John's Journal... Entry 210, Day 1
BEST NEW LURES OF THE PROS
New Lures and Needing Speed
EDITOR'S NOTE: Each year, tackle manufacturers and fishing pros develop new lures and new tactics for catching bass. Most companies employ professional fishermen to tell them about problems they find throughout the year while competing and to help them create new lures to solve these fishing problems.
Mike Iaconelli, a 31-year-old from Woodbury Heights, New Jersey, won the 2003 CITGO Bassmaster Classic on three prototype lures with new colors no one ever had seen. Iaconelli used a swimming-worm tactic with a stone jig. When a bass missed the jig, he cast back to that same spot with a finesse worm. New baits, new lures and new colors won Iaconelli a place in the professional-fishing hall of fame forever with his Classic win that also should earn him thousands of dollars. One of the most-successful bass anglers of all time, Rick Clunn, of Ava, Missouri, four-time Bassmaster Classic winner, has earned over $1 million in tournament fishing. Clunn says, "when you quit trying new lures, tactics and colors, you're destined to fail as a fisherman and especially as a tournament angler. Bass fishing is an evolving sport, and we're just starting to learn how to catch bass."
You Need Speed: Forty-three-year-old Peter Thliveros of Jacksonville, Florida, has won three Bassmaster Tournaments and has had 30 top-10 finishes. Thliveros has participated in the Bassmaster Classic eight times. Thliveros' all-time winnings on the BASS tournament trail amount to $650,929.
"I like to use the new Zoom Ultravibe Speed Craw," Thliveros states. "The Speed Craw is a soft-plastic crawdad with pinchers and flappers on the end that flutter back and forth. Speed Craws have lots of movement, which the bass like. Kenyon Hill used a Speed Craw to win the last Bassmaster Tour event of the 2003 season on the Alabama River. When fishing with the Ultravibe Speed Craw, I'll use Stren Fluorocarbon 17- to 20-pound-test line or Stren Power Braid, either 50- or 65-pound-test line.
"In addition to the Speed Craw, I'll fish with Zoom's Speed Worm. The Speed Worm is a 5-1/4-inch bait that puts out plenty of vibration in the water, attracting bass with its paddle tail from far away. I use the same retrieves for both Zoom baits, either flipping or stop-and-go. I fish soft-plastic baits all different ways from top to bottom. However, the method that I like the most is flipping it. I'll generally present the Speed Craw vertically."
TOMORROW: YELAS'S GULP!