Thursday, August 9, 2012

Mike McFarland Wins The Hardy Cup

This past weekend the 2nd Annual Hardy Cup was held at the Catskill Fly Fishing Center and Museum and famed rod builder and fiberglass blank maker Mike McFarland took home first prize with two casts measuring 104'4" and 106'2".  Impressive to say the least.

Mike McFarland (left) receiving the Hardy Cup from last year's winner, Masaki Takemoto of Niigata, Japan.

Mike McFarland shared a few thoughts on the event on the Fiberglass Flyrodders forum and wrote...
"The rules for this event allow any cane rod up to 9' in length. For rods 7'6" to 7'11" you get a 5' handicap.  Rods 7' to 7'5" receive a 10' handicap. Rods 6'11" and under get a 15' handicap.   I think Hardy did a great job of setting the handicaps for rod length. I have run all the possible configurations through my head and find it hard to see where there is an actual advantage as far as length.  Last year I built a 7'11" rod and got the 5 feet.  This year we decided to go short and get the full 15'.  Not sure about next year yet.

When you are called to the line, you can have up to 6 practice casts.  When you say you are ready to score your casts, you get two distance casts.  Both of these casts are totaled together and both casts count.  Even if you stand on the line, lose your grip during a haul, etc.  This is the hardest part of the event, not screwing up.  After your two distance casts, you get one accuracy casts that can total up to 15 points.  It is amazing how hard it is to hit the accuracy target.   I think of the 75 or so casters, maybe 5 hit the target.  And no, I was not one of them.

I don't think there are any rules that say the reel needs to be mounted.  You can take as many false casts as you want.   I would encourage anyone who is interested to try it next year. It is a great time and there were casters ranging from I think 7 years old to 95 years old.  Everyone who cast received a raffle ticket for a chance to win a Hardy Bougle reel. It is a great event that is fun for everyone."

Mike...congratulations on a very special win.  Which Hardy Cane fly rod did you chose as your prize?

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