UPCOMING EVENT: YETI College Fishing - 2019 - Sam Rayburn Reservoir


Padgett Leads All-American With 27

Bobby Padgett took the day-one lead with 27-13.

Bobby Padgett, long a force to be reckoned with on the Chattahoochee River chain of lakes, was once asked why he never went pro and fished the major circuits outside of his home region. His answer: “Because I never get in a tournament I don’t think I can win.”

Padgett, of LaGrange, Ga., is fishing the Walmart Bass Fishing League All-American on Kentucky Lake, and he thinks he can win. The ledge-fishing specialist made his case in the tournament’s opening round with a five-fish sack that weighed 27 pounds, 13 ounces. The veteran leads Curtis Richardson of Belleville, Ont., by 3 pounds, and a bevy of anglers trail behind them with 20-pound-plus stringers.

Kentucky Lake exceeded most expectations on day one, considering it has hosted a number of major tournaments in the last few weeks. Ten anglers caught more than 20 pounds, and three more were in the 19-pound range. Considering that there are only 49 boaters in the event, the fishing might be described as phenomenal.

Ranger bass boats boiled out of Paris Landing marina Thursday morning, with many heading toward toward the grass beds and ledges from the Highway 79 bridge south to New Johnsonville and beyond, and others turning north and running toward the maze of ledges that distinguish the midlake area. Padgett was among the latter group, and fished his way up to Moors Resort and back. Though he culled a number of times during the day, it wasn’t until an afternoon thunderstorm swept across the lake that Padgett benefited from a flurry of bites that left him with three of his biggest keepers.

“I figured I could get 19 or 20 fish a day, and they would be the right kind of fish,” says the Georgia veteran, who’s fishing his third consecutive All-American. “I didn’t really have what I wanted until that storm came across and they just lit up for a while. I got lucky. I don’t know if I can do it tomorrow [Friday], but I’ve got some places I haven’t hit yet.”

Padgett alternated among a Zoom Ol’ Monster worm, a Profound Z-Boss 25 crankbait and a Preacher Jig, fishing each in water that ranged from just under 10 feet deep to about 25 feet deep. His bag included four largemouth and a smallmouth bass that weighed just over 4 pounds.

“Today is my wife’s [Donna] birthday and my birthday,” Padgett told the weigh-in audience, “so this was a pretty good birthday present for both of us.”

Padgett feels that his spots have the potential to yield good stringers Friday, but the caveat is the weather. Storm clouds are expected to roll through on day two, and heavy seas could make boat traffic unpleasant at best.

“Getting to where I want to go doesn’t bother me as much as not having any sun when I get there,” notes Padgett. “I need sunshine to help position the fish.”

Full Results


Michael Gross

Gross Leads Co-Anglers

To catch bass, you have to be on bass, and Michal Gross of Gurdon, Ark., was on plenty of them Thursday, thanks to pro partner Chris Martinkovic. The pair spent most of day one fishing within sight of the Highway 79 Bridge that spans Kentucky Lake at Paris Landing, and were rewarded with two of the biggest sacks of the tournament.

Martinkovic, of Hamilton, Ohio, is currently fourth in the pro standings with 24-9 while Gross leads the 48 other co-anglers with 19-3. The pair were fishing ledges and using a variety of lures and found their spots Wednesday during the practice session.    

Full Results

Tags: kentucky-lake  summer  ledge-fishing  bobby-padgett  colin-moore  headline-story  2015-06-18-bfl-all-american 


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