Tuesday Tour Update: Q&A with Clark Wendlandt

Riggin’ in the waves: Day three at Lake Champlain was a pivotal moment for Clark Wendlandt. Instead of running to Ticonderoga, he “backed up and punted” with a Carolina rig, securing a 13-pound catch that allowed him to win Angler of the Year.

(Editor's note: Moving forward, FLWOutdoors.com will be unveiling a host of new editorial content focusing exclusively on FLW Tour pros. The latest in that effort is a feature entitled "10 Questions" where FLW editors will attempt to pick the minds of FLW Tour pros by posing questions ranging from the serious to the light-hearted. The ultimate goal is for readers to get to know the thoughts, opinions and personalities of some of the best anglers the sport has to offer).

10 Questions with Clark Wendlandt What are your plans for this offseason? Wendlandt: "I actually do have a good little bit of time this offseason. For me, I really enjoy hunting so I'll do a little bit of that. I also have a little part of a hunting business. It's basically a white-tail deer outfitting business and November is a pretty busy time for us. But from a fishing standpoint, I'm going to film a couple of shows for Fishing Texas. But beyond that, it's just diving into the tedious part of getting ready for the next season - making sure all of my tackle is in order, etc. What do you think of the upcoming Tour schedule? Wendlandt: "I really like the schedule. We've got a tournament on Sam Rayburn and we really haven't had an FLW Tour event in Texas in a long time, so that's good. I'm excited about that. There are also some good old standbys like Okeechobee, Lake Hartwell and Kentucky Lake. I guess the only thing I would have preferred is to (visit) Kentucky Lake earlier in the year because as it stands now, we have two Tennessee River tournaments back to back - so that probably isn't ideal. But overall, I feel really good about 2014. I'm excited about the schedule. I also think (the tournament venues) really suites my style pretty well." How's it like these days competing with all the younger kids? Wendlandt: "Having young kids coming up the ranks is really about what the sport of fishing is all about. It's a sport where young people can come in and really thrive. The (young guns) have such a thirst to compete and that's great. Now, the older guys have the experience on their side so each event kind of sets up as experience versus youthful exuberance. But given the schedule, I think experience is going to win out this year." How has tournament fishing changed over the past decade or so? Wendlandt: "Technology is a lot more important than it was at one time - especially with regard to electronics. You now have Power-Poles and Lowrance electronics and they're so dominant right now. With (electronic) mapping and what you can see with sonar, side scans, etc., it's pretty amazing. And you just have to embrace it. Now, that doesn't mean that you can't compete without it. But that technology has made certain aspects of tournament fishing a little different. And it's definitely made (that technology) a necessity especially on ledge lakes and deep impoundments." What's your take on the A-rig ban? FLW pro Clark Wendlandt used a 16-pound, 13-ounce catch to net 13th place overall after the first day of FLW Tour competition on Pickwick Lake.Wendlandt: "That was, in my opinion, an absolute necessity. I actually wasn't going to fish the FLW Tour this year unless they changed that rule. I remember back when this whole thing started. When I first picked up that bait, it just didn't feel right to me. I've always believed that tournament fishing is about using one bait (at a time) to test your skill. And the A-rig kind of dumbs down tournament fishing for me. I know it's a hot topic and I know a lot of people disagree with me, but that's just how I feel. So I applaud FLW for changing that rule." Once you realize you're not in a position to win an FLW Tour event, who do you quietly root for? Wendlandt: "My roommate is Mike Surman and we root for each other all the time. So I'd say Mike." What's the most overused or annoying cliche in bass fishing? Wendlandt: "I'm not sure I have an answer for you on that one. Let me get back to you." What music are you listening to these days? Wendlandt: "Country - a little bit of older country music - like the kind you'd find 10 or 15 years ago." As one of the older veterans on Tour, what's the one thing you know now that you wish you knew when you first started out? Wendlandt: "How much traveling I was going to have to do because you do spend a long time on the road. Overall, I don't think I'd change anything but I wish I'd been a little bit better prepared for that aspect when I first started out." What is the one technique, if any, that you'd like to improve upon? Wendlandt: "I'd have to say ledge fishing. Reading my electronics and being able to react better to what I'm seeing is something I'd like to get better at. The only problem with learning (that technique) is that there just aren't that many ledge lakes out there. There's nothing like it in Texas, so it's a hard-learned art. But it's definitely something I'd love to be better at."

Tags: article 

/tips/2015-06-27-martin-earns-first-aoy-title

Martin Earns First AOY Title

Prior to the 2015 Walmart FLW Tour season, Scott Martin had banked a total of three top-10 Angler of the Year finishes in his 15-year career as a pro. It was impressive, but not indicative of his greatness. The truth of the matter is that Scott Martin was a winner, always taking risks in search of equal reward. That risky fishing has led Martin to more than $2 million in earnings, a Forrest Wood Cup win and four Tour-level wins. But the gambles burned him often enough that he never earned AOY. This year, Martin set out to fish more consistently in hopes of winning the $100,000 AOY award, and his plan succeeded admirably. With five top-20 finishes and 1,110 points (through the third day of competition on the Potomac), he seized the title as Bryan Thrift and John Cox, who came into the tournament in first and second, respectively, stumbled at the finish line. READ MORE »

/tips/2015-06-27-flw-signs-contract-for-south-korean-tournaments

FLW Signs Contract for South Korean Tournaments

At the day-two weigh-in of the Walmart FLW Tour event presented by Ranger Boats on the Potomac River, FLW signed a contract that inked an exclusive licensing agreement with MirooNamoo Media Group from South Korea to begin sanctioning FLW bass fishing tournaments in the Eastern-Asian country. South Korea will run a series of FLW tournaments that advance anglers, who are citizens of the host country, to a new International Division at the Rayovac FLW Series Championship beginning in 2016. Two anglers will compete as pros with FLW providing Ranger boats, and two will compete as co-anglers. The top pro award at the Rayovac FLW Series Championship is $95,000, including a Ranger Z518C if the pro is Ranger Cup qualified, and the top co-angler award is a Ranger Z117. READ MORE »

/tips/2015-06-26-birge-dominates-roy-race

Birge Dominates ROY Race

Zack Birge isn’t wasting any time filling out his tournament-fishing resume. The Oklahoman won the 2014 Rayovac FLW Series Championship on Wheeler Lake last fall then joined up on the Walmart FLW Tour for 2015 and went on a season-long tear that earned him the Rookie of the Year award. Birge, alongside his wife, Kristina, was presented with his ROY trophy this afternoon on the weigh-in stage at the Potomac River tournament, where he finished in 77th place. He finished 29th overall in the AOY standings to best a group of 18 rookies. READ MORE »

/tips/2015-06-26-hunter-captures-co-angler-of-the-year-title

Hunter Captures Co-angler of the Year Title

Things couldn’t have worked out any better for first-year Walmart FLW Tour co-angler John Hunter, who wrapped up a phenomenal season from the back of the boat to win Co-angler of the Year and the Ranger Z518C with 200-hp outboard that goes with it. READ MORE »

/tips/2015-06-26-aoy-update-martin-controls-his-destiny-

AOY Update: Martin Controls His Destiny

Scott Martin is on the verge of winning the only major FLW title that has escaped him to this point: Walmart FLW Tour Angler of the Year. As John Cox and Bryan Thrift stumbled in the Walmart FLW Tour season finale on the Potomac River, Martin steamed ahead and made the top-20 cut in 11th place with 26 pounds, 9 ounces. The way the math checks out, if Martin finishes 19th place or better, he’ll win AOY. If he finishes 20th, he’ll be tied with Cox. The tiebreaker awards AOY to the angler with the most total weight for the season. If he finishes 20th, Martin can still win by bringing at least 11-13 to the scale on day three. Anything less and Cox survives to win. READ MORE »

/tips/2015-06-25-on-the-bubble-for-the-cup-

On the Bubble for the Cup

By rule, the top 35 anglers in the Walmart FLW Tour Angler of the Year standings make the 2015 Forrest Wood Cup on Lake Ouachita Aug. 20-23. However, when a Tour pro pre-qualifies through another of FLW’s tournament circuits and also finishes in the top 35, an additional Cup invitation is extended to the angler in 36th place, and on down the list in the event of additional double qualifications. READ MORE »

/tips/2015-06-24-a-bass-fisherman-in-need

A Bass Fisherman in Need

Friends of FLW College Fishing angler David Cosner have established a fund to help the Texas fisherman pay medical bills associated with his long battle with Wegener’s Granulomatosis, a debilitating disease that gradually destroys the organs. Cosner, who founded the Texas State University Bass Cats and was named to the 2010 FLW College Fishing All-America team, was diagnosed with the rare disease in 2009 when he was 17 and since has had to undergo 215 surgeries. READ MORE »

/tips/2015-06-22-coy-and-roy-on-the-line

COY and ROY on the Line

FLW is hauling a lot of hardware to Maryland this week for the final stop of the 2015 Walmart FLW Tour event presented by Ranger Boats on the Potomac River. The world’s largest tournament fishing organization is also going to be writing some fat checks. READ MORE »

/tips/2015-06-18-father-of-david-dudley-passes

Father of David Dudley Passes

James Dudley, the father of longtime Walmart FLW Tour pro David Dudley, passed away June 17 after a lengthy illness. He was a lifetime resident of Lynchburg, Va., and a member of Thomas Road Baptist Church. Like his son, James Dudley was also a tournament fisherman and competed in 73 FLW events. He finished in the top 10 in eight of them. READ MORE »

/tips/2015-06-12-is-this-the-new-bass-fishing-capital-of-the-south-

Is this the New Bass Fishing Capital of the South?

Dayton, Tenn., is situated on Richland Creek, a tributary that flows into the western side of Lake Chickamauga, one of the hottest bass fisheries in the country. Local officials with a flair for marketing – and good business sense – believe that Chickamauga can be the sellable “brand” that attracts bass fishermen to come and spend their time and their money in Dayton. They believe that old-fashioned Southern hospitality and small-town charm, plus trophy bass, are just the recipe for turning Dayton into “The New Bass Fishing Capital of the South.” READ MORE »

/tips/2015-06-09-bass-bbq-is-back

Bass & BBQ is Back

Bass fishing and barbecue are favorite Southern pastimes, made even better when you spice them up with a little competition. READ MORE »

/tips/2015-06-04-bfl-payouts

BFL Payouts

READ MORE »

/tips/2015-06-01-2015-flw-tv-schedule

2015 FLW TV Schedule

READ MORE »

/tips/2015-06-01-miss-nina-wins-more-accolades

Miss Nina Wins More Accolades

When the letter that notified Nina Wood that she was being inducted into the Legends of the Outdoors Hall of Fame came awhile back, she was a bit surprised. None of the rest of us was. In a sense, it was a restatement of the obvious, another in a long line of awards and recognition earned by the co-founder of Ranger Boats. READ MORE »

/tips/2015-05-19-missed-opportunities-at-beaver-lake

Missed Opportunities at Beaver Lake

READ MORE »

/tips/2015-05-12-strader-maintains-lead-at-halfway-mark

Strader Maintains Lead At Halfway Mark

Midway through the 2015 Walmart FLW Tour, Tennessee pro Wes Strader is in first place in the Angler of the Year race, and his prospects for winning it are as good as anyone’s. Two upcoming events, at lakes Eufaula and Chickamauga, “fish” in a way that suits his style, and he has a good track record on the Potomac River, the last Tour stop of 2015. A good finishing kick could earn the veteran his first AOY title. READ MORE »

/tips/2015-05-10-mother-of-ramie-colson-jr-passes

Mother of Ramie Colson Jr. Passes

READ MORE »

/tips/2015-05-07-community-outreach-sportsmanship-award-

Community Outreach (Sportsmanship Award)

READ MORE »

/tips/2015-05-06-tornadoes-sweep-across-oklahoma

Tornadoes Sweep Across Oklahoma

2014 Rayovac FLW Series Champion Zack Birge, whose appears in the Central Division Tournament on Kentucky Lake was cut short by tornados at his home town in Oklahoma, characterized the damage to his house as “a near miss.” READ MORE »

/tips/2015-05-05-weekend-wrap-up-may-4-2015

Weekend Wrap-Up – May 4, 2015

This weekend saw history being made at the Rayovac level. Plus, it was a bush- and flipping-filled BFL Saturday and the College Fishing ranks produced some Guntersville giants. Here’s a recap of last weekend’s tournament action. READ MORE »