Vance McCullough's blog

2016 Toyota Texas Bass Classic (now called Toyota Texas Fest) set to kick off Thursday

The shindig formerly known as the TTBC is now simply called Toyota (‘cause that’s the big sponsor) Texas (‘cause that’s the place where it’s happening) Fest (which covers all the goings-on including music, food, games AND a bass fishing tournament).

Apparently, the fishing part is still known as the Toyota Texas Bass Classic, as the winner will be crowned ‘the 2016 TTBC champion’, according to the last paragraph of the attached press release.

Van Dam closes strong to win 21st Bassmaster title in Elite Series tourney on Toledo Bend

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Kevin VanDam of Kalamazoo, Mich., wins the 2016 A.R.E. Truck Caps Bassmaster Elite at Toledo Bend held out of Many, La., Sunday, with a four-day total weight of 96 pounds, 2 ounces.

Photo by Seigo Saito/Bassmaster

Kevin Van Dam closed with another strong limit of bass today - 21 pounds, 6 ounces - to score an impressive 96-02 for the week. He out-paced his nearest competitor, Chris Lane, by more than 7 pounds. When he's on top of his game Van Dam makes it look easy. It was anything but. 

"This was the most challenging tournament I’ve ever won,” said VanDam.

Van Dam maintains blistering pace; leads pros into final day of Elite Series tourney on Toled Bend

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KVD leads Elites into final day on Toledo Bend. Photo courtesy B.A.S.S.KVD leads Elites into final day on Toledo Bend. Photo courtesy B.A.S.S.


Kevin Van Dam nearly matched his 25-pounds-per-day average that he established over the first 2 days of the Bassmaster Elite Series tournament on Toledo Bend Reservoir. With 24 pounds, 12 ounces today he has a 3-day total weight of 74-12.

There are some great anglers behind him and they will have to perform great tomorrow if they hope to catch the man often referred to as 'The Greatest Angler of All Time'.

Van Dam slams 50 pounds of Toledo Bend bass in 2 days to lead Bassmaster Elite Series tourney

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Kevin VanDam of Kalamazoo, Mich., maintains the lead on the second day of the A.R.E. Truck Caps Bassmaster Elite at Toledo Bend, bringing a two-day total weight of 50 pounds to the scales Friday.

Photo by Gary Tramontina/Bassmaster

The Bassmaster Elite Series event on Toledo Bend Reservoir is halfway done and Kevin Van Dam is halfway to the Century Mark. With more than 20 pounds again today he ran his total weight to an even 50 pounds.

He's making it look easy. It's not.

KVD caught a 7-pound, 7-ounce specimen on a Strike King 10XD crankbait. He took a treble hook in the hand to catch her. Van Dam hints that he may be running out of fish. "That 7-pounder saved my day." The wind switched out of the north and "I couldn't get a bite for the first two hours."

Van Dam dominates Day 1, Clunn and Cherry close behind at Bassmaster Elite Series on Toledo Bend

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Kevin VanDam of Kalamazoo, Mich., takes the lead on the first day of the A.R.E. Truck Caps Bassmaster Elite at Toledo Bend, bringing 29 pounds, 5 ounces to the scales on Thursday. 

Photo by Gary Tramontina/Bassmaster

They whacked 'em today on Toledo Bend. Well, the guys at the top did.It took 20 pounds to place 12th.

Of course, given the numbers of big bass swimming along the Texas/Louisiana border, a guy could get well in a hurry tomorrow and jump up from the middle of the pack. Kevin Van Dam rode an 8-pound, 5-ounce fish to the top of the board today.

Then again, with his 29-pound, 5-ounce haul today Van Dam could have left the 8-5 in the lake and he'd still be in the Top 10 - even without a 5th fish!

Looking forward to Hammer Fest as Elites take to T-bend!

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Dennis Tietje will be one of the local favorites this week at Toledo Bend. photo by Seigo Saito/B.A.S.S.Dennis Tietje will be one of the local favorites this week at Toledo Bend. photo by Seigo Saito/B.A.S.S.

We've had an eventful season so far on the 2016 Bassmaster Elite Series. 

Now we turn our attention to what should be a down-South hammer fest on Toledo Bend.  108 Elite Series pros will spread out over the 185,000 acre monster that straddles a good portion of the Texas/Louisiana border.

Should Professional 'Misunderstanings' be aired on 'Net; TV?

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photo courtesy courtesy B.A.S.S.

“We went to a fight and a hockey game broke out.” – Anonymous Sports Fan

As shocking as it may be to some, people do watch NASCAR for the crashes.

That’s not to say that they don’t enjoy the competition, strategy and an exciting finish, but the tension and drama that comes along with high speed, high stakes racing certainly helps to sell the sport.

Think of a passionate baseball player busting a bat across his knee after striking out. Good sportsmanship? No. But . . .

Omori's strategy carries him past Lefebre - a look inside 2 Elite brains at work

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photo courtesy James Overstreet/ courtesy James Overstreet/B.A.S.S.

“It’s better to burn out than fade away!” – Def Leppard, Pyromania

Given the advantage of hindsight, Dave Lefebre would probably burn more bass than he did on the first competition day of last week’s Bassmaster Elite Series tournament on Wheeler Lake. A conservative strategy is the single biggest contributing factor to his fall from atop the leaderboard during the final weigh in.

Tim Mann, Troy Ray win big NEFAR tourney on St Johns River with 24.59 pounds

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Tim Mann and Troy Ray topped a record field of 189 boats to win the 2016 Northeast Florida Association of Realtors bass tournament to benefit Haven Hospice on the St Johns River out of Palatka, Fla. on Saturday.

Mann and Ray weighed-in 24.59 pounds of bass.

The NEFAR tourney indicates that fishing is good on the river right now. It also hints that we'll see big numbers of boats and bass at the Wolfson tourney in mid-May.

More details to come.

Rare Baker's Dozen fish final day of Elite Series on Wheeler

It's interesting that Dave Lefebre is sponsored by '13 Fishing' because he leads the Elites into a final round that features 13, not the standard 12, anglers.

At the close of Day 3, Saturday, Luke Clausen was disqualified under Bassmaster Elite Series Rule C3 which pertains to 'practice and competition' and has 5 subrules attached to it.

Citing his rights under Rule C23, Clausen appealed his disqualification and was thus allowed to fish today with the understanding that his efforts will be null and void if the DQ is upheld.

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