landed five bass weighing 20 pounds, 4 ounces Wednesday to lead day
one of the Wal-Mart FLW Series BP Eastern Division tournament on Lake
Okeechobee. He now holds a 1-pound, 3-ounce lead in the $1 million
tournament featuring 200 pros and 200 co-anglers representing 33
states and Canada. Browne won the Stren Series' Southeast Division
season opener Jan. 6 on Lake Okeechobee.
"I just relaxed and fished, and good things happened," said Browne.
"I cranked the big motor twice today once when I took off and once
when I came in. A lot of people fished the same area I did, but I
found the edge of the grass produced bigger fish. If I didn't get a
big bite, I knew I would end up with eight or ten pounds."
Kip Carter of Oxford, Ga., trails Browne in the No. 2 spot with five
bass weighing 19-1. Rounding out the top five pros are Keith Combs of
Temple, Texas (five bass, 16-12); Bob Blosser of Lodi, Wis. (five
bass, 16-5) and Jonathan Newton of Rogersville, Ala. (five bass, 16-5).
Overall there were 913 bass weighing 1,782 pounds, 5 ounces caught by
200 pros Wednesday. The catch included 157 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.
National Guard team member Pamela Wood of Jonesboro, Ark., leads the
Co-angler Division with three bass weighing 15-0 followed by Wayne
Pomeroy of Wellington, Fla., in second place with five bass weighing
14-14. Rounding out the top five co-anglers are Mark Phillips of
Fayetteville, Ark. (five bass, 14-11); Matt Krekovich of Granite
City, Ill. (five bass, 14-9) and Ty Hester of Russellville, Ala.
(five bass, 14-8).
Overall there were 656 bass weighing 1,192 pounds, 10 ounces caught
by 181 co-anglers Wednesday. The catch included 81 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 Roland and Mary Ann
Martin's Marina and Resort in Clewiston, Fla. 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 in Clewiston, Fla.,
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.