UPCOMING EVENT: YETI FLW COLLEGE FISHING - 2019 - Lake Erie

FISHING LEAGUE WORLDWIDE

Horton Crowned Co-angler of the Year

Horton Crowned Co-angler of the Year
Mark Horton

It’s been a tough year for Mark Horton, but things are most definitely looking up. The Nicholasville, Ky., co-angler won the 2018 FLW Tour Co-angler of the Year award today at Lake St. Clair, edging out last year’s COY Gary Haraguchi by just one point. Horton was awarded his COY trophy and a certificate for a new Ranger Z518C with a 200-hp outboard motor following the day-two weigh-in of the final FLW Tour stop of the year.

All year, Horton admits that he’s been distracted by the druthers of a divorce, and it’s affected his ability to prepare for each tournament and focus on fishing. Yet the fishing gave him an outlet from the stress of the situation, and today he experienced one of the most memorable days on the water in his life. He caught 22 pounds, 4 ounces of bass while fishing with pro Dylan Hays.

“It’s a big surprise,” Horton says. “I was in fifth place [coming into the tournament]. I didn’t think I had a shot at it, especially after starting in 123rd place yesterday.

“Today was just unreal. We caught them all by about 10 o’clock. Then we left the area.”

A couple of late culls while prospecting new areas with Hays gave Horton a few extra ounces, boosting him into 30th place in the tournament standings, which was exactly where he needed to be to pass Haraguchi.  

Horton says Hays and pro Brad Knight are sharing their key area this week, and he witnessed true sportsmanship between the two pros as they maneuvered near one another and even discussed when they ought to leave the spot to let it rest for the weekend. He also witnessed true sportsmanship from Hays throughout the magic final day.

“Dylan gave me a boat today,” says Horton. “Today was a gift. I was so far out of it. Him being such a good guy, he didn’t hinder me at all. Even though I’m sure he wasn’t thrilled I caught a couple 5-pounders he would have liked to have, he was excited for me. It was high fives and fist bumps all day.”

Horton performed consistently well all season. He earned a check at every tournament. A third-place finish at Smith Lake was his highest showing, and he never finished lower than 68th at Lake Cumberland. He says he got a big bite at every tournament except Kentucky Lake, but he was able to still finish 39th at that event and keep in the COY hunt for the finale on St. Clair.

In all, despite a tough situation off the water, Horton’s year has been just what a co-angler would wish for: a good time with good friends, including his travel partner Shawn Murphy, and a steady flow of paychecks. He’ll use the Ranger Boats certificate to purchase a new boat and replace the one he sold prior to this season. And then he’ll go back to fishing.

“I was planning on buying a new Ranger anyway,” he says. “So this makes it easier. I might upgrade to a little bigger boat and a little bigger motor, but I’m definitely getting a new one.”

As for whether or not he’ll use the COY title to move up to the pro ranks, Horton isn’t so sure just yet.

“I’m not looking to be a pro fisherman, per se,” says Horton, who owns Heat Pro, a heating and air conditioning company in Nicholasville. “I do this just for the fun and camaraderie, to travel with the guys and have a good time.”

Tags: curtis-niedermier  headline-story  2018-06-28-lake-st-clair-metropark 

Potomac River Top 5 Patterns – Day 2

Potomac River Top 5 Patterns – Day 2

Through two days of competition on the Potomac in the Costa FLW Series Northern Division presented by Gajo Baits event the weights haven’t been nearly what the river is capable of kicking out. That said, all the top pros have managed to put at least one good day together, and some have maintained really strong consistency, just at a lesser pace than would be the norm in June or some other time of the year. READ MORE »

Better Day Keeps Reese Out Front

Better Day Keeps Reese Out Front

A lovely morning gave way to a dismal afternoon on day two of the Costa FLW Series Northern Division presented by Gajo Baits on the Potomac River, but despite the difference in conditions, Marvin Reese kept on plugging. Weighing 14 pounds, 12 ounces on day one, Reese added 15-14 on day two for a 30-10 total. With his day two bag, Reese has now weighed the two biggest bags of the event, which is presented by Lowrance, and he’s widened his lead over Justin Atkins to nearly 4 pounds. READ MORE »

Potomac River Midday Update – Day 2

Potomac River Midday Update – Day 2

Day two of the Costa FLW Series Northern Division presented by Gajo Baits event on the Potomac has been quite a swing from day one. However, despite dramatically different weather, some of the top pros are still catching, and it looks like a tight race is setting up for the final day. READ MORE »

Potomac River Top 5 Patterns – Day 1

Potomac River Top 5 Patterns – Day 1

As is so often the case, the first day of the Costa FLW Series Northern Division presented by Gajo Baits on the Potomac River wasn’t quite as bad as some predicted in practice. Though it was hot and humid as all get out, plenty of limits hit the scale and enough pros weighed 12 pounds or better to make things really interesting READ MORE »

Reese Leads on the Potomac

Reese Leads on the Potomac

Day one of the Potomac River event, which is the second stop of the Costa FLW Series Northern Division presented by Gajo Baits, featured plenty of limits, but getting quality bites was definitely an issue for some. In the lead after day one, Marvin Reese of Randallstown, Md., weighed 14 pounds, 12 ounces to get things underway. Behind Reese, Justin Atkins and Jason Kervin both weighed 14-5, and Robert Grike rounded out the 14-pound brigade with 14-4. Overall, just 11 pros cracked the 12-pound mark on day one of the tournament, which is presented by Lowrance, but 8- and 9-pound limits weren’t too hard to come by.  READ MORE »

Potomac River Midday Update – Day 1

Potomac River Midday Update – Day 1

As predicted, day one of the Costa FLW Series Northern Division presented by Gajo Baits event on the Potomac River has been fairly tough. Though most folks have a fish or two, and many will undoubtedly fill limits by weigh-in, it certainly hasn’t been a catch-fest. READ MORE »

High Tide Takes Langford to Top

High Tide Takes Langford to Top

Todd Langford of Great Falls, Virginia, won the T-H Marine FLW Bass Fishing League (BFL) Shenandoah Division tournament on the Potomac River Saturday after catching a five-bass limit weighing 15 pounds, 2 ounces. Langford took home $2,600 for his efforts. READ MORE »

Mills Works Wood at Ohio River

Mills Works Wood at Ohio River

Craig Mills of Hamilton, Ohio, took top honors at Saturday’s T-H Marine FLW Bass Fishing League (BFL) Buckeye Division tournament on the Ohio River at Tanners Creek after catching five bass weighing 10 pounds, 4 ounces. Mills took home $5,466 for his win. READ MORE »

Pollak Plays Current for Big Muddy W

Pollak Plays Current for Big Muddy W

Joe Pollak of Lake Geneva, Wisconsin, won the T-H Marine FLW Bass Fishing League (BFL) Great Lakes Division tournament on the Mississippi River at Prairie du Chien Saturday after catching five bass weighing 15 pounds, 1 ounce. For his win, Pollack netted $4,586. READ MORE »

Cup Top 10: Osborne Fished Finesse

Cup Top 10: Osborne Fished Finesse

Osborne spent the early visit graphing for brush in Hamilton’s lower end. In practice, it was more of the same, as Osborne spent only a couple of hours beating the bank. READ MORE »

Cup Top 10: Douglas Fished Brush and a Buzzbait

Cup Top 10: Douglas Fished Brush and a Buzzbait

Minnesota pro Josh Douglas is regarded as an electronics expert. But while he put his Lowrance units to the test at the FLW Cup on Lake Hamilton to find offshore brush piles, even Douglas couldn’t resist spending some time in the mornings hunting shallow bass. READ MORE »

Cup Top 10: Salzman Went Shallow to Deep

Cup Top 10: Salzman Went Shallow to Deep

Ryan Salzman earned an eighth-place finish at the FLW Cup at Lake Hamilton with a well-executed two-part strategy. READ MORE »

Cup Top 10: Webster Wormed Brush

Cup Top 10: Webster Wormed Brush

Among the FLW Cup pros that committed the entire tournament to one pattern was Joseph Webster, who weighed in a three-day total of 28 pounds, 2 ounces at Lake Hamilton. He finished seventh. READ MORE »

Cup Top 10: Felix Keyed on Clear Water

Cup Top 10: Felix Keyed on Clear Water

Eden Prairie, Minn., pro Austin Felix finished sixth in this year’s FLW Cup at Lake Hamilton, but he’s convinced that if the engineers operating Blakely Mountain Dam had released water on a more consistent schedule, the results might have been even better for him. Felix spent most of the tournament keying on the clear waters of Hamilton’s upper end. READ MORE »

Cup Top 10: Martin went up the River

Cup Top 10: Martin went up the River

Prior to practice, Scott Martin had no idea that the far upper end of Lake Hamilton, where the cold waters from the bottom of Lake Ouachita flow in through Blakely Mountain Dam, was such a drastically different mini-fishery within the reservoir. Then he started scouting it in practice and realized there was potential to win the tournament in the tailrace in areas where the water temperature was below 60 degrees. READ MORE »

Cup Top 10: Lawyer Mixes it Up for Fourth

Cup Top 10: Lawyer Mixes it Up for Fourth

Fourth-place pro Jeremy Lawyer was the highest finisher to utilize the shallow-early, brush-later strategy. Lawyer stacked together limits of 12 pounds, 1 ounce and 12-5 on the first two days to go into the final day in fourth place. He weighed in just 7 pounds on Sunday. READ MORE »

Cup Top 10: Ebare Fished the Tailrace

Cup Top 10: Ebare Fished the Tailrace

Most of the time, fishing Southern impoundments in August is all about slowly dragging worms through brush piles. That’s what Dakota Ebare planned to do at the FLW Cup on Lake Hamilton. How he wound up catching enough fish to finish in third place felt more like Southern stream fishing. Ebare spent three days fishing the tailrace below Blakely Mountain Dam where the cold, clear waters drained through from the bottom of Lake Ouachita. READ MORE »

Top 10 Baits from the Cup at Hamilton

Top 10 Baits from the Cup at Hamilton

While there weren’t too many patterns in play at the 2019 FLW Cup at Lake Hamilton in Hot Springs, Ark., the nature of an August tournament in the South forced most of the top finishers to mix in a bunch of baits to catch their fish. Here’s what the top 10 used to catch schoolers and ply brush, docks and various types of shallow grass. READ MORE »

Cup Top 10: Walters Committed to Brush

Cup Top 10: Walters Committed to Brush

Coming into the FLW Cup at Lake Hamilton, Florida pro Kyle Walters figured the only chance he had to win was to stay away from the bank, where competing with the best in the sport was a tall order, and commit to finding as many brush piles as he could. READ MORE »

Thrift Finally Wins the Cup

Thrift Finally Wins the Cup

Everyone knew it was only a matter of time, and that time is finally now. Bryan Thrift is an FLW Cup champion. READ MORE »