(Feb 2, 2017 - Jonestown, TX)
The second tournament of the 22nd season of the FLW Tour, the most competitive circuit in professional bass fishing, is coming to Jonestown Feb. 16-19 with the FLW Tour at Lake Travis presented by Quaker State. The event, hosted by the City of Jonestown and the Austin Sports Commission, will feature 330 of the world’s best bass-fishing professionals and co-anglers casting for top awards of up to $125,000 cash in the Pro Division and up to $25,000 cash in the Co-angler Division.
“This tournament is going to be a lot of fun because many of us haven’t fished Lake Travis competitively,” said FLW Tour pro Tom Redington of Royse City, Texas. “A lot of the field will be making new discoveries in terms of fishable cover and structure. I think there will be a few anglers that break away and do something really unique.”
Redington said that weather conditions will be the main factor in determining where anglers decide to fish.
“It won’t be a four-day pattern where someone sits on a hole and throws the same bait all week,” said Redington. “It’s going to be different each day. In central Texas, we’re in the heat of the spawn, so if the weather continues to warm up a huge wave of bass could move up shallow into the backwaters. Lake Travis is very clear, so sight-fishing may play a role. In these areas, anglers will throw finesse baits or a worm rigged on a drop-shot.
“If it gets windy and sight-fishing isn’t an option, I see a jerkbait or crankbait doing well out deep,” continued Redington. “The water on the main lake is above full pool, which means there’s a ton of submerged cover for bass to suspend in. We may be fishing trees, rocks and bushes that are 50 feet down. Some of the points run a half-mile out into the lake. Finesse jigs and drop-shots rigged with soft-plastics will be big. If competitors want to be shallow but still fish the main lake, a spinnerbait or flipping a creature-bait will do the trick.”
Redington went on to say that there won’t be any shortage of bass caught, but finding kickers will be a challenge.
“There are some really big fish in Lake Travis – enough for a 20-pound limit,” said Redington. “But you may have four fish at three pounds apiece, and one that comes in at seven pounds to round off the limit. If it warms up, anglers could catch 60 bass a day, but getting the one that really tips the scale will be key.”
The Texas pro finished by saying that the winner will likely need a four-day cumulative catch nearing 55 pounds to win.
Anglers will take off at 7 a.m. CST each day from Jones Brothers Park, located at 10301 Lakeside Drive, in Jonestown. Thursday and Friday’s weigh-ins, Feb. 16-17, will also be held at Jones Brothers Park beginning at 3 p.m. Saturday and Sunday’s weigh-ins, Feb. 18-19, will be held at Jones Brothers Park but will begin at 4 p.m.
Prior to the weigh-ins Saturday and Sunday, FLW will host a free Family Fishing Expo at Jones Brothers Park from noon to 4 p.m. The Expo is a chance for fishing fans to meet their favorite anglers, enjoy interactive games, activities and giveaways provided by FLW sponsors, and learn more about the sport of fishing and other outdoor activities.
Also for youth, the FLW Foundation’s Unified Fishing Derby will be held at Jones Brothers Park on Saturday, Feb. 18 from 9-11 a.m. The event is hosted by FLW Foundation pro Cody Kelley along with other FLW Tour anglers, and is free and open to area youth 15 years of age and younger and Special Olympics athletes. Rods and reels are available for use, but youth are encouraged to bring their own if they own one.
As part of the FLW Tour’s community outreach initiative, FLW Tour anglers will visit middle school students at Wiley Middle School in Leander, Texas, on Wednesday, Feb. 15 from 9:30-10:30 a.m. to introduce students to fishing and outdoor activities in their community. During the presentations the pro anglers will reinforce how science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) relate to outdoor activities as well as boating safety.
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 of 330 anglers 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 Lake Travis presented by Quaker State is more than $800,000, including $10,000 through 50th place in the Pro Division.
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.