AUSTIN, Texas -- Three days produced three different leaders at the second Hobie Fishing World Championship presented by Daiwa. In the end, it was the consistency of Pensacola, Fla., angler Marty Mood that paid off and gained him the trophy, prize package and automatic entry to next year’s event.
Mood’s three-fish limit Thursday measured 58.85 inches, his best of the tournament, and brought his three-day aggregate score to 161 inches. Italy’s Gianluca Armani took second and that brought roars from the crowd as the boisterous Italian exclaimed, “This is incredible … so much fun.”
Gianluca’s 50.5 inch bag increased his total to 151.25, putting him just ahead of the 150.75 of Singapore’s Johnson Lee.
Mood caught most of his fish on a drop shot rig using a Bass Assassin Vapor shad. Falling behind early after his frog bite failed him, he peddled across the lake to another location he’d noticed resembled his primary one.
“I’d been throwing a frog all morning and it just wasn’t producing today,” he said. “I changed locations, went to the drop shot and started catching fish immediately.”
Though Mood’s mornings were slow, he came on strong by catching most of his keepers within the last two hours of the day.
“Words cant describe what this means to me … I mean, I’ve got goose bumps,” Mood said onstage as he received the trophy from last year’s champ Scotty Baker of Australia.. “This has been a great experience and I can’t wait until the next one.”
Hobie, which held last year’s championship in Australia, was pleased its visit to America, bringing together 43 competitors from 13 countries.
“Were elated at the success of the event and honored to have Marty Mood as the reigning champion,” Hobie’s Keeton Eoff said. “I’m equally impressed at the strong showing the internationals made. It just proves there are great fishermen all over the world and when you bring them all together in one place great things happen.”