Central Opens Off and Running at Rayburn

Jasper, Texas – Four ounces – that’s all that separates the top three anglers at the season opening CITGO Bassmaster Central Open on Sam Rayburn Reservoir. The weather was ideal and so was the fishing for most of the field. Fifty-one of the top 53 anglers brought five bass limits to the scales on the first day.

Arkansas’ Doug Garrett and Carl Svebek sit tied atop the leaderboard with 18 pounds, seven ounces. Just behind the leaders is legendary flipper David Gliebe of Kentucky with 18-3.

Garrett’s day got off to a fast start. He had a limit in just 20 minutes fishing shallow water with a Carolina rig.

“I caught four fish in 10 minutes, so you have to be happy with that,” Garrett said. “I’m looking for that shallow water bite every chance I get.”

Despite his great start and early lead, Garrett was realistic about his chances for the rest of the tournament.

“That shallow bite is going away, and that really hurts me,” he said, “but I feel like I can make an adjustment if I have to. I know what I’m looking for out there.”

Though Garrett and Svebek share the top spot and both call the Natural State home, the similarities end there. The methods they used to catch their fish are very different. Svebek is keying on deep buck brush and took his limit on a Gambler Sweebo Worm.

“I caught a lot of fish, which means I had a lot of fun today,” Svebek said. “This lake is just so beautiful, and I fish it as much as I can.”

Svebek, who is originally from the Rayburn area, took advantage of his knowledge of the lake by moving around a lot and hitting as many spots as possible.

“Being from here, I feel really good about this lake. I just have to wait and see what kind of conditions we get.”

Also in contrast to Garrett, Svebek likes his chances for the rest of the tournament.

“I left some really quality water out there,” Svebek said. “I didn’t know what I was going to do coming into the morning, but I think I’ve got something figured out.”

David Gliebe also likes his chances for the rest of the tournament. Gliebe is flipping jigs and Senkos in the backs of coves.

“I caught two eight-pounders and two 10-pounders in practice, so I’ve got a good feeling,” Gliebe said. “Depending on the weather, I have some different patterns I can go to tomorrow.”

Rounding out the top five are Texas’s David Curtis (17-4) and Oklahoma’s Terry Butcher (16-14).

On the non-boater side, Texas’s Dean Perkins came in just one bass short of a limit, but he made his four fish count. They weighed a hefty 16-5. Trailing Perkins are Texas’s Allen Rhoden (15-10) and Mike Lang (14-3) and Arkansas’s Bill Gift (14-3) and Melinda Mize (12-5).

One of Perkins’ bass weighed nine pounds. It was the Purolator Big Bass of the day and earned him $500. Perkins took his lunker on a Carolina rig.

Louisiana’s Clark Reehm took Purolator Big Bass honors on the boater side with a largemouth that strained the scales to 8-4. His big fish inhaled a spinnerbait and earned him $1,000.

Daily weigh-ins will be held at the Umphrey Family Pavilion at 3:00 p.m. in Sam Rayburn, Texas.

BASS is the world's largest fishing organization, sanctioning more than 20,000 tournaments worldwide through its Federation. The CITGO Bassmaster Tournament Trail, which includes the Bassmaster Elite 50 series, is the oldest and most prestigious pro bass fishing tournament circuit and continues to set the standard for credibility, professionalism and sportsmanship as it has since 1968.

Sponsors of the Bassmaster Open Series include CITGO Petroleum Corp., Toyota, Busch Beer, Purolator, Triton Boats, Mercury Marine, Berkley, Lowrance Electronics, MotorGuide, Bass Pro Shops and Cialis (tadalafil).

For more information, contact BASS Communications at (407) 566-22208 or visit www.bassmaster.com.