Friday, June 17, 2011

FLW Tour Kentucky Lake Day 1: Chappelear, Colson Jr. lead Walmart FLW

Chappelear, Colson Jr. lead Walmart FLW

GILBERTSVILLE, Ky. – Pros Glenn Chappelear of Acworth, Ga., and Ramie Colson Jr. of Cadiz, Ky., both crossed the stage Thursday with five-bass limits weighing 23 pounds, 5 ounces to lead day one of the Walmart FLW Tour on Kentucky Lake presented by Kellogg’s. They now hold a 4-ounce lead over Diet Mt. Dew pro Jason Christie of Park Hill, Okla., who caught five bass weighing 23-1 in a tournament featuring anglers from all across the U.S. and Canada.

“I felt like fishing was a little bit tougher than it was when we were here two years ago,” Chappelear said. “I located a school of fish on Sunday morning (in practice) and caught several 3-pounders and a 5-pounder.

“I saw them on my graph first, so I knew it was a really large school of fish,” Chappelear added. “I found some other fish in other parts of the lake, but I wanted to fish in the north end if I could. I went back Tuesday and it took me about 15 minutes to find the school of fish. As soon as I found them it was first cast a 2-pounder and second cast a 3-pounder. So I left them alone.”

Chappelear said he started the first day of competition looking for the school of fish. He quickly located them, waited for boat traffic to pass him, then began assaulting the school. He threw his first cast at 6:20 a.m., quickly caught about 20 keepers and had a limit in his first seven casts.

Chappelear said he targeted a creek channel ledge in 15 to 18 feet of water and used three Strike King baits – a football jig with a Rage Tail Lobster trailer, Sexy Shad 6XD deep-diving crankbait and a 5 ½-inch Sexy Spoon.

“My strategy is to see if I can make it to Saturday,” Chappelear said. “I’ll be curious to see what I need to catch tomorrow. I’ve got some other fish 30 miles away that’s an every-cast place. God really blessed me today.”

Colson said his first spot of the day didn’t pay off for him, but he managed to catch a 5-pounder and a couple of keepers at his second spot.

“It seemed like everything was working like it should,” Colson said. “I fished several places in one area, and when I did get a good bite, it was a decent fish – a 4- or 5-pound fish. I’ve got other areas I could have fished, but I thought, ‘What’s the point of going and busting up those fish to catch keepers?’ So I figured I’d save some. I’ve got stuff I can run over three days easily.”

Colson said he was fishing a “typical June” pattern - creek channel ledges in Lake Barkley. Colson said his practice wasn’t what he had hoped for, but his bites came when it mattered. He said Thursday he picked apart brush piles on top of ledges and methodically fished each brush pile with two or three casts for fish that were “buried up in it.” Colson said he relied on a homemade ½-ounce Arkie-style jig with a Zoom Big Salty Chunk trailer as well as a plum-colored Zoom Ol’ Monster worm to catch his fish.

“I’m tickled to death,” Colson said. “I was aiming for 20 pounds a day. Anything over that was a bonus.”

Rounding out the top 10 pros after day one on Kentucky Lake are:

3rd: Diet Mountain Dew pro Jason Christie, Park Hill., Okla., five bass, 23-1
4th: National Guard pro Mark Rose, Marion, Ark., five bass, 21-12
5th: Tom Mann Jr., Buford, Ga., five bass, 21-10
6th: Blake Nick, Adger, Ala., five bass, 21-8
7th: Cody Bird, Granbury, Texas, five bass, 21-7
8th: AMP pro Stetson Blaylock, Benton, Ark., five bass, 20-5
9th: Tom Monsoor, La Crosse, Wis., five bass, 19-15
10th: Goodwill pro Chad Grigsby, Maple Grove, Minn., five bass, 19-11

Chevy pro Dion Hibdon of Stover, Mo., caught the Snickers® Big Bass weighing 7-2 on the pro side to win $500.

Overall there were 634 bass weighing 1,780 pounds, 5 ounces caught by 140 pros Thursday. The catch included 111 five-bass limits.

Pros are competing for a top award of up to $125,000 this week plus valuable points in the hope of qualifying for the Forrest Wood Cup presented by Walmart, the world championship of bass fishing. This year’s Cup will be in Hot Springs, Ark., Aug. 11-14 on Lake Ouachita where pros are competing for a top prize of $600,000 – the sport’s biggest award. Pro anglers are also vying for the prestigious 2011 Walmart FLW Tour Angler of the Year presented by Kellogg’s that will be determined by the most points accumulated over the six Tour Majors with the winner receiving $100,000 for their accomplishment.

Tony Dumitras of Winston, Ga., leads the Co-angler Division with five bass weighing 20-7 followed by Chad Parks of Olive Branch, Miss., in second place with five bass weighing 18-10.

Rounding out the top 10 co-anglers are:
3rd: Patrick Bone, Cleveland, Ga., five bass, 17-7
4th: Mike Devere, Berea, Ky., five bass, 16-5
5th: Jason Law, Waycross, Ga., five bass, 15-15
6th: Mike Helton, Jeffersonville, Ind., five bass, 15-9
7th: Mark Denney, Somerset, Ky., five bass, 15-5
8th: Dakota Lucy, Hot Springs, Ark., five bass, 15-3
9th: Richard Peek, Centre, Ala., five bass, 14-15
10th: Dan Thill, La Crosse, Wis., five bass, 14-3

Helton caught the Snickers® Big Bass weighing 7-11 in the co-angler division to win $250.
Overall there were 464 bass weighing 1,149 pounds, 10 ounces caught by 131 co-anglers Thursday. The catch included 48 five-bass limits.

Co-anglers are fishing for a top award of $25,000 this week plus valuable points that could help them qualify for the 2011 Forrest Wood Cup. The Walmart FLW Tour Co-angler of the Year presented by Kellogg’s will be determined by the most points accumulated over the six Tour Majors and the winner will receive a new Ranger 198VX with a 200-horsepower Evinrude or Mercury outboard.

Anglers will take off from Kentucky Dam Marina located at 466 Marina Drive in Gilbertsville, Ky., at 6 a.m. Friday morning and Ken-Lake State Park Marina located at 542 Ken-Lake Road in Hardin, Ky., at 6 a.m. Saturday and Sunday mornings. Friday’s weigh-in will also be held at Kentucky Dam Marina beginning at 2:30 p.m. Saturday and Sunday’s final weigh-ins will be held at the Murray State University - CFSB Center located at 1401 State Route 121 N. in Murray, Ky., beginning at 4 p.m.

Fans will be treated to the FLW Outdoors Expo at the Murray State University - CFSB Center on Saturday and Sunday from noon to 4 p.m. prior to the final weigh-ins. The first 300 kids 14 and under on Sunday will receive a free rod and reel combo compliments of 93.3 WKYQ. Fans can also register to win a Can-Am ATV courtesy of The Paducah Sun which will be given away following the final weigh-in. The Expo includes Ranger boat simulators, the opportunity to interact with professional anglers, enjoy interactive games, activities and giveaways provided by sponsors, and fans can learn more about the sport of fishing and other outdoor activities. All activities are free and open to the public.

Coverage of the Kentucky Lake tournament will be broadcast in high-definition (HD) on VERSUS. “FLW Outdoors” will air Sept. 4 from 1 to 2 p.m. ET. “FLW Outdoors,” hosted by Jason Harper, is broadcast to more than 500 million households worldwide.

For regular updates, photos, tournament news and more, follow FLW Outdoors on Facebook at and on Twitter at

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