Lindsays best family of FFCBC?

The walkway leading to the weigh station at this year’s Fort Frances Canadian Bass Championship became similar to a street corner in downtown New York.
It was family versus family as the Lindner and Lindsay clans went head-to-head like a bunch of Mafiosos, with bats being replaced by fishing rods.
The rivalry is guaranteed magma—smoldering and always on the verge of eruption.
That’s not to suggest they don’t respect each other—they do. But it’s certain that after they check how their own family members did, they always look to the other family’s next.
The talk before the 11th-annual tournament centered on James Lindner, who was trying to become the first angler to make it three wins in a row at the FFCBC. A victory also would have tied him with Norm Lindsay for the most wins by an angler there (three).
After the first day last Thursday, it seemed it was all Lindner, who looked like he hadn’t missed a beat with his new partner, Mike Hehner (his brother, Bill, missed the FFCBC this year so he could be home in Minneapolis with his wife, who was expecting their first child), as they brought in 21.10 pounds to lead after Day 1.
And then there was Lindner’s dad, Ron, and brother, Dan, who weren’t too shabby themselves with a 19.30-pound bag to put them in fourth spot. Al and Troy Lindner also were in the thick of things Thursday with a 13.72-pound bag for 44th place.
“We only fish a couple of tournaments a year, so when we come here we want to do well,” said James Lindner.
So where were the Lindsays? Well, Dave and Lee were in second place with the only other 20-pound bag of the tournament at 20.38 pounds while Norm, with his partner, Bill Godin, were in 14th place with a 17.07-pound haul.
“The Lindners always come out here and fish this together and share information, and so does our family,” said Dave Lindsay. “Families that play together, stay together.”
Did you notice how each family had three names each in the top 15 after Day 1?
“I for sure noticed it,” said Dave.
So things were tight, but then came Day 2.
The only two teams that were able to move up in the standings Friday were Norm Lindsay and Godin, who stepped up to seventh place, and Al and Troy Lindner, who got promoted to 39th.
Everyone else went down. James Lindner and Hehner fell to second place, Dave Lindsay and his dad, Lee, went to third, and Ron and Dan Lindner took the biggest drop to 50th place.
But things were far from being decided as to which family would come out on top Saturday afternoon.
It turned out to be a historic day. Lee and Dave Lindsay became the first father-son tandem to win the FFCBC. And with Norm Lindsay finishing in second, it was the first time members from one family encompassed the top two spots.
Dave Lindsay also equalled his brother for most wins (three).
“We always though it was possible,” said Norm, who won the inaugural FFCBC with his brother in 1995 and then again in 1997.
Norm got his third win in 2002 with a different partner in Jess Swenson.
So who’s the better angler—Dave or Norm?
Well, right now they’re tied, and Lionel Robert says that question might get even more difficult to answer if his prediction goes according to plan.
“I knew it was just a matter of time before Dave [Lindsay] would become a three-time champion,” said Robert, one of the founders of the FFCBC and its emcee for its first 10 years.
“But I have a feeling they will become four-time champions and they will do that as partners,” he predicted.
So which is the better angling family—the Lindsays or Lindners?
For that question, it would have to go to the Lindners, who make a living through the fishing industry. So, instead, let’s go to a question that can be discussed a little more hotly—Which is the better angling family at the FFCBC?
If you go by the stats, the Lindners have won the tournament twice (James and Bill in 2003-04) while the Lindsays now have four under their belts as a family.
Let’s look even further though. Through 2005, the Lindners have had their name in the top 10 22 times spread across six family members—Al, Ron, James, Bill, Dan, and Troy.
The Lindsays, meanwhile, have had 13 top-10 mentions spread across three members—Dave, Norm, and Lee.
But let’s look even further. Al, Ron, and James Lindner have competed in all 11 FFCBCs, as have Norm and Dave Lindsay. But this was Lee Lindsay’s first time in the tourney while Dan, Bill, and Troy Lindner have been here multiple times.
If you average out the numbers, the Lindners have a 10 percent chance of placing in the top 10 whenever they come here while the Lindsays have a six percent chance.
But the Lindner clan is six strong while the Lindsays are now three (Lee is uncertain if he’ll be back next year), so let’s multiply their chances and give them 12 percent.
So what does that give us?
Well there is no definitive answer, but the numbers sure do favour the Lindsays.
emoutsatsos@fortfrances.com

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