Weekend anglers have opportunity to participate in three no-entry-fee championships with payouts exc

BENTON, Ky. (Nov. 6, 2006) - FLW Outdoors announced Monday that competitors in the Wal-Mart Bass Fishing League (BFL) will compete for $8.8 million in 2007 and the opportunity to participate in three no-entry-fee championships with total payouts exceeding $3 million. Also announced was the introduction of a new Volunteer Division for anglers in eastern Tennessee.

The BFL, the nation's most affordable, close-to-home weekend tournaments for bass anglers, is made up of 28 divisions, each with four $45,000 one-day qualifying tournaments and one $67,500 two-day Super Tournament. In the $45,000 qualifying tournaments next season, the winning boater will earn as much as $6,000 in cash, including $5,100 plus a $900 bonus if the winner is the registered original owner of a Ranger boat. First-place co-anglers will earn as much as $3,000 in cash. Top boater payouts in the $67,500 Super Tournaments will be $9,000, which includes $7,650 plus a $1,350 Ranger bonus, while top co-anglers will earn as much as $4,500.

Ranger Boats will award an additional $1,000 to winning boaters if they participate in the Ranger Cup incentive program, or $500 to the highest-finishing Ranger Cup participant, at each qualifier and Super Tournament in 2007. If "Powered by Yamaha" guidelines are met, Yamaha will award an additional 50 percent of Ranger Cup winnings. The highest-finishing Ranger Cup co-angler in each regular-season tournament will receive a custom Ranger jacket. Bombardier will also award a $1,000 bonus to the winning boater in each regular-season tournament if the winner's boat is equipped with an Evinrude E-TEC or Direct Injection outboard that was purchased new from an authorized dealer after Dec. 31, 2005. These bonuses boost the potential top boater award to $7,500 in qualifiers and $10,500 in Super Tournaments.

After four one-day qualifiers and a two-day Super Tournament in a division are complete, the top 40 boaters and 40 co-anglers from the division will advance to a three-day no-entry-fee Regional Championship. Here boaters will compete for a Ranger 519VX powered by Evinrude or Yamaha and a Chevy truck, and co-anglers will compete for a Ranger 519VX powered by Evinrude or Yamaha. The top six boaters and six co-anglers in each of seven Regional Championships will also advance to the $1 million no-entry-fee 2008 All-American championship presented by Chevy. Anglers who enter all five tournaments within a division but do not advance to a Regional Championship will be eligible to fish a Chevy Wild Card regional, which will also send six boaters and six co-anglers to the All-American.

Anglers who qualify for the $1 million All-American will fish for as much as $140,000 in the Boater Division and $70,000 in the Co-angler Division. Additionally, the winning boater and co-angler from the All-American will advance to the $2 million no-entry-fee Forrest Wood Cup presented by Castrol. The Forrest Wood Cup will feature pros/boaters competing against top anglers from the Wal-Mart FLW Tour, Wal-Mart FLW Series, Stren Series, Wal-Mart Bass Fishing League, TBF (The Bass Federation) and Ranger owners' tournaments for a $1 million first place prize - the biggest award in the history of competitive bass fishing.

"Our company was founded on providing affordable, close-to-home weekend tournaments for bass anglers," said Charlie Evans, president and CEO of FLW Outdoors. "These anglers are the heart and soul of FLW Outdoors, and we take great pride in providing them with the best possible tournament options as well as a clear pathway for advancement to the sport's highest levels - namely the Stren Series, Wal-Mart FLW Series and Wal-Mart FLW Tour. Nowhere else do anglers have the opportunity to fish five close-to-home tournaments with a shot at advancing to not just one, but three no-entry-fee championships, including the sport's biggest championship where they could win $1 million cash."

The top 40 boaters and 40 co-anglers from every BFL division in 2007 may also advance to the Stren Series in 2008. All-American champions are eligible to advance directly to the FLW Tour for a shot at top awards of $125,000 to $200,000 in every tournament. Each season the top 10 pros and 10 co-anglers from each Stren Series division are eligible to advance to the FLW Series for a shot at top awards of $125,000 in every tournament.

In the BFL's boater and co-angler format, the boater supplies the boat, controls boat movement and competes against other boaters. Co-anglers fish from the back deck against other co-anglers.

Field sizes will remain the same for 2007, with 200 boaters and 200 co-anglers comprising a full BFL field. Entry fees also remain the same, with boater entry fees of $200 for qualifiers and $300 for Super Tournaments. Co-angler entry fees are $100 for qualifiers and $150 for Super Tournaments. Pretournament meetings for each tournament will be held at the local Wal-Mart store hosting the event.

The complete BFL schedule is posted at FLWOutdoors.com. Anglers fishing the Bulldog, Dixie, Everglades, Louisiana, Savannah River, South Carolina and Volunteer divisions may register Dec. 18. Anglers fishing the Bama, Choo Choo, Cowboy, Gator, Mississippi, Music City and Okie divisions may register Dec. 19. Angler fishing the Arkie, Empire, LBL, Mountain, Ozark, Piedmont and Shenandoah divisions may register Dec. 20. Anglers fishing the Buckeye, Great Lakes, Hoosier, Illini, Michigan, North Carolina and Northeast divisions may register Dec. 21. Registration may be made online at FLWOutdoors.com or by calling (270) 252-1000. Phones are open 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Central time Monday through Friday.

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 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, Wal-Mart FLW Redfish Series and Wal-Mart FLW Striper Series. These circuits will offer combined purses exceeding $43 million through 247 events in 2007.

For more information about FLW Outdoors and its tournaments, visit FLWOutdoors.com 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 Wal-Mart.com.