clear Lake victory at the Costa FLW Series Western Division event presented by Ranger Boats by amassing a three-day total of 57 pounds, 15 ounces. READ MORE »

Co-Angler Parsons Wins for Brother 

Co-Angler Parsons Wins for Brother 

Co-angler Scott Parsons won the Costa FLW Series Central Division event at Table Rock Lake with a combination of smallmouth and largemouth bass. He dedicated the win to his late brother, Dustin, who died of cancer in 2016. READ MORE »

Tapp Nets Santee Title and COY

Tapp Nets Santee Title and COY

Fast forward to today, and Tapp is back in the winner’s circle again, having won the Costa FLW Series Southeastern Division event presented by Power-Pole on Santee Cooper. His two-day weight of 32 pounds, 10 ounces didn’t just blow away the field and give him the tournament win, though. It also crowned him the 2019 Costa FLW Series Southeastern Division Co-angler of the Year. READ MORE »

Co-angler Bickers Wins by Ounces

Co-angler Bickers Wins by Ounces

One fish is unlikely to win a three-day tournament, but the right one can help an angler dig out of a hole. Just ask co-angler Troy Bickers, who rebounded from the dreaded day-one goose egg to go worst-to-first in the Costa FLW Series Central Division opener presented by Lowrance on Kentucky Lake with a winning weight of 20 pounds, 14 ounces. READ MORE »

Kentucky Lake Midday Update – Day 3

Kentucky Lake Midday Update – Day 3

Question marks are about the only certainty for day three of the Costa FLW Series Central Division event presented by Lowrance on Kentucky Lake, as the top 10 pros scattered and left us lean on details on a day where changing weather could see changing fortunes. After two dreary days of cloudy, dim conditions, the final round brought lots of the bright, sunny stuff that pushes fish tighter to cover and makes them easier to target. Also, considerably more warmth may very well put the giddy-up on seasonal progression. No one’s getting too crazy with visions of heavy bed-fishing, but accelerated prespawn movement is certainly possible. READ MORE »