UPCOMING EVENT: Costa FLW Series - 2019 - Lake Champlain

FISHING LEAGUE WORLDWIDE

Christie climbs to first

Christie climbs to first
Jason Christie casted a topwater to shallow water all day for the tournament lead

HOT SPRINGS, Ark. - Bass Fishing 101 states that the day after a front is the toughest. And that proved true on day two of the 2011 Forrest Wood Cup as the weather returned to normal and Lake Ouachita became stingy. While the weights fell substantially, a handful of pros continue to figure them out. Ironically, the one leading the tournament had an absolutely terrible practice.

Jason Christie felt like yesterday's cool, cloudy conditions were a godsend. It not only allowed him to fish to his strengths, but it also helped him slowly begin to pattern the lake.

"I took what I learned yesterday and applied it to today," he said. "I figured out what I should be looking for and today I found more of that; I probably doubled my area. I junk-fished completely yesterday and today I spent about 60 percent of my day junk-fishing. I'm just taking off with the trolling motor, and I'll fish all the way through an area and then pull up and go somewhere else. I actually fished a place today and went back an hour later and there were fish there that weren't there an hour earlier. I think they just cruise around and travel. You've just got to hit them in the head."

Christie has 10 or so shallow coves that are covered with standing timber. Not only are the bluegills Diet Mountain Dew pro Jason Christie holds up his biggest bass from day two on Lake Ouachita. spawning around the timber, but the shade spots and wood make the Oklahoma native feel more comfortable.

"I actually caught my biggest fish today flipping, but my primary deal is topwater."

The Diet Mountain Dew pro is throwing both prop baits and poppers on top.

"In the slick water I use the prop baits and when it's choppy I use the popper, which is the best topwater bait in August, period."

Christie starts each morning by staying in one area until he has a limit. Today he had No. 5 by 9 a.m. But each day his better fish have come from somewhere else. That trend has him reconsidering the order in which he samples his spots.

"I caught probably twice as many fish today, but they're still spooky. Overall, I would still describe them as hard to catch. If you don't make the perfect cast with just the right angle you don't get bit."

Christie's day-two limit weighed 13 pounds, 6 ounces and pushed his total weight to 31-7.

"This tournament is all about getting a big bite or two each day. And I think the big bites come from up shallow so I'm going to live or die there."

Martin slips to second

In some ways, day two was disappointing for National Guard pro Scott Martin. In other ways, it was Second-place pro Scott Martin caught a five-fish limit Friday weighing 11 pounds, 9 ounces.positive. Martin fell from first to second after catching an 11-pound, 9-ounce limit and trails Christie by less than a pound. But Martin's co-angler partner sacked an unthinkable 17-pound, 11-ounce limit, which was the second heaviest of the day regardless of division.

"I don't know how to describe what happened," he said. "It's unfortunate, but it reinforced to me that the big ones are there. I still think the potential for a 17- or 18-pound bag is there."

Martin said he received the same number of bites as on day one, but they just weren't as big. The exception was a 4- or 5-pounder that broke the ring that connects the line to his bait.

"I still think I've got the magic spot out there. If I can catch those types of fish the next few days, I'll have a good shot."

Martin is still fishing 10 to 20 feet of water. He targets bait (big shad) and scattered brush both with a swimbait and with soft plastics - via drop-shots and Texas rigs.

"The next two days are going to be a battle and I really want to take this one back to Florida."

Tharp third

Ouachita Shower: Randall Tharp gets splashed by a feisty keeper.After converting only half his bites on day one, Randall Tharp had a much cleaner day two on Ouachita. He didn't get as many bites, but he converted on all but one - managing a limit worth 13 pounds, 1 ounce. Tharp sits in third with a total weight of 29 pounds, 1 ounce.

The Gardendale, Ala., pro is fishing wolfpack bass over shallow bluegill beds. He has four productive areas located and he's excited about their potential.

"When I caught that 4-pounder, I could see about 10 more fish of similar size below it," he said. "There's definitely more bluegills up now than there was in practice and prepractice. And I'm absolutely sure the bluegills are going to be there tomorrow."

Tharp is throwing solely topwaters to catch his fish. He said the areas he's in have both timber and a little bit of grass.

"The fish in this lake are really smart, but at the same time they're feeding. I'm confident that I know where a bunch of these wolfpacks swim. Let's just say it's going to be a fun next couple of days."

Morgan rallies to fourth, Meyer fifth

After starting day two in 35th place, Evinrude pro Andy Morgan caught the dayThe biggest stringer of the day came from veteran pro Andy Morgan. The Dayton, Tenn., native caught only four keepers on day one but rallied with an impressive 18-pound, 15-ounce limit today.

"The difference was that I landed them today," Morgan said. "Yesterday I had the bites for 13 or 14 pounds but I couldn't hook them. I think the sunshine helped in that you could see what you were casting at."

Morgan said he's throwing topwaters and targeting wolfpacks and he's also doing some sight-fishing. The key to his pattern is timing.

"I try to stay off my best stuff until it lines up just right and I can see they're pushing bait. Then they come and they come in to eat. Today was dead on like it was in practice. You catch a fish about every hour."

Morgan tried flipping the grass, but was unable to get it to go. Now he's committed to the topwater game, much like Tharp and Christie.

Fifth-place pro Cody Meyer holds up his kicker fish from day two on Lake Ouachita.Fifth-place pro Cody Meyer is also playing the shallow-water topwater game, although it wasn't as productive on day two. He still brought 13 pounds, 1 ounce to the scale, but most of it came via a drop-shot.

"I only got six bites but I culled a 13-incher with about five minutes left in the day," said the Grass Valley, Calif., pro. "That fish gave me about a pound and 3/4 upgrade, so it was huge. But overall it was pretty brutal."

On day one, Meyer caught all of his fish on a Jackall Bowstick. Today he used a drop-shot with a wacky-rigged Flick Shake.

"Not only did that Bowstick catch fish, but it helped find some. Today I started with the topwater and then came back with the drop-shot. The key to fishing the bream beds with the drop-shot is making real long casts."

Like many others, Meyer said his pattern is all about timing. Unfortunately, he can't pin down exactly when and why the wolfpacks come in to feed.

Rest of the best

Rounding out the top 10 pros at the Forrest Wood Cup after day two:

6th: Mark Rose of Marion, Ark., 10 bass, 27-1
7th: Brent Ehrler of Redlands, Calif., 10 bass, 26-15
8th: Andy Montgomery of Grover, N.C., 10 bass, 26-13
9th: Jacob Wheeler of Indianapolis, Ind., 10 bass, 26-12
10th: Brandon Coulter of Knoxville, Tenn., 10 bass, 26-0

Tomorrow's takeoff is scheduled for 6:30 a.m. Eastern time from Brady Mountain Resort & Marina, located at 4120 Brady Mountain Rd. in Royal, Ark.

Tags: brett-carlson  headline-story  2011-08-11-forrest-wood-cup-lake-ouachita 

Champlain Midday Update – Day 1

Champlain Midday Update – Day 1

Takeoff was a little blustery, but overall, it’s been a perfect start to the Costa FLW Series event on Lake Champlain. The event is the kickoff of the Northern Division, which is presented by Gajo Baits, and the tournament itself is presented by Polaris. READ MORE »

Lake Champlain Top 5 Patterns – Day 1

Lake Champlain Top 5 Patterns – Day 1

Last year, every event in the Costa FLW Series Northern Division, which is presented by Gajo Baits, was won entirely with smallmouth bass. This season, the kickoff event on Champlain, which is presented by Polaris, looks destined to involve some largemouths. Everyone in the top five weighed green ones on day one, though somewhat surprisingly, the south end down by Ticonderoga didn’t play an overwhelming role, as only three of the top 10 anglers made the long run southward. READ MORE »

Thrift Takes Command on Champlain

Thrift Takes Command on Champlain

Less than three weeks removed from a third-place finish on Lake Champlain in the FLW Tour’s 2019 season finale, Bryan Thrift hauled 22 pounds, 6 ounces of green fish to the weigh-in stage to take the day one lead in the Costa FLW Series Northern Division opener, which is presented by Polaris. In second, Brandt Tumberg weighed 21-10, and Joe Wood is just an ounce behind him with 21-9 for third.  READ MORE »

Elrod Runs Tide, Wood on James River

Elrod Runs Tide, Wood on James River

Bryan Elrod of Mechanicsville, Virginia, won Saturday’s T-H Marine FLW Bass Fishing League (BFL) Piedmont Division tournament on the James River after catching five bass weighing 16 pounds, 10 ounces. For his efforts, Elrod took home $3,637. READ MORE »

Mittlestat Tops at St. Clair

Mittlestat Tops at St. Clair

Dan Mittlestat of Woodhaven, Michigan, won the T-H Marine FLW Bass Fishing League (BFL) Michigan Division tournament on Lake St. Clair presented by Navionics Saturday after catching a five-bass limit weighing 22 pounds, 7 ounces. Mittlestat netted $6,552 for his win. READ MORE »

Schmitt Takes Champlain Title

Schmitt Takes Champlain Title

FLW Tour pro Bryan Schmitt of Deale, Maryland, won Saturday’s T-H Marine FLW Bass Fishing League (BFL) tournament on Lake Champlain presented by Navionics after catching five bass weighing 19 pounds, 10 ounces. For his win, Schmitt earned $7,209 and 250 points in the Northeast Division presented by Gajo Baits standings. The winner of the division’s Angler of the Year title after five tournaments will win $3,000. READ MORE »

Peter T and Crew Win ICAST Cup

Peter T and Crew Win ICAST Cup

Representing Lew’s, the team of John Carman, Peter Thliveros and Matthew Mattingly won the 2019 ICAST Cup at Lake Toho this morning with a five-bass limit that weighed 20 pounds, 4 ounces. It’s the first time in the ICAST kickoff event’s five-year history that a team has won two titles, and they come back-to-back – though this time it was an outright win.  READ MORE »

Kilgore on Top at Neely Henry

Kilgore on Top at Neely Henry

Andy Kilgore of Kingston, Georgia, caught five bass Saturday weighing 19 pounds, 7 ounces, to win the T-H Marine FLW Bass Fishing League (BFL) tournament on Lake Neely Henry. Kilgore pocketed $4,426 for his win in the event and earned 250 points in the Bama Division Angler of the Year (AOY) standings. The winner of the division’s AOY title after five tournaments will win $3,000. READ MORE »

Experience Carries Siggers

Experience Carries Siggers

Dennis Siggers of Danville, Virginia, won the T-H Marine FLW Bass Fishing League (BFL) Shenandoah Division tournament on Smith Mountain Lake Saturday after catching a five-bass limit weighing 19 pounds, 1 ounce. For his victory, Siggers earned $2,585 for his victory. READ MORE »

Melton Wins on Rough River

Melton Wins on Rough River

John Melton of Corydon, Indiana, won the T-H Marine FLW Bass Fishing League (BFL) Hoosier Division tournament on Rough River Lake Saturday after catching five bass weighing 13 pounds, 12 ounces. Melton netted $4,838 for his win. READ MORE »

Jenkel Flips Bushes on Rend

Jenkel Flips Bushes on Rend

Derek Jenkel of Pinckneyville, Illinois, won the T-H Marine FLW Bass Fishing League (BFL) Illini Division tournament on Rend Lake Saturday after catching a five-bass limit weighing 15 pounds, 8 ounces. Jenkel earned $4,384 for his victory. READ MORE »

Campbell Gets a Hat Trick

Campbell Gets a Hat Trick

Brody Campbell of Oxford, Ohio, won the rescheduled T-H Marine FLW Bass Fishing League (BFL) Hoosier Division tournament on Rough River Lake presented by Navionics Sunday after catching four bass weighing 7 pounds, 13 ounces. Campbell earned $5,703 for his win. READ MORE »

Harlin Sacks 24 for Ozark W

Harlin Sacks 24 for Ozark W

Michael Harlin of Sunrise Beach, Missouri, caught five bass Saturday weighing 24 pounds, 9 ounces, to win the T-H Marine FLW Bass Fishing League (BFL) tournament on Lake of the Ozarks. Harlin pocketed $4,463 for his win in the event and 250 points in the Ozark Division presented by Bassing Bob standings. The winner of the division’s Angler of the Year title after five tournaments will win $3,000. READ MORE »

Lake Champlain Day 4 Coverage

Lake Champlain Day 4 Coverage

Yesterday saw the crowning of the FLW Tour 2019 Angler of the Year (David Dudley) and Polaris Rookie of the Year (Ron Nelson). Today, there's nothing left to do but crown a champion for the Tour's last stop of the season. READ MORE »

Scanlon Wins it at Ti

Scanlon Wins it at Ti

Running south to Ticonderoga each day, Casey Scanlon weighed 19 pounds, 10 ounces on the final day of the FLW Tour event presented by T-H Marine on Lake Champlain. With a total of 76-2, Scanlon earned the win in the final event of the season and pocketed $102,700 for his efforts. READ MORE »

Nelson Wins ROY

Nelson Wins ROY

Ron Nelson blanked on the first day of his first FLW Tour event. Then he got things on track – so on track that he finished the season ninth overall in the standings and above every other rookie to earn the Polaris FLW Tour Rookie of the Year award. Winning ROY is typically a career-setting accomplishment, and to go with the hardware Nelson will also receive a Polaris Sportsman® 570 ATV. READ MORE »

Dudley Wins Historic 4th AOY

Dudley Wins Historic 4th AOY

Taking to the second to last day of the 2019 FLW Tour season, David Dudley finally did it again, triumphing over John Cox to win a historic fourth FLW Tour Angler of the Year title. Winning his first AOY in 2008, and then going back-to-back in 2011 and 2012, Dudley is now the only pro with four titles to their credit, surpassing both Clark Wendlandt and Andy Morgan. READ MORE »

Ticonderoga Showdown Looms

Ticonderoga Showdown Looms

After three days of the FLW Tour event presented by T-H Marine on Lake Champlain, all but one of the top five pros are turning south from Plattsburgh to chase largemouths at Ticonderoga. In the lead, Tyler Stewart of West Monroe, La., bagged up another 18 pounds, 5 ounces to boost his total to 58-6. In second and just 1-14 behind, Casey Scanlon of Lake Ozark., Mo., weighed 18-13 on day three for a 56-8 total. READ MORE »

Lake Champlain Day 3 Coverage

Lake Champlain Day 3 Coverage

We're down to 30 anglers in the FLW Tour's last stop of the 2019 season. The Angler of the Year and Polaris Rookie of the Year races are still up for grabs, and second-year pro Tyler Stewart is haflway to his first win on Tour. There will be storylines apletny today. READ MORE »

A Three-Angler Race for AOY

A Three-Angler Race for AOY

By making the top-30 cut, John Cox, David Dudley and Joseph Webster are all still in the 2019 FLW Tour Angler of the Year race. Scott Martin, who also made the cut and started the week in fourth place in the standings, cannot mathematically earn enough points to win AOY. READ MORE »