BassWestUSA - July/August, 2009, Page 34

before having to move to the next one. Nixon said it was his ability to find fish quickly that gave him an advantage in the format. “Qualifying for the final round was the most difficult part of Megabucks,” Nixon said. “It was challenging with so many anglers trying to make the final 10 spots.” Once in the finals, Nixon used an innate sense of locating fish, and the skills his father instilled in him to combat the course. “I looked at it differently than most I suppose,” Nixon speculated. “Rather than looking for big, tournament winning bites, I tried to fish the most obvious spot on the hole first.” Once he caught one, he would begin to expand on the area. “I could always spot where a bass lived, it was a necessity learned in my guiding days,” Nixon said. “I focused on trying to catch one fish per hole, then I could start putting together a pattern. If I focused on each particular area, it would keep me from getting over- whelmed by the schedule and the process of rotating. His approach produced four Megabucks Champi- onships. His first in 1988 on Harris Chain of Lakes in Leesburg, Fla. produced a $109,000 prize. His second victory in February of 1990 came on the Harris Chain again, this time he earned $108,788. His third Mega- bucks title came in November of 1990 at Lake Gunters- ville, where he earned $76,304. Then came the 1991 event at Lake Chickamauga in Chattanooga, Tenn., where he earned $88,572 rounding out his fourth and final Megabucks championship. In 15 entries into Megabucks competition, to go along with his four victories, Nixon was also a runner up, and finished 4th and 9th on separate occasions. Combined, he finished in the top 10 of Megabucks nearly 50-percent of the time; an incredible set of accomplishments in what could possibly have been the toughest format the sport of bass fishing has ever seen.

Relationships

Business

Larry Nixon FLW Trophy

Sponsors are the lifeblood of the angler, and the industry, and Nixon has enjoyed long relationships with some of the best companies in the sport. While he has made some changes over the years, it is his relationships with his supporters that he is the proudest of. “I’ve been with Evinrude my entire career,” Nixon said. “It is a company that I am really proud to be associated with. They’ve had their ups and downs, but they always bounce back. Bombardier came in and helped push the company and the product line to new heights. I’ve been with Stratos now for 12 years, and Chevy has been a company I’ve loved for a long time, I wouldn’t buy another truck if I wasn’t working with them. I been with Berkley / Pure Fishing since 1983, and Rapala makes the best crankbaits on the market, and working with Jewell Bait Company has been something I have really enjoyed. My sponsors make what I believe to be the best products on the market; I’m proud of my long relationships, and proud to represent their products.”

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July/August 2009

Photo by FLW O u

tdoors - Jennife r Simmons