[Editor’s Note: In observance of the 4th of July Holiday the Bass Fishing Archives staff will be taking July 4th and 5th off to spend with their families and friends. We will post the answer to the trivia question Thursday, July 4th, but there will be no other feature posted until Monday July 8th.]
David Wharton’s win at the 2003 Bassmaster Tour event on Toledo Bend marked the fourth and final victory of his B.A.S.S. career. Sixteen years earlier he’d won a Texas Invitational on his home lake, Sam Rayburn, and he’d notched two subsequent victories on South Carolina’s Lake Murray, before earning this final trophy close to home – even though the 2003 event went out of Louisiana, the big border lake is essentially a sister lake to Rayburn, only about an hour from his home near the banks of Big Sam.
Wharton attributed his victory not only to his general angling skills, but also to his experience on the Bend: “What a lot of people don’t realize is how long I’ve fished Toledo Bend,” he told BassFan shortly thereafter, noting that he’d been “fishing the lake since it was created in the late ’60s. I’ve caught a lot of fish out of that lake. I’ve fished it plenty in rising-water situations so that probably helped me more than anything. Even though I’d never fished in La Nana Creek, I knew what to expect when the water started coming up.”
Wharton dominated a 177-angler field, with a 12 pound gap between first and second in the hole-course final rounds, so nothing in this column is meant to diminish his achievement in any way. Indeed, the 11-time Classic qualifier beat a stacked contestant list, outlasting the next two Classic champions, Takahiro Omori and Jay Yelas, to take home the title. Nevertheless, someone was missing. No guarantee that the absent competitor would have won, but in order to win this week’s prize you need to identify who failed to show up and provide the reason.
The answer and winner will be announced Thursday. Good Luck!