(Jun 15, 2017 - MARBURY, Md.)
Pro Clark Wendlandt of Leander, Texas, grabbed the early lead Thursday after Day One of the FLW Tour on the Potomac River presented by Costa Sunglasses with five bass weighing 19 pounds, 11 ounces. Wendlandt will begin Day Two with a 5-ounce advantage over second place angler Yamamoto Baits pro Tom Monsoor of La Crosse, Wisconsin, in the four-day event that features the world’s best bass anglers competing for a top award of up to $125,000.
“To be honest, I didn’t really think I’d catch them like that today,” said Wendlandt, who won on the Potomac River when the FLW Tour last visited in 2015. “I really struggled early on. I only had three fish in the boat at noon. I thought I would do better later on in the day, but couldn’t get anything going then either. The middle of the day was really the only time I did well.”
Wendlandt said he caught around 18 keepers throughout the day, and that the bulk of his weight came from one area.
“I practiced from Washington D.C. all the way down to just about as far as you can go on the river, and it was the best place that I found,” said Wendlandt. “There were a lot of boats in there today, so I think tomorrow could be a lot harder. At some point I may just have to bail and go do something else.”
Wendlandt said that there are still plenty of options for him to catch a decent limit, even if his primary area is overcrowded.
“The Potomac River is a unique fishery because you can catch them from grass one day and out of wood and rocks the next,” said Wendlandt. “Everything can be good, it just depends on the tide. I guess I’ve been good at knowing the right places to fish at the right time.”
The top 10 pros after Day One on the Potomac River are:
1st: Clark Wendlandt, Leander, Texas, five bass, 19-11
2nd: Yamamoto Baits pro Tom Monsoor, La Crosse, Wis., five bass, 19-6
3rd: Kurt Dove, Del Rio, Texas, five bass, 18-14
4th: Carl Jocumsen, Frisco, Texas, five bass, 18-11
5th: Robert Behrle, Hoover, Ala., five bass, 18-10
6th: Clark Reehm, Huntington, Texas, five bass, 18-2
7th: Quaker State pro Matt Arey, Shelby, N.C., five bass, 18-1
8th: Andy Young, Mound, Minn., five bass, 17-15
9th: Polaris pro David Dudley, Lynchburg, Va., five bass, 17-8
10th: Chris Johnston, Peterborough, Ontario, Canada, five bass, 17-7
Dove caught a bass weighing 5 pounds, 15 ounces – the largest in the Pro Division – which earned him the day's $500 Big Bass award.
Overall there were 752 bass weighing 2,160 pounds, 13 ounces caught by 160 pros Thursday. The catch included 135 five-bass limits.
David Larson of Mound, Minnesota, leads the Co-angler Division with five bass weighing 17 pounds, 12 ounces, followed by Mark Horton of Nicholasville, Kentucky, in second place with five bass totaling 17 pounds, 2 ounces.
The top 10 co-anglers after Day One on the Potomac River are:
1st: David Larson, Mound, Minn., five bass, 17-12
2nd: Mark Horton, Nicholasville, Ky., five bass, 17-2
3rd: Ryan Cannon, Bullard, Texas, five bass, 16-13
4th: Douglas Colson, Cadiz, Ky., five bass, 16-8
4th: Richie Eaves, Nauvoo, Ill., five bass, 16-8
6th: Larry Kempler, Bluemont, Va., five bass, 16-0
7th: Greg Mansfield, Burnsville, Minn., five bass, 15-13
8th: Jason Williams, Alexandria, Va., five bass, 15-8
9th: Larry Mulllikin, Lauderhill, Fla., five bass, 15-6
10th: Keith Honeycutt, Temple, Texas, five bass, 14-15
Eaves earned $250 for the Big Bass award in the Co-angler Division with a 4-pound, 14-ounce largemouth.
Overall there were 481 bass weighing 1,275 pounds, 14 ounces caught by 152 co-anglers Thursday. The catch included 44 five-bass limits.
In FLW Tour competition, pros and co-anglers are randomly paired each day, with pros supplying the boat, controlling boat movement and competing against other pros. Co-anglers fish from the back deck against other co-anglers. The full field competes in the two-day opening round. Co-angler competition concludes following Friday’s weigh-in, while the top 20 pros based on their two-day accumulated weight advance to Saturday. Only the top 10 pros continue competition Sunday, with the winner determined by the heaviest accumulated weight from the four days of competition.
Throughout the season, anglers are also vying for valuable points in hopes of qualifying for the 2017 Forrest Wood Cup, the world-championship of professional bass fishing. The 2017 Forrest Wood Cup will be on Lake Murray in Columbia, South Carolina, Aug. 11-13.
The total purse for the FLW Tour at the Potomac River presented by Costa Sunglasses is more than $800,000, including $10,000 through 50th place in the Pro Division.
Competitors will take off at 6:30 a.m. EDT each day from Smallwood State Park, located at 2750 Sweden Point Road, in Marbury. Friday’s weigh-in will be held at Smallwood State Park beginning at 3 p.m. Saturday and Sunday’s weigh-ins, June 17-18, will also be held at Smallwood State Park, but will begin at 4 p.m.
Prior to the weigh-ins Saturday and Sunday, fans are invited to come out and experience the free FLW Expo at Smallwood State Park from noon to 4 p.m. The FLW Expo is a great opportunity for fishing fans of all ages to meet-and-greet with top FLW Tour anglers, enjoy games, activities and giveaways provided by FLW sponsors, and learn more about the sport of fishing and other outdoor activities.
Youth are also invited to participate in the free FLW Foundation Unified Fishing Derby at Smallwood State Park on Saturday, June 17, from 9-11 a.m. The event, hosted by FLW Foundation pro Cody Kelley along with other FLW Tour anglers, is free and open to area youth (18 years of age and younger) and Special Olympics athletes (all ages). Rods and reels are available for the first 50 participants to use, but youth are encouraged to bring their own if they own one.
Television coverage of the FLW Tour at the Potomac River presented by Costa Sunglasses will premiere in high-definition (HD) on NBC Sports Network (NBCSN) Sept. 20 from 12 p.m.-1 p.m. EDT. 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 world’s largest tournament-fishing organization, providing anglers of all skill levels the opportunity to compete for millions in prize money in 2017 across five tournament circuits. Headquartered in Benton, Kentucky, with offices in Minneapolis, FLW conducts more than 274 bass-fishing tournaments annually across the United States and sanctions tournaments in Canada, China, Mexico, South Africa and South Korea. FLW tournament fishing can be seen on the Emmy-nominated “FLW" television show, broadcast to more than 564 million households worldwide, while FLW Bass Fishing magazine delivers cutting-edge tips from top pros.