ELIZABETH CITY, N.C. – The $8.8 million Walmart Bass Fishing League will visit Albemarle Sound near Elizabeth City, N.C., Oct. 9-11 for one of seven no-entry-fee Regional Championships. During the tournament, hosted by the Elizabeth City Area Convention & Visitor’s Bureau, top Empire, Northeast, Shenandoah and South Carolina division anglers will compete for a $60,000 prize package that includes a new Chevy truck and Ranger 519VX powered by Evinrude or Yamaha in the Boater Division and a $40,000 Ranger 519VX powered by Evinrude or Yamaha in the Co-angler Division.
Boater Scott Fairchild of New Windsor, N.Y., and co-angler Jeff Warren of Lansdale, Pa., will lead the Empire qualifiers on Albemarle Sound while boater Bryan Schmitt of Deale, Md., and co-angler Dave Kovack of Lancaster, Pa., lead the Northeast Division contingent. Boater Bryan Elrod of Mechanicsville, Va., and co-angler Jerry Comperatore of Tarentum, Pa., are the No. 1 qualifiers from the Shenandoah Division, and boater Rusty White of Rock Hill, S.C., and co-angler Scott Peavy of Ridgeway, S.C., are the top qualifiers from the South Carolina Division.
Overall, 40 boaters and 40 co-anglers qualified from each of these divisions for a total field of 160 boats on Albemarle Sound. The anglers qualified for the Regional Championship through a series of four one-day tournaments and a two-day Super Tournament in each of their respective divisions.
Waterfront Park located on Water Street in Elizabeth City will host daily takeoffs at 7 a.m. Waterfront Park will also host Thursday and Friday’s weigh-ins beginning at 3 p.m. Saturday’s weigh-in featuring the top six boaters and six co-anglers will be held at the Wal-Mart located at 101 Tanglewood Parkway in Elizabeth City beginning at 4 p.m. The winners will be determined by the heaviest total catch from all three days of competition.
Boaters and co-anglers who finish in the top six at the Albemarle Sound Regional Championship will also advance to the $1 million no-entry-fee 2009 All-American championship presented by Chevy where they will fish for as much as $140,000 in the Boater Division and $70,000 in the Co-angler Division. The winning boater and winning co-angler at the All-American will also advance to the no-entry-fee $2 million 2009 Forrest Wood Cup. This event, featuring a top award of $1 million, is the most lucrative tournament in all of competitive bass fishing.
In all, the BFL offers weekend anglers the opportunity to qualify for three no-entry-fee championships with total cash awards exceeding $3 million. Additionally, the top 40 boaters and 40 co-anglers from each BFL division may move up to the Stren Series for 2009 while All-American champions have the option to advance directly to the Walmart FLW Tour.
Tournament anglers aren’t the only ones winning big this season. With the introduction of FLW Fantasy Fishing, FLW Outdoors offered anyone the opportunity to enter for their chance to land the catch of a lifetime with the opportunity to win $7.3 million in cash and prizes. Players could become a virtual pro angler by signing up for Player’s Advantage, which provided them with exclusive insider information that could have guided them to a $100,000 victory at every FLW Tour stop and the Forrest Wood Cup. Player’s Advantage gave them an edge over the competition and increased their shot for the $1 million cash grand prize awarded to the FLW Fantasy Fishing cumulative points winner. Visit FantasyFishing.com today to find out more information and to register for next season.
In BFL competition, boaters supply the boat and compete from the front deck against other boaters. Co-anglers compete from the back deck against other co-anglers.
As the nation’s leading provider of affordable, close-to-home weekend tournaments, the BFL is widely credited with opening competitive bass fishing to the masses. It also serves as a steppingstone for anglers who wish to advance to the Stren Series and ultimately the FLW Tour – bass fishing’s most lucrative tournament circuit.
FLW Outdoors, named after Forrest L. Wood, the legendary founder of Ranger Boats, is the largest fishing tournament organization in the world. In 2008 alone the organization is offering more than 90,000 anglers the chance to win over $40 million through 230 tournaments in 10 circuits. FLW Outdoors is also taking fishing mainstream with the largest cash awards in the history of fantasy sports, $7.3 million.
For more information about FLW Outdoors and its tournaments, browse FLWOutdoors.com or call (270) 252-1000. For more information about FLW Fantasy Fishing and Player’s Advantage, visit FantasyFishing.com.
Total awards are based on a full field of 200 boats in every tournament.