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Lake Ouachita selected as site for 2007 $2 million Forrest Wood Cup

1933 Views 3 Replies 3 Participants Last post by  Ron Falz
Lake Ouachita in Hot Springs has been selected as host site for the 2007, $2 million Forrest Wood Cup
By Jeff Schroeder
Feb 19, 2006, 07:34

Lake Ouachita covers 45,000 acres, has hundreds of miles of shoreline and abounds with prime bass habitat.

HOT SPRINGS, Ark. – FLW Outdoors and the Hot Springs Convention and Visitor’s Bureau announced Jan. 23 that Lake Ouachita in Hot Springs has been selected as host site for the 2007, $2 million Forrest Wood Cup presented by Castrol, the most lucrative championship in bass-fishing tournament history. The five-day tournament and outdoor show featuring hundreds of exhibits will be held July 24-28, 2007.

As the sport’s premier event, the new championship will pit top anglers from the Wal-Mart FLW Tour, Wal-Mart FLW Series, Stren Series, Wal-Mart Bass Fishing League, The Bass Federation and Ranger owners’ tournaments in head-to-head competition for a top pro award of $1 million cash. Top anglers from the new Stratos Owners’ Tournament Trail will also compete in the championship’s Co-angler Division.

The Hot Springs Advertising and Promotion Commission as well as the Arkansas Game and Fish Commission and the Arkansas Department of Parks and Tourism will host the event, which will launch out of Brady Mountain Marina located on Caribbean Road in Royal, Ark.

Hot Springs isn’t a new venue for FLW Outdoors’ championship tournaments. The 2005 Wal-Mart FLW Tour Championship and Outdoor Show was held on Lake Hamilton, a sister lake to Lake Ouachita, and drew a record crowd of 40,671 fans to the Hot Springs Convention Center and Summit Arena over the course of four days. Those fans ultimately witnessed Hot Springs resident and bass-fishing legend George Cochran reel in what was, at the time, bass fishing’s most lucrative prize, $500,000.

“The 2005 FLW Tour Championship was by far the largest and most successful event we’ve ever held in the Hot Springs Convention Center since the construction of the Summit Arena in 2003,” said Steve Arrison, executive director for the Hot Springs Convention and Visitor’s Bureau. “With the top prize doubled and anglers qualifying from all levels of FLW Outdoors competition, I expect the 2007 Forrest Wood Cup to really be something special. Hot Springs is a bass-fishing town situated along some fantastic lakes and full of fishing fans. There’s no better place to hold the most lucrative event in the history of the sport.”

The no-entry-fee Forrest Wood Cup will indeed represent something special in the sport of bass fishing. For the first time, anglers from the weekend level of the BFL to the top level of the FLW Tour will have the opportunity to compete for bass fishing’s first $1 million prize, which will go to the winner if the winner is running a Ranger boat. A guaranteed first prize of $500,000 will be awarded to the winner regardless of boat brand.

In addition to the tournament and the international media coverage it will receive, a world-class outdoor show with hundreds of exhibits and activities for children will be held at the convention center. Visitors from around the globe will not only catch the world’s best bass-fishing action, they’ll also receive great buys on everything from crankbaits to bass boats at the outdoor show.

The Forrest Wood Cup will pit top anglers from the 2007 FLW Tour against top anglers from the 2006 FLW Series, Stren Series, the BFL All-American champion and The Bass Federation national champion plus Ranger and Stratos owners’ tournaments. All told, 81 pros and 81 co-anglers will qualify for the 2007 event.

“We couldn’t be happier about returning to Hot Springs for the 2007 Forrest Wood Cup,” said Charlie Evans, FLW Outdoors president and CEO. “The record attendance we had not only at the 2005 FLW Tour Championship and Outdoor Show but also at the 2004 All-American in Hot Springs speaks volumes about the enthusiasm for bass fishing that fans have throughout the state and the entire region.”

Coverage of the Forrest Wood Cup will be broadcast to 78 million FSN (Fox Sports Net) subscribers in the United States as part of the “FLW Outdoors” television program. “FLW Outdoors” airs Sunday mornings at 11 Eastern time. “FLW Outdoors” is also broadcast internationally to more than 300 million households in Africa, Asia, Australia and Europe, along with Canada, making it the most widely distributed weekly outdoor-sports television show in the world. Additionally, FLW Outdoors is proud to provide tournament coverage to more than 800,000 service members stationed around the world in 177 countries and aboard naval ships through broadcasts on the American Forces Network.

Named after the legendary founder of Ranger Boats, Forrest L. Wood, FLW Outdoors administers the Wal-Mart FLW Tour, Wal-Mart FLW Series, Stren Series, Wal-Mart Bass Fishing League, Wal-Mart Texas Tournament Trail, Wal-Mart FLW Walleye Tour, Wal-Mart FLW Walleye League, Wal-Mart FLW Kingfish Tour, Wal-Mart FLW Kingfish Series, Wal-Mart FLW Redfish Series and Stratos Owners’ Tournament Trail. These circuits offer combined purses exceeding $36.7 million through 241 events in 2006.
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I'm mighty glad to see the FLW Championship return here. The last one was a blast, as much as I could watch, having to work each day last time, but not for that one. I'll be RETIRED! But too late to try fishing my way into the game. Wow, an extra $500k for the winner in a Ranger! A cool million dollars.

I see a problem with the launch site, though. It's too small if left available to the public. it's a free ramp put in by the state, but only 2 small individual ramps and limited parking. The marina is there, and folks using slips keep the ramp full. Lots of folks call their houseboats HOME, living there permanently, and that time of year there's still high visitation to the water. Boy o boy. How in the world will they do it?

If any of you can get away to attend, it's worth it. I'd be gald to meet any of you. I'm still using stuff won there. I still haven't used up a box of spinnerbaits Jimmy Houston mailed me. I got to talk with him about 15 minutes in the show room and he gave me a voucher. I mailed it in and I got about 30 baits back, free. On top of that I won a $250 bait drawing, one of about 100 at the Rapala booth, and caught a pair of Solar Bat sunglasses in a case worn by a pro who tossed it into the crowd. I came away with another bag of line and a nice rod won at a local dealers booth. They, a relatively small company, gave away $10,000 worth of stuff.

Ya'll try planning on coming down. I'll take ya fishing till ya drops.

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Thats a long ways off so who knows maybe I can figure how to get down your way by then. Id really like to anyway. If my work schedule allows me to, Im going to try and attend as many of the tournaments in my region so I can collect photos, video, stories and interviews for this site. With my 4 days on 4 days off schedule I think I should be able to swing several events I hope :)
I have been seriously considering moving to the Hot Springs area and that would sure be a good time to check the area out. I have been trying to get a co-angler to fish the Ranger Owners Cup tournaments in N.C and Mo. but no takers. Winners and 2nd place in both tournaments get all expense paid entry into that classic. Are there any good local bass clubs? I used to fish Florida Federation before split and refuse to rejoin BASS because of their affiliation with CITCO. :tbh_flag:
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