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Follow-up coverage: BASSFest - details of Hackney's win; Card's big climb on Texoma

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Hackney wrestled Texoma bass from flooded bushes all week. photo by Steve Bowman/B.A.S.S.Hackney wrestled Texoma bass from flooded bushes all week. photo by Steve Bowman/B.A.S.S.


To round-out our coverage of BASSFest, here's the official press release. Hackney gives a detailed breakdown of his pattern. He was seriously dialed-in on what it took to catch quality bass this week. 

Brandon Card made an excellent adjustment on the final morning that led to the heaviest sack of the tournament and a big climb up the standings. It would have been a huge win for Card if Hackney hadn't won so many armwrestling matches with bush-bound bass. As Hackney shares, you often lose heavyweight fish in those conditions. 

Hackney Whacks 'em for Big BASSFest win on Lake Texoma!

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photo courtesy B.A.S.S.photo courtesy B.A.S.S.

 

On a cloudy final day with water levels continuing to drop and visibility improving, there was a solid topwater bite on Lake Texoma. Greg Hackney stuck with the big jig that had gotten him to Championship Sunday and closed-out the win at BASSFest 2016.

Meanwhile, Brandon Card had a career day with over 21 pounds - far and away the heaviest sack of the day - so Hackney had to bring his 'A' game to to take the blue trophy.

It was a classic battle as Card capitalized on the topwater action with a Yo-Zuri 3DB Pencil and Hackney countered with his Strike King jig. What a contest!

Ashley back on top as Pros take a break at BASSFest on Lake Texoma

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Casey Ashley of Donalds, S.C., takes the lead on the third day of the GEICO Bassmaster BASSfest presented by Choctaw Casino and Resort, bringing 17 pounds, 5 ounces to the scales on Friday for a three-day total weight of 51-15.  Photo by Seigo Saito/BassmCasey Ashley of Donalds, S.C., takes the lead on the third day of the GEICO Bassmaster BASSfest presented by Choctaw Casino and Resort, bringing 17 pounds, 5 ounces to the scales on Friday for a three-day total weight of 51-15. Photo by Seigo Saito/Bassm

 

Long rods, heavy fluorocarbon line and lightly weighted lures dominate as anglers continue to pitch into thick bushes and other flooded cover.
 
Casey Ashley retook the lead today but Gerald Swindle is becoming a story in his own right as he attacks Greg Hackney's lead in the Angler of the Year race. Swindle downplayed the AOY race,"I try not to even look at the points at this time of the year. We've got a long way to go." He did say he is having a good week, making adjustments - and they all seem to be the right ones.

Hackney takes over BASSFest on Lake Texoma

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Greg Hackney had the hot hand on muddy Texoma today. photo courtesy B.A.S.S.Greg Hackney had the hot hand on muddy Texoma today. photo courtesy B.A.S.S.

 

Today Casey Ashley turned-in 14 pounds, 9 ounces of Lake Texoma bass to follow his 20-pound, 2-ounce start on Day 1. He fell a notch to 2nd as Greg Hackney put 20-2 on the scale which, combined with his first day's effort of 15-10, gave him the lead with 35-12 in total weight so far.

Gerald Swindle, Brandon Palaniuk and a cast of stars follow. And Rick Clunn is making noise yet again on this year's Elite Series campaign. He is currently in 7th place.

Brandon Coulter was the last man in the Top 50 cut with 22 pounds, 5 ounces over two days of fishing in chocolate milk.

Ashley off to hot start as muddy waters roll through Lake Texoma at BASSFest

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 Casey Ashley of Donalds, S.C., takes the lead on the first day of the GEICO Bassmaster BASSfest presented by Choctaw Casino and Resort at Lake Texoma, bringing 20 pounds, 1 ounce to the scales on Wednesday.  Photo by Seigo Saito/Bassmaster Casey Ashley of Donalds, S.C., takes the lead on the first day of the GEICO Bassmaster BASSfest presented by Choctaw Casino and Resort at Lake Texoma, bringing 20 pounds, 1 ounce to the scales on Wednesday. Photo by Seigo Saito/Bassmaster


With Lake Texoma 9 feet above normal Elite pros have been posting pictures of places they plan to fish - you know, parking lots, picnic tables, typical flood condition stuff.

2016 Toyota Texas Bass Classic (now called Toyota Texas Fest) set to kick off Thursday

The shindig formerly known as the TTBC is now simply called Toyota (‘cause that’s the big sponsor) Texas (‘cause that’s the place where it’s happening) Fest (which covers all the goings-on including music, food, games AND a bass fishing tournament).

Apparently, the fishing part is still known as the Toyota Texas Bass Classic, as the winner will be crowned ‘the 2016 TTBC champion’, according to the last paragraph of the attached press release.

Van Dam closes strong to win 21st Bassmaster title in Elite Series tourney on Toledo Bend

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Kevin VanDam of Kalamazoo, Mich., wins the 2016 A.R.E. Truck Caps Bassmaster Elite at Toledo Bend held out of Many, La., Sunday, with a four-day total weight of 96 pounds, 2 ounces.

Photo by Seigo Saito/Bassmaster

Kevin Van Dam closed with another strong limit of bass today - 21 pounds, 6 ounces - to score an impressive 96-02 for the week. He out-paced his nearest competitor, Chris Lane, by more than 7 pounds. When he's on top of his game Van Dam makes it look easy. It was anything but. 

"This was the most challenging tournament I’ve ever won,” said VanDam.

Van Dam maintains blistering pace; leads pros into final day of Elite Series tourney on Toled Bend

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KVD leads Elites into final day on Toledo Bend. Photo courtesy B.A.S.S.KVD leads Elites into final day on Toledo Bend. Photo courtesy B.A.S.S.

 

Kevin Van Dam nearly matched his 25-pounds-per-day average that he established over the first 2 days of the Bassmaster Elite Series tournament on Toledo Bend Reservoir. With 24 pounds, 12 ounces today he has a 3-day total weight of 74-12.

There are some great anglers behind him and they will have to perform great tomorrow if they hope to catch the man often referred to as 'The Greatest Angler of All Time'.

Van Dam slams 50 pounds of Toledo Bend bass in 2 days to lead Bassmaster Elite Series tourney

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Kevin VanDam of Kalamazoo, Mich., maintains the lead on the second day of the A.R.E. Truck Caps Bassmaster Elite at Toledo Bend, bringing a two-day total weight of 50 pounds to the scales Friday.

Photo by Gary Tramontina/Bassmaster

The Bassmaster Elite Series event on Toledo Bend Reservoir is halfway done and Kevin Van Dam is halfway to the Century Mark. With more than 20 pounds again today he ran his total weight to an even 50 pounds.

He's making it look easy. It's not.

KVD caught a 7-pound, 7-ounce specimen on a Strike King 10XD crankbait. He took a treble hook in the hand to catch her. Van Dam hints that he may be running out of fish. "That 7-pounder saved my day." The wind switched out of the north and "I couldn't get a bite for the first two hours."

Van Dam dominates Day 1, Clunn and Cherry close behind at Bassmaster Elite Series on Toledo Bend

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Kevin VanDam of Kalamazoo, Mich., takes the lead on the first day of the A.R.E. Truck Caps Bassmaster Elite at Toledo Bend, bringing 29 pounds, 5 ounces to the scales on Thursday. 

Photo by Gary Tramontina/Bassmaster

They whacked 'em today on Toledo Bend. Well, the guys at the top did.It took 20 pounds to place 12th.

Of course, given the numbers of big bass swimming along the Texas/Louisiana border, a guy could get well in a hurry tomorrow and jump up from the middle of the pack. Kevin Van Dam rode an 8-pound, 5-ounce fish to the top of the board today.

Then again, with his 29-pound, 5-ounce haul today Van Dam could have left the 8-5 in the lake and he'd still be in the Top 10 - even without a 5th fish!

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