(Jun 18, 2015 - BUCHANAN, TN.)
Bobby Padgett of LaGrange, Georgia, took the early lead at the Walmart BFL All-American on Kentucky Lake with a five-bass limit weighing 27 pounds, 13 ounces. Padgett will begin day two of the three-day competition with a 3-pound lead over second-place angler Curtis Richardson of Belleville, Ontario, Canada, who weighed in five bass totaling 24 pounds, 13 ounces.
“It feels great to be leading on day one but it would feel even better to be leading on day three,” said Padgett, who has accumulated 20 top-10 finishes in FLW competition. “I just have to go out there and grind it out again tomorrow.”
Padgett said he spent his morning targeting secondary points, flats and small kick-outs in mid-lake areas between Paris Landing and Moors Marina.
“The bass are active along the secondary stuff because they’re pulling so much current,” said Padgett. “I used a Carolina-rigged Red Bug-colored Zoom Ol’ Monster Worm and caught a decent limit by 10 a.m.”
Around 10:45, Padgett said he ran to a different location and reeled in a 7½-pounder using the Red Bug-colored Zoom Ol’ Monster Worm, this time Texas-rigged.
“It was near a barge that I had found in the river channel. It was 40 feet down and rose up to about 17 feet,” Padgett said.
To finish out his day, the Georgia angler targeted fish that were fired up from thunderstorms that had passed through over lunchtime.
“I hit three places in 40 minutes and culled out three 3¾-pounders with 5-pounders,” Padgett said. “I gained about four pounds in an hour using a Two Timer-colored Profound Outdoors Crankbait.”
Padgett said he ended up catching about 25 keepers by the end of the day.
“Most of the fish came between 11 a.m. and 2 p.m.,” said Padgett. “Tomorrow I’m going to stick to a similar pattern but focus more on the spots where I caught my biggest fish.”
The top 10 boaters after day one on Kentucky Lake are:
1st: Bobby Padgett, LaGrange, Ga., five bass, 27-13
2nd: Curtis Richardson, Belleville, Ontario, Canada, five bass, 24-13
3rd: Dennis Middleton, Madison Heights, Va., five bass, 24-10
4th: Chris Martinkovic, Hamilton, Ohio, five bass, 24-9
5th: Billy Schroeder, Paducah, Ky., five bass, 22-5
6th: Jeff Johnston, Marion, Ark., five bass, 21-10
6th: Jeremy Lawyer, Sarcoxie, Mo., five bass, 21-10
8th: Lloyd Pickett Jr., Bartlett, Tenn., five bass, 20-13
9th: J.R. Henard, Rogersville, Tenn., five bass, 20-11
10th: Chris Daves, Spring Grove, Va., five bass, 20-1
Michael Gross of Gurdon, Arkansas, leads the co-angler division with five bass weighing 19 pounds, 3 ounces followed by James Hatch of Gainesville, Florida, in second place with five bass weighing 18-14.
The top 10 co-anglers are:
1st: Michael Gross, Gurdon, Ark., five bass, 19-3
2nd: James Hatch, Gainesville, Fla., five bass, 18-14
3rd: Bob Burgess, Charleston, W. Va., five bass, 18-10
4th: Joshua Pullins, Bonne Terre, Mo., five bass, 18-5
5th: Will Treadwell, Buford, Ga., five bass, 16-9
6th: Joe Eubanks, Marietta, Ga., five bass, 16-6
7th: Jacob Harris, Bonne Terre, Mo., five bass, 16-5
8th: Charles Hardin, Evansville, Ind., five bass, 16-3
9th: Ryan Sykes, Hamilton, Ohio, five bass, 16-1
10th: Cole Huskins, Mount Holly, N.C., five bass, 15-15
Hosted by the Henry County Alliance, the Walmart BFL All-American features the top 49 boaters and top 49 co-anglers from across the 24-division BFL circuit will cast for cash prizes of up to $120,000 in the Boater Division and $60,000 in the Co-angler Division, plus an opportunity to compete for the Forrest Wood Cup Aug. 20-23 on Lake Ouachita in Hot Springs, Arkansas.
Anglers will take off from the Paris Landing State Park ramp located at 16055 Highway 79 N. in Buchanan at 7 a.m. each morning. Friday’s weigh-in will be held at Paris Landing State Park beginning at 3 p.m. Saturday’s final weigh-in will be held at Walmart, located at 1210 Mineral Wells Ave., in Paris, Tennessee, beginning at 4 p.m.
Fans will also be treated to the FLW Expo at Walmart in Paris on Saturday from noon to 4 p.m. The Expo includes Ranger boat simulators, the opportunity to interact with competing anglers, enjoy interactive games, activities and giveaways provided by sponsors and learn more about the sport of fishing and other outdoor activities. All activities are free and open to the public.
The BFL is a 24-division circuit devoted to weekend anglers, with 120 tournaments throughout the season, five in each division. The top 40 boaters and co-anglers from each division qualify for a regional championship and compete to finish in the top six, which then qualifies them for one of the longest-running championships in all of competitive bass fishing – the Walmart BFL All-American. Top anglers in the BFL can move up to the Rayovac FLW Series or even the Walmart FLW Tour.
Coverage of the 2015 BFL All-American on Kentucky Lake will be broadcast in high-definition (HD) on NBC Sports Network (NBCSN) November 29 from 7 p.m.-8 p.m. EDT when Season 20 of “FLW” returns this fall. The Emmy-nominated "FLW" television show airs on NBCSN, the Pursuit Channel and the World Fishing Network and is broadcast to more than 564 million households worldwide, making it the most widely distributed weekly outdoors-sports television show in the world.
FLW is the industry’s premier tournament-fishing organization, providing anglers of all skill levels the opportunity to compete for millions in prize money nationwide in 2015 over the course of 240 tournaments across five tournament circuits, four of which provide an avenue to the sport’s richest payday and most coveted championship trophy – the Forrest Wood Cup. FLW tournament fishing can be seen on the Emmy-nominated “FLW" television show and is broadcast to more than 564 million households worldwide, making it the most widely distributed weekly outdoors-sports television show in the world.