We only had one person try to answer this week’s trivia contest and unfortunately one of the answers supplied was incorrect. Therefore, no one wins this week’s contest. Come on back next week and try again for a $25 e-coupon from Gary Yamamoto Custom Baits. For this weeks answers, read below.
Larry Nixon is generally thought of as the king of the Bassmaster “Megabucks” format. He won four Megabucks events, one in 1988 and one in 1991, sandwiched around two such victories in 1990. Two of those wins came on Florida’s Harris Chain of Lakes, but in the 1986 and 1987 hole course events on that same waterway Nixon did not come out on top.
Roger Farmer won the 1986 Megabucks event on the Harris Chain with 68 pounds of bass over four days to earn his lone B.A.S.S. win. In 1987, Lonnie Stanley claimed the Megabucks crown with Nixon finishing 21st before starting his Megabucks tear in 1988.
The 1987 tournament was a war of attrition, with two practice days and six competition days through which the field was ultimately winnowed down to a winner. Not surprisingly, the final round was jam-packed with Floridians as well as past and future Classic winners including Ken Cook, Hank Parker, Rick Clunn and Guido Hibdon – but Stanley fell into neither of those categories. He’d previously made the top 10 in B.A.S.S. competition on four occasions, but the closest he’d come to earning a title was at the 1982 Louisiana Invitational at Lake Bistineau, where he finished 3rd, with Larry Nixon, the future king of Megabucks, coming out on top.
As we’ve documented previously on the Bass Fishing Archives, the Harris Chain has had an up and down history. Five years after Stanley’s win, Mike Folkestad won the 1992 Florida Invitational with a three-day total of 12 fish that weighed 14-10 (fishing with a seven-fish limit). The fishing wasn’t quite that tough in ’87, but it wasn’t easy, either. With weights zeroed out heading into the final two-day hole course session, Stanley tallied 12 fish for 16-06 to claim the win. No one else caught more than nine fish, and on the last day in particular, when heavy winds descended upon central Florida, several anglers caught either nothing or one fish.
In order to win this week’s trivia contest, answer the following three questions correctly:
- Stanley’s second B.A.S.S. win came 10 years after his first, in that same late February time period. The second win came closer to his Texas home, at Sam Rayburn. What lures did he use to claim that victory?
- Who was the only angler to make the final round in both the 1986 and 1987 Megabucks events?
- Who caught the tournament’s big bass in 1987 and what lure did he catch it on?
Here are the answers:
In February of 1997, Stanley tallied 51 pounds 2 ounces of Sam Rayburn bass over three days to claim his second B.A.S.S. win, this time by the small margin of 9 ounces over Rayburn guide Bill Cannan. Fellow Texans Stan Gerzsenyi and Tommy Dickerson were 3rd and 4th, and Jay Yelas (who had then adopted Texas as his home) finished 5th.
Stanley was raised in Zavalla, Texas, and later told Lakecaster writer Ed Snyder “of ‘walking backwards’ along the old 147 roadbed when Rayburn began filling up.” He’d started to build jigs in 1979 and was inducted into the Texas Freshwater Fishing Hall of Fame in 2012. Neither of the two wins came on a jig, though. According to Bassmaster’s Tim Tucker he won the 1987 event primarily by “pitching a spring lizard on 12-pound line.” His 1997 victory came on the back of a Stanley Lures Platinum Wedge Spinnerbait and a Carolina-rigged junebug Zoom 5-inch lizard.
According to Bassmaster’s Steve Price, Stanley modified his 3/8 ounce spinnerbait to better work its way through the flooded Johnson grass. He “replac[ed] the standard size 4 ½ willowleaf blade with a smaller size 4 Wedge willowleaf. The change allowed him to bring the lure through the grass more effectively, and it also downsized the entire lure to match the baitfish more closely. He further mimicked the forage with a color known as golden bream, which features a black/gold skirt and head, gold blades and a small gold-flake twin-tail trailer.”
For more about Stanley, watch the following video:
Ninth place finisher George Medders of Holiday, Fla. was the only angler to make it to the final round of Megabucks in both 1986 and 1987. Those two tournaments produced two of his four top twenty finishes in 23 lifetime B.A.S.S. appearances. Three of his top twenties came in Florida, the only exception being the 1987 Bassmaster Team Championship on New York’s St. Lawrence River, where this time he finished 18th. The two Megabucks events produced over 60% of his lifetime B.A.S.S. winnings.
Florida pro Hugh Crumpler caught the tournament’s biggest bass, a 9 pound 7 ounce largemouth, on the way to finishing 10th in the event. He used a Sugar Shad lipless crankbait, made by Ed Moore Lures of Welaka, Fla. The Sugar Shad was later manufactured by Luhr-Jensen. According to Bassmaster’s Tim Tucker, “Crumpler’s luckiest moment had come when he drew Floridian Bob Plemmons of Port Orange, who not only showed him a grassbed loaded with bass, but loaned him the lure to catch them.”