FLORENCE, Ala. (Nov. 5, 2009) – Mark Rose of Marion, Ark., stood atop the leaderboard on the first day of competition at the Stren Series Championship on Pickwick Lake after weighing five fish for 22 pounds, 5 ounces and ended the day with a commanding 3-pound, 2-ounce lead.
“I had a limit this morning in about 30 minutes,” said Rose, who has won more than $887,000 in FLW Outdoors competition. “That settled me down and allowed me to just go fishing.”
Rose said he began the day fishing a school of fish close to the McFarland Park launch and caught his limit and then made a run to his next spot. He said caught his largest fish, a 7-pound, 6-ounce largemouth, at 11 a.m. and then culled fish the rest of the day. Rose said he caught 13 or 14 keepers throughout the course of the day.
Rose said after he hit the first two schools of fish, the rest of the day was spent catching lone fish in random spots. He said he would pull up to a spot and fish 10 minutes then move on.
“I was just hitting old waypoints I’ve got,” Rose said. “If this water would stop falling, the fish would start biting … some of my offshore fish. That’s what I’m really banking on.”
Rose said the majority of his bites came off of ledges, where he caught bass on topwater baits as well as deeper in the water column. He said his big bass came in 10 feet of water.
Rounding out the top five places are Team National Guard pro Jonathan Newton of Rogersville, Ala. (five bass, 19-3); Team Kellogg’s pro Dave Lefebre of Union City, Pa. (five bass, 19-0); Keith Pace of Monticello, Ark. (five bass, 18-5); and Robert Robinson of Mobile, Ala. (five bass, 16-9).
Rose also earned the day’s $500 Folgers Big Bass award in the Pro Division thanks to his 7-pound, 6-ounce largemouth bass.
Overall there were 835 bass weighing 1,733 pounds, 13 ounces caught by 185 pros Thursday. The catch included 143 five-bass limits.
George Yund of Albany, N.Y., leads the Co-angler Division with five bass weighing 13-2 followed by David Kayda of Crosby, Texas, in second place with five bass weighing 12-4.
Rounding out the top five co-anglers are Mark White of Tucson, Ariz. (five bass, 11-4); Jeff Grant of La Mirada, Calif. (five bass, 11-3) and Phil Jarmon of Apex, N.C. (five bass, 11-2).
Mike Power of Canyon Lake, Texas, earned the day’s $250 Folgers Big Bass award in the Co-angler Division thanks to a 5-pound, 13-ounce bass.
Overall there were 549 bass weighing 909 pounds, 8 ounces caught by 175 co-anglers Thursday. The catch included 51 five-bass limits.
In the Stren Series Championship anglers are vying for their shot at $115,000 in the Pro Division and $43,000 in the Co-angler Division.
Anglers will take off from McFarland Park located at 200 James M. Spain Drive in Florence at 6:30 each morning. Friday’s weigh-in will be held at McFarland Park beginning at 3 p.m. Saturday’s weigh-in will be held at the Walmart store located at 3100 Hough Rd. in Florence beginning at 4 p.m. Takeoffs and weigh-ins are free and open to the public.
After four qualifying events were completed in each Stren Series division – Central, Northern, Southeast, Texas and Western – the top 40 pros and 40 co-anglers based on the points standings from each division advanced to the championship. The top 10 pros and top 10 co-anglers from each division also qualify for the 2010 Walmart FLW Tour®, bass fishing’s top professional circuit. The highest-finishing pro and co-angler from each division at the Stren Series Championship also qualify for the 2010 Forrest Wood Cup.
In Stren Series competition, pros supply the boats, fish from the front deck against other pros and control boat movement. Co-anglers fish from the back deck and compete against other co-anglers. The full field competes on days one and two with the top 10 pros and 10 co-anglers advancing to day three based on their two-day accumulated weight. Winners are determined by the heaviest accumulated weight from all three days.
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.