Fishing & Boating News


Sept. 24 program to conclude with crowning of co-angler champion

(Sep. 15, 2006 - Minneapolis, MN) After six qualifying events, 48 of the world's top professional bass anglers traveled to Birmingham, Ala., to square off in head-to-head competition on Logan Martin Lake for a chance at winning $500,000 in their sport's crowning event, the Wal-Mart FLW Tour Championship, presented by Castrol. "FLW Outdoors" will chronicle the championship in two parts, the first airing Sunday, Sept. 24 on FSN. Anglers from 28 states and Japan qualified for the championship after competing in six events stretching from Lake Okeechobee in Florida to Lake Champlain in New York. Qualifiers were seeded according to their Land O'Lakes Angler of the Year rankings and competed in bracket-style competition where No. 1 fished against No. 48, No. 2 against No. 47, No. 3 against No. 46, etc. Despite winning the 2006 AOY award and earning his second $100,000 check at Lake Murray this year, Anthony Gagliardi sent a message that he's not content to rest on his laurels. The Prosperity, S.C., native caught a limit weighing 15 pounds, 12 ounces on day one of the championship to lead all anglers. Watch as FSN takes closer look at the Folgers pro as he discusses what it's like being compared to the elite of professional bass fishing. FSN will also air a segment on what was loosely termed the "Arkansas Bracket." One of the most intriguing brackets of the 2006 FLW Tour Championship included George Cochran and Rob Kilby of Hot Springs, Ark., Larry Nixon of Bee Branch, Ark., and Glenn Browne of Ocala, Fla. Cochran, the Wal-Mart pro who won $500,000 as last year's championship winner, will square off against his best friend Nixon, one of the true legends of the sport. The winner of that opening-round match up goes on to compete against Kilby. In addition, Fujifilm pro Randy Blaukat of Lamar, Mo., participates in this week's edition of Fishing 101. Blaukat, who has earned over $485,000 in his FLW Outdoors career, shows the proper way to skip a lure under a dock. Prior to the FLW Tour Championship, the National Guard Junior World Championship was held in Gadsden, Ala., on Lake Neely Henry featuring 60 anglers from 32 participating TBF chapters. The junior anglers were paired with an FLW Tour pro for one day of competition with three anglers to a boat: one junior angler from each age group plus an FLW Tour pro, who ran the boat and mentored the anglers but was not allowed to fish. Josh Wagy of Dewitt, Va., and Johnathan Jones of Chickasha, Okla., finished as the winners, each earning a $5,000 college scholarship plus sponsor prize packages of more than $800 from Castrol, Lowrance and Yamaha. Wagy won the 15 to 18 age bracket with five bass weighing 15 pounds while Jones won the 11 to 14 age bracket with three bass weighing 9 pounds, 6 ounces. FSN is the industry leader in providing the most up-to-date technology in TV production. FSN puts viewers in the boats with the pros, shadowing them from sunrise until the final weigh-in using innovative camera work that gives fishing fans an intimate viewing experience. FSN broadcasts "FLW Outdoors" Sundays from 11 a.m. to noon ET . FLW Outdoors also provides an online show guide listing upcoming events on "FLW Outdoors." During each tournament show, "FLW Outdoors" hosts Charlie Evans and Keith Lebowitz appear on location and provide on-the-water coverage. "FLW Outdoors" is tape-delayed to bring audiences nationwide the best tournament footage possible throughout the season. FSN reaches more than 81 million homes through its network of 20 regional sports channels. Established in 1996, FSN is the only cable network that supplies national, regional and local sports programming. FSN serves as the cable TV home to 62 of the 82 MLB, NHL and NBA teams based in the United States, and produces over 4,500 live events each year. FSN has an extensive catalog of original national programs, including "Best Damn Sports Show Period" and "Beyond the Glory" documentary series, along with national packages of collegiate sports. Based in Los Angeles, FSN is part of the vast FOX Sports television family. For the latest up-to-the-minute sports news and opinions, visit the FOX Sports/FSN website at "FLW Outdoors" is also broadcast internationally to more than 350 million households in such countries as Germany, China, South Africa, Australia, Malaysia, Russia, Hungary and the United Kingdom, making it the most widely distributed weekly outdoor-sports television show in the world. Additionally, FLW Outdoors is proud to provide tournament coverage to more than 800,000 service men and women stationed around the world in 177 countries and aboard Navy ships through broadcasts on the American Forces Network. Named after the legendary founder of Ranger Boats, Forrest L. Wood, FLW Outdoors administers the Wal-Mart FLW Tour, Wal-Mart FLW Series, Stren Series, Wal-Mart Bass Fishing League, Wal-Mart Texas Tournament Trail presented by Abu Garcia, Stratos Owners' Tournament Trail, Wal-Mart FLW Walleye Tour, Wal-Mart FLW Walleye League, Wal-Mart FLW Kingfish Tour, Wal-Mart FLW Kingfish Series, Wal-Mart FLW Redfish Series and Wal-Mart FLW Striper Series. These circuits offer combined purses exceeding $37.9 million through 249 events in 2006. Wal-Mart and many of America's largest and most-respected companies support FLW Outdoors and its tournament trails. Wal-Mart signed on as an FLW Outdoors sponsor in 1997 and today is the world's leading supporter of tournament fishing. For more information about FLW Outdoors and its tournament programs, call (270) 252-1000.