Great Lakes Angler Blog

JVD Trails Leader By 4 Ounces Heading into Final Day

Sunday, July 01, 2012
Share |

GREEN BAY, WI – Kalamazoo's Jonathon VanDam is fishing in the final day of a Bassmaster Elite tournament for the first time in his two-year pro career. Yesterday's catch of five smallmouth weighing 20 pounds, 12 ounces moved him into second place, just four ounces behind Idaho's Brandon Palaniuk, who brought in five fish totaling 21 pounds, 2 ounces caught in Lake Michigan in the Bassmaster Elite Series Green Bay Challenge.

On the first day, it was 2005 Toyota Tundra Bassmaster Angler of the Year Aaron Martens. On Day 2, three-time Elite winner Dean Rojas grabbed the top spot. Palaniuk, has already won one Elite event this year on Bull Shoals Lake in Arkansas.

Palaniuk's was the heaviest catch by any angler thus far in the event. It moved Palaniuk up from fourth place and gives him 56-2.

Palaniuk’s big bite started on the second day, when he brought a 5-10 bronzeback to the scales to take the lead in the Carhartt Big Bass contest. Today, VanDam’s limit was anchored by a smallmouth that weighed 5-9 — today’s best, but not quite good enough to surpass Palaniuk for the tournament lead or big bass of the tournament.

VanDam’s catch came by drop shotting a 4-inch Strike King Dream Shot in KVD Magic (green and silver with blue flake). He’s using a 3/8-ounce sinker and fishing in the same area that has kept him high on the leaderboard for all three days.

“I think my area will hold up,” VanDam said, “but I’d like the wind to blow a little more. It helps my bite, and I think it makes it tougher for the other anglers in the field to hold on their spots and fish them effectively.” When VanDam was fighting his biggest bass to the boat today, the fish was followed by several others, some of which were also in the five-pound class. He’s hoping to put them in the boat today. VanDam, 24, contributes the column JVD on GL Bass to Great Lakes Angler Magazine.

Day 1 leader Aaron Martens fell from second place into third today after catching a limit of smallmouth that weighed 16-1. He has 53-0 for three days. Dean Rojas, the Day 2 leader, slipped to fourth with 13-8 for a total of 51-4.

With fewer than four pounds separating the top four anglers, this is one of the closest tournaments of the Elite season. Palaniuk could become the first angler to win multiple Elite events in a single season since Skeet Reese won two in 2010. Jonathon VanDam would earn his first Bassmaster Classic berth with a win, and either Martens or Rojas could notch a third Elite title with a victory in Green Bay.

On the Angler of the Year front, the race continues to tighten among a trio of anglers. For Brent Chapman and Todd Faircloth, the Green Bay Challenge is over. In this tournament, they finished in 27th and 29th, respectively. For Ott DeFoe, last season’s Bassmaster Rookie of the Year, there’s still a chance to add to his AOY points total. DeFoe is in sixth place going into the finals on Lake Michigan. A few spots up or down tomorrow could be critical to his dream of winning the AOY title.

For now, Chapman leads the race with 566 points. DeFoe is second with 552, and Faircloth is third with 546. The race will be decided in the season finale at the Oneida Lake Challenge, Aug. 23-26.

First prize in the Challenge is $100,000 and a berth in the 2013 Bassmaster Classic. The pros also are fighting for points to earn a qualification for the 2013 Classic. Those near the top of the points standings are in contention for a postseason entry and the 2012 Toyota Tundra Bassmaster Angler of the Year title.


The Challenge will continue through Sunday at Metro Boat Launch in Green Bay. Takeoff was set for 6:30 a.m., and weigh-ins will begin at 3:15 p.m. The Bassmaster Elite Series Family Festival will open at noon on Saturday and Sunday.

All Bassmaster fan activities are free and open to the public. will provide extensive daily coverage, including daily streaming of the weigh-ins as they happen, real-time leaderboards, photo galleries, results and standings. Saturday and Sunday, the Bassmaster Elite Series War Room will present updates from BASSTrakk, a catch system relayed from the water, plus in-depth interviews and analysis. Hooked Up! segments will be presented Saturday and Sunday. Access is free to all pages and features.

PHOTO: Jonathon VanDam, shown at yesterday's weigh-in, is competing against 11 other anglers for the $100,000 top prize today on Green Bay. Photo courtesy of B.A.S.S. / Seigo Saito



Recent Posts


Andrew Semprevivo Gill NA Ultracoat Marine Speakers Keep Kool Legend Extreme Jeff's Tackle Shop SOG boat rental Quantum Todd Sokolow KVD Speedbag Mark Chmura Turning Point Props Dollahon Moisture Muncher Rippin' Lips Slender Spoon fitness St. Croix Blue Collar Outdoors Nautical Izaak Walton League Power Monel Metal Jeff Wenzel Boat lifts Apps Strike King Boat names Lowrance Baitcast Fishing Pole BBQ Lighter Stabenow Line South Haven, Michigan EZ Dock Boating Tracker Marine Technology Lake Assault Martin-Flory splice Trade Shows Oshkosh iPhone Salmon Unlimited of Illinois Tom Neustrom Ice Fishing Tim Popfinger ODNR Odd'ball Fin Spin Plano Synergy Alaska Bro Brosdahl Mike Seymour Aquatic AV Rubrail iPilot Link Gene Larew Side Imaging Interlux Whale Pumps Cliff Pace New Lures Rig'N Tails Yamaha 1675 Pro Guide Gary Dollahon ABT Smart Guide to Freshwater Fishing Iaconelli Bibs OHIO Lures Aqua Vu Boats Fish Hawk XD4 La Mar Snow-Shoe Tip-Up Fiberglass boat Aqualuma Absolute Outdoor, Inc. Davis Instruments Wisconsin radar Sport Shows Marcum Bob Schmidt Pro Polish Wildlife Forever Traditions Media Serious Shine Ranger CMP Global Practical Sailor Bass fishing Lake trout Spencer Yachts Ned Rig Coleman cooler Tyee News/Social Hunting Ryan Wilson Ranger Boats Ravenswood Media FRIDAY FUNNIES Audio Greater Niagara Fishing & Outdoor Expo LineGrabber Venice, Louisiana PFDs Lock Endura Salmon Clam Gull Lake Marine Mosquito repellent Andrew Dordek Tommy Skarlis New Zealand Fishing Tools Mary Snyder Bass Pro Z-Man Lip-Stix Michigan DNR Fishouflage JVD Team Aqua-Vu Reef Runner Asian carp River Fishing Forage Minnow Mustad Simrad Footwear Ditty bag theft spreader light Swim bait Invasive species Lead NAIFC Championship Shurhold Fuel Prosepec Electronics Rovermax LR 100 Ditch CUSTOM JIGS 'N' SPINS Global Spectrum Grady-White Legend Gold AKOYA Okuma Wounded Warriors McMurdo Kayak Cannon USCG weather marlin ONIX NMEA VMC Costa Sunglasses Minnesota exotic invader Headgear Grab Rail One-Handle-Does-It-All System Angler 175T Frigibar Water Buddies Bad Elf Deck Plate Dan Egan Barry Brown Marine Mag Light Whale JBL Bug repellent Alaskan clubs Knife sharpening Lake of the Woods EVOLVE FISHING CO BASSMASTER Plano Muscle Squared 65 LakeMaster Western States Version Bass Pro Shops SeaLife Cameras tree stand injury Glorvigen Full Throttle spinning rod Northland Bass Pro Shops Four-Person Dome Tent with Screen Porch Michigan Innovative Outdoors Frabill Dogs Chatterbait PulseTech WeatherStation Tight Lines Jewelry Soul5 Tackle Labs Costa Marine General Optima Rain gear SeaEra QC Marine Lighting Ryan Kleckner Beckson Marine Stowaway Bag Plate Gravity Boat Covers Speakers Walleye tournament USCGA Clay Dyer Insect repellent Steve Wood B.A.S.S. Green Bay Macho Minnow Acme Up Stream Hydration Back Pack Kill switch Brown trout Rushton Gregory tackle storage redfish Lake Superior Olcott, NY Mack's Lures The Conference & Event Center Niagara Falls Scott Martin Sunglasses Owners tournament 360 Sheldon's Muskie Lure Size limits Catfish Boga Chronglobal Costa Del Mar Catch & Cook DSC Fort Wayne, Indiana Tournaments Scott Glorvigen 580P lenses Sphaera Jeff Gustafson Angler dock lines Silver Horde RAT FINKEE Aluminum Deep V Series Beckson Marine Deck Plate iPad mudsnail eZSplice Big Bear Products Lake Ontario Ethanol Grunden's Faria Bass lure Jack Links Masters Walleye Circuit Bait head Uncle Norm's Scholarship Chicago barrier Larson Electronics Plano Tackle Boxes The Harry Lure Streams Bristol Bay Salmon ASA Triton Boats Bait Holder YUM Gunnison, CO Records Walleye Louie Stout Personal Flotation Devices USO Mystery Tackle Box Downriggers ice fishing, Bro Show, Traditions Media Smartfind S20 Personal AIS Beacon BoatUS Angler Kurt Mazurek Knives Fish America Foundation USSA Beckson METS Evolve BoatUS award Shoes MWC Rain suit Walleyes Ranger Aluminum Deep V Series Mr. Twister Patrick Hurst Sportsman's rights Indiana DNR Church Tackle thieves Brian Brosdahl Volvo Penta Insurance Soo Locks Conservation spoon Yamaha ATV Navigation Accon Marine Hevi-Beads Sunstream Boat Lifts Bethel University Wedding Ring Dunkirk, NY Princecraft Vick Port of Indiana Alabama Rig EZ BoatPort New York Rough Weather Multitools Marine NewsWire Accessories trailer tongue Aqua-Vu Video YUMphibian treestand injury Rippin Lips Northwest Indiana Steelheaders Lighting Swanson-Russell Rapala WFN MATE USA DuraSafe LCWCC Matt Serbenski Normark Milennia MIL-iDock Beckson Marine KVD Speedbag Wormfile Marsh Madness Whistler Spoon Micro-Mobile Pro Viewing Case Contaminants Glacier Glove inReach Husky Jerk Shipping Safe boating LineSnubber Pop-Up LED Bowlights F-Series Storm Gear University of Buffalo Rugged Shark Crankbait Net Kindle book Rods John E. Phillips Slide Moor Betsy U.S.S.A. Autotether Weather Buoy hardbaits Manistee iPilot Soft Jigwobbler Brad's Berkley WileyX Promise Keeper RedHead Swedish FireKnife PRADCO Free Fishing Weekend Kevin VanDam ChartSelect Bristol Bay Marine Radio Boating safety Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel Grand Rapids Ultimate Outdoors Show Chaco Custom Jigs & Spins CLASSIC KVD IGFA Coast Guard Launch ramp Jerky Balog Traxstech Evinrude Orca Fin System Ultimate Flannel Shirts Batteries TRAC Bug bite relief Boat maintenance ABT X-2 Countdown Contest Sun protection Green Bay, Wisconsin Shelter Camera mount Kayaks Synergy Outdoors Foul weather gear Fishing Clubs Side Thruster Lund Boats Extended Warranty Gear Hobie Pro Angler Army Corp of Engineers Wild River series Traditions Ice Features Home Port Marine Marketing Shock Wave jigs Holland STRATTEC Lights Radial National Guard GPS for Lightning Connector Boat US Mack's Lure Mercury Marine Blue Heron Communications Reese Dave Mull Blog Homeport Marine Marketing DuraSafe Electronics Lock MUSHING Bheestie Bag Pharmaceuticals Tournament Grade Circle Hooks Honda Wake Fishing Kevin Van Dam Humminbird Lake Michigan Ranger VS1780 Bait Rigs InvisaSnap Cabela's Dollohan Gary Giudice Trout Unlimited Shoremaster GPS Speedometer Rescue Youth Brian "Bro" Brosdahl Delorme Line Recycle Bin Magnum Flow-Troll Black Velvet Thermacell FLW binoculars Wind Power ShowSpan HELLA blue marlin Raritan Fiberglass tiller Tides Games Spreads Matt Straw Torpedo Divers Beckson Marine Stowaway Bag Plates and Kits toilet Michigan City, Indiana Topwater Airmar exotic species Niagara Falls bimini top Air show Flat Slider 75 Conservation Marathon Hobie Lakemaster Tip-Up Bass Pro Shops Gift Card Extreme Baitcast Reel Tackle Bag cruzin On board Smart Guide Publications Titan Chain Coleman Black Earth Creek Buff Telescoping JIggler Long Rod ATV High school bass fishing News Storage Earth Day Lake Huron Ascend BASSMASTER CLASSIC Minn Kota Mark Zona Skamania Mania TRAC Ecological Great Lakes Troller Corey Schmidt sunglass PLB Safety Dave Mull BOLT Padlock Skarlis St. Croix Rods LOTSA Dogwood Canyon Trail Runs Mazurek YUM Dinger Lund Seakeeper gyro Deep Sea Diver great lakes Bass Brandon Newby thieves trailer tongue Sharpeners AmVets EZ Splice Fasteners Multi-species Radio Tournament Hamlin Brite Wash Onyx Dave Genz South Haven Future Fisherman Foundation Swim Whizz MULL BLOG Goby Jonathon VanDam Lake Erie Oakley Sunglasses Chargers Electronics Personal Flotation Device Oculus