HomeblogsJonathon VanDam – Tough at Pickwick but Good News I’m just leaving Pickwick where things didn’t go as good as I had wanted it to go. I finished 85th, but I felt like I was right there in an area that I could have had a big bag at any time. I was fishing in the same are with some of the guys who are in the Elite 12. What was really frustrating is that I was doing the same thing too; I just don’t know what the difference was that meant I was catching two pounders and they are catching three to four pounders. I was Flippin’ and Pitchin’ a Strike King Rodent on a 5/16 Tour Grade Tungsten sinker and a 4/0 TK190 TroKar Tournament Tube hook. I also used a Hack Attack Jig in black and blue with a matching KVD Perfect Plastics Chunk. I caught plenty of fish, but I just couldn’t get a big bite. I want to tell you that hook is bad! I started using it for anything I Texas Rig when we were fishing at the St. John’s River, and I used it on my Rodent here at Pickwick. The plastic B.A.R.B. keeps the bait up on the hook, and when I set the hook; it’s buried; I really like it a lot. It doesn’t replace the TK130 Flippin’ Hook for punching, but I’m using it for everything else I Texas Rig. I got some good news before I came down to Pickwick; I got my first shipment from my new rod and reel sponsor; Shimano. I got them all set up for the event and was really happy with how they performed. I’m mostly using Core baitcasters and Stradic CI4 and Stella spinning reels. Most of my rods are the Cumaras, but I did order a few of the Cumulus rods too and they are really impressive. It feels really good to be working with a company like Shimano. They are a great company, who put quality and innovation at the front of their goals, and I’m proud to be with them. They really make great products and it’s a company that gives me the opportunity to grow with. I did a segment of Hooked Up! On Bassmaster.com this morning and will head down the road to Toledo Bend on Saturday and get ready for next week.