John's Journal...


Days One and Day Two of the Tournament

Click to enlargeEDITOR'S NOTE: George Cochran of Hot Springs, Arkansas, has just finished a tremendous bass-fishing career with a $500,000 FLW (Forrest L. Wood) Championship win, the highest payout for any bass-fishing tournament in history. Cochran, a Strike King pro staffer for 30 years, has won two Bassmasters Classics. Cochran admits, “Winning championships on both the BASS and the FLW circuits is a dream come true.” Only a few anglers in history have been able to complete a double grand slam like this.

Click to enlargeQUESTION: George, what happened day one of the FLW Championship tournament?

COCHRAN: I almost messed up. I practiced seven days for the tournament and only caught about 13 pounds of bass on my best day with a top-water lure. I made the decision to only fish top-water lures because the other six days of practice I hadn’t caught hardly anything. The first day I fished, the water was Click to enlargeclear, we had a blue bird sky, and I got to fish one of my better areas. However, I only caught three bass. I’d lost three or four bass, but as luck would have it, I beat Sandy Melvin of Florida, by one ounce. In this type of tournament, you’re fishing head-to-head against other competitors. That mere one ounce on the first day, allowed me to move to the second day. The first day of the tournament, I only fished Strike King’s Spit-N-King and the Baby Chug Bug.

Click to enlargeQUESTION: On the second day of the tournament, you knew you were in trouble. You had only stayed in the competition by a single ounce. How did your strategy change at that point?

COCHRAN: I had a heart-to-heart talk with myself. I told myself, “George, you can’t hold back much more and stay in the competition.” I knew I’d caught all the bass I could in that area, so I went to a completely new region where I thought I could catch some bass on top water. Thankfully, on the second day in this new area I caught 6 pounds of bass, and I beat out Sandy Melvin by one pound, enabling me to move into the third day of competition.


Check back each day this week for more about GEORGE COCHRAN’S HALF-MILLION-DOLLAR WEEKEND

Day 1: Getting to Know George Cochran
Day 2: The Big Gamble
Day 3: Days One and Day Two of the Tournament
Day 4: Head-to-Head with Brent Chapman
Day 5: Victory on the Last Day



Entry 311, Day 3