Lakecaster Online

Tournament Pathfinder
by John Presley

The Bassmaster Pro Tour was at Lake Guntersville in Guntersville, AL on February 26-29. After the first day, Kevin VanDam of Kalamazoo, MI was in first with 5 fish that weighed 26-03, second place was Michael Iaconelli of Runnemede, NJ with 5 fish that weighed 24-03, and third place was David Wharton of Sam Rayburn, TX with 5 fish that weighed 22-03. After the second day, Michael Iaconelli took the lead with 10 fish 48-09, second place was Zell Rowland of Montgomery, TX with 10 fish 47-15, and third place was Chad Brauer of Osage Beach, MO with 10 fish 46-12. Only the top 12 anglers advanced to the third day of the tournament. After the third day, George Cochran of Hot Springs, AR told the lead with 15 fish 69-10, second place was Stacey King of Reeds Spring, MO with 15 fish 68-11, third place was Chad Brauer with 15 fish 66-01, fourth place was Kevin VanDam with 15 fish 64-01, fifth place was Michael Iaconelli with 12 fish 54-11, and sixth place was Zell Rowland with 11 fish 51-06. Only these top 6 anglers advanced to the fourth and final day of the tournament. On the final day of the tournament, George Cochran won the tournament with 20 fish 99-10 good for $102,000. Second place was Stacey King with 20 fish 90-01 good for $39,000, third place was Kevin VanDam with 20 fish 87-03 good for $24,000, fourth place was Chad Brauer with 20 fish 83-13 good for $21,000, fifth place was Michael Iaconelli with 15 fish 66-01 good for $15,000, and sixth place was Zell Rowland with 13 fish 60-10 good for $14,000. Big bass each day also paid $1,000. The winners were first day Danny White of Milledgeville, GA with a 9-03 fish, second day was Dennis Kolender of Henderson, NV with a 9-01 fish, third day was George Cochran with a 7-00 and the fourth day was Kevin VanDam with a 8-05. The top money winning amateurs were: first place was Phillip Dukes with 14 fish 45-07 good for $36,000, second place William Carter with 10 fish 34-05 good for $35,000, and third place Larry Butler with 8 fish 31-06 good for $11,000.

The next Pro Tour tournament was at Table Rock Lake in Kimberling City, MO on March 4-7. After the first day, Paul Elias of Pachuta, MS was in first with 5 fish that weighed 20-05, second place was Mark Davis of Mount Ida, AR with 5 fish that weighed 18-10, and third place was Chad Brauer of Osage Beach, MO with 5 fish that weighed 16-06. After the second day, Paul Elias was still in the lead with 10 fish 37-08, tied for second place was Mark Davis and Roland Martin of Naples, FL each with 10 fish 33-03. Only the top 12 anglers advanced to the third day of the tournament. After the third day, Roland Martin was in the lead with 15 fish 52-01, second place was Mark Davis with 15 fish 49-10, third place was Gerald Swindle of Hayden, AL with 14 fish 44-15, fourth place was Todd Auten of Lake Wylie, SC with 12 fish 44-09, fifth place was Paul Elias with 11 fish 40-05, and sixth place was Chad Morgenthaler of Coulterville, IL with 12 fish 39-01. Only these top 6 anglers advanced to the fourth and final day of the tournament. On the final day of the tournament, Mark Davis won the tournament with 20 fish 67-02 good for $100,000. Second place was Roland Martin with 17 fish 59-07 good for $39,000, third place was Gerald Swindle with 18 fish 55-06 good for $24,000, fourth place was Chad Morgenthaler with 17 fish 53-07 good for $21,000, fifth place was Todd Auten with 14 fish 49-09 good for $15,000, and sixth place was Paul Elias with 12 fish 42-06 good for $15,000. Big bass each day also paid $1,000. The winners were first day Jarrett Edwards of Del Norte, CO with a 6-10 fish, second day was Jason Quinn of Clover, SC with a 7-10 fish, third day was Gerald Swindle with a 7-03 and the fourth day was Roland Martin with a 4-09. The top money winning amateurs were: first place was Terry Chapman with 7 fish 22-15 good for $36,000, second place Ronnie Kane with 9 fish 21-15 good for $35,000, and third place John Harris with 6 fish 21-04 good for $11,000.

Fishing will be great in April & May. The water level is up and you should try fishing wacky worms and texas rig lizards in the bushes and willows Wacky worming is a great way to catch spawning bass and postspawning bass. I like to use the Swacky worm it is a 6-1/2 inch worm by Gambler Lures. The best spring colors that I like are watermelon ,watermelon red, watermelon blue, green pumpkin candy and sour grape. It is hard for a spawning bass to resist a Gambler Swacky worm when it slowly falls in front of their nest. The Gambler Swacky worm is available at your local tackle shop or visit Gamblers Website at www.gambler-bang.com. The hook that I have found to be the best wacky worm hook is made by Falcon Lures the K-Wacky it was designed by Wayne Falcon of Falcon Lures. The K-wacky is a is a kale style hook with a weight on the front end of the hook .The weight forward design allows the hook to fall in an upright position ensuring fewer missed strikes. The K-Wacky's are available with or without a weed guard. The weedless model is also available unweighted. The weedless "K"- WackyTM hook has a closed weedguard that prevents the fishing line from being tangled in the weed guard. Falcon Lures also has weighted soft plastic hooks they are available with Gamakatsu G- Lock and super line hooks. This hook also has a specially designed weight located on the front of the hook. The small diameter weight on this hook has a unique taper on both ends which enables anglers Texas style rigging of a weighted hook without damaging soft plastic lures. The weight forward design allows the rigged soft plastic lure to fall in a head down position that imitates the natural decent of an injured baitfish. This weighted hook can be used with any type of soft plastic lure, but works exceptionally well with Fluke and Senko type lures. Also this month ,don't forget to practice catch and release.

The crappie fishing should also get really good this month with a road runner over the hydrilla as they move in to spawn. So get out their and spend as much time on the water as you can and catch the big one.
Don't forget about the McDonald's Big Bass Splash on April 16-18. This is the 20th anniversary for the tournament at Sam Rayburn. The tournament has great hourly paybacks. A total of $500,000 guaranteed payout in cash and prizes are going to be given away.

If you are looking for a boat or motor come see me at Dawson Marine or call me at 409-489-9600.

By the way, when I am not fishing tournaments, I am a fishing guide on Lake Sam Rayburn. If you would like to book a trip please call me at 409-698-9713 or Ann's Tackle Shop at 409-384-7685. Or e-mail me at JOHN@SAMRAYBURNFISHING.COM. or check out my website at SAMRAYBURNFISHING.COM.

Good Luck and Good Fishing.

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