UPCOMING EVENT: TOYOTA SERIES - 2020 - Lake Cumberland

Quick Bites: FLW Series Lake Cumberland, Day 1

Quick Bites: FLW Series Lake Cumberland, Day 1
The TV cameras are on Clark Wendlandt as he weighs in on day one.

Wal-Mart FLW Series
Lake Cumberland, Somerset, Ky.
Opening round, Wednesday

Look-alikes ... This morning before takeoff, pro David Walker compared Lake Cumberland to Beaver Lake, an annual stop on the Wal-Mart FLW Tour. Therefore it is no surprise that famed Beaver Lake stalwart Clark Wendlandt is performing well on this plus-sized Beaver Lake twin. Wendlandt, who has two Beaver Lake victories to his credit, is currently in second place with 16 pounds, 14 ounces. "I like this lake; it fits my style," Wendlandt said. "It's a lot like Beaver Lake, and I've had a lot of success there. They both have all three species of fish, but the thing that's better here is that it's a lot bigger. There are more places to fish in general." Wendlandt said what also makes the lakes similar is how an angler can approach it. "I would anticipate this being a really good pattern lake, similar to Beaver," Wendlandt said.

Ott Defoe shows off his purple cast.Revenge is the color purple ... Poor Ott Defoe. Not only is he mired back in 131st place in the pro standings after day one on Lake Cumberland, but he had to fish all day in a cast - a purple cast. "I fell at work and broke my wrist," he explained of his new, brightly colored accessory. "I've been in this cast for two days." Defoe said he can't blame his subpar performance on the injury, attributing that to a lack of practice time. But he can blame the unique color of the cast on his wife. "My wife told me if I got to go fishing, she got to pick the color of the cast," Defoe explained. Good choice. At the very least, you got your husband some publicity.

Back for more ... Kevin Koone was an unknown co-angler with only two Wal-Mart Bass Fishing League starts to his credit when he took a surprising victory at the inaugural FLW Series event on Lake Lanier in March. Now, after day one of the second FLW Series event, Koone is once again the man on top, leading the Co-angler Division with a three-bass catch weighing 10 pounds, 1 ounce. So who is this guy? Turns out he's a college student on the cusp of graduation, a young man trying to make his mark on the bass-fishing world - and succeeding. "I've just been getting good draws and taking advantage of opportunities," Koone said as he explained his success. "Both times, I've practiced and got confidence, and then guys got me on fish." Indeed, co-angler success can be hit or miss, as they do depend on where their pros take them almost as much as they depend on their own natural ability. In the meantime, Koone will fish this week before heading back to Arkansas Tech, where he awaits graduation May 13 with a degree in agribusiness. "I'll just keep fishing and see where it takes me," he said.

Sean Hoernke said he appreciated the tournament officials delaying this morningThe long and short of it ... Fog delays are not uncommon along the professional fishing trails, but this morning's two-hour, 40-minute setback did seem a bit extreme. Though sitting in a boat while your adrenaline is primed for action is never a fisherman's preferred scenario, most of them seemed to take today's long delay in stride. "The fog was really bad, and I appreciate FLW for keeping us back," said pro Sean Hoernke, who caught 14-11 despite the shortened day and ended today in third. Said pro Ron Shuffield, "That was the right call this morning. I'm glad to be in an organization that respects the fishermen." ... Despite the understanding, there were plenty of pros who said they could have used the three hours they lost. Said No. 13 pro Steve Wright, "I'm waiting on a longer day."

Three's company ... Anglers say that one of the best things about Lake Cumberland is its population of all three bass species - spots, smallmouths and largemouths - and competitors seem to be catching them in that order this week. Most of the bags that contained more than one bass were mainly filled up with Kentucky spots, with a smallmouth or two as a kicker. Largemouths seemed to be a little more rare. "It's an interesting lake; I've never seen one quite like it," said No. 9 pro Jay Yelas. "I'm using spots as my limit fish, and I've had better luck catching big smallmouths than largemouths." No. 24 pro Curt Lytle agrees that the spots are good for fleshing out a limit, but he is one of the pros hoping to score with largemouths. "I only caught spots," he said. "Personally, I ignore the smallmouths because an 18-inch size limit isn't feasible. The largemouths are what I am going to pay attention to tomorrow."

Craig Powers was one of many anglers who had a tough time on Lake Cumberland today.Slim pickins ... Though 162 pros did weigh in fish today, and a few posted very solid stringers, there was still no doubt the fishing was tough today on Lake Cumberland. Anglers carrying bags of one to two fish seemed a lot more common than those with a limit of five. In fact, only 31 pros caught a limit on day one, and one lone co-angler, No. 2 Jim Smith, brought in five. Co-anglers seemed to have a particularly rough time of it, as only 72 of 200 weighed in. So what's the problem? "One thing is the three-hour fog delay," pro Craig Powers explained wryly. Powers is among those bringing in a single bass today, but the fog delay wasn't the only issue. "The lake has come up 16 feet in two weeks," Powers explained. "We're not showing how good this fishery really is. Everything that could go wrong is going wrong." ... Powers also explained that unstable weather is also messing with the bite. "This is the first sun we've had in a week," Powers said. Concurred pro Ray Scheide, "I'm with you, brother, I need some clouds." They may get what they wish for, but at a price - the rain is expected to roll in tonight, but it could come in the form of severe thunderstorms.

Quick numbers

Mark Rose displays the 6-pounder that earned him day-one big-bass honors.6: Weight, in pounds, of the heaviest bass brought in today, caught by pro Mark Rose of Marion, Ark.

1: Number of co-anglers with a day-one weight that registered in the double digits - leader Koone, who brought in 10 pounds, 1 ounce.

3: Number of Texas pros in the top five - Wendlandt, Hoernke and Mike Hawkes.

2: Number of Bassmaster Classic winners in the top 10 - Yelas and Luke Clausen.

Sound bites

The legend Guido Hibdon ended day one in 17th."It's a good start for an old man." - Fishing legend Guido Hibdon, who ended day one in the enviable 17th-place position with 9-15.

"I could have caught as many eating a peanut butter and jelly sandwich at the hotel." - Pro Tommy Stiles, bemoaning his 97th-place day-one performance.

"Get stark-raving, lunatical mad." - Sgt. Frank O'Laughlin, SFC of the National Guard, encouraging the audience to make a difference - thus the m-a-d - and inventing a new word in the process.

Tomorrow's takeoff is scheduled to take place at 7 a.m. Eastern time at General Burnside Island State Park, located Highway 27 South in Burnside.

Tags: jennifer-simmons  quick-bites  2006-05-03-lake-cumberland 

Breaking Down the Cup Field

Breaking Down the Cup Field

The 2018 FLW Cup field includes 56 of the best bass pros in the world who qualified over the course of the 2017 and 2018 seasons. On Aug. 10-12 at Lake Ouachita they’ll compete for their share of the $1,097,500 prize purse, which includes the $300,000 first-place prize. READ MORE »

Studio Notes: Smith Lake

Studio Notes: Smith Lake

The fun of Studio Notes is going back in hindsight and looking at an FLW Tour event with 20/20 vision to see what happened and what could be learned. After all, when a bunch of the nation’s best bass anglers fish a lake for a week, there are a lot of observations to be made that make for some interesting theories. READ MORE »

Size Limit Lifted at Cumberland

Size Limit Lifted at Cumberland

As part of a program to determine the impact of tournaments on the fishery, the Kentucky Department of Fish and Wildlife Resources has temporarily imposed a 12-inch minimum size limit on largemouths and smallmouths during the Lake Cumberland event. Since 2001, the minimum size limit for largemouths there has been 15 inches, and 18 inches for smallmouths. The five-fish daily limit remains the same. READ MORE »

FLW Live Schedule for Lake Cumberland

FLW Live Schedule for Lake Cumberland

FLW Live coverage picks up again this week at stop No. 4 of the 2018 FLW Tour at Lake Cumberland in Somerset, Ky. The event, which is presented by General Tire and hosted by Somerset Tourist & Convention Commission, runs Thursday, April 12 through Sunday, April 15. READ MORE »

Quick Bites: Forrest Wood Cup, Red River, Day 4

Quick Bites: Forrest Wood Cup, Red River, Day 4

In 2011, EverStart team pro Randall Tharp of Port Saint Joe, Fla., thought he had fished the perfect Forrest Wood Cup only to lose out at the very end to FLW Tour pro Scott Martin on Lake Ouachita. Although Tharp walked away from that tournament $100,000 richer, he couldn’t help but think of what might have been. READ MORE »

Quick Bites: Forrest Wood Cup, Red River, Day 3

Quick Bites: Forrest Wood Cup, Red River, Day 3

A change at the top … For two straight days, EverStart team pro Randall Tharp of Port Saint Joe, Fla., had led the 2013 Forrest Wood Cup. Well today that all changed … just barely. READ MORE »

Quick Bites: Forrest Wood Cup, Red River, Day 2

Quick Bites: Forrest Wood Cup, Red River, Day 2

By the start of day two, the new conventional wisdom was that the 2013 Forrest Wood Cup was now simply a two-man duel between Tharp and Thrift. While that narrative made perfect sense at the time, multiple-day, high-stakes bass-fishing tournaments sometimes have a tendency to veer off from a carefully written script. READ MORE »

Quick Bites: Forrest Wood Cup, Red River, Day 1

Quick Bites: Forrest Wood Cup, Red River, Day 1

Heading into today’s competition, the conventional wisdom was that it would take anywhere from 11 to 12 pounds a day to win the 2013 Forrest Wood Cup. However, apparently EverStart team pro Randall Tharp and Chevy team pro Bryan Thrift weren’t listening. READ MORE »

Big Mac attack

Big Mac attack

BENTON, Ky. – It took three days, thirteen rods, at least five different kinds of lures, and countless miles and gallons of gas for Curt McGuire to claim the EverStart Series Central Division title on Kentucky Lake, and he claimed it in decisive fashion, leading the event wire to wire before closing the deal today with a 7-pound, 6-ounce margin of victory. READ MORE »

Ralls reels 'em in

Ralls reels 'em in

BENTON, Ky. – After jumping from 30th to first yesterday, Steve Ralls of Buncombe, Ill., caught a whopping 20 pounds, 4 ounces from the back of Curt McGuire’s boat today to retain his status as the No. 1 co-angler at the EverStart Series Central Division event on Kentucky Lake. READ MORE »

McGuire maintains mojo

McGuire maintains mojo

HARDIN, Ky. – The top three slots on the leaderboard remained unchanged after two days of EverStart Series Central Division competition on Kentucky Lake, as Curt McGuire continues to lead David Gnewikow and Clent Davis in his quest to score another win on his home lake. READ MORE »

Man vs. nature

Man vs. nature

HARDIN, Ky. – As predicted, strong winds shook, smacked and stomped EverStart Series Central Division competitors up and down Kentucky Lake today, leaving more than one angler to mourn his blown-away hot spot with a tube of Bengay and a pack of ice. READ MORE »

Blowin’ in the wind on Kentucky/Barkley

Blowin’ in the wind on Kentucky/Barkley

HARDIN, Ky. – A deceptively gentle breeze swayed the boats on the first morning of EverStart Series Central Division competition on Kentucky Lake today, and the inhabitants of many of those boats will spend the day making a long run. What felt like a gentle, cooling wind is actually the beginning of a lake wind advisory that could complicate the plans of anglers who plan to make the fabled long run to New Johnsonville, Tenn. READ MORE »

Not just a swamp person

Not just a swamp person

Perhaps the fiercest resident of the bayous of Texas and Louisiana is the alligator, that prehistoric predator so perfectly camouflaged in its swampy terrain. Many a man and gator have tangled, but none as famously as the cast of “Swamp People,” the History Channel’s popular program that follows hunters as they trap and kill monster-sized gators during Louisiana’s short alligator-hunting season. READ MORE »

On the Mark

On the Mark

It seems like everything’s coming up roses for Mark Rose. Earlier this month, the National Guard pro from West Memphis, Ark., became the first-ever recipient of the Forrest L. Wood Sportsmanship and Community Leadership Award presented by Goodwill. READ MORE »

Quick Bites: Forrest Wood Cup, Lake Lanier, Day 4

Quick Bites: Forrest Wood Cup, Lake Lanier, Day 4

In the end, the 21-year-old upstart from Indianapolis, Ind., was just too much for the rest of the field. Bolstered by an 11-pound, 15-ounce catch on the final day of competition, FLW Tour rookie Jacob Wheeler blew away four former Forrest Wood Cup champions, three FLW Tour Angler of the Year title holders as well as the rest of the top-10 field to claim the most prestigious title in bass fishing. READ MORE »

Quick Bites: Forrest Wood Cup, Lake Lanier, Day 3

Quick Bites: Forrest Wood Cup, Lake Lanier, Day 3

After three grueling days of Forrest Wood Cup competition, the top-10 pro qualifiers have been determined and will now get a chance to fish Sunday for the sport’s ultimate prize. The lineup includes: Fatheadz pro Jacob Wheeler (first), Straight Talk pro Scott Canterbury (second), Chevy pro Bryan Thrift (third), National Guard pro and defending Forrest Wood Cup champion Scott Martin (fourth), Chevy pro Jay Yelas (fifth), Chevy pro Luke Clausen (sixth), Evinrude pro Andy Morgan (seventh), Troy Morrow (eighth), Castrol pro David Dudley (ninth) and Chevy pro Dion Hibdon (10th). READ MORE »

Quick Bites: Forrest Wood Cup, Lake Lanier, Day 2

Quick Bites: Forrest Wood Cup, Lake Lanier, Day 2

After stunning the field and electrifying bass-fishing fans everywhere with his amazing 21-pound, 15-ounce stringer during the opening round of 2012 Forrest Wood Cup competition, 21-year-old Jacob Wheeler found the going a lot tougher during Friday’s action. READ MORE »

Quick Bites: Forrest Wood Cup, Lake Lanier, Day 1

Quick Bites: Forrest Wood Cup, Lake Lanier, Day 1

With six returning Forrest Wood Cup champions, multiple FLW Tour Angler of the Year winners and a lethal group of veteran pros comprising the 46-member field, the day-one leader at the 2012 Forrest Wood Cup turned out to be none other than a 21-year-old rookie upstart named Jacob Wheeler. READ MORE »

Le victor

Le victor

MURRAY, Ky. – Dave Lefebre left them biting on Kentucky Lake on day three, and they did not let him down today, as the Kellogg’s pro once again hauled in the day’s heaviest stringer to claim the Walmart FLW Tour victory with 6 ½ pounds to spare. READ MORE »