FLORENCE, Ala. (Oct. 10, 2007) – Team Suave pro Mark Rose of Marion, Ark., landed five bass weighing 18 pounds, 15 ounces Wednesday to lead day one of the Wal-Mart FLW Series BP Eastern Division tournament on Pickwick Lake. He now holds a 2-pound, 8-ounce lead in the $1 million tournament featuring 200 pros and 200 co-anglers representing 28 states.

“It’s been a good day,” said Rose, who has $481,902 in career earnings with FLW Outdoors. “I really like fishing here on Pickwick. I tend to do a little better in the spring but it just seems to be fishing really good right now with the grass and all. My two biggest fish today came off the same area and that area wasn’t even one of my better spots. I’ve been catching a lot of fish. I probably had eight keepers today. After I caught my limit this morning I didn’t fish all that hard this afternoon. I just went looking and trying out a few different spots.

“Who knows how things are going to go tomorrow. I saw a few guys sitting on some of my other spots today. I’m just going to go fish hard early and get my limit. When I get that, I’m going to go hit my big fish spot and some of my other better areas and hopefully get a good kicker fish.”

Rose is throwing a football head jigs around deep structure and breaks. He also said that the key depth for him Wednesday was 14 to 16 feet. Rose also stayed on Pickwick the entire day.

Fishing for Team Yamaha, Terry Bolton of Paducah, Ky., trails Rose in the No. 2 spot with five bass weighing 16-07. Rounding out the top five pros are Chevy pro Dion Hibdon of Stover, Mo. (five bass, 16-00); Tom Mann Jr. of Buford, Ga. (five bass, 15-12) and Chad Morgenthaler of Coulterville, Ill. (five bass, 15-06). Kyle Mabrey of McCalla, Ala., earned the day’s $440 Snickers Big Bass award in the Pro Division thanks to a 5-pound, 4-ounce bass.

Overall there were 451 bass weighing 1075 pounds caught by 153 pros Wednesday. The catch included 37 five-bass limits.

Pros are competing this week for a top award of $125,000 plus valuable points in the hope of qualifying for the BP East-National Guard West Fishoff and a shot at advancing to the $2 million, 2008 Forrest Wood Cup, where the winning pro will earn as much as $1 million – the sport’s biggest award. The top 30 pros from both FLW Series divisions after four qualifying events are complete will advance to the East-West Fishoff, which will be held Jan. 17-19, 2008. The location for the fishoff has not yet been announced. Thirty winners from the fishoff will advance to the 2008 Forrest Wood Cup.

Edward Gildernew Jr. of Zelienople, Pa., leads the Co-angler Division with four bass weighing 11-09 followed by Chris Cox of Bethel Springs, Tenn., in second place with three bass weighing 11-02.

“Today went really well,” said Gildernew, who has been fishing with FLW Outdoors since 2000. “I caught most of my fish on a jig I make myself. I plan on throwing that the rest of the week. Having the chance to fish with Larry Nixon was very exciting. He was a great guy and a top notch pro.”

Gildernew was paired with Chevy pro Larry Nixon of Bee Branch, Ark., who is currently in 18th place with five bass weighing 12-09.

Rounding out the top five co-anglers are Gilbert Herald of Pittsburg, Texas (five bass, 10-08); Kevin Koone of Greenbrier, Ark. (four bass, 9-06) and tied for fifth is Thomas Helton of Charleston, Tenn., and Michael McCoy of Mentor, Ohio (four bass, 7-14).

Mark Phillips of Fayetteville, Ark., earned $275 for the Snickers Big Bass award in the Co-angler Division thanks to a 4-pound, 14-ounce bass he caught while fishing with Fujifilm pro Randy Blaukat of Jasper, Mo.

Overall there were 144 bass weighing 328 pounds, 14 ounces caught by 85 co-anglers Wednesday. The catch included one five-bass limits.

Co-anglers are competing this week for a top award of $25,000. Like the pros, the top 30 co-anglers from both FLW Series divisions after four qualifying events are complete will advance to the East-West Fishoff for a shot at the $2 million, 2008 Forrest Wood Cup.

Anglers will take off at 7 each morning from McFarland Park located on James M. Spain Drive in Florence, Ala. Thursday and Friday’s weigh-in will be held at the marina beginning at 3 p.m. Saturday’s weigh-in will be held at the Wal-Mart store located at 3100 Hough Road in Florence, Ala., beginning at 4 p.m. Children will also be treated to a Family Fun Zone prior to Saturday’s weigh-in from noon to 4 p.m. at Wal-Mart. Activities in the Family Fun Zone include the Fujifilm trout pond, a Ranger boat simulator and assorted fishing-themed games. All activities are free and open to the public.

In FLW Series 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 entire field competes for the first three days, and co-angler competition concludes on day three with the winner determined by the heaviest accumulated three-day weight. The top 10 professionals continue competition on day four, and the winner is determined by the heaviest accumulated weight from all four days. FLW Outdoors historically maintains a 98 percent live release rate in all of its bass tournaments.

Coverage of the Pickwick Lake FLW Series tournament will be broadcast to 81 million FSN (Fox Sports Net) subscribers in the United States as part of the “FLW Outdoors” television program airing Dec. 16. “FLW Outdoors” airs Sunday mornings at 11 Eastern time. “FLW Outdoors” is also broadcast internationally to approximately 350 million households in Europe, Africa and Asia, making it the most widely distributed weekly fishing program 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 presented by Abu Garcia, Ranger Owners Tournament Championship Series, Wal-Mart FLW Walleye Tour, Wal-Mart FLW Walleye League, Wal-Mart FLW Kingfish Tour, Wal-Mart FLW Kingfish Series, Wal-Mart FLW Redfish Series and Wal-Mart FLW Striper Series. These circuits offer combined purses of nearly $43 million through 241 events in 2007.

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

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