Jim Moynagh of Carver, Minnesota, has landed four bass weighing 19 pounds, 12 ounces to lead the 165-man professional division after the first round of competition in the third event of the $4 million, 1999 Wal-Mart FLW Tour being held on Lake Lanier. The world’s best bass fishermen are competing for a share of the $471,500 cash purse, the largest for a bass tournament in Georgia history, and $100,000 for first place.
Moynagh is attempting to make the 10-man, first round cut, determined at the end of Thursday’s fishing. The top 10 professional and 10 co-anglers, based on total weight after the first two days of fishing, will advance to the second round of action on Friday. At the conclusion of Friday’s fishing, the co-angler competition is completed and the pro field is cut to five. Saturday’s final round of fishing will determine the winner of the Wal-Mart FLW Tour Pro Division, based on total catch weight for that day. In addition to $100,000, the winning pro (and co-angler) receive a berth in the Wal-Mart FLW Tour Championship, presented by CITGO, September 22-25, 1999, on Ft Gibson Lake in Wagoner, Oklahoma.
The Pro Division leader at the end of Thursday’s action will receive 75 points in the Land O’Lakes Angler of the Year race. The professional angler accumulating the most points through the second day of the Forrest Wood Open, sixth stop on the tour, will be featured on a nationally-distributed, special edition box of Wheaties. Superstar angler, Denny Brauer, was the first angler in history to grace the famous cereal box, having won the 1998 race.
Gill Keener, Jr. of Muskogee, Oklahoma, is leading the 165-man co-angler field with a four bass catch weighing 9 pounds, 5 ounces. Co-anglers are competing for a share of $71,500, with $15,000 going to the winner.
Thursday’s indoor weigh-in will be held from 3:00 – 4:30 p.m. at Laurel Park in Gainesville. Friday and Saturday’s weigh-ins will be held at the Gainesville Wal-Mart Supercenter. Friday’s weigh-in begins at 5 p.m. Activities on Saturday begin at 11:30 a.m.
All tour events are scheduled to be televised on ESPN approximately two weeks after the tournament. The Wal-Mart FLW Tour opener will be televised on ESPN, Saturday, April 3, at 6 p.m. EST.
The highest-finishing original Ranger boat owner in each tournament will qualify to enter the $3.5 million Ranger M1 Millennium tournament, the richest bass event in history, with a $1 million first-place cash prize at stake. The Ranger owner who catches the largest bass in each division over the course of the season will also qualify for the Ranger Millennium tournament.
Sponsors of the 1999 Wal-Mart FLW Tour include: Wal-Mart, Coca-Cola, Land O’Lakes, CITGO Petroleum Products, Chevy Trucks, Uniroyal Tires, Fujifilm, EverStart Batteries, Eveready Flashlights, Black and Decker, Coleman Company, Ranger Boats, Mitchell Rods and Reels, Spiderwire, Evinrude Outboard Motors, Evinrude Electric Trolling Motors, Eagle Electronics, Timex Expedition, Wrangler, Chex Mix, Hamburger Helper, and Wheaties. The Lake Lanier event of the Wal-Mart FLW Tour is presented by Gainesville-Hall County Convention and Visitor’s Bureau.