UPCOMING EVENT: T-H Marine BFL - 2019 - Kentucky / Barkley Lake

FISHING LEAGUE WORLDWIDE

Thrift by 3

Thrift by 3
Yep, that'll do. Bryan Thrift smiles at the fruits of his second FLW Tour win in two years.

The “numbers game.”

It’s a term that Bryan Thrift used to describe his fishing on Lake Eufaula back in 2013 when he finished runner-up to Randy Haynes in a Walmart FLW Tour event.

The method to his numbers madness was to hit as many solitary objects – stumps, brush piles, rocks, logs – on the bottom of Lake Eufaula as humanly possible in an eight-hour tournament day.

When Thrift saw that Lake Eufaula was back on the 2015 Walmart FLW Tour schedule for May of this year, he grinned that patented Bryan Thrift grin because he already knew how to crunch the numbers at Eufaula.

And Thrift is still grinning. After sacking up a final-day catch of 15 pounds, 5 ounces to top off 69-14 for the week, Thrift made the numbers work for his fourth FLW Tour win. He added another $125,000 to his bank account.

“This is my favorite lake in the country. I absolutely love it,” Thrift says. “I’ve wanted to win here so bad for so long. I’ve finished second here in two other FLW events [the 2013 Tour Major and 2010 FLW Series], so to finally get over the hump feels pretty good.”

Thrift’s numbers game is a model of absolute maximum efficiency on offshore objects sitting in water that’s anywhere from 5 to 15 feet deep. He works with mechanical precision to hit as many as 70 targets per day. For each target, Thrift uses his electronics to idle to within 50 feet of the target. He then breaks his forward momentum with reverse throttle, hops to the deck and fires a swimbait beyond the target. The object of his game is to waddle the swimbait right into the target in hopes that any unsuspecting bass holed up there will blast the lure.

His perfection in this process is measured in the number of times he can hit the target with the very first cast. If he doesn’t get a bite the first time, Thrift might sling the swimbait out there a time or two more, but then he is gone to the next.

As for the objects he is fishing, Thrift says he really doesn’t care what it is. It’s the size of the object that matters to him.

“I don’t really care about the big stuff,” he says. “I like for it to be small and compact; something that others won’t fool with and that I can cover in about two to three casts. It might only hold a single fish, but that’s why I want to have so many of those places to throw at. If I throw at enough of them I’m going to get five bites. It’s a numbers game, simple as that.”

That fish chocked the frog Thrift worked around shallow grass.

Thrift says he spent his entire practice idling flats looking for his targets. He put in 30 hours on his motor in three days of practice. In all, he found nearly 200 pieces of cover that made his waypoint list.

Thrift’s primary weapons in the numbers game were a couple of swimbaits, one rigged with a 1/4-ounce jighead for the shallower or thicker stuff and one with a 1/2-ounce jighead for deeper objects.

Thrift’s weights got stronger each of the first three days – 15-15, 18-12 and 19-14, respectively – making it look as if his program was easy. But the numbers game is not an easy way of fishing by any means.

Sometimes he endured dozens and dozens of fishless stops before striking pay dirt.

While most of Thrift’s fish were derived from the offshore numbers game, Thrift did rely on a hollow-bodied frog fished shallow for a couple of his key keepers on days two and four.

“When I’d go a long time without getting a bite and I started to get frustrated, I’d go to the bank and throw a frog to get a bite and get my head back in the game,” he says. “That happened today. I was starting to spin out a little bit, went to the bank and on about my fourth cast with a frog, I caught a nice 3-pounder. That got me back on track. I headed back out to run my offshore stuff again, and things started clicking then.”

Refocused, Thrift proceeded to put together the second-largest limit of the final day, surpassed only by Randy Haynes’ 15-06, to jump ahead of day-three leader Troy Morrow by almost 3 pounds for the FLW Tour victory.

Bryan Thrift rears back to launch his swimbait to the perfect brush pile on the final day.

 

Top 10 Pros

1. Bryan Thrift – Shelby, N.C. – 69-14 (20) – $100,000 + Ranger Cup ($25,000)

2. Troy Morrow – Eastanollee, Ga. – 66-15 (20) – $29,789

3. Clent Davis – Montevallo, Ala. – 66-01 (20) – $24,822

4. Wesley Strader – Spring City, Tenn. – 63-01 (20) – $19,855

5. Jeff Gustafson – Keewatin, Ontario – 62-15 (19) – $18,862

6. Randy Haynes – Counce, Tenn. – 60-01 (20) – $17,869

7. Shinichi Fukae – Palestine, Texas – 57-12 (20) – $16,875

8. Zack Birge – Blanchard, Okla. – 57-12 (20) – $15,882

9. Adrian Avena – Vineland, N.J. – 56-09 (20) – $14,889

10. John Cox – Debary, Fla. – 55-06 (20) – $13,895

 

Complete Results

Tags: flw-tour  lake-eufaula  bryan-thrift  rob-newell  headline-story  2015-05-14-lake-eufaula 

Hays Rallies for Ozark Title

Hays Rallies for Ozark Title

The final day of the Costa FLW Series Central Division event on Lake of the Ozarks presented by Evinrude was no walk in the park for the top 10 pros. With a cold front passing through at the start of the event, a high-pressure system settled in for the final round of fishing. While most struggled, Dylan Hays of El Dorado, Ark., sacked up 14 pounds, 6 ounces today – the biggest limit brought in during the final day – and finally was able to wrangle his first FLW title. READ MORE »

Lake of the Ozarks Midday Update – Day 3

Lake of the Ozarks Midday Update – Day 3

The final day of the Costa FLW Series Central Division on Lake of the Ozarks presented by Evinrude is fixing to get fun based on what’s already happened today and what could happen. READ MORE »

Top 5 Patterns from Lake of the Ozarks – Day 2

Top 5 Patterns from Lake of the Ozarks – Day 2

Sure enough, with conditions changing from rain and clouds to sun and wind, the Costa FLW Series Central Division on Lake of the Ozarks, which is presented by Evinrude, has made it tough on guys. Of course, day-two leader James Watson predicted that some of the biggest bags of the event would come in today despite the conditions, and he was right. READ MORE »

Consistency Puts Watson Out Front

Consistency Puts Watson Out Front

Weather has been the storyline leading up to the Costa FLW Series Central Division finale on Lake of the Ozarks presented by Evinrude. With storms and rain blowing through yesterday ahead of a cold front, the cooler weather set in today making fishing tough on some, but others took advantage of the change. READ MORE »

Lake of the Ozarks Midday Update – Day 2

Lake of the Ozarks Midday Update – Day 2

A cold front that brought temperatures in the 40s, rain and wind has the bass in a funk on day two of the Costa FLW Series Central Division event presented by Evinrude on Lake of the Ozarks. READ MORE »

Top 5 Patterns from Lake of the Ozarks – Day 1

Top 5 Patterns from Lake of the Ozarks – Day 1

Even some of the best locals were driving the struggle bus all day trying to find ways to adapt to fish that moved thanks to the heavy storms. Yet, some guys did adapt well, with the best being Ladd Shannon and his 19-pound, 6-ounce tournament-leading bag. READ MORE »

Shannon Leads the Ozark Charge

Shannon Leads the Ozark Charge

After losing over an hour of fishing time due to a massive thunderstorm that rolled through the area early this morning causing a lightning delay, day one of the Costa FLW Series Central Division finale on Lake of the Ozarks looked to be a grinder of an event. The tournament, which is presented by Evinrude, saw plenty of fish catching by midday, but no size to speak of. Ladd Shannon of Atkins, Ark., managed to scrape up a limit worth 19 pounds, 6 ounces by the end of the day and sits in first by 1-11 over FLW pro Greg Bohannan. READ MORE »

Rampey Stays Red Hot on Hartwell

Rampey Stays Red Hot on Hartwell

After winning a T-H Marine Bass Fishing League (BFL) Super Tournament on Lake Hartwell a few weeks ago, Jayme Rampey of Liberty, S.C., was certainly one of the favorites heading into the BFL Regional on the same pond this past weekend. Lo and behold, he wouldn’t disappoint, and notched his 11th career BFL win – five of which have come on Hartwell – and won a Ranger Z518L with a 200-horsepower motor, plus $20,000 cash for his efforts. READ MORE »

Warren Mounts Furious Comeback on Grand

Warren Mounts Furious Comeback on Grand

Curt Warren was a paragon of consistency over three days at Grand Lake, and the result was a victory in the Costa FLW Series Southwestern Division finale, presented by T-H Marine. Warren turned in limits of 14-5 on day one and 16-9 on day two, but it was his day-three limit of 15-9 that was the most impressive – no other pro even cracked the 13-pound mark battling the tough post-frontal conditions Grand had to offer on day three. READ MORE »

Top 5 Patterns from Grand Lake - Day 2

Top 5 Patterns from Grand Lake - Day 2

When conditions changed, Cody Bird of Granbury, Texas completely scrapped his day-one pattern, caught a limit that weighed 13-11 and took over the lead of the Costa FLW Series Southwestern Division event, presented by T-H Marine, with a two-day total of 32-14. Here’s what the rest of the top five was up to on day two. READ MORE »

Bird Moves Ahead on Grand

Bird Moves Ahead on Grand

After his sizzling day-one pattern fizzled, Cody Bird adjusted his focus to a completely different scenario and sacked up a limit of 13-11 on day two to take over the lead in the Costa FLW Series Southwestern Division finale, presented by T-H Marine, with a two day total of 32-14. Going into Saturday’s final round, Bird holds a 7-ounce lead over day-one leader and Grand Lake stick Jason Christie. READ MORE »

Top 5 Patterns from Grand Lake - Day 1

Top 5 Patterns from Grand Lake - Day 1

Jason Christie of Park Hill, Okla., leveraged his intimate understanding of Grand Lake’s tendencies to catch a five-bass limit that weighed 22 pounds, 10 ounces to take the lead on day one of the Costa FLW Series Southwestern Division event Presented by T-H Marine. Here are the details of the rest of the top five. READ MORE »

Christie Blasts 22-10 on Grand

Christie Blasts 22-10 on Grand

Oklahoma stick Jason Christie overcame the unsettling effects of a passing cold front to sack up a five-bass limit that weighed 22 pounds, 10 ounces for the day one lead in the Costa FLW Series Southwestern Division finale, presented by T-H Marine on Oklahoma’s Grand Lake. READ MORE »

Grand Lake Midday Update - Day 1

Grand Lake Midday Update - Day 1

After several weeks of hot, sunny conditions, anglers launched with cloudy skies, stout winds and air temperatures in the low 60s. By midday, the temperature rose into the mid to upper 60s and the wind started to subside, however, the first couple of hours saw Grand Lake’s temperamental side. READ MORE »

Beavers Focused on Bluebacks

Beavers Focused on Bluebacks

FLW Tour pro Bradford Beavers of Summerville, South Carolina, brought a two-day total of 10 bass to the scale weighing 28 pounds, 1 ounce, to win the two-day T-H Marine FLW Bass Fishing League (BFL) South Carolina Division super-tournament on Lake Hartwell Sunday. Beavers earned $6,345 for his efforts. READ MORE »

Sac State Wins on the Delta

Sac State Wins on the Delta

The Sacramento State University duo of Ilya Guryanov of West Sacramento and Will Karnthong, of Antioch, California, won the YETI FLW College Fishing event on the California Delta presented by Bass Pro Shops with a five-bass limit weighing 15 pounds, 7 ounces. The victory earned the Hornets’ bass club $2,000 and a slot in the 2020 FLW College Fishing National Championship. READ MORE »

Carolina Rig Carries Lewellen

Carolina Rig Carries Lewellen

Kyle Lewellen of Byhalia, Mississippi, brought a two-day total of 10 bass to the scale weighing 34 pounds, 5 ounces, to win the two-day T-H Marine FLW Bass Fishing League (BFL) Mississippi Division super-tournament on Pickwick Lake Sunday. Lewellen earned $5,690 for his efforts. READ MORE »

Vandiver’s Stracner Wins Two-Day T-H Marine FLW Bass Fishing League Event on Lake Eufaula

Vandiver’s Stracner Wins Two-Day T-H Marine FLW Bass Fishing League Event on Lake Eufaula

EUFAULA, Ala. – Boater Josh Stracner of Vandiver, Alabama, brought a two-day total of 10 bass to the scale weighing 35 pounds, 12 ounces, to win the two-day T-H Marine FLW Bass Fishing League (BFL) Bama Division super-tournament on Lake Eufaula Sunday. Stracner earned $6,694 for his efforts... READ MORE »

Stracner Wins Again, Clinches AOY

Stracner Wins Again, Clinches AOY

Josh Stracner of Vandiver, Alabama, brought a two-day total of 10 bass to the scale weighing 35 pounds, 12 ounces, to win the two-day T-H Marine FLW Bass Fishing League (BFL) Bama Division super-tournament on Lake Eufaula Sunday. Stracner earned $6,694 for his efforts. READ MORE »

Turner Ran Brush on Lanier

Turner Ran Brush on Lanier

Brock Turner of Jasper, Georgia, brought a two-day total of 10 bass to the scale weighing 33 pounds, 7 ounces, to win the two-day T-H Marine FLW Bass Fishing League (BFL) Bulldog Division super-tournament on Lake Lanier Sunday. Turner earned $8,266 for his efforts. READ MORE »