All-time attendance records were set this weekend on Lake Fork as Skeeter Products, Inc., manufacturer of Skeeter brand boats, hosted its largest owner’s tournament in the company’s history drawing 988 Boats with 1,946 anglers competing.
Donald McCormick of Greenville, Indiana won the event with an 11.19 pound bass, winning the angler a boat package valued at $75,000. McCormick caught the fish on a Net Bait 5-inch Salt Lick soft plastic lure in 10 feet of water during the first hour of the tournament.
“I basically had a hard time even fishing, or sleeping, the rest of the weekend, anything can happen on Lake Fork, there are so many big fish here — my fish could be beaten on any cast,” said McCormick after accepting the keys to his new Skeeter Boat at the events awards ceremony.
While McCormick’s lead held the entire weekend, one of the big stories of the tournament was when 14-year-old Garrett Reding of Van, weighed in a 2.95-pound bass, which was the largest bass caught “under” the Lake Fork Slot limit of 16 to 24 inches. The bass was caught on the second day of the tournament just prior to the final weigh in of the day which created a dramatic finish. Garrett was awarded a Skeeter ZX200 bass boat package valued at $45,000.
“I knew it was a good one, but I did not realize that it was going to be that big,” commented Reding. “When the scales lit up, and I saw that it was almost 3 pounds, I could not believe my eyes.”
Reding’s fish held throughout the final weigh-in hour and was declared the winner with his mom and dad alongside him to share in the victory — and to tow the boat home.
The weekend was filled with many activities and ways to win, including two Yamaha four wheeler giveaways. Everyone that took a Demo Ride in a new Skeeter, as well as for those that participated in the “Boatload of Toys” charity toy drive got their names in the hat to win one of two Yamaha ATV Four wheelers. Skeeter’s Professional Demo Team gave over 800 demo rides, and over 1000 toys were collected which will be distributed to East Texas Charities this fall prior to Christmas. In addition, 50 “Rubber Ducks” were distributed all over the lake during the event, and found by anglers competing in the event for additional awards and prizes.