Rose Leads $1.1 Million Walmart Open on Beaver Lake
Hawk leads field of Co-Anglers
ROGERS, Ark. (May 14, 2009) - Mark Rose of Marion, Ark., weighed in a five-bass limit that weighed 13 pounds even during the first day of competition at the Walmart FLW Tour's Walmart Open presented by Kellogg's on Beaver Lake and ended the day with a slim 8-ounce lead. The Walmart Open features anglers from all across the United States, Mexico, Canada and Japan.
"On Beaver Lake, it's all about getting in a comfort zone and then being able to go fishing," said Rose, who has won more than $778,000 in FLW Outdoors events. "That's what happened to me today.
"I caught a little limit of spots and then went flipping and was fortunate to catch my big fish on a Strike King Rodent in a bush," Rose added. "The fish got me hung up, but I was able to get it out."
Rose said he caught one of his larger fish in water he called "very clear." He added the water he fished Thursday had little to no color at all. According to reports from many anglers, Beaver Lake has returned to its traditional clear state after heavy rains for an extended period of time in the area. During the 2008 Walmart Open, Beaver Lake was uncharacteristically muddy, and most fisherman caught fish using power fishing techniques.
"I got a few key bites that really helped me, but you never really know with fish," Rose said. "I've got an area that has some keepers, but as far as getting those kicker fish that you need to get you over the hump on Beaver Lake two days in a row that's really hard on Beaver Lake. I've kind of clued in to what's going on. It's just a matter of getting the right bites."
Rose said his strategy won't change for the second day of competition. He said he would like to repeat his Day 1 performance and perhaps even eclipse the 13-pound mark.
"I'm not going to do anything different," Rose said. "I've got an area I started in today that nobody tried to come in on. Hopefully I'll get there in the morning and try to catch a limit and go from there."
Rounding out the top five places are Thanh Le of Lake Havasu City, Ariz. (five bass, 12-8); Rob Kilby of Hot Springs, Ark. (five bass, 12-3); Andy Morgan of Dayton, Tenn. (five bass, 12-1); and Bryan Thrift of Shelby, N.C. (five bass, 12-1).
Team Chevy pro Jay Yelas of Corvallis, Ore., earned the day's $1,000 Folgers Big Bass award in the Pro Division thanks to a 4-pound, 13-ounce bass.
Overall there were 702 bass weighing 1,233 pounds, 15 ounces caught by 154 pros Thursday. The catch included 118 five-bass limits.
Pros are competing for a top award of $200,000 this week plus valuable points in the hope of qualifying for $2 million Forrest Wood Cup presented by BP and Castrol, which will be held July 30-Aug. 2 on the Three Rivers in Pittsburgh, Pa., where they could win as much as $1 million - the sport's biggest award.
Kevin Hawk of Ramona, Calif., leads the Co-angler Division with five bass weighing 10-0 followed by Brent Bridgeman of Elkmont, Ala., in second place with five bass weighing 9-14.
Rounding out the top five co-anglers are Dirk Davenport of Delaware, Ohio (five bass, 9-11); Ernest Cate of Springdale, Ark. (five bass, 9-8) and Alton Lackie of Germantown, Tenn. (five bass, 9-8).
Patrick Majors of Rogers earned the day's $500 Folgers Big Bass award in the Co-angler Division thanks to a 3-pound, 3-ounce bass.
Overall there were 424 bass weighing 620 pounds, 9 ounces caught by 139 co-anglers Thursday. The catch included 37 five-bass limits.
Co-anglers are fishing for a top award of $40,000 this week.
Anglers will take off at 6:30 a.m. each day from Prairie Creek Marina located at 1 Prairie Creek Marina Drive in Rogers. Friday's weigh-ins will also be held at Prairie Creek Marina beginning at 3 p.m. Saturday and Sunday's weigh-ins will be held at the John Q. Hammons Center located at 3303 Pinnacle Hills Pkwy. in Rogers beginning at 4 p.m.
In conjunction with the weigh-ins Saturday and Sunday, FLW Outdoors will host a free Family Fun Zone and outdoor show at the John Q. Hammons Center from noon to 4 p.m. each day. The Family Fun Zone offers fans a chance to meet their Fantasy Fishing team anglers face-to-face and review the latest products from Berkley, Lowrance, Ranger, Evinrude, Yamaha and other sponsors while children are treated to giveaways, fishing themed games and rides like the Ranger Boat simulator. Children 14 and under visiting the Family Fun Zone on Sunday will receive a free rod and reel combo while supplies last. One lucky member of the audience will even win a new Ranger boat during the final 4 p.m. weigh-in Sunday, May 17. Admission is free, and you must be present to win.
In FLW Tour competition, pros and co-anglers are randomly paired each day, with pros supplying the boat, controlling boat movement and competing against other pros. Co-anglers fish from the back deck against other co-anglers. The full field competes in the two-day opening round for one of 10 slots in Saturday's competition based on their two-day accumulated weight. Weights are cleared for day three, and co-angler competition concludes following Saturday's weigh-in. The top 10 pros continue competition Sunday, with the winner determined by the heaviest accumulated weight from days three and four.
The total purse for the Walmart Open event at Beaver Lake is more than $1.1 million, including $11,000 through 50th place in the Pro Division.
Coverage of the Beaver Lake tournament, hosted by the Rogers Convention & Visitors Bureau and the Bentonville Convention & Visitors Bureau, will be broadcast in high-definition (HD) on VERSUS, the network which brings anglers the best fishing programming on television featuring the most-trusted authorities on the water. The Emmy-nominated "FLW Outdoors," will air June 14 from 12:30 p.m. to 1:30 p.m. ET. "FLW Outdoors," hosted by Jason Harper, is broadcast to approximately 500 million households worldwide, including internationally through agreements with WFN (World Fishing Network) and Matchroom Sport to such countries as Canada, Germany, China, South Africa, Australia, Malaysia, Russia, Hungary and the United Kingdom, making it the most widely distributed weekly outdoor-sports television show in the world.
The FLW Tour will award more than $8 million cash to the world's top bass anglers in 2009. Regular season competition includes three qualifiers and three opens. Each event takes anglers a step closer to the $2 million Forrest Wood Cup presented by Castrol, which will be held July 30-Aug. 2 on the Three Rivers in Pittsburgh, Pa. The prestigious championship and outdoor show hosted by Visit Pittsburgh will feature 77 pros, 77 co-anglers and bass fishing's largest cash award - a potential $1 million first-place prize for the winning pro.
FLW Outdoors, named after Forrest L. Wood, the legendary founder of Ranger Boats, is the largest fishing tournament organization in the world. FLW Outdoors also is taking fishing mainstream with FLW Fantasy Fishing, offering the largest awards possible in the history of fantasy sports, $10 million in cash and prizes. Sign up for Player's Advantage for only $10 to get your edge and win.
For more information about FLW Outdoors and its tournaments, visit FLWOutdoors.com or call (270) 252-1000. For more information about FLW Fantasy Fishing and Player's Advantage, visit FantasyFishing.com.
Source: flwoutdoors.com (2009-05-14)