FLORENCE, Ala. (March 1, 2006) - Pro Rob Kilby of Hot Springs, Ark., caught a five-bass limit weighing 20 pounds, 2 ounces to take a commanding lead on day one of the $900,000 Wal-Mart FLW Tour event on Pickwick Lake presented by A&W Root Beer. Pros are competing for a top award of $100,000, and the Co-angler Division first-place award is $20,000.

Fishing conditions on Pickwick Lake, along with the adjoining waterways, are tough. Water temperatures are in the high 40s on the main lake. Furthermore, water release from Wilson and Pickwick dams is raising and dropping Pickwick water levels by several feet in a relatively short time each day. As a result of the cold water and fluctuating water levels, only 142 pros and 83 co-anglers caught keepers Wednesday. The entire field only caught 20 limits, but as is usually the case, a handful of anglers caught solid weights.

Kilby surprised everyone when he weighed in such a strong limit and leads by nearly 4 pounds over second place – Wet Ones pro Brennan Bosley of Benton, Ark., who finished second at the last FLW Tour event on Lake Murray.

“I must have got luckier than most,” Kilby said. “I never missed a fish today. I caught them on a jig and jerkbait. I’m going up to Wheeler and fishing in stained water. I caught some fish deep and some shallow, but they’re all coming from the same kind of spot, and I caught my best fish early.”

Kilby caught seven keepers Wednesday, including a 5-pound, 14-ounce largemouth.

Bosley stepped up to the scale with a smile on his face. He caught a limit that weighed 16 pounds, 4 ounces. “I have a lot of confidence right now after my finish at Murray,” he said. “I feel like I can do well. I caught six keepers today.”

Tylenol pro Gabe Bolivar of Ramona, Calif., who finished second in the Stren Series Championship on Pickwick Lake last November is tied for third with five bass weighing 14 pounds, 4 ounces. Bolivar was casting a custom-made square-lipped Japanese crankbait along rip rap banks in the waterway connecting Bay Springs Lake and Pickwick. Also with a limit weighing 14 pounds, 4 ounces is National Guard pro Ramie Colson Jr. of Cadiz, Ky.

In fifth place in the Pro Division is David Curtis of Trinity, Texas, with five bass weighing 14 pounds, 3 ounces. “I struggled and struggled in practice,” Curtis said, “so I’m thrilled to have this limit. I started in an area where I caught a 3-pounder in practice last Saturday, which was the warmest day of practice. Since it was so warm today, I went back to the same place and tried to duplicate what I was doing Saturday, and I culled three times. And I’ve got the spot all to myself.”

Fujifilm pro Sam Swett of Covington, La., caught a 6-pound, 2-ounce largemouth to win the Snickers Big Bass Award in the Pro Division and earn $750.

Judy Israel of Clewiston, Fla., leads the Co-angler Division with four bass weighing 13 pounds, 13 ounces, including a lunker bass weighing 6 pounds. Israel fishing with pro Todd Auten of Lake Wylie, S.C.

Andy Montgomery of Blacksburg, S.C., was one of only three co-anglers to catch a limit Wednesday and is currently in second place with 12 pounds, 8 ounces. Montgomery, who fished with eighth-place pro Mark Pack, of Mineola, Texas, caught his fish shallow with a Chatterbait, which is arguably the hottest lure in the country.

Rounding out the top five co-anglers are Arch Cornett of Huntsville, Ala. (four bass, 10 pounds, 6 ounces); Alex Ormand of Bessemer City, N.C. (three bass, 9 pounds, 1 ounce); and Bill Gift of Alix, Ark. (five bass, 9 pounds).

Anglers will take off at 7 each morning from McFarland Park. Thursday’s weigh-in will be held at McFarland Park beginning at 3 p.m. Friday and Saturday’s weigh-ins will be held at the Wal-Mart store located at 3100 Hough Road in Florence beginning at 4 p.m.

The community is invited to attend the free Family Fun Zone Friday and Saturday outside the weigh-in tent in the Wal-Mart parking lot. The Family Fun Zone, which opens at 2 p.m. Friday and noon Saturday, features interactive displays, product samples and games for the entire family to enjoy.

The full field competes in the two-day opening round for one of 10 slots in Friday’s competition based on their two-day accumulated weight. Weights are cleared for day three, and co-angler competition concludes following Friday’s weigh-in. The top 10 pros continue competition Saturday, with the winner determined by the heaviest accumulated weight from days three and four.

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.

This is the most lucrative FLW Tour season to date with a $7.6 million purse, including four $900,000 events and two $1.25 million open events during the regular season. Each event leads up to the $1.5 million Wal-Mart FLW Tour Championship and Outdoor Show presented by Castrol, which will be held Aug. 2-5 on Logan Martin Lake in Birmingham, Ala. The prestigious championship hosted by Birmingham, Pell City and St. Clair County features 48 pros, 48 co-anglers and bass fishing’s largest guaranteed cash award – a $500,000 first-place prize for the winning pro. Held in conjunction with the tournament is a world-class outdoor show featuring more than 140 exhibits.

Coverage of the Pickwick Lake tournament will be broadcast to 78 million FSN (Fox Sports Net) subscribers in the United States on April 2 and April 9 as part of the “FLW Outdoors” television program. “FLW Outdoors” airs Sunday mornings at 11 Eastern time. “FLW Outdoors” is also broadcast internationally to more than 300 million households in such countries as 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. Additionally, FLW Outdoors is proud to provide tournament coverage to more than 800,000 servicemembers stationed around the world in 177 countries and aboard Navy ships through broadcasts on the American Forces Network.

Named after the legendary founder of Ranger Boats, Forrest L. Wood, FLW Outdoors administers the Wal-Mart FLW Tour, Wal-Mart FLW Series, Stren Series, Wal-Mart Bass Fishing League, Wal-Mart Texas Tournament Trail, Stratos Owners’ Tournament Trail, Wal-Mart FLW Walleye Tour, Wal-Mart FLW Walleye League, Wal-Mart FLW Kingfish Tour, Wal-Mart FLW Kingfish Series and Wal-Mart FLW Redfish Series. These circuits offer combined purses exceeding $36.9 million through 241 events in 2006.

For more information about FLW Outdoors and its tournament programs, visit or call (270) 252-1000.

Wal-Mart and many of America’s largest and most respected companies support FLW Outdoors and its tournament trails. Wal-Mart signed on as an FLW Outdoors sponsor in 1997 and today is the world’s leading supporter of tournament fishing. For more information about Wal-Mart, visit