The last time the FLW Tour held an event on the Detroit River, it quickly became a one-man show. Steve Clapper of Lima, Ohio, led wire-to-wire and won the 2007 championship title with a four-day weight of 88 pounds, 7 ounces, more than 6 pounds over the second-place finisher.
Clapper is in the field for the Walmart FLW Tour on the Detroit River presented by the National Guard Aug. 23-26 for the second Open tournament of its 17th season. Hosted by the Detroit Metro Convention & Visitors Bureau, the tournament will feature a field of the world’s best bass pros and co-anglers casting for top awards up to $125,000 cash in the Pro Division and up to $25,000 cash in the Co-angler Division.
“I think the Detroit River is going to be fishing very well,” said National Guard pro Brent Ehrler of Redlands, Calif., who managed to haul in 32 pounds, 7 ounces of bass during the first two days of competition in 2007. “Reports over the past couple of months have indicated that it’s been really good. I’m excited because I think we’re really going to catch them. This is one of places where it’s going to be tough because everybody catches them. It’s not a matter of how many you’re going to catch. It’s a matter of how big the ones you catch going to be.”
Ehrler said he expects the tournament to be won in Lake Erie waters and predicts anglers will need at least 20 pounds a day to be in contention to win. Besides the traditional hot techniques like drop-shot rigs and tubes, Ehrler said anglers will catch a good number of smallmouth on jerkbaits, crankbaits and spinnerbaits.
“You could probably go and catch a big stringer of largemouth by throwing a topwater,” Ehrler said. “There’s a lot of backwaters here that hold a lot of big ones. You could see a guy do real well and compete with largemouth.”
In FLW Tour Open competition, anglers are also vying for valuable points in hopes of qualifying for the 2013 Forrest Wood Cup, the world championship of bass fishing. The 2013 Forrest Wood Cup will be in Shreveport, La., Aug. 15-18 on the Red River.
Anglers will take off from Elizabeth Park Marina located at 202 Grosse Ile Parkway in Trenton, Mich., at 6:30 a.m. daily. Thursday and Friday’s weigh-ins will also be held at Elizabeth Park Marina beginning at 2:30 p.m. Saturday and Sunday’s final weigh-ins will be held at the Walmart located at 23800 Allen Road in Woodhaven, Mich., beginning at 4 p.m.
Fans will be treated to the FLW Outdoors Expo at the Walmart on Saturday and Sunday from noon to 4 p.m. prior to the final weigh-ins. 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 Detroit River tournament will be broadcast in high-definition (HD) on NBC Sports Network when “FLW” airs Sept. 30 from 1 to 2 p.m. ET. “FLW” is hosted by Jason Harper and is broadcast to more than 559 million households worldwide, making it the most widely distributed weekly outdoors-sports television show in the world.
For complete details and updated information visit FLWOutdoors.com. For regular updates, photos, tournament news and more, follow us on Facebook at Facebook.com/FLWFishing and on Twitter at Twitter.com/FLWFishing.
Logo courtesy FLW Outdoors