UPCOMING EVENT: T-H Marine BFL - 2019 - Grand Lake

FISHING LEAGUE WORLDWIDE

2013 Forrest Wood Cup preview: The contenders

2013 Forrest Wood Cup preview: The contenders
Bass fishing legend Hank Parker introduces Forrest L. Wood to the crowd at Gwinnett Convention Center.

With the 2013 Forrest Wood Cup slated for Aug. 15-18 on the Red River in Shreveport, La., the clock continues to tick toward the start of one of the most prestigious and exciting bass-fishing championships in the nation. In an effort to provide bass-fishing fans with a little more perspective and background on the competition, FLWOutdoors.com is launching a six-part series/overview of each of the 46 qualifying pros - one of whom will walk away with the title of Forrest Wood Cup champion.

With a guaranteed first-place prize of $500,000 on the line, there is clearly plenty at stake this summer in Louisiana. So without further ado, let's meet the contenders.

(Editor's note: Forrest Wood Cup competitors will be featured in alphabetical order. This is the first in a six-part series.)

2013 Forrest Wood Cup contenders

Pro Matt Arey.Matt Arey, Shelby, N.C. - Matt Arey finished the 2013 FLW Tour season ranked 22nd overall, representing his second-highest finish on the FLW Tour to date. Arey currently boasts 14 top-10 finishes in FLW events, which includes five final-day appearances on the FLW Tour alone (two as a pro and three as a co-angler). Arey has one victory to his credit, a first-place finish in the Co-angler Division at the 2006 Forrest Wood Cup on Logan Martin Lake. Arey began fishing FLW events in 2003 and has accumulated more than $333,000 in winnings since that time. Arey ultimately qualified for this year's Cup via the FLW Tour and will be making his sixth FWC championship appearance overall.

Pro Adrian Avena. Adrian Avena, Vineland, N.J. - Adrian Avena got his start in FLW competition with the National Guard FLW College Fishing circuit. Avena competed in the FLW College Fishing Northern Conference Championships in 2009 and 2010, finishing in ninth and sixth place respectively. Since then, Avena has competed on the BFL, EverStart and FLW Tour circuits. This season represents his second year as a pro on the FLW Tour. During his sophomore season, Avena continued to impress, improving his overall Tour ranking from 23rd place in 2012 to seventh overall in 2013. Avena, who is making his second trip to the Cup, qualified via the FLW Tour. In addition, Avena has amassed nearly $150,000 in career earnings, eight top-10 finishes and two victories (a 2011 EverStart Series win on Lake Champlain and a 2010 BFL co-angler title on the St. Clair River) since the 2009 season. Avena also scored his first-ever top-10 appearance on the FLW Tour this season on Lake Okeechobee.

Drew Benton.Drew Benton, Panama City, Fla. - Despite coming into the 2013 FLW Tour season as a rookie, Drew Benton demonstrated immediately that he could compete on the highest levels of his sport, winning the very first Tour event of his career on Lake Okeechobee last February. During his very next outing he recorded a top-15 finish on Lewis Smith Lake and then followed that up with a 29th-place finish at Beaver Lake in April. Overall, Benton finished his rookie campaign ranked 18th overall. Benton, who began his FLW fishing career on the EverStart Series trail back 2010, has already amassed nearly $139,000 in career earnings. Benton will be making his very first Forrest Wood Cup appearance in August. The Florida native qualified for this year's Cup via the FLW Tour.

Pro Stetson Blaylock.Stetson Blaylock, Benton, Ark. - Stetson Blaylock has accrued 26 top-10 finishes and amassed nearly $654,000 in winnings over the course of his young FLW career. One of the sport's truly up-and-coming phenoms, Blaylock wasted little time making his FLW mark, cranking out five top-10 finishes in 2006, three in 2007 and six in 2008 before turning pro on the FLW Tour in 2009. Blaylock has five FLW wins to his credit, including an FLW Tour victory on Lake Norman in 2009. The Arkansas native finished the 2013 FLW Tour season ranked second overall, his highest ranking ever, and will be making his eighth Cup appearance, fourth as a pro. Blaylock qualified for this year's Cup via the FLW Tour.

Pro Christopher Brasher.Christopher Brasher, Hallsville, Texas - Christopher Brasher finished his sophomore season on the FLW Tour ranked 25th overall. Brasher currently boats a little over $100,000 in career earnings and will be making his very first trip to the Forrest Wood Cup this August. Since he began his FLW career back in 2003, the Texan has recorded two top-10 tallies, including an eighth-place EverStart Series finish on Lake Amistad in 2009 and a 10th-place EverStart Series finish at Falcon Lake in 2010. Brasher qualified for this year's Cup from the FLW Tour.

Scott Canterbury.Scott Canterbury, Springville, Ala. - Scott Canterbury began his FLW fishing career in 2003 and since then the Alabama native has racked up over $720,000 in career earnings. Canterbury currently boasts 29 top-10 finishes, including nine on the FLW Tour alone. The Straight Talk pro finished the 2013 FLW Tour season ranked 21st overall and has now qualified for the Forrest Wood Cup five times. Canterbury owns one tournament title, which came during a 2011 EverStart event on Lake Eufaula. Canterbury qualified for this year's Cup via the FLW Tour.

Jason Christie of Park Hill, Okla., used a four-day catch of 78 pounds, 1 ounce to win the FLW Tour event on Grand Lake.Jason Christie, Park Hill, Okla. - With over $945,000 in career FLW earnings, Rayovac team pro Jason Christie is arguably fishing as well as anyone on the FLW Tour right now. In fact, over the last five FLW Tour events, Christie has won two of them (Beaver Lake in April and Grand Lake in June), placed fourth in another (Lewis Smith Lake in March) and 16th during the final regular-season event on the year at Lake Chickamauga. Throw in come-from-behind win at the BASSmaster Elite Series event at Bull Shoals this past April and it's clear that the Oklahoma native is having one of his best all-around seasons as a pro. As a result of his most recent efforts, Christie now boasts 10 tournament titles since he began his FLW career back in 1996. Christie has also recorded an astounding 36 top-10 finishes, including 12 on the FLW Tour alone since the 2008. The Oklahoma native has qualified for the Forrest Wood Cup five years in a row, beginning with the 2009 season, and finished the 2013 FLW Tour season ranked fourth overall. Christie qualified for this year's Cup via the FLW Tour.

Paul Clark, Monroe, La., - Paul Clark qualified for the 2013 Forrest Wood Cup after winning the 2013 FLW College Fishing National Championship on Beaver Lake this past April with the help of his teammate Brett Preuett. Representing the University of Louisiana Monroe at FLW College Fishing events since 2011, Clark has scored third-, sixth- and 10th-place finishes in the Southern Division, a second-place finish during the Southern Conference Championship in 2012 as well as this year's college national championship title. Clark has also netted over $25,000 in scholarships and winnings since the start of his college fishing career.

Related links:

Forrest Wood Cup preview: The contenders II

Pro field set for 2013 Forrest Wood Cup

For more information about the upcoming 2013 Forrest Wood Cup, click here.

To see detailed schedule information for this year's Cup, click here.

Tags: gary-mortenson  article 

B. Lat, MDJ Win Pan Am

B. Lat, MDJ Win Pan Am

Brian Latimer and Mark Daniels Jr. are best friends off the water, and it looks like they’ve got the makings of a deadly team on the water. Weighing five smallmouths for 21.16 pounds in the first session and 23.92 pounds in the second session, the pair totaled 45.08 pounds to win the individual competition in the Pan American Bass Championship on Lake St. Francis. READ MORE »

Canada Wins Gold at Pan Am

Canada Wins Gold at Pan Am

Though Team USA locked up the top three places, Team Canada placed six teams in the top 10 and averaged 38.98 pounds to win the Pan American Bass Championship on Lake St. Francis. Results were tallied based on the average weight brought in by each team in the two sessions of fishing, which almost guaranteed an extremely close finish. Earning a silver medal, Team USA finished just a hundredth of a pound back with a 38.97 average. READ MORE »

Canada Leads at Pan Am

Canada Leads at Pan Am

The first session of competition in the Pan American Bass Championship on Lake St. Francis was a roaring success. After the morning weigh-in, Team Canada is leading with an average of 21.16 pounds, Team USA is in second with a 19.6 average, Team Akwesasne First Nation is in third with 18.62 and Mexico had an up and down morning to accrue a 17.24-pound average. READ MORE »

Do you need a generator for bass fishing?

Do you need a generator for bass fishing?

Austin Felix has been running a generator for a few years now, and his primary use is during the spring in the North, when he’s spending mega-days on the water practicing for tournaments that feature bedding smallmouths. READ MORE »

Day 1 Delayed at Pan Am

Day 1 Delayed at Pan Am

Because of steady rain and hard winds at around 20 mph or more, day one of the Pan American Bass Championship has been canceled. With gusts up to 40 mph in the forecast, the organizers have decided to fish two sessions on Friday instead. READ MORE »

Pan Am Gets Underway in Canada

Pan Am Gets Underway in Canada

With the official training day in the rearview, the Pan American Bass Championship starts Thursday, Oct. 16, on Lake St. Francis in Cornwall, Ontario. Teams from Mexico, the Akwesasne First Nation, Canada and the United States will be competing the next two days for glory and country, but also to help along the movement to make bass fishing an Olympic sport. READ MORE »

How to Find Big-Water Smallmouth in Fall

How to Find Big-Water Smallmouth in Fall

The key to finding smallmouth bass on big water in the fall is to know where they’re coming from and where they’re heading, then connecting the dots in between. Swimbaits, blade baits, ChatterBaits, crankbaits, spinnerbaits, drop-shots and Ned rigs all put bass in the boat. READ MORE »

Morris Locks up Central Division AOY

Morris Locks up Central Division AOY

It’s not often an angler wins a Strike King Angler of the Year title in a Costa FLW Series division by chance, and while skill is what carried Jake Morris to his first Costa AOY title, chance definitely brought him to the opportunity. READ MORE »

Umbrella Rigs for Great Lakes Smallies   

Umbrella Rigs for Great Lakes Smallies   

The days of catching seemingly infinite bass on an umbrella rig are mostly gone, but that doesn't mean you shouldn't fish with one. The rig is a great tool for catching fall smallmouth bass on the big waters of the Great Lakes and elsewhere up north. READ MORE »

Takeoff Delayed at Lake of the Ozarks

Takeoff Delayed at Lake of the Ozarks

The final Costa FLW Series Central Division event on Lake of the Ozarks – which is presented by Evinrude – was originally slated to begin at 7 a.m. CT this morning, but Mother Nature had other plans. A massive thunderstorm has been rolling through Osage Beach, Mo., this morning bringing heavy downpours and lots of lightning. READ MORE »

Major League Fishing to Acquire FLW

Major League Fishing to Acquire FLW

Major League Fishing (MLF) announced today that it has reached an agreement to acquire Fishing League Worldwide (FLW), the world’s largest tournament-fishing organization. The Letter of Intent (LOI) sets in motion the most significant brand merger in competitive bass fishing history, linking a tour and original, award-winning programming featuring the top professional anglers in the world to an extensive grassroots organization that serves tens of thousands of competitive anglers from high school and college students to weekenders and tour pros.  READ MORE »

How the MLF Acquisition will Affect Me

How the MLF Acquisition will Affect Me

The Thursday announcement of Major League Fishing’s acquisition of FLW signifies a historic shift in the landscape of competitive bass fishing. Here’s an overview of how the competitive circuits of FLW will operate. READ MORE »

Newberry Wins Southwestern Division AOY

Newberry Wins Southwestern Division AOY

It was sweet redemption in many ways for the Texas legend who still owns and operates his Houston-based HVAC company despite spending so much time on the tournament-fishing circuit. Redemption for missing out on the FLW Cup in his first season. Redemption for what Grand did to him earlier this year on Tour (dropping from sixth to 41st with only one fish on day two). And, in a way, validation for a career filled with big accomplishments. READ MORE »

Rapala Varsity Bass Ep. 3 Airs Friday 

Rapala Varsity Bass Ep. 3 Airs Friday 

Join FLW for a Rapala Varsity Bass watch party on Friday, Oct. 4 at 2 p.m. CT for the premiere of Episode 3 in the series. READ MORE »

Valdivia is Best in the West

Valdivia is Best in the West

California pro David Valdivia has consistently finished near the top of the standings in the Costa FLW Series Western Division. This year he finally won his first Strike King Angler of the Year award, and he did it by just one point in the standings. READ MORE »

Super Tournament Winning Ways – Week 4

Super Tournament Winning Ways – Week 4

The final five T-H Marine FLW Bass Fishing League (BFL) Super Tournaments took place over the weekend, bringing BFL regular-season competition to a close. Regional tournaments will kick off Oct. 10, and by the end of the month the majority of the field for the 2020 All-American will be set.  READ MORE »

Wild Card set for Kentucky Lake

Wild Card set for Kentucky Lake

Fishing League Worldwide, the world’s largest tournament fishing organization, announced Sunday that the 2019 T-H Marine BFL Wild Card tournament will take place on Kentucky Lake in Gilbertsville, Kentucky, Nov. 8-9. The two-day event, hosted by the Kentucky Lake Convention and Visitor’s Bureau, will launch from the Kentucky Dam Marina in Gilbertsville. READ MORE »

Dobson Wins First FLW Series AOY

Dobson Wins First FLW Series AOY

Scott Dobson has earned a pile of accolades up north, but this year, he earned his biggest title yet. Winning the Strike King Angler of the Year in the Costa FLW Series Northern Division presented by Gajo Baits, the Clarkston, Mich., angler finished third at Lake Champlain, 13th on the Potomac River and wrapped the season and the title with a second-place showing on the St. Lawrence River. READ MORE »

Super Tournament Winning Ways – Week 3

Super Tournament Winning Ways – Week 3

The third round of T-H Marine Bass Fishing League (BFL) Super Tournament action saw smallmouths, spotted bass and largemouths all make an appearance as six divisions put a bow on the season with their respective two-day events. Here’s a quick recap of what all played out in the action spanning from the Detroit River down to Lake Okeechobee. READ MORE »

Buy a Hat, Help USA Bass 

Buy a Hat, Help USA Bass 

Bass fishing fans have a chance to help the USA Bass team achieve its goal of winning the 2019 Pan American Championship in Canada next month. To help fund the effort, USA Bass, which is a 501c3 nonprofit organization, recently launched a limited edition hat drive with the goal of selling 1,000 USA Bass hats. READ MORE »