"I had two horrible days of practice to start. I almost gave up and went to Watts Bar, but I just said to myself 'this is the Tennessee River. It's June. There has to be a big school out there somewhere.' I idled for 6 hours before I found a mega school the third day.
"The first day of the tournament I pulled up there and Mark Rose was there and I've got to thank Mark because I asked him if I could fish with him, and he said, 'sure come in and we'll share them.' That second day with the fog delay I was in there with JT Kenney, Mark Rose, Anthony Gagliardi but for some reason they just really wanted that Picasso Bait Ball Extreme Rig. I don't know if it was the fog or the low light conditions but I was getting bit every cast.
"I knew I had a spot that had big fish. The first two days I pulled in there and culled out a couple fish and the third day I just left it alone. I told Rob Newell I was going there instead on the final day and just see what I could do sitting on it all day and it was unbelievable.
"I had a 6 pounder and 5-pounder on at the same time in the first 10 minutes. The 5-pounder jumped and got off and I got the 6-pounder. After that it was on. I never felt like I really had it won until I got back to the dock because I knew what this fishery could do. Michael Neal has already caught a 40-pound limit here this year so I knew what could happen. So I just kept catching them hoping I could get enough to pull it out."
Martin's primary baits this week included:
- 5/8 ounce vibrating jig with a Castaic Jerky J and a single Basstrix Paddle Tail on a Picasso swimbait head to catch his first day weight.
- Picasso bait ball extreme tipped with Strike King Shadalicious, Zoom Super Fluke Juniors and Basstrix Paddle Tails to catch his second day weight.
- 23 pounds of bass all came on a drop shot with green pumpkin and morning dawn Robo Worms the third day
- The Picasso Bait ball Extreme accounted for his amazing final day weight.
Final top 10:
- Casey Martin 103-3
- Wesley Strader 80-8
- Michael Neal 79-13
- Dan Morehead 77-2
- Andy Morgan 73-8
- Jim Moynaugh 71-14
- Larry Nixon 71-6
- Tom Reddington 68-14
- Luke Clausen 68-9
- Todd Auten 65-15