UPCOMING EVENT: T-H Marine BFL - 2019 - Potomac River

FISHING LEAGUE WORLDWIDE

Prelude to Pickwick title

Prelude to Pickwick title
The top-20 pros make their way to their way to their prime fishing locations as the third day of tournament action commences on Pickwick Lake.

FLORENCE, Ala. - With another day of balmy temperatures, low winds and a slow bass bite in store for the field, the top-20 FLW Tour pros and co-anglers who survived Friday's cut can now start focusing in earnest on the task at hand - procuring a tournament title.

However, as usual, it won't be easy. With tough competition abound, local anglers hitting Pickwick Lake in droves and not much current to speak of, hauling in competitive sacks of fish during today's competition could be as difficult as it has been all week.

As a result, some pros area rethinking their strategy while trying to remain as patient as possible on the water as they search for schooling bass adhering to deep ledges throughout the lake.

"I just set up on one spot over the last two days just waiting for them to bite," said FLW Tour pro Jason Christie, who currently sits in 10th place overall. "But today I'm going to run to some more stuff. I'm going to do a lot more idling trying to find a new school of fish."

Finding fish eager to bite - correct that, big fish eager to bite - has been the primary puzzle anglers have been trying to decipher all week.

"When you find a new school of fish it doesn't take very long to catch 20 pounds," Christie continued. "Yesterday was painfully slow fishing and I had a hard time getting those fish to bite. If I made a cast it would last two minutes which is absolutely against my philosophy of fishing. But here, you've got to do what you've got to do."

Christie, who entered the Pickwick event ranked fifth overall in the angler of the year standings, said that the mid-summer bite on Pickwick Lake is notoriously slow and that it takes a tremendous amount of patience and finesse in order to compel the fish to start biting.

"The fish aren't aggressive and they really don't want to bite right now," he said. "Yesterday, the big school of fish I was on never moved up in the water column where they're a lot easier to catch. But if you see those fish starting to move up, you know they're ready to start feeding."

Although Christie has some real ground to make up if he's to make a legit title run, he believes he still has a realistic shot at the title.

"I'm 6 or 7 pounds off the lead right now," he said. "If there was only one day of fishing left, I'd be worried. But with two days left, I can make up (that deficit). It's definitely doable."

Currently, the entire pro field is trying to chase down Mark Rose of Marion, Ark., who boasts a two-day total of 42 pounds, 12 ounces.

Angler of the Year race at a glance

AOY leader David Dudley conducts one final interview before the start of the dayWhile six competitors entered the Pickwick Lake contest with a realistic chance of capturing the 2011 FLW Tour Angler of the Year title, the race has now boiled down to a duel between David Dudley of Lynchburg, Va., and Brent Ehrler of Redlands, Calif. Although Ehrler currently sits in sixth place overall at the Pickwick event while Dudley stands in eighth place, Dudley held a 16-point lead in the overall year-end standings so he has some cushion to work with over the final two days. As such, Dudley needs only a top-16 finish to claim the crown. However, if Ehrler finishes in the top four after Sunday's final weigh-in and Dudley falls somewhere between 16th and 20th in the standings, Ehrler could walk away with the title.

With the AOY title carrying with it $100,000 in prize money and another $125,000 up for grabs with respect to the Pickwick Lake title, there is clearly a lot at stake for the remaining pro field over the next two days of competition.

Co-angler title and Cup berths up for grabs

While the pros will be jockey for position to see who can survive today's top-10 cut, co-anglers are fishing their final day of competition.

Currently, Clent Davis of Montevallo, Ala., is in first place with a total catch of 35 pounds, 14 ounces. But Dan Thill of Lacrosse, Wisc., is right on his heels with 33 pounds, 8 ounces.

In addition to the co-angler competition, today's tournament action will go a long way to deciding who receives the final 30 berths in this year's Forrest Wood Cup. To gain automatic entry into the main event, anglers and co-anglers need to finish in the top 30 in the year-end standings. However, that being said, there is some wiggle room. If any of the top 30 pros or co-anglers has previously qualified for the Cup through another circuit, the 31st ranked angler/co-angler will be invited as well. If two anglers in the top 30 have already qualified, then the 32nd ranked angler will receive a berth ... so on.

This year's Cup will be in Hot Springs, Ark., Aug. 11-14 on Lake Ouachita where the winning pro could net as much as $600,000 - the sport's biggest award.

Tourney format

Randall Tharp prepares to hit the open waters of Pickwick Lake as day three of FLW Tour action commences on Pickwick Lake.During FLW Tour competition, pros supply the boats, fish from the front deck against other pros and control boat movement. Co-anglers fish from the back deck and compete against other co-anglers. Anglers are permitted to weigh in their best five bass each day. Every angler who receives weight credit in a tournament earns points that determine angler standings.

On day three, the co-angler champion will be crowned based on the field's three-day accumulated weight. Also on Saturday, the pro field will be cut down to the top 10 pros. The remaining pro field will then compete during Sunday's final round of tournament action. The pro winner ultimately will be determined by the heaviest accumulated weight from all four days.

Anglers will take off from McFarland Park located at 200 James M. Spain Drive in Florence, Ala., at 6 a.m. each morning. Saturday and Sunday's final weigh-ins will be held at Walmart, located at 3100 Hough Road in Florence, Ala., beginning at 4 p.m.

Takeoffs and weigh-ins are free and open to the public.

Pros will fish for a top award of $125,000 and co-anglers will cast for a first-place prize of $25,000 if Ranger Cup guidelines are met.

Bass-fishing fans take note

Want to watch the weigh in live but can't make it in person? Then tune into FLW Live on FLWOutdoors.com shortly before 3:30 p.m. Central Time to watch live streaming video and audio of today's opening-round weigh in.

Daily on-the-water coverage will also be available online at FLWOutdoors.com. To see up-to-the-minute tournament updates, click here.

Fans will be treated to the FLW Outdoors Expo at Walmart on Saturday and Sunday from noon to 4 p.m. prior to the final weigh-ins. The first 300 kids 14 and under on Sunday will receive a free rod and reel combo compliments of KIX 96 FM. The Expo includes Ranger boat simulators, the opportunity to interact with professional anglers, enjoy interactive games, activities and giveaways provided by sponsors, and fans can learn more about the sport of fishing and other outdoor activities. All activities are free and open to the public.

Coverage of the Pickwick Lake tournament will be broadcast in high-definition (HD) on VERSUS. "FLW Outdoors" will air Sept. 11 from 1 to 2 p.m. ET. "FLW Outdoors," hosted by Jason Harper, is broadcast to more than 500 million households worldwide.

The top-20 anglers engage in some last-minute preparation before the start of day three of tourney action on Pickwick Lake.Vital statistics:

Sunrise: 5:54 a.m.
Temperature at takeoff: 73 degrees
Expected high temperature: 92 degrees
Water temperature: 86-90 degrees
Wind: From the south-southwest at 4 to 7 mph
Humidity: 67 percent
Day's outlook: Mostly sunny

Tags: gary-mortenson  morning-story  2011-07-21-pickwick-lake 

Big Bags Coming on Rainy Clear Lake

Big Bags Coming on Rainy Clear Lake

One of the gems of California bass fishing might have its luster muted by the week’s weather, but Clear Lake will likely still provide plenty of opportunity for anglers competing in this week’s Costa FLW Series Western Division event, which is presented by Ranger Boats and hosted by Konocti Vista Casino Resort & Marina.  READ MORE »

Everything on the Table at Table Rock

Everything on the Table at Table Rock

Stop No. 2 of the Costa FLW Series Central Division, which is presented by Power-Pole and hosted by Explore Branson, is primed to be an all-out show. It seems like the lake’s entire population of bass is rushing to the bank to spawn, with all three species willing to eat a vast array of offerings. The only question: Will Mother Nature play nice? READ MORE »

Tougher but Still Santee Cooper

Tougher but Still Santee Cooper

The Costa FLW Series Southeastern Division finale began this morning at Santee Cooper, where even though fishing has been tough, everyone expects to see mega-bags brought to weigh-in. The bass are nearly done spawning, but a strong shad spawn in the mornings offers real potential. READ MORE »

Everything’s in Play on Kentucky Lake

Everything’s in Play on Kentucky Lake

A squad of 147 boaters and their co-anglers partners enjoyed a pleasant spring morning in western Kentucky for the start of the Costa FLW Series Central Division tournament presented by Lowrance on Kentucky Lake and Lake Barkley. READ MORE »

Big Bags on Horizon at Chickamauga

Big Bags on Horizon at Chickamauga

Day one of the Costa FLW Series Southeastern Division event presented by T-H Marine is underway, and by all indications, the fishery is set up to churn out some mega-bags throughout the event. Even during practice, with the water falling well below normal levels, 7-, 8- and 9-pounders weren’t uncommon. Now, with the best anglers in the southeast hard at it, you can expect fireworks. READ MORE »

College Open Weigh-in to Start at Noon

College Open Weigh-in to Start at Noon

Day one of the YETI FLW College Fishing Open on Kentucky Lake was phenomenal in terms of the fishing, and while that may be the case for day two, strong winds forced FLW officials to cut the tournament short by a few hours. READ MORE »

Good Conditions Greet College Open Field

Good Conditions Greet College Open Field

The YETI FLW College Fishing Open on Kentucky and Barkley Lakes returns to FLW’s home waters this morning, as a full field of anglers prepare to take off for the fifth iteration of the two-day event, hosted by the Kentucky Lake Convention & Visitors Bureau and Moors Resort & Marina. READ MORE »

Rise and Grind Time at Lake Mead

Rise and Grind Time at Lake Mead

Strong winds on the heels of a prolonged cold-weather period may prove to turn the Costa FLW Series Western Division opener into a true grind fest this week as pros and co-anglers take off from Callville Bay – Forever Resorts on Lake Mead in southern Nevada. READ MORE »

A Different Okeechobee

A Different Okeechobee

Cold fronts, dirty water and lower water levels make for an interesting start to the Costa FLW Series Southeastern Division season. READ MORE »

Perfect Weather Now on Tap in Texas

Perfect Weather Now on Tap in Texas

Amistad is one of south Texas’ most famous reservoirs – the other being Falcon. Though it’s not the juggernaut that it was in the not too distant past, Amistad is still an incredible tournament fishery, with room to spread out and plenty of grass and rocky structure to target for big giant wintertime bass. READ MORE »

Here Comes Fall in the Ozarks

Here Comes Fall in the Ozarks

Mother Nature will deliver a big part of the story this week as the 2018 Costa FLW Series season comes to a close on Lake of the Ozarks. The tournament, which is presented by Evinrude, will wrap up the Central Division and finalize the field for the 2018 Costa FLW Series Championship scheduled for Nov. 1-3 at Lake Guntersville. READ MORE »

Promising Tides on Tap at the Cal Delta

Promising Tides on Tap at the Cal Delta

It’s kind of a good news-bad news deal on the California Delta this week as anglers take on this vast and storied fishery for the final event of the Costa FLW Series Western Division. READ MORE »

Summer Not Over at 1000 Islands

Summer Not Over at 1000 Islands

It has been the year of the smallmouth in the Northern Division of the Costa FLW Series this season and the third and final event on the 1000 Islands will certainly showcase that. The event, which is presented by Navionics and hosted by the Clayton Chamber of Commerce, is expected to have big weights especially due to the recent results of the Bassmaster Elite Series event and the Renegade Bass Tour Thousand Islands Open held back in early August. No doubt it’ll take over 20 pounds a day to win, however, conditions aren’t as ideal as anticipated for a major smallie smackdown to happen. READ MORE »

Costa Smallmouth Derby Begins on Erie

Costa Smallmouth Derby Begins on Erie

Stop two in the Costa FLW Series Northern Division got underway under clear skies this morning on Lake Erie out of Buffalo. The event, which drew 169 boats, is presented by Polaris and hosted by Buffalo Niagara Sports Commission. The field features some of the top smallmouth sticks in the Northeast. The big question at game time was not whether anglers would catch plenty of fish, but how many and of what size. READ MORE »

Suggs Cracks 24-6 on Barkley

Suggs Cracks 24-6 on Barkley

Andrew Suggs of Cunningham, Tennessee, caught five bass weighing 24 pounds, 6 ounces, to win Saturday’s T-H Marine FLW Bass Fishing League (BFL) LBL Division tournament on Kentucky and Barkley lakes. For his win, Suggs took home $3,945. READ MORE »

High Schoolers Head to Pickwick’s Ledges

High Schoolers Head to Pickwick’s Ledges

At 43,100 surface acres, Pickwick Lake offers lots of fishing area, but when the 2018 TBF/FLW Student Angler Federation High School Fishing National Championship, held in conjunction with the 2018 High School Fishing World Finals, sends 384 teams into competition, even this Tennessee River powerhouse might seem rather small. READ MORE »

Test article

Test article READ MORE »

Game Day on Champlain

Game Day on Champlain

Kicking the season off at Lake Champlain worked great last year, and this year the Costa FLW Series Northern Division is once again getting things rolling on the big Northern lake. Again, there’s a new record field size for the Northern Division with a total of 205 boats. The tournament, which is presented by Power-Pole and hosted by the City of Plattsburgh and the Adirondack Coast Visitors Bureau, should treat anglers and fans to an impressive parade of big smallmouth bass for the next three days. READ MORE »

Ledge Bite Awaits at Barkley and Kentucky

Ledge Bite Awaits at Barkley and Kentucky

Bass anglers of every stripe smile when they think of Kentucky Lake and Lake Barkley, the sprawling twin reservoirs that, respectively, mark the lower impoundments on the Tennessee and Cumberland Rivers. All bass anglers, including the field of pros and co-anglers who have converged on Lake Barkley State Park for the Costa FLW Series Central Division tournament hosted by Cadiz-Trigg County Tourism and presented by T-H Marine today through Saturday, know what the big lakes can do. READ MORE »

Diverse Patterns in Play at Clear Lake

Diverse Patterns in Play at Clear Lake

The gem of northern California is set to shine as anglers do their best to unlock Clear Lake’s treasure during the Costa FLW Series Western Division event powered by Evinrude and hosted by Konocti Vista Casino Resort & Marina. With warm and mostly sunny conditions on tap, we’re expecting a diverse event with all spring phases in play. READ MORE »