MEMPHIS, Tenn., Ten anglers have made the first round cut to advance to Friday’s second round of professional fishing action in the fifth event of the $471,500 Wal-Mart FLW Tour being held on Mississippi River at Memphis. The world’s best bass anglers are competing for a first place cash prize of $100,000 in the fifth tournament of seven on the tour that in 1999 will award anglers $4 million.
The 10 world class anglers, together with the remaining 10 co-anglers, will compete Friday, for one day, with the top five professionals, based on Friday’s catch weight, advancing to Saturday’s final round. In addition to the $100,000 first place cash, the winning professional and co-angler receive berths in the Wal-Mart FLW Tour Championship, presented by CITGO, September 22-25, 1999, on Ft. Gibson Lake in Wagoner, Oklahoma, where the winning professional will receive the largest cash award in fishing – $250,000. Co-angler competition will end Friday with the winner receiving
David Walker of Cannon, Kentucky, is leading the Land O’Lakes Angler of the Year points race with 245 points. Points are awarded to anglers after the first two days of competition based on ranking at that time. Craig Powers of Rockwood, TN is following in second place with 244 points. Alton Jones of Waco, TX, is in third with 233 points, followed by Roland Martin of Clewiston, FL, with 232 points, and Ben Lee of Columbia, S.C., 219 points. The Land O’Lakes Angler of the Year will be featured on a special edition box of Wheaties later in the year.
Danny Correia of Marlboro, Mass. landed a 7 pound, 2 ounce bass to win the Coca-Cola Big Bass award of $1,000. Coca-Cola will award $5,000 to the angler weighing in the biggest bass during the 1999 tour. Jim Moynagh of Carver, Minnesota, is leading the big bass contest for the year with a 10 pound, 4 ounce bass caught during the third FLW Tour event held on Lake Lanier.
Friday and Saturday’s weigh-ins will be held at Mud Island Riverfront amphitheater. Friday’s weigh-in will begin at 5:00 p.m. Saturday’s activities will begin at 11:30 a.m., with the weigh-in beginning at 3:30 p.m.
All tour events are scheduled to be televised on ESPN approximately two weeks after the tournament. The Wal-Mart FLW Tour Memphis event will be televised on ESPN, Saturday, June 5, 1999, at 1:30 p.m. EDT.
The highest-finishing Ranger boat owner in the 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 to. be held in November.
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, US Bank-VISA, and Wheaties. The Memphis stop of the Wal-Mart FLW Tour is presented by Evinrude Outboards.