UPCOMING EVENT: YETI FLW COLLEGE FISHING - 2019 - Sam Rayburn Reservoir

FISHING LEAGUE WORLDWIDE

The Norman King

Bryan Thrift

When Bryan Thrift of Shelby, N.C., hit the FLW Tour as a rookie 10 years ago, his unusual fishing style immediately drew the attention of fishing fans, media and, of course, his competition.

Thrift’s fishing approach was completely idiosyncratic, bolstered by multiple stops at a blistering pace. Many times his “fishing” did not look like fishing in the normal sense of the word. Instead, it looked like an extreme exercise in repetition: run, stop, trolling motor down, three casts, trolling motor up, run…repeat 50 times per day. The sheer number of miles he covered in a day was downright bewildering.

At first, his high-speed pursuit of a fish that seldom swims faster than 5 mph left a lot of people scratching their heads.

“What’s that kid doing?” some would ask.

“He is just running around like a mad man,” others would say.

Practice with Thrift

Day three coverage blog

Ten years and nearly 2 million dollars in winnings later, no one questions Thrift’s brazen high speed run and gun any more. Today, he once again proved that his turbo speed pace applied across dozens of stops per hour is his winning formula by claiming victory in the Walmart FLW Tour Invitational presented by Lowrance on Lake Norman. It’s the same approach that brought him his first Tour win here on Norman in 2010 as well as a Tour win on Eufaula in 2015 and his Costa FLW Series win on Santee Cooper back in March.

Bryan Thrift

“That’s why I love Norman, it just suits my fishing style so well,” Thrift says. “There is so much to fish here, it never gets old.”

Lake Norman suits Thrift’s style because, in essence, Norman helped mold Thrift’s fishing style. One look at Lake Norman and it doesn’t take long to understand why. Norman is a compact lake slammed full of cover and bass. In all areas and at all depths the bass can live on anything and everything from 40 feet to 4 inches.

Thrift has fished the lake all his life and has limitless places he can throw a lure to. The only way to even begin to put a dent in his exhaustive list of docks, brushpiles, rockpiles, clay points, laydowns and multiple offshore waypoints is simply to fish as fast as humanly possible.

The key to Thrift’s success is the speed and efficiency in which he carries out his mission. To him it’s not as much of a pattern game as it is a numbers game of making presentations to cover. He knows the exact line up on an offshore spot, casting angle on a rockpile or skipping lane on a dock. And he only needs a few presentations to sample each spot.

Bryan Thrift

Like a computer programmer, each day Thrift tweaks his runs and rotations to maximize his efficiency and consistency. This week he weighed in bags of 11-5, 11-12 and 11-11 to close out victory with 34 pounds, 12 ounces.

Thrift’s winning arsenal included a 4-inch Damiki Anchovy Shad swimbait threaded on a 3/16-ounce jighead. He fished the swimbait on 8-pound test P-Line and used it to target offshore brushpiles and rockpiles in about 15 feet of water. He also cranked the offshore sweetspots with a crankbait that runs 10 to 15 feet and dragged a ½-ounce jig through them as well.

When running banks he resorted to a buzzbait with a soft plastic trailer.

“The last two days I got a few more better bites running the bank with topwater,” Thrift says. “That first day I ran a lot of shallow water, but I just didn’t get any good bites fishing that way.”

In terms of having his fishing style dubbed a “numbers game” Thrift just grins and says, “I love it. I cast up there where one is supposed to be and he either bites it or he doesn’t. And then I go on to the next one. If I hit enough of spots, I figure I’ll eventually catch a good one.”

 

Top 10 pros

1. Bryan Thrift – Shelby, N.C. – 34-12 (15) – $71,000

2. Scott Beattie – Lincolnton, N.C. – 34-6 (15) – $18,340

3. Wesley Strader – Spring City, Tenn. – 33-7 (15) – $15,200

4. Todd Hollowell – Fishers, Ind. – 33-9 (15) – $12,160

5. Michael Neal – Dayton, Tenn. – 32-14 (15) – $9,120

6. Billy Shelton – La Crosse, Va. – 32-12 (15) – $7,904

7. Scott Canterbury – Springville, Ala. – 31-14 (15) – $7,600

8. Tracy Adams – Wilkesboro, N.C. – 31-7 (15) – $7,296

9. Michael Stephens – Gastonia, N.C. – 31-4 (15) – $6,992

10. John Cox – DeBary, Fla. – 31-3 (15) – $6,688

Complete results

Tags: bryan-thrift  lake-norman  rob-newell  headline-story  2016-09-15-lake-norman 

Duarte Covers Ground for Second W

Duarte Covers Ground for Second W

John Duarte of Middle River, Maryland, caught five bass Saturday weighing 18 pounds, 8 ounces, to win the T-H Marine FLW Bass Fishing League (BFL) South Carolina Division season opener on Lake Hartwell presented by Navionics. For his win, Duarte earned $4,396. READ MORE »

Stevens Drops 32-10 on Big O

Stevens Drops 32-10 on Big O

Kail Stevens of Boynton Beach, Florida, caught a massive five-bass limit Saturday weighing 32 pounds, 10 ounces, to win the T-H Marine FLW Bass Fishing League (BFL) Gator Division tournament on Lake Okeechobee. Stevens took home $4,766 for his efforts. READ MORE »

Aaron Plays Current for G-Ville Win

Aaron Plays Current for G-Ville Win

Chad Aaron of Lawrenceburg, Tennessee, caught five bass Saturday weighing 25 pounds, 14 ounces, to win the T-H Marine FLW Bass Fishing League (BFL) Choo Choo Division season opener on Lake Guntersville presented by Navionics. For his win, Aaron earned $4,363. READ MORE »

Montevallo Wins on Seminole

Montevallo Wins on Seminole

The University of Montevallo duo of Justin Barnes of Monroeville, Alabama, and Adam Carroll of Carrollton, Georgia, won the YETI FLW College Fishing event on Lake Seminole Saturday with a five-bass limit weighing 23 pounds, 1 ounce. The victory earned the Falcon’s bass club $2,000 and a slot in the 2020 FLW College Fishing National Championship. READ MORE »

Mount Paran Christian School wins on Seminole

Mount Paran Christian School wins on Seminole

The Mount Paran Christian School duo of Lee Rose Koza and Carter Koza, both of Marietta, Georgia, brought a five-bass limit to the scale Saturday weighing 23 pounds, 2 ounces to win the 2019 Bass Pro Shops FLW High School Fishing Lake Seminole Open. READ MORE »

Anders Chases Shad for Keowee W

Anders Chases Shad for Keowee W

Boater Joe Anders of Easley, South Carolina, caught a five-bass limit Saturday weighing 14 pounds, 11 ounces, to win the T-H Marine FLW Bass Fishing League (BFL) Savannah River division event on Lake Keowee presented by Navionics. Anders earned $4,164 for his efforts. READ MORE »

Toho Day 4 Coverage

Toho Day 4 Coverage

Complete coverage of the 2019 Tour event presented by Ranger Boats on Lake Toho in Kissimmee, Fla. READ MORE »

Gross Wins Second Tour Title

Gross Wins Second Tour Title

Buddy Gross of Chickamauga, Ga., won the 2019 FLW Tour event presented by Ranger Boats at Lake Toho in Kissimmee, Fla., with a four-day total of 20 bass that weighed 85 pounds, 12 ounces. READ MORE »

Gross Grabs Toho Lead

Gross Grabs Toho Lead

Day three of the FLW Tour presented by Ranger Boats on Lake Toho was tough on the leaders, but Buddy Gross stayed steady, rising to first from fifth with 19 pounds, 12 ounces. In total, Gross has amassed 62 pounds even through three days, which is just about a pound ahead of Darrell Davis, who caught 25-12 for a 60-15 total and rocketed up to second from 13th. Going into the final day, everyone in the top six is within 5 pounds of the lead, and the way the Kissimmee Chain is pumping out big ones, that counts as the slimmest of margins. READ MORE »

Toho Day 3 Coverage

Toho Day 3 Coverage

Complete coverage of the 2019 Tour event presented by Ranger Boats on Lake Toho in Kissimmee, Fla. READ MORE »

Cox Stays Ahead on Toho

Cox Stays Ahead on Toho

Day two of the FLW Tour presented by Ranger on Lake Toho featured not one, but TWO 10-pounders, one caught by Casey Scanlon and the other by Jamie Horton. READ MORE »

Toho Day 2 Coverage

Toho Day 2 Coverage

Complete coverage of the 2019 Tour event presented by Ranger Boats on Lake Toho in Kissimmee, Fla. READ MORE »

Cox Leads Toho Slugfest

Cox Leads Toho Slugfest

Day one of the FLW Tour presented by Ranger Boats on Lake Toho was the slugfest many expected. Leading the way is sight-fishing extraordinaire John Cox, who caught 31 pounds, 9 ounces and the day one big bass – a giant that went 10-9.  In second, John Voyles wrangled up 24-15, and Scott Martin is close behind him with 24-12. READ MORE »

Toho Day 1 Coverage

Toho Day 1 Coverage

Complete coverage of the 2019 Tour event presented by Ranger Boats on Lake Toho in Kissimmee, Fla. READ MORE »

FLW Live Schedule for Lake Toho

FLW Live Schedule for Lake Toho

Weigh-ins at the FLW Tour Lake Toho event will be broadcast daily at 3 p.m. ET days one and two and 4 p.m ET days three and four. The studio broadcast, with live in-the-boat streaming, airs Saturday and Sunday from 8 a.m. - 2 p.m. with hosts Travis Moran and Peter T. READ MORE »

Thliveros Brings it Home

Thliveros Brings it Home

Nick Thliveros led after day two on Okeechobee and after weighing his lowest weight of the week, he was able to seal the deal for his first Costa FLW Series win as a pro. READ MORE »

Top 5 Patterns from Okeechobee – Day 2

Top 5 Patterns from Okeechobee – Day 2

Fishing as a whole is still tough on the Big O, but there was definitely an improvement today – especially for the guys at the top of the leaderboard. READ MORE »

Thliveros in Charge on Okeechobee

Thliveros in Charge on Okeechobee

Nick Thliveros is one day away from taking the title in the Costa FLW Series event on Lake Okeechobee. READ MORE »

Top 5 Patterns from Okeechobee – Day 1

Top 5 Patterns from Okeechobee – Day 1

Things are tough on Okeechobee, but these pros cracked some of the code to wrangle solid catches. READ MORE »

Roder Out Front on Big O

Roder Out Front on Big O

Okeechobee is normally the place of dreams. This week, however, it isn’t quite living up to its reputation. Day one of the Costa FLW Series Southeastern Division event on the Big O saw plenty of fish, though the quality bites were hard to come by. Troy Roder of Brookeland, Texas, set the pace early with a 19-pound, 15-ounce limit to grab the lead in the season opener – presented by Power-Pole – with a lead of over 4 pounds heading into Friday. READ MORE »