Missouri’s Table Rock Lake has been a stopping point for the major tours for decades, with the most recent stop producing Mike McClelland’s seventh B.A.S.S. victory, fourth Elite Series win, and his first since 2008. He compiled 61 pounds 15 ounces of Table Rock bass over four days (nearly a 15 pound 8 ounce average) to claim the crown.
Just under 17 years ago, New Englander Lee Bailey won the Bassmaster Missouri Central Invitational on the Rock, putting together three limits of bass that totaled 47-15, an average just a hair under 16 pounds a day. It marked the sole win of Bailey’s 122 event B.A.S.S. career. He came in 3rd on three occasions, coming closest to winning again in 1999 on the Hudson River when he finished behind winner Woo Daves by a little bit less than 3 pounds.
As we’ve previously described on the Bass Fishing Archives, Bailey had a lengthy professional angling career, notable in part for his partnership with the Foxwoods Casino in his home state of Connecticut. He later moved to the Guntersville, Alabama area.
Unlike McClelland this year, in ’97 Bailey primarily sight-fished his way to victory. Like McClelland, he also used a jerkbait – in his case a clown-colored Smithwick Rogue. Both Bailey and second place finisher Bud Pruitt of Texas fished wacky rigs, a technique that was not yet in vogue but would become a standard presentation in short order.
To win this week’s trivia contest, answer the following three questions about Bailey and the 1997 Table Rock tournament correctly:
- When professional anglers decided to adopt personal numbers, NASCAR-style, Bailey went a little bit outside the norm. What number did he choose?
- While Pruitt wacky-rigged a V&M Needle Worm, Bailey utilized a small northeastern bait for the same technique. What was it called and who invented it?
- Fifth place finisher Stan Gerzsenyi relied upon three different Yamamoto products, all of which were relatively new at the time. What were they?
The answer and winner will be announced Thursday. Good Luck!