Fishing & Boating News

Chevy Open Coverage Commences August 31

One-hour show to cover final qualifier of $9.5 million Walmart FLW Tour season

by: Jeff McCoy, PR dir, FLW Outdoors

(Aug. 25, 2008 - Minneapolis, MN) Tune in Sunday, August 31, to "FLW Outdoors" on FSN for complete coverage of the Chevy Open on the Detroit River in Detroit, Mich. The $1.5 million tournament awarded the winning bass pro a cash prize of $200,000. The one-hour show is the first of a two-part series covering stop No. 6 on the $9.5 million Walmart FLW Tour. The event, held on the Detroit River and the surrounding waters of Lake Erie and Lake St. Clair, is the final qualifying event of the season, meaning it is a make or break tournament for several anglers trying to reach the $2 million Forrest Wood Cup on Lake Murray in Columbia, S.C. In addition to qualifying for the Forrest Wood Cup, a handful of anglers are competing for the coveted Land O'Lakes Angler of the Year award. The AOY title, which rewards consistency, is given to the pro angler who accumulates the most points during the six qualifying events. Several anglers are still in prime position to capture AOY honors. Before the Chevy Open started, Dayton, Tenn., pro Andy Morgan held the lead with a total of 926 points over five events. But after an incredibly disappointing 175th-place finish after day one, his 24-point buffer may not be enough to bring it home. Next in line with 904 points is Berkley pro Glenn Browne of Ocala, Fla., but amazingly, he had a worse opening day than Morgan, sliding all the way down to 190th. Chevy pro Luke Clausen began the Chevy Open third in the points race and finished a respectable 59th on day one. Shelby, N.C., pro Bryan Thrift is right behind Clausen with 870 points and may be the best-positioned for the AOY win after his 33rd-place day-one effort. Also in contention are Castrol pro David Dudley and National Guard pro Brent Ehrler. Both anglers started the event on the outside looking in, Dudley in fifth and Ehrler in sixth but wild point swings, massive comebacks and huge sacks are part of pro bass fishing. Tune in to see the drama unfold as these talented fishermen duke it out to the end. Along with the title, the winner earns $75,000, including a fully-equipped Ranger boat and $25,000 cash. While the AOY race is looking like a photo finish, the tournament lead is owned by pro David McCrone of Minnetonka, Minn., who has managed a two-day total of 10 bass weighing 42 pounds, 5 ounces. McCrone is an FLW Tour greenhorn with just one previous Tour event under his belt. But when it comes to Lake Erie, he is no beginner. McCrone is originally from Amherst, Ohio, and as a result knows quite a bit about the waters around Sandusky, Huron and Lorain. The last two days he has made 60- and 70-mile runs to the southeast to get back to familiar stomping grounds. The tactic has clearly worked thus far, but high winds and rough seas could instantly force him to alter his plans. Cheez-It pro Alvin Shaw is in second place after catching 20 pounds, 15 ounces on day two, which gives him an opening-round total of 41 pounds, 3 ounces. Shaw is fishing Lake St. Clair and focusing on isolated patches of grass, rock and sand in 12 to 16 feet of water. Interestingly, he found his best places during the calmest days of practice. When the lake is flat, Shaw is meticulously reading his electronics to find precise little areas where the smallmouth bass are holding. To catch those fish, the State Road, N.C., native is using Berkley Gulp leeches and tubes. Third place currently belongs to Chevy pro Kim Stricker, whose two-day weight registered 40 pounds, 2 ounces. The Howell, Mich., angler is fishing shallower than most, in depths of 6 feet and less. Stricker is relying on a weightless soft plastic jerkbait to catch his fish. He's spent most of this time in the St. Clair River system and the jerkbait bite is best when the sun is shining. While Stricker is fishing shallower than most, Pringles Select pro Vic Vatalaro is fishing deeper than most. Also on St. Clair, Vatalaro said he is fishing in the dead center of the lake in 18 feet of water. In the Duracell Angler Spotlight, viewers get an in-depth look at the smallmouth-catching machine from Kent, Ohio. Vatalaro, who has two Stren Series victories on Lake Erie, is on a strong pattern, catching roughly 25 keepers a day by pitching Mizmo tubes to holes and bare spots in grass. In addition, pro Sandy Melvin of Boca Grande, Fla., participates in this edition of Fishing 101. Melvin, an FLW Tour veteran, talks about the importance of wearing a life jacket and what to do if someone accidentally goes overboard. 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 the most intimate viewing experience available. FSN broadcasts "FLW Outdoors" Sunday mornings. Check local listings for show times and channels in your area. The FLWOutdoors website also provides an online guide listing upcoming episodes on "FLW Outdoors." FSN is broadcast to 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 more than 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. FLW Outdoors, named after Forrest L. Wood, the legendary founder of Ranger Boats, is the largest fishing tournament organization in the world. In 2008 alone the organization is offering more than 90,000 anglers the chance to win over $40 million through 230 tournaments in 10 circuits targeting bass, walleye, redfish, kingfish and striped bass. For more information about FLW Outdoors and its tournaments, call (270) 252-1000.