BAINBRIDGE, Ga. – Patrick Dobbins of Opelika, Ala., won the Walmart Bass Fishing League Lake Seminole Regional Championship Saturday with a three-day 15-bass catch weighing 36 pounds, 5 ounces. The victory earned Dobbins a Ranger 198VX boat with a choice of a 200 horsepower Evinrude or Yamaha motor and a Chevrolet 1500 Silverado. The win also helped him qualify for the 2010 BFL All-American where he could ultimately win a top prize of $140,000 and a trip to the 2010 Forrest Wood Cup.
“That was the best win ever,” Dobbins said. “You can’t beat that at all. I went to an area with less-pressured fish and less boat traffic, about an hour from the takeoff, and it really paid off.
“I went into this tournament thinking I would be fishing grass,” Dobbins added. “It’s my style to fish the river. On Wednesday during practice I got eight bites flipping, but of course I didn’t set the hook on anything.”
Dobbins said he flipped a creature bait paired with a 1 1/4-ounce tungsten weight into trees sitting in three feet of water. He admits he caught a couple of fish on a spinnerbait during the course of the tournament, but maintains the creature bait was the bait that produced the win.
“I was getting seven to eight bites a day on that bait,” Dobbins said. “I just got lucky and didn’t run out of fish.”
Rounding out the top five boaters are Billy Bowen Jr. of Ocala, Fla. (12 bass, 28-10, $3,000); Ty Garrett of Pulaski, Tenn. (14 bass, 26-4, $1,500); Jay Brewer of Collinwood, Tenn. (10 bass, 25-3, $1,200); and Charles Cummings of Leeds, Ala. (13 bass, 23-0, $1,100).
Wayne Montgomery of Lake Wales, Fla., won a Ranger 198VX boat with a choice of a 200 horsepower Evinrude or Yamaha motor as the co-angler winner Saturday thanks to eight bass weighing 25 pounds, 2 ounces.
Rounding out the top five co-anglers are Ray Holloway of Snellville, Ga. (nine bass, 21-15, $1,500); Michael Corbett of Oxford, Ala. (seven bass, 20-11, $750); Joe Edwards Jr. of Kissimmee, Fla. (seven bass, 19-6, $600); and Jay Galimore of Auburn, Ala. (six bass, 18-6, $550).
The top 40 boaters and 40 co-anglers in BFL’s Bama, Bulldog, Dixie and Everglades divisions advanced to this no-entry-fee Lake Seminole Regional Championship. All seven of the BFL regional championships will each send six boaters and six co-anglers to the no-entry-fee Walmart BFL All-American presented by Chevy. Anglers who compete in all five regular-season events within a division but do not advance to a Regional Championship are eligible to compete in the Chevy Wild Card, which will also send six boaters and six co-anglers to the All-American for a total of 48 boaters and 48 co-anglers advancing through BFL competition.
The winning boater and winning co-angler at the All-American will advance to the no-entry-fee Forrest Wood Cup in Atlanta in 2010. This event 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. Plus, the top 40 boaters and 40 co-anglers from each BFL division may move up to the Stren Series for 2010 while All-American champions have the option to advance directly to the Walmart FLW Tour.
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. FLW Outdoors also has taken fishing mainstream with FLW Fantasy Fishing, offering the largest awards possible in the history of fantasy sports. Sign up for Player’s Advantage to get your edge and win.
For more information about FLW Outdoors and its tournaments, visit FLWOutdoors.com or call (270) 252-1000. For more information about FLW Fantasy Fishing and Player’s Advantage, visit FantasyFishing.com.