Fishing & Boating News

Thrift's Lake Norman Win Airs May 9

Shelby, N.C., Pro Dominates 2010's Second FLW Tour Event

by: Jeff McCoy, PR dir, FLW Outdoors

(May. 06, 2010 - ) The second tournament of the 2010 FLW Tour season was held on Lake Norman, North Carolina's largest manmade lake. Norman also happens to be the home lake of pro Bryan Thrift - one of the hottest bass anglers in the world. Thrift leveraged his local knowledge to catch a four-day total of 20 bass weighing 58 pounds, 5 ounces - winning the event by nearly a 9-pound margin. Complete coverage of the tournament will air May 9 from 12:30-1:30 p.m. ET on VERSUS as part of the weekly "FLW Outdoors" program.

In years past, the Lake Norman event was typically held during the spawn. But this time the fish were largely in prespawn mode - which allowed Thrift to target staging bass under Norman's innumerable docks. Using a run-and-gun strategy, Thrift sampled nearly 100 docks each day. The most productive ones housed underwater brush piles. In addition, the Shelby, N.C., native worked a crankbait over shallow-water stumps.

When fishing docks, Thrift mostly used a 1/2-ounce jig with a soft-plastic trailer. He would skip the jig under the main section of the float, let it fall to the bottom and hop it two or three times. After winding it in, he'd make an additional casts to each post before heading to the next dock and repeating the process. Though tedious, it proved extremely effective as the Damiki-sponsored angler earned $125,000.

In second place was Alpine, Calif., pro Rusty Salewske, who finished with a four-day total of 49-7. While Thrift covered Norman from end to end, Salewske hunkered down in two creeks - Mountain and Muddy. There he fished shallow, dirty water with a square-billed crankbait - attempting to deflect the lure off any piece of cover and cause a reaction strike. His consolation check was nearly $40,000.

Andy Montgomery of Blacksburg, S.C., took third and earned nearly $30,000 with a total weight of 49 pounds, 3 ounces. Like Thrift, Montgomery skipped a 1/2-ounce jig under docks. The two are longtime friends and travel partners on Tour.

VERSUS Country broadcasts "FLW Outdoors" in high-definition (HD) Sundays from 12:30-1:30 p.m. ET. also provides an online guide listing upcoming episodes of "FLW Outdoors." In addition, each episode of "FLW Outdoors" will be available on demand in its entirety on

FLW Outdoors, named after Forrest L. Wood, the legendary founder of Ranger Boats, is the largest fishing tournament organization in the world offering anglers worldwide the opportunity to compete for millions over the course of 189 tournaments in 2010. For more information about FLW Outdoors and its tournaments, call (270) 252-1000.