Ultimate Bass

Santee Copper Hosts Stren Open

MANNING, S.C. (April 23, 2009) – The $6.5 million Stren Series™ is headed to Santee Cooper, April 30-May 2 for a $275,225 bass tournament…

FLW OutdoorsMANNING, S.C. (April 23, 2009) – The $6.5 million Stren Series™ is headed to Santee Cooper, April 30-May 2 for a $275,225 bass tournament. As many as 400 pros and co-anglers from 22 states will be competing in the second Southeast Division tournament of the season for top awards of $65,000 and $35,000, respectively.

Local pro Ken Ellis of Bowman, S.C., won the Stren Series Southeast Division Santee Cooper event in 2002 and 2007. He has 17 top-10 finishes in FLW Outdoors competition and 12 of those were from a Santee Cooper event.

“The lakes seem to be about three weeks to a month behind normal,” Ellis said. “We have had a good bit of rain so the lakes are higher and the water has a lot of color. I think it will fish pretty much the same because the tournament is actually a few weeks later than years past.”

Ellis said that the only difference is that there is a lot more water and that the fish are just about done spawning. “There should be a lot of fish caught during the tournament,” he said. “Anglers will be catching fish in all three phases but the majority of the fish are post spawn. In a few areas of the lake that are clear enough there will even be some anglers sight-fishing.”

Ellis predicts that anglers will need 20 pounds a day to make the top-10 cut in hopes of winning $25,000 and a new Ranger boat. He said that key baits among anglers will be spinnerbaits, frogs and buzzbaits. “In the past two years anglers used more finesse type baits but with the water not being as clear and as low, powerbaits will come into play.

“I am really looking forward to this event,” Ellis added. “There is always pressure going into this event because everyone expects me to do good when it’s on Santee Cooper. The fact that I have won it twice does take some of the pressure off though.”

Anglers will take off from John C. Landing located at County Rd. S-14-260 (Greenall Rd.) in Summerton, S.C., at 7 each morning. Thursday and Friday’s weigh-ins will be held at the marina beginning at 3 p.m. Saturday’s weigh-in will be held at the Walmart store located at 2010 Paxville Highway in Manning, S.C., beginning at 4 p.m. Takeoffs and weigh-ins are free and open to the public.

The Santee Cooper Lake Stren Series tournament is hosted by the Clarendon County Chamber of Commerce.

Pros will fish for a top award of $25,000 plus a 198VX Ranger powered by an Evinrude or Yamaha outboard and equipped with a Minn Kota trolling motor and Lowrance electronics if Ranger Cup guidelines are met. If the winner is not a Ranger Cup participant, Ranger will award $7,500 to the highest-finishing Ranger Cup participant in the contingency program.

Co-anglers will cast for a top award of a 177TR Ranger powered by an Evinrude or Yamaha outboard and trailer. If the co-angler meets the Ranger Cup guidelines, they will earn an additional $5,000. If the winner is not a Ranger Cup participant, Ranger will award $2,500 to the highest-finishing Ranger Cup participant in the contingency program.

Competitors will also be vying for valuable points that could earn them a trip to the Stren Series Championship on Pickwick Lake in Florence, Ala., Nov. 5-7 for a shot at $150,000 in the Pro Division and $60,000 in the Co-angler Division. After four qualifying events are complete 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 will advance to the championship. The top 10 pros and 10 co-anglers from each division will also qualify for the 2010 Walmart FLW Tour® and Walmart FLW Series®, bass fishing’s top professional circuits. The highest-finishing pro and co-angler from each division at the Stren Series Championship will also qualify for the $2.5 million 2010 Forrest Wood Cup, where anglers will compete for the $1 million grand prize – the most lucrative award in bass fishing.

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. Every angler who receives weight credit in a tournament earns points that determine angler standings. Two hundred points are awarded to the winner, 199 points for second, 198 points for third, and so on. The full field competes on days one, two and three, with the top 10 pros and 10 co-anglers advancing to day four based on their three-day accumulated weight. Winners are determined by the heaviest accumulated weight from all four days.

Total awards are based on a full field of 200 boats in every tournament.

FLW Outdoors, named after Forrest L. Wood, the legendary founder of Ranger Boats, is the largest fishing tournament organization in the world. In 2009 alone the organization is offering more bass and walleye anglers from coast to coast the chance to win more than $33 million through 231 tournaments. FLW Outdoors also is taking fishing mainstream with FLW Fantasy Fishing, offering the largest awards possible in the history of fantasy sports, $10 million in cash and prizes. Sign up for Player’s Advantage for only $10 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



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