Dear TBFKS Membership,
I would like to start out by saying thank you to all of you that fished the state qualifier at Grand Lake. For the most part, I believe it was a successful weekend.
Now on to the business at hand, there was a question regarding competitor Matt King fishing in an off limits area. To his knowledge this area was not an off limits fishing area. This area was not specifically designated as an off limits zone by the tournament director prior to the tournament.
After taking time to gather facts, the boater Matt, and non-boaters, Danny Barrett and Mark Hamel were disqualified for the sessions fished in the off limits area. I want all of you to know that Matt DID NOT do this intentionally or with ill intent. He thought he had every right to fish in that area. It was a simple mistake and has been handled.
Midway thru our investigation there was a post put out on BBC (Bass Boat Central) stating comments that were untrue about the situation. The untrue comments were presented to be in a different state but if you know about the issue, you could easily figure out. The BBC comments which stated LARGE orange buoys with cables and rope for a trolling motor to be lifted to gain access are completely untrue. To the contrary, the actual part of the lake is marked with some new restricted area buoys, for safety, approx.. a hundred feet apart or more that were just placed this spring 2015. This area was not designated as an off limits zone by the tournament director. However after extensive fact finding this area is off limits to fishing. Matt stayed out, in front of the original sign that says stay back/stay away and was to his knowledge the area he thought he could fish. He went to the area the 1st session and left without catching a fish. He also went back during the 2nd session while fishing with Mark Hamel. The comments on the BBC board about Mark having a handicap and feeling as if he couldn’t express his thoughts to Matt are completely out of line. Those of you who know Mark or have been around him know that he can get across what he wants and was not being taken advantage of because of his handicap in any way shape or form.
The BBC member who made fabricated comments is not a member of the TBFKS officer committee & in no way represents what TBFKS is or stands for. This issue will be addressed with that individual. At this point I believe Wes Proctor, Matt King and myself, Dell Mettlen Jr. have taken care of this. I hope Matt will join us in the future and that our membership will not have any question whatsoever about the reputation of Matt. He is a great person, great fisherman and has represented our state very well for many years and hopefully will in the future.
If you have any questions, please direct them to me or Wes.
Dell Mettlen Jr.