Ultimate Bass

Thompson wins BFL on South Holston Reservoir

Walmart Bass Fishing LeagueBRISTOL, Tenn. (April 20, 2009) – Jim Thompson of Bluff City, Tenn., won the Walmart Bass Fishing League® Volunteer Division tournament on the

Walmart Bass Fishing LeagueBRISTOL, Tenn. (April 20, 2009) – Jim Thompson of Bluff City, Tenn., won the Walmart Bass Fishing League® Volunteer Division tournament on the South Holston Reservoir Saturday with a four-bass catch weighing 17 pounds, 8 ounces. The victory earned Thompson $3,963 and placed him one step closer to qualifying for the Lake Norman Regional Championship in Lake Norman, N.C., Oct. 22-24, where he could ultimately win a new Ranger boat and a Chevy truck.

“I figured out a pattern nobody else had and was catching 20 pounds or so during practice,” said Thompson. “I backed off during the tournament and expected to catch 20-25 pounds.”

Thompson caught his limit throwing a crankbait.

Rounding out the top five boaters are Tim Saylor of Johnson City, Tenn. (3 bass, 13-4, $1,981); Tim Smiley of White Pine, Tenn. (3 bass, 8-15, $1,322); Wayne Coppage of Jonesboro, Tenn. (2 bass, 8-0, $925) and James Richardson of Johnson City, Tenn. (2 bass, 5-14, $793).

Keith Sykes of Clintwood, Va., and Tim Saylor took home the Boater Division Big Bass award, each earning $267 for a 5-pound, 13-ounce bass they caught.

William Kees Jr. of Coalfield, Tenn., earned $1,981 as the co-angler winner Saturday thanks to 1 bass weighing 4 pounds, 8 ounces.

Rounding out the top five co-anglers are Sammy Hurley of London, Ky. (1 bass, 4-7, $991); Brian Stringfield of Clinton, Tenn. (1 bass, 4-3, $662); Larry Minnick of Bristol, Tenn. (1 bass, 3-12, $462); and Adam Hooper of Powder Springs, Tenn. (1 bass, 3-9, $396).

William Kees Jr. earned $267 as the co-angler Big Bass winner after catching a 4-pound, 8-ounce bass.

The next Volunteer Division event will be held on Douglas Lake in Kodak, Tenn., May 9.

The top 40 boaters and 40 co-anglers in each of the BFL’s 28 divisions at the end of the season advance to a no-entry-fee Regional Championship where boaters fish for a new Ranger boat and a Chevy truck and co-anglers fish for a new Ranger boat. Seven regional championships will each send six boaters and six co-anglers to the no-entry-fee Walmart BFL All-American presented by Chevy, which features a $1 million purse and a top award of $140,000 in the Boater Division and $70,000 in the Co-angler Division. 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 $2.5 million Forrest Wood Cup in Atlanta in 2010. 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 $3.5 million. 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.

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. 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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