Tourney Patterns

ALL the baits from the 2022 Hartwell Classic!

Same deal, different year, here’s how they caught ’em at this one –from 1st to 55th! Note: These are the MAIN baits and techniques for each guy, not everything they used/did. Any mistakes below are mine (and apologies) – was runnin’ hard to get ’em all!

1. Jason Christie

Check Jason’s winning baits and pattern here.

2. Kyle Welcher

> 2.8 finesse swimbait, 1/4-oz ball head, 10-lb Sunline Shooter fluoro, 7′ 1″ 13 Fishing Envy Cranking Rod.

> 6″ swimbait, 22-lb Sunline Shooter, 7′ 6″ MH 13 Fishing Omen Rod.

> SPRO McStick jerkbait (SPRO blue).

> Swimbaits were suspended bass off of flats. Jerkbait was over brushpiles.

3. Stetson Blaylock

> Wacky-rigged 5″ YUM Dinger (dirt purple), O ring and #1 Gamakatsu Split Shot Drop Shot Hook, 1/32-oz nail weight, 15-lb Seaguar Smackdown Flash Green Braid to 8-lb Seaguar InvizX fluoro leader, 6’ 10” ML Academy H20xpress Tach 40 Rod.

> Caught some on pre-spawn docks but most came off LiveScope just hanging off of pre-spawn points around the main lake. 6-12′.

4. Justin Hamner

> Small swimbait (shad) with BaitFuel, 1/4-oz Freedom Swimbait Head, 10-lb Yo-Zuri SuperBraid to 8-lb Yo-Zuri T7 Fluoro, Lew’s HyperMag Reel, 7′ Halo Ti Rod.

> Dropshotted a NetBait STH Flat Sided Shad (has BaitFuel baked in), #2 Spearpoint Performance Hook, a 3/8-oz Freedom Tackle Tungsten Worm Weight.

> Yo-Zuri 3DB Mid Range 1.5 crank (real brown crawfish).

> Rockpiles in 20-40′.

5. Chris Johnston

> Neko-rigged docks with a Daiwa Yamamoto Neko Fat Worm (gp and shad) on a #2 Gamakatsu G Finesse Stinger Hook.

6. Luke Palmer

> 3″ YUM Scottsboro Swimbait (rainbow shad), 3/8-oz ball head, 12-lb Sunline Sniper, 7′ 2″ M Falcon Rod. Ditches and drains in 3-10′.

> Wacky-rigged YUM Dinger (gp purple), 1/0 hook, 12-lb Sunline SX1 Braid to 10-lb Sunline Sniper, 7′ M Falcon Cara Spin Rod. Around docks.

7. Taku Ito

> Deps Sakamata Shad (blue back/gold flake – “reservoir shad”?), 1/2-oz Nories Skip In The Shade Jighead, 11-lb Seaguar Smackdown Flash Green Braid to 6-lb Seaguar Gold Label leader, Shimano Stella Reel, 6′ 10″ ML Nories Roadrunner Rod.

> Brushpiles in 25′.

8. Taylor Smith

> Strike King Caffeine Shad (bone), nail-weighted, 2/0 Gamakatsu EWG Hook, 15-lb P-Line Braid to 12-lb P-Line 100% Fluorocarbon, Lew’s spinning reel, 7′ 2″ Lew’s Tournament Pro Rod. Also a Strike King Ocho (gp).

> Over a cane pile in 20′ – fish were chasing bait on top.

9. Bryan New

> 5.8 Keitech Fat (TN shad), 1/4-oz head, 12-lb Sunline Sniper, STX reel, 7′ 2″ MH Fitzgerald Frog Rod.

> 3/8-oz Greenfish Tackle Bryan New signature Bad Little Dude Jig (new craw), Zoom Z-Craw Worm (gp), 14-lb Sunline Shooter, STX reel,  6′ 9″ MH Fitzgerald Chatterbait Rod.

> Shallow docks, less than 3′. Best ones were by a drain.

> Deep docks and offshore: Zoom Zlinky (natural shad), #1 Gamakatsu G Finesse Stinger Hook, 3/32-oz weight, 8-lb Sunline Xplasma braid to 8-lb Sunline Sniper, Abu Zenon Spin Reel, Fitzgerald Drop Shot Rod.

> Used BaitFuel on all baits except the swimbait.

10. David Mullins

> Z-Man JackHammer (white), Z-Man Razor Shadz (white), 18-lb Sunline Shooter, Shimano Metanium Reel, 7′ 2″ M Shimano Curado Rod. Rock banks and wood in 0-4′.

> Jerkbait (shad), 12-lb Sunline Sniper, Shimano Metanium Reel, 6′ 10″ M Shimano Expride Rod. Points and drain-ins in 6-8′.

11. Lee Livesay

> 6th Sense Crush Flat 75x flatside (shad scales), 12-lb Sunline Sniper fluoro, 7′ M Halo HFX signature Lee Livesay Cranking Rod.

> Rock in 4-8′.

12. Patrick Walters

> Wacky Neko Zoom Fluke Stick (natural shad), #1 VMC Neko Hook, 1/16-oz VMC Neko Weight, 10-lb Sufix 832 Braid (yellow) to 8-lb Sufix Advance Fluorocarbon, Daiwa Tatula LT Reel, 7′ Daiwa Tatula Elite All Around Spinning Rod.

> 5-20′ mostly just around bait.

13. Joey Nania

> 4” scented Z-Man Jerk ShadZ (bad shad), 3/16-oz 1/0 Z-Man Finesse EyeZ Jighead (greenback), 10-lb Vicious No-Fade Braid (yellow) to 10′ of 11-lb Vicious Tora Fluorocarbon (“the same diameter as a typical 8-lb fluorocarbon”), Bass Pro Shops Johnny Morris Platinum 3000 Spinning Reel, 7′ 6″ ML Temple Fork Outfitters Tactical Elite Spinning Rod.

> “I call it the Nedmiki because Z-man started the Ned craze and when I first started doing it I just put the same plastic on a Ned head and it worked really well. Then they came out with the finesse EyeZ and it makes the bait swim really well on the retrieve as well as fall really good.”

> “I was fishing a shoal that dropped from 5′ to 30′ and the fish were right on the drop. Some would eat it as it was sinking, and a lot of them I would let it sink down and then burn it up and they would smoke it on the burn. I was looking at most of the fish I caught using LiveScope.”

14. Matt Arey

> 5″ stickworms including the Lunkerhunt Lunker Stick (watermelon red flake and baby bass), rigged wacky an on a jighead. Wacky: 1/0 Gamakatsu Aaron Martens Drop Shot Hook, 1/32-oz nail weight. Jighead: Gamakatsu Skip Gap Jighead.

> 7′ 2″ M Lew’s Zona Signature Spin Rod, Lew’s HyperMag Spinning Reel, 8-lb P-Line Spin-x Braid to 8-lb P-Line Shinsei fluoro leader.

> Docks in 5-12′ and ditches/drains in 20-30′.

15. Steve Kennedy

> 6″ Megabass Magdraft (white) and a 5.8 Keitech Fat, weightless with a belly treble.

> Senko (watermelon) rigged wacky.

> Under docks, less than 5′.

16. Caleb Sumrall

> 4″ swimbait on a 1/4-oz Gamakatsu Round Jighead. Islands and other structure.

17. Hank Cherry

> Berkley Stunna jerkbait (stealth shad), 12-lb Berkley Trilene 100% Fluoro, Abu REVO STX Reel, 7′ MMod Abu Pro Series Hank Cherry signature Jerkbait Rod (not out yet). Around bait, from “mud” (shallow) out to 40′.

> Docks: Berkley MaxScent General (gp), 1/0 Berkley Fusion19 Wacky Hook, 20-lb Berkley X9 Braid to 12-lb Berkley Trilene 100% Fluoro.

18. Nick LeBrun

> 1/2-oz bladed jig (orange/red) with a V&M J-Bug (fire red), 20-lb Sunline Sniper fluoro, Fitzgerald Stunner Reel, 7 H Fitzgerald Stunner Rod.

> Bank cover, 5′ or less.

19. Scott Martin

> Wacky weightless Googan Baits Lunker Log (gp blue), 1/0 Trokar Wacky Hook, 10-lb P-Line Spin-X Braid (yellow) to 8-lb P-Line Tactical Fluoro, 6′ 10″ Favorite Jack Hammer Rod. Docks in 10′ or less.

> Jerkbait (translucent green, got to 8′), 10-lb P-Line Tactical Fluoro, 6′ 10″ Favorite B-Lat Rod. LiveScoped fish and bait.

20. Buddy Gross

> SPRO Aruku Shad (red), 17-lb P-Line Fluoro, Daiwa Tatula SV Reel, 7′ 3″ H Fitzgerald All Purpose Rod.

> Fished hard spots surrounded by soft bottoms in 12′.

21. Brock Mosley

> Z-Man JackHammer (chart/white), Yamamoto Zako (white), 17-lb P-Line Tactical Fluoro, 7′ 6″ MH Ark Invoker Rod.

> Fished flats in less than 1′.

22. Brandon Card

> 5″ Senko (watermelon violet) Neko-rigged with 1/16-oz weight shallow and 7/64-oz deep, #2 VMC Weedless Neko Hook or a Gamakatsu Stinger Hook, 15-lb Yo-Zuri HardCore Braid to 10-lb Yo-Zuri T7 Fluoro, 7′ 1″ MH Irod Genesis Rod.

> Shallow docks and deep brush (mid-20s feet).

23. Wes Logan

> Zoom Super Fluke Jr (white pearl) on a 1/2-oz underspin, 12-lb Sunline FC Sniper fluoro, Lew’s Custom Pro Reel, 7′ 2″ M Ark Reinforcer Rod.

> Brushpiles in 15-25′.

24. Gerald Swindle

> Rapala DT8 (green gizzard), 7′ 4″ 13 Fishing Gerald Swindle signature Cranking Rod (glass, rod will be out around ICAST), 13 Fishing signature reel (5.6, also not out yet), 10-lb Sunline Shooter fluoro. In 40′ water, fish were suspended in 10′ – he was burning it through them: “It’s small and fast enough” to get them to react.

> 6″ Megabass Magdraft (white, unweighted), 7′ 6″ MH 13 Fishing Gerald Swindle signature rod, 13 Fishing signature reel (6.8), 20-lb Sunline Shooter. Rocks in 6′.

25. Greg Hackney

> 1/2-oz HackAttack Select Swim Jig (gp, Academy exclusive) with a Strike King Baby Rage Craw (gp), 16-lb Gamma Edge fluoro, Lew’s HyperSpeed Reel, 7′ 3″ H Lew’s Signature Greg Hackney Rod.

> 1/2-oz Strike King Red Eye Shad lipless (chili craw), 14-lb Gamma Edge fluoro, Lew’s BB1 Pro Reel, 7’ HackAttack Crankbait Rod (Academy exclusive).

> Docks in 5-10′ with the jig, flat pockets in 5-10′ with the Red Eye Shad.

26. Marc Frazier

> SPRO McStick jerkbait (natural herring and nanko reaction), 12-lb Sunline Sniper, Abu REVO STX Reel, 7′ M Abu Fantasista X Rod.

> Neko rig: SPRO Pin Tail Stick, #2 Gamakatsu G Finesse Hook, 1/32-oz nail weight, 12-lb Sunline braid to 8-lb Sunline Sniper, Abu Zenon Spin Reel, 7′ M Abu Fantasista X Spin Rod.

> “Anytime I had a follower on the jerkbait I would throw the Neko Rig at them. Main lake points, 5-25′.”

27. Cory Johnston

> Wacky-rigged Senko (gp), #4 Gamakatsu Aaron Martens straight shank hook, 3/32-oz nail weight (also fished weightless), 10-lb Seaugar Smackdown Flash Green Braid to 8-lb Seaugar Tatsu fluoro, Daiwa Exist Reel, 7′ 1″ Daiwa Tatula Elite Dropshot Rod.

> Fished a variety of stuff in 1-40′ including bait and docks.

28. Bryan Schmitt

> Neko-rigged Missile Quiver Worm (gp), 1/0 Hayabusa Spin Muscle Guard Hook, 3/32-oz Reins Tungsten Nail Weight, 10-lb P-Line Fluoro, Fitzgerald Stunner Spinning Reel, 7′ MH Fitzgerald Bryan Thrift Shakey Head Wacky Worm Rod.

> Cane piles in 20-40′.

29. Hunter Shryock

> Berkley Stunna jerkbait (northern lights), 10-lb Berkley Trilene 100% Fluoro, Abu REVO MGX Reel, 6′ 10″ M Abu Fantasista X Rod.

> Wacky-rigged Berkley MaxScent General (gp), #1 hook, weightless and with 3/32-oz nail weight, 15-lb Berkley X5 Braid to 8-lb Berkley Trilene 100% Fluoro, Abu Zenon Spin Reel, 7’ MH Abu Fantasista X Spin Rod.

> Berkley Magnum Hit Worm (gp), 3/16-oz Berkley Fusion19 Shakey Head, same rod/reel/line.

> Docks in 10’ or less. Also ditches and drains in 20-30′ in the morning, needed bait.

30. Chris Zaldain

> 3.5″ tube (gp blue), 3/16-oz jighead, 10-lb Seaguar Smackdown Flash Green Braid to 10-lb Seaguar Gold Label fluoro, 6′ 9″ M 13 Fishing Spinning Rod.

> Docks in 6-10′.

31. Daisuke Aoki

> 4″ Senko (gp blue flake), 1/0 Hayabusa Finesse Wacky Hook, 12-lb Berkley X9 Braid to 8-lb Berkley Vanish Revolution Fluoro, Abu Zenon Spinning Reel, 6′ 6″ ML Abu Daisuke Aoki signature Fantasista Deex Rod.

> Docks in 20′.

32. Matt Herren

> Neko rig: 4.5 Reaction Innovations Pocket Rocket (gp), #1 Hayabusa Straight Shank FPP Hook, 1/16-oz nail weight, 14-lb Gamma Torque Braid to 8-lb Gamma Edge fluoro, 7′ M Kistler Helium Spin Rod.

> Docks in 4-8′.

33. Tyler Rivet

> Berkley Stunna jerkbait (chart shad), 15-lb P-Line Tactical Fluoro, Sixgill Hammer Reel, 7′ 2″ M Sixgill Jerkbait Rod.

> 12-30′ around bait and timber.

34. Brandon Cobb

> Zoom Fluke Stick (gp), 2/0 Berkley Fusion19 Finesse Wide Gap Hook, 10-lb Yo-Zuri SuperBraid to 10-lb Yo-Zuri HD Carbon Fluoro, Abu REVO SX Spin Reel, 6′ 10″ M Ark Cobb Series Hartwell Magic Rod.

> Yo-Zuri 3DB Jerkbait 110 (natural TN shad), 12-lb Yo-Zuri T7 fluoro, Abu REVO MGXtreme Reel, 6′ 11″ M Ark Cobb Series Century Rod.

> Docks in less than 10′.

35. Tristan McCormick

> Strike King Chick Magnet flatside (red craw), 12-lb Strike King Contra Fluoro, Lew’s BB1 Pro Reel, 7′ 3″ Lew’s KVD Signature Series Cranking Stick.

> Channel-swing banks and chunk rock transitions.

36. Jacob Powroznik

> Livingston 121 Jerkbait (shad), 10-lb Hi-Seas Fluoro, Quantum Reel, 6′ 10″ Quantum Smoke Rod.

> 7/16-oz Spotsticker underspin, Yamamoto swimbait (white), same rod/reel/line.

> Shad and herring on drops. 12-18′ with the Fish Head.

> Yamamoto Senko, Mustad hook, 10-lb Hi-Seas Braid to Hi-Seas Fluoro, Quantum Smoke Spin Reel, 7′ 2″ Quantum Smoke Spin Rod.

37. Josh Stracner

> Strike King KVD Deep Jerkbait (pro green), 10-lb Strike King Contra Fluoro, Lew’s HyperMag Reel, Lew’s Signature Series Jerkbait Rod.

> 2.75 Strike King Rage Swimmer (ghost shad), 12-lb braid to 8-lb Strike King Contra Fluoro, Lew’s HyperMag Spinning Reel, 6′ 10″ Lew’s Signature Series Spin Rod.

> 5″ Strike King Ocho (gp), same setup as the Rage Swimmer.

> Strike King 3XD crankbait (green gizzard), 10-lb Strike King Contra Fluoro, Lew’s HyperMag Reel, 7′ Lew’s Signature Series Cranking Rod.

> Points in pockets less than 10′ deep and shallow docks in pockets.

38. Brandon Lester

> Wacky-rigged 5″ Yamamoto Senko (gp green flake), #2 Mustad Wacky Neko Hook, 1/32-oz nail weight, 10-lb Vicious No Fade Braid to 10-lb Vicious 100% fluoro leader, 6′ 10″ M Mustad Instinct signature Brandon Lester Rod.

> Mostly skipped docks in 5-20′. “I’d see them on Active Target under the docks…they’d follow it down and eat it off the bottom.”

39. Chad Pipkens

> Deep-diving jerkbait (pro blue), 12-lb Sunline Sniper, 6′ 10″ Swate Black Label Rod. Bait in drains, 10-20′.

> Ned Rig: 1/16-oz head, Lunker Stick (gp), 12-lb braid to a 10-lb leader, 6′ 11″ Swate Spin Rod. Sand edges in 3-5′ where they were staging to spawn.

40. Austin Felix

> 4″ Senko (gp) on a shakey head and Neko rig.

> Neko: Arsenal Silicone Neko Sleeve, #1 Ryugi Talisman Hook, 1/16-oz Swagger Tungsten Nail Weight, 10-lb Power Pro Braid to 8-lb Seaguar Gold Label fluoro, Shimano Sustain Reel, 6′ 8″ Airrus Helium Fighter Rod.

> Docks in 4-30′, worked his way back in creeks.

41. Jeff Gustafson

> Z-Man Jerk Shadz (pearl), 1/4-oz Smeltinator Jighead, 10-lb Power Pro Braid to 10-lb Seaguar Tatsu fluoro, Shimano Stella Reel, G. Loomis 852 NRX+ Rod.

> Ned Rig: Z-Man Hula Stickz (gp, cut down), 3/16-oz custom head with a Gamakatsu 604 Hook, same rod/reel/line.

> Rock and brush in 20-35′.

42. Jared Miller

> 5/16-oz homemade jig (brown, made by his dad), Yamamoto Double Tail Grub and Fat Baby Craw (gp and cinnamon/black purple flake), 18-lb Sunline Shooter, Shimano Chronarch Reel, G. Loomis Conquest Rod.

> Fished shallow muddy water.

43. Drew Benton

> Big Bite Limit Maker (silver smoke), 1/4-oz Big Bite Limit Maker Head, 10-lb Seaguar Camo Braid, 8-lb Seaguar InvizX fluoro, 7′ 1″ M Phenix Feather Rod.

> Cracking it in drains (timber and brush) in 25-30′, and tightlining it for suspended fish in 15-50′.

44. John Cox

> Berkley Warpig lipless (ghost morning dawn, new color), 15-lb Berkley Trilene 100% Fluoro, Abu REVO Rocket Reel, 7′ 5″ MH Abu Winch Rod.

> Snapping it up from the bottom on shallow points (3′) with bushes on them.

45. John Crews

> Carolina rig: Missile Baby D Bomb (gp flash), 2/0 Gamakatsu G Finesse Hybrid Worm Hook, 3/4-oz tungsten weight, 20-lb Sunline Shooter fluoro to a 14-lb Shooter leader, Daiwa Tatula 100 Reel, 7′ 3″ MH Cashion Rod.

> Rock in 5-15′.

46. Matt Robertson

> Berkley Frittside 5 (KY blue), 12-lb Berkley Big Game mono, Abu REVO STX Reel, 7′ M Ugly Stik Carbon Rod. Stained water in 2-5′.

> 3/8-oz Outkast Tackle Cage Feider Jig (magic craw), Berkley MaxScent Meaty Chunk (gp red), 15-lb Berkley Big Game, Abu REVO STX Reel, 7′ MH Ugly Stik Carbon Rod. Flipping docks in 2-10′.

47. Seth Feider

> 5″ Z-Man Streakz (Fluke-type bait, shiner), 3/8-oz swimbait head, 8-lb Sufix 832 Braid to 10-lb Sufix Advance Fluoro, Daiwa Certate Reel, 7′ 3″ M Daiwa Tatula Elite Spin Rod.

> Drains in 15-20′.

48. KJ Queen

> Queen Tackle Switchblade bladed jig (gp green) with a Zoom Z Craw Jr (watermelon candy), Lew’s Custom Pro Speed Spool Reel, 7′ 3″ MH Jenko High Roller Rod. Shallow rock.

> 1/2-oz Queen Tackle Live Sonar Jighead (not out yet) with a Jenko Tremor Shad (shad).

49. Brandon Palaniuk

> Dropshot: X-Zone Deception Worm (gp blue), #1 VMC Finesse Neko Hook, 1/4-oz VMC Tungsten Dropshot Weight, 15-lb Seaguar Smackdown Flash Green Braid to 8-lb Seaguar Gold Label fluoro leader, Daiwa Exist Reel, Alpha Angler DSR Rod.

> A single offshore pile of concrete in 15-20′.

50. Shane LeHew

> Mostly wacky-rigged a 5″ Berkley MaxScent General (gp and baby bass), 2/0 Berkley Fusion19 Drop Shot Hook, 10-lb Berkley X5 Braid to 8-lb Berkley Trilene 100% Fluoro, Abu Zenon Spinning Reel, 7′ M Abu Fantasista X Spin Rod.

> 1/2-oz Berkley Powerbait Skippin’ Jig (blue oyster) with a prototype Berkley craw (gp), 17-lb Berkley Trilene 100% Fluoro, Abu REVO AL-F Reel, 7′ 1″ Abu prototype Jig Rod.

> Shallow docks in pockets or ditches.

51. Drew Cook

> Big Bite Limit Maker (silver smoke), 1/4-oz Big Bite Limit Maker Head, 8-lb Sunline XPlasma Braid to 8-lb Sunline Sniper fluoro, Dobyns Champion XP 733 Rod.

> Cracking it in drains (timber and brush) in 25-30′, and tightlining it for suspended fish in 15-50′.

52. Ray Hanselman

> Muddy water shallow: Strike King 1.0 and 1.5 cranks (chart/black back) 10- and 12-lb Gamma fluoro, Daiwa Tatula Reel, 7′ 6″ Power Tackle 102 Rod.

> Clear water, fish suspended in 10-20′ over ditches: 2.75 Strike King Rage Swimmer (pro blue), 3/16-oz Strike King Squadron Head, 15-lb Gamma braid to 8-lb Gamma fluoro, Daiwa Ballistic Spin Reel, Power Tackle 450 Spin Rod.

53. Shane Powell

> 3″ Megabass Spark Shad (albino)on Megabass Okashira Screwhead. Caught 1-2 on Spark Shad under docks but mostly in ditches in 30′ and around brush in 20-30′.

> Neko-rigged Senko (gp blue), VMC Neko Hook, 1/32-oz weight. Under docks.

> 15-lb braid to 8-lb fluoro, 7’ M spin rod.

54. Matty Wong

> Texas-rigged Megabass Bottle Shrimp (gp), 2/0 Gamakatsu Offset Worm Hook, pegged 1/4-oz Woo Tungsten Weight, 16-lb Sunline Shooter fluoro, Shimano Curado Reel, 7′ 2″ H Megabass X-Bites Destroyer P5 Rod. Also a Megabass Vision 110 jerkbait (pro blue).

> Natural rock and wood in 5-8′.

55. Keith Tuma

> 2.75 Keitech Fat (shad), 1/4-oz head, 15-lb Seaguar InvizX fluoro, 13 Fishing Concept C2 Reel, 7′ 3″ MH 13 Fishing Rod.

> Stumps and rocks in 8-12′.

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