Baumgardner completes Snickers trifecta

Chris Baumgardner holds his $125,000 check for winning the FLW Tour event on the Potomac River.

WASHINGTON - Ignoring David Dudley and his millions of dollars, Chris Baumgardner pinned down the Snickers trifecta Sunday. Baumgardner, a team angler sponsored by Snickers, won the Snickers Big Bass award with a 7-pound, 6-ounce Potomac River largemouth caught on Friday. Two days later, he won the fifth Wal-Mart FLW Tour qualifier presented by Snickers. Baumgardner did so in striking fashion, catching 10 bass over the final two days that weighed 33 pounds, 5 ounces. His margin of victory was a whopping 6 pounds, 12 ounces. While other competitors wilted while targeting highly pressured bass, Baumgardner displayed incredible consistency. Although he entered Sunday's competition with a 1-pound lead, the smart money was probably still on Dudley, a pro with a fat wallet and a tremendous track record on the Potomac. But the mild-mannered veteran from Gastonia, N.C., never flinched. He stuck with his game plan and caught five bass that weighed 16 pounds, 14 ounces. Chris Baumgardner holds up a pair of 4-pound bass that propelled him to victory Sunday.All of those bass came on the original Rad Lures ChatterBait, a lure that is taking professional fishing by storm. On day four, he caught one bass with a black-and-blue color scheme. The rest were caught on brown and green-pumpkin. The jig portion of the bait was a brown color he calls "Andy" after fellow tour pro Andy Montgomery of Blacksburg, S.C. Montgomery tied the bait's skirt for him, and the body was tipped with a 4-inch green-pumpkin Speed Craw made by Zoom. "It's a bait I've been using the past couple years," said the pro winner. "On these kinds of lakes and rivers where there's grass, it works real good. It's kind of like a spinnerbait that you can skip under docks." Baumgardner never really altered his pattern. During the two-day opening round, he would slow-roll his ChatterBait around lily pads and then move to the milfoil flats around 1 p.m. During the final round, he abandoned the pads and fished the grass exclusively. The winning area was located three miles south of Mattawoman Creek. Baumgardner described it as a classic postspawn area. He caught a sum of 11 keepers on the final day. His livewell was empty at about 8:15 this morning until he hooked up his first fish, a 2 1/2-pounder. A half-hour later he experienced his first flurry, boating three keepers in approximately five minutes. These sporadic flurries continued for the duration of the day. Chris Baumgardner holds up a Potomac River bass while David Dudley looks on.Baumgardner said he remained calm the last two days despite being so close to tasting victory. "I get nervous the first two days. That's when you can really bomb really bad. Once you make the top 10, all you're trying to do then is win. To finally get that win is a great feeling. I've been wanting to win one of these forever. You think you've got it in you to win one, but you don't know for sure until you do it." For eliminating 199 of the best bass anglers in the world, Baumgardner earned a $125,000 first-place purse. In addition, the Snickers Big Bass for the tournament paid a total of $1,750. Dudley doesn't win? Dudley was confident coming into the final day, but he's never one to predict his performances. In his own words, he fished well mechanically but was just off with his decision making. "The timing of my moves wasn't right," said the FLW Outdoors all-time leading money winner. "I think I was 30 minutes late sometimes or 30 minutes too early." David Dudley earned $50,000 for his second-place finish on the Potomac River.Dudley caught a great number of keepers, but they were not near the quality of Baumgardner's. His five-bass limit on day four weighed 11 pounds, 2 ounces, giving him a final-round total weight of 26 pounds, 9 ounces. The Castrol pro spent most of his time in the Mattawoman Creek area near Smallwood State Park. On day one, he primarily fished the Greenway Flats. He returned to that area for a quick stop today, but it was unproductive. His key bait this week was a Zoom Baby Brush Hog in green-pumpkin color. Ironically, Dudley ran out of these baits, and it was Baumgardner who gave him three additional packs. Dudley credited his success to how he presented the bait. "In rivers like this, you've got to make your bait present itself naturally." For his second-place finish, the Lynchburg, Va., pro earned $50,000 and surpassed Denny Brauer to claim the fourth spot on the all-time leading money winner's list with a career-winnings total of $2,370,410. That total includes both his BASS earnings as well as his FLW Outdoors earnings. "I still hate to lose. I don't know what else to say. If I don't win, in my opinion, I've lost. I hate to lose. Big money, little money, it doesn't matter. You want to challenge me at picking four-leaf clovers? No matter what, I just want to win." Lane third Over the duration of the two-day final round, Spiderwire pro Bobby Lane caught an awful lot of fish. But like many others, he struggled to find the quality bites that were the staple of his opening round. Pro Bobby Lane finished third with a two-day total weight of 24 pounds, 12 ounces.Lane mainly fished directly across from the ramp in Mattawoman Creek, burning very little gas the first two days. Sporadically, he would dip into Chicamuxen Creek, although that area was only productive on day one. He caught his fish by flipping thick mats with a Berkley Chigger Craw. On occasion, he would also pull out a Pop-R in search of a kicker bite up top. Sunday morning, he saw a big bass jump nearby in his area. He immediately hopped on his trolling motor and whipped his Pop-R in the direction of the swirl. The result was his first fish, and the biggest bass of the day. That largemouth anchored an 11-pound, 13-ounce limit, which pushed his total to 24 pounds, 12 ounces. "I just love fishing grass," said the Lakeland, Fla., pro. "I can fish grass all day and not catch a fish, and I'll still be happy." With his $40,000 check, Lane's career FLW Outdoors earnings surpassed the $200,000 mark. "I think I'm back on track." Wick maintains fourth Making his first FLW Tour appearance in the final round of 10 boats, Bounty pro Ken Wick caught a two-day total of 10 bass weighing 24 pounds, 3 ounces. His limit Sunday weighed 11 pounds, 6 ounces. Pro Ken Wick earned $30,000 in his first top-10 on the FLW Tour.Wick fished two areas in a small creek that was located eight miles north of Smallwood State Park. Running north, the creek is located on the right-hand side of the river. On day four, all of his bass were caught on a 3/8-ounce Skinny Bear jig that was tipped with a Berkley Chigger Craw. "It's been a ball," said the Star, Idaho, native. "I had an absolute blast. It was everything I thought it was going to be." For finishing fourth, Wick earned $30,000. Davis limits, claims fifth Making his second top-10 appearance of the season, Mark Davis of Mount Ida, Ark., caught a limit of bass weighing 12 pounds, 1 ounce today to push his final-round total to 23-10, good for fifth place and $20,000. Mark Davis holds up his biggest bass from SundayDavis experienced more success in the opening round when the weather was cloudy and cool. Those conditions allowed him to tap into a stellar topwater bite. That pattern dried up Friday, and Davis was forced to scrounge with a plastic worm. "It was awesome when the cloud cover was here," said the only angler to have won the BASS Angler of the Year and the Bassmaster Classic in the same season. "My fish were scattered, not schooled. If they had been schooled up, I possibly could have won the tournament." With only one FLW Tour qualifier remaining, Davis is beginning to set his sights on the 2007 Forrest Wood Cup on Lake Ouachita, his home water. Rest of the best Rounding out the top 10 pro finishers in FLW Tour competition at the Potomac River: 6th: Jack Wade of Knoxville, Tenn., 22-14, $19,000 7th: Shad Schenck of Waynetown, Ind., 21-7, $18,000 8th: Jerry Williams of Conway, Ark., 21-2, $17,000 9th: Ray Scheide of Russellville, Ark., 20-7, $16,000 10th: Sandy Melvin of Boca Grande, Fla., 14-5, $15,000 Coming up The next and final FLW Tour qualifying event, the Chevy Open, is scheduled for the Detroit River in the Motor City, July 12-15. AOY update Jay Yelas maintained his lead in the Land O'Lakes Angler of the Year race after five events. To date, Yelas has accumulated 898 points. Behind him is Shinichi Fukae, the 2004 AOY, with 872 points and Davis with 860 points.

Tags: headline-story  brett-carlson 

/news/2015-06-29-dobson-sticks-with-jerkbait-for-win

Dobson Sticks With Jerkbait for Win

Scott Dobson of Clarkston, Michigan, weighed a five-bass limit totaling 21 pounds, 6 ounces Saturday to win the first Walmart Bass Fishing League Michigan Division tournament of 2015 on Lake St. Clair. For his victory, Dobson earned $5,804. READ MORE »

/news/2015-06-29-johnston-targets-beds-for-big-limit

Johnston Targets Beds for Big Limit

Cory Johnston of Cavan, Ontario, Canada, weighed a five-bass limit totaling 25 pounds, 13 ounces Saturday to win the second Walmart Bass Fishing League Northeast Division tournament of 2015 on 1000 Islands. For his victory, Johnston earned $5,632. READ MORE »

/news/2015-06-29-football-jig-helps-bates-net-title

Football Jig Helps Bates Net Title

Matthew Bates of Greenville, Mississippi, weighed a five-bass limit totaling 20 pounds even Saturday to win the fourth Walmart Bass Fishing League Mississippi Division tournament of 2015 on Lake Ferguson. For his victory, Bates earned $3,963. READ MORE »

/news/2015-06-29-hipsher-hops-ledges-for-victory

Hipsher Hops Ledges for Victory

Craig Hipsher of Benton, Kentucky, weighed a five-bass limit totaling 22 pounds, 8 ounces Saturday to win the fourth Walmart Bass Fishing League LBL Division tournament of 2015 on Kentucky and Barkley lakes. For his victory, Hipsher earned $4,385. READ MORE »

/news/2015-06-29-lauer-wins-on-ohio-river

Lauer Wins on Ohio River

David Lauer of McConnelsville, Ohio, weighed a five-bass limit totaling 12 pounds, 5 ounces Saturday to win the second Walmart Bass Fishing League Buckeye Division tournament of 2015 on the Ohio River. For his victory, Lauer earned $6,289. READ MORE »

/news/2015-06-29-creature-bait-does-it-for-berhorst

Creature Bait Does it for Berhorst

Dennis Berhorst of Holts Summit, Missouri, weighed a five-bass limit totaling 16 pounds, 12 ounces Saturday to win the fourth Walmart Bass Fishing League Ozark Division tournament of 2015 on Lake Truman. For his victory, Berhorst earned $5,963. READ MORE »

/news/2015-06-28-wendlandt-back-at-the-top

Wendlandt Back at the Top

It’s been 14 seasons since Clark Wendlandt last stood on a Walmart FLW Tour stage and hoisted a tournament championship trophy. Since that time, the Texas pro has experienced ups and downs, including an Angler of the Year title (his third) in 2009 and a major medical issue that sidelined him for most of the 2014 season. All that’s in the past now, however, and Wendlandt is right back where he belongs in the world of bass fishing – in first place after the final day on the Potomac River in the Walmart FLW Tour event presented by Ranger Boats. READ MORE »

/news/2015-06-28-top-10-patterns-from-the-potomac-river

Top 10 Patterns from the Potomac River

Clark Wendlandt didn’t pull off any secret techniques to win the Walmart FLW Tour event presented by Ranger Boats on the Potomac River. He simply found an area with the right quality of bass to win and managed it perfectly despite facing a medley of Mother Nature’s toughest challenges. The rest of the top 10 stuck with the standard Potomac targets too, namely grass, docks and wood cover. The only underlying trend of the top 10 is that they found areas to themselves. Here’s how the rest of the top 10 got it done at the 2015 Tour finale. READ MORE »

/news/2015-06-28-potomac-river-day-4-coverage

Potomac River Day 4 Coverage

Daily updates from the Walmart FLW Tour event on the Potomac River presented by Ranger Boats. READ MORE »

/news/2015-06-27-wendlandt-receives-helping-hand

Wendlandt Receives Helping Hand

Not to discredit Clark Wendlandt’s skills as a bass fisherman, but if it wasn’t for an extreme act of kindness on the part of fellow competitor Shin Fukae, Wendlandt wouldn’t be where he is this evening – leading through three days of competition at the Walmart FLW Tour event presented by Ranger Boats on the Potomac River. READ MORE »

/news/2015-06-27-top-5-patterns-from-potomac-river-day-3

Top 5 Patterns from Potomac River Day 3

Pouring rain, gusting winds, a remarkable act of kindness, an Angler of the Year title on the line – day three of the Walmart FLW Tour event presented by Ranger Boats on the Potomac River certainly was not boring. To say the top 20 anglers were waterlogged after Saturday would be any understatement, but as nasty as the weather was, it wasn’t the biggest story of the day. Shinichi Fukae generously helped Clark Wendlandt retain his lead, while Scott Martin sealed the deal on his first AOY title. Meanwhile, a number of other anglers scrambled to adjust with what the weather and the Potomac are throwing at them. Here’s how the rest of the top five caught their fish today. READ MORE »

/news/2015-06-27-potomac-river-day-3-coverage

Potomac River Day 3 Coverage

Daily updates from the Walmart FLW Tour event on the Potomac River presented by Ranger Boats. READ MORE »

/news/2015-06-26-wendlandt-in-familiar-territory

Wendlandt in Familiar Territory

A lot of flip-flopping took place on the second day of the Walmart FLW Tour event presented by Ranger Boats on the Potomac River. When the scale closed, it was three-time Tour Angler of the Year Clark Wendlandt who found himself on top with a two-day total of 32 pounds, 10 ounces. Wendlandt caught 17-13 today – the day’s second-heaviest limit – and leads Potomac local Bryan Schmitt by 1-12 going into the weekend. Wendlandt missed part of last season after suffering a heart attack but has rebounded with good success this season. He has won three times on Tour but hasn’t finished in first place since Beaver Lake in 2001. Details to come on the patterns of the top five. READ MORE »

/news/2015-06-26-potomac-river-day-2-coverage

Potomac River Day 2 Coverage

Daily updates from the Walmart FLW Tour event on Lake Chickamauga presented by Ranger Boats. READ MORE »

/news/2015-06-25-jersey-boy-leads-the-pack

Jersey Boy Leads the Pack

Talk about a traffic jam. And, no, we’re not talking about the streets around the Washington, D.C. area. We’re talking about the standings at the Walmart FLW Tour event presented by Ranger Boats on the Potomac River. Adrian “Jersey Boy” Avena leads the way with a 16-pound, 12-ounce limit, but a total of 41 pros weighed in at least 12 pounds. Many pros lamented the tough bite today, but the results say otherwise as 114 limits were brought to the scale on the pro side. Troy Morrow trails Avena by just 1-06, and 1 ounce behind Morrow is one of the most successful tidewater bass anglers of all time, Bryan Schmitt. READ MORE »

/news/2015-06-25-top-5-patterns-from-potomac-river-day-1

Top 5 Patterns from Potomac River Day 1

It might seem impossible for 405 miles of water to fish small, but space was hard to come by on day one of the Walmart FLW Tour event presented by Ranger Boats on the Potomac River. The creeks near takeoff at Smallwood State Park have seen as much traffic as a Washington, D.C. highway at rush hour. On the flip side, anglers who were able to develop patterns that got them away from the crowds, such as day-one leader Adrian Avena, have been able to reap the benefits of what has been a stingy fishery. Here’s how the rest of the pros in the top five caught their fish today. READ MORE »

/news/2015-06-25-aoy-shake-up-martin-makes-his-move

AOY Shake-Up: Martin Makes His Move

Scott Martin has been talking about winning the Angler of the Year title since before the 2015 Walmart FLW Tour season started. It’s on his mind and for good reason: Angler of the Year is the only major FLW title he hasn’t won in what Martin has built into one of the most decorated professional fishing careers in FLW Tour history. Today, on the first day of competition at the Tour finale on the Potomac River, Martin has unofficially moved into the lead in the AOY race for the first time all season. READ MORE »

/news/2015-06-25-potomac-river-day-1-coverage

Potomac River Day 1 Coverage

Daily updates from the Walmart FLW Tour event on Lake Chickamauga presented by Ranger Boats. READ MORE »

/news/2015-06-20-richardson-wins-all-american

Richardson Wins All-American

Curtis Richardson has a way of surprising people – even himself. The Ontario angler had all but written himself off in the championship round of the Walmart Bass Fishing League All-American, thinking his limit of five bass wouldn’t hold up for long with the likes of Jeremy Lawyer and Bill Schroeder breathing down his neck. READ MORE »

/news/2015-06-20-all-american-midday-update-day-3

All-American Midday Update Day 3

Big changes might be coming in the standings of the Walmart Bass Fishing League All-American on Kentucky Lake, as some of the top 10 leaders struggled this morning to catch limits. Canadian angler Curtis Richardson, who currently is leading, had only one 3-pound keeper by midmorning. And second-place boater Billy Schroeder, who had fished just below the Paris Landing Bridge for the first two days, finally bailed out from there after catching four keepers this morning. READ MORE »