HOT SPRINGS, Ark. – Diet Mt. Dew pro Jason Christie of Park Hill, Okla., crossed the stage with a five-bass limit weighing 13 pounds, 6 ounces for a two-day total of 10 bass weighing 31-7 to lead day two of the Forrest Wood Cup presented by Walmart on Lake Ouachita. Christie now holds a 12-ounce lead over National Guard pro Scott Martin of Clewiston, Fla., who weighed five bass weighing 11-9 for a two-day total of 10 bass for 30-11 in a tournament featuring 58 of the world’s best professional bass anglers.
“Today started off good,” said Christie, who is competing in his third consecutive Forrest Wood Cup. “I caught three in the first hour and that kind of settled me down. I’ve got a rule right now where I stay in a certain area until I catch five.
“I had my five at 9 o’clock,” Christie added. “Then I started moving. I actually caught more fish today than I did yesterday, but they weren’t as big.”
Christie said he caught 12 keepers during the course of the day and indicated the conditions on the first day of competition were better suited for fishing Ouachita’s clear waters. He said he’s fishing shallow and moving down the bank covering water and flipping whenever the opportunity presents itself.
“I’m just taking off with the trolling motor, and I’ll fish all the way through an area and then pull up and go somewhere else,” Christie said. “I actually fished a place today and went back an hour later and there were fish there that weren’t there an hour earlier. I think they just cruise around and travel. You’ve just got to hit them in the head.”
Martin, who led the first day of competition, slipped to second place Friday but said he remains confident about his chances in the tournament. Martin’s co-angler, Jeffrey Cummins, caught 17-11 out of the back of the boat Friday.
“Today was a little tougher for me,” Martin said. “I’ve been fortunate to win tournaments, and winning’s never easy. You always have to overcome things.
“It did prove to me that my pattern’s working, so I’m looking forward to tomorrow, hopefully making the top 10 and winning this tournament,” Martin added. “Winning is everything in this event, and I feel like I’ve got a good game plan.”
Rounding out the top 10 pros after day one on Lake Ouachita are:
3rd: EverStart pro Randall Tharp, Gardendale, Ala., 10 bass, 29-1
4th: Andy Morgan, Dayton, Tenn., nine bass, 28-11
5th: Cody Meyer, Grass Valley, Calif., 10 bass, 27-3
6th: National Guard pro Mark Rose, Marion, Ark., 10 bass, 27-1
7th: National Guard pro Brent Ehrler, Redlands, Calif., 10 bass, 26-15
8th: Andy Montgomery, Grover, N.C., 10 bass, 26-13
9th: Jacob Wheeler, Indianapolis, Ind., 10 bass, 26-12
10th: Brandon Coulter, Knoxville, Tenn., 10 bass, 26-0
Rounding out the top 20 pros are:
11th: Chevy pro Luke Clausen, Spokane, Wash., 10 bass, 25-11
12th: EverStart pro Ron Shuffield, Bismarck, Ark., 10 bass, 24-8
13th: Chevy pro Jay Yelas, Corvallis, Ore., seven bass, 24-6
14th: Duracell/Gillette pro Jacob Powroznik, Prince George, Va., 10 bass, 24-6
15th: Todd Auten, Lake Wylie, S.C., 10 bass, 24-4
16th: Jon Strelic, El Cajon, Calif., 10 bass, 24-3
17th: Castrol pro David Dudley, Lynchburg, Va., 10 bass, 24-2
18th: National Guard pro Justin Lucas, Guntersville, Ala., 10 bass, 23-10
19th: Robbie Dodson, Harrison, Ark., eight bass, 23-9
20th: Shane Long, Sarcoxie, Mo., 10 bass, 23-3
Overall there were 228 bass weighing 508 pounds, 8 ounces caught by 57 pros Friday. The catch included 34 five-bass limits.
The second day of competition marks the cut to the top 20 pros and co-anglers. Pros are competing for the title of Forrest Wood Cup champion, the most prestigious award in professional bass fishing, as well as a top award of up to $600,000 — the sport’s biggest award. Co-anglers are competing for up to $60,000.
Mike Helton of Jeffersonville, Ind., leads the Co-angler Division with nine bass weighing 21-11 followed by Spencer Shuffield of Bismarck, Ark., in second place with eight bass weighing 21-4.
Rounding out the top 10 co-anglers are:
3rd: Chris Hults, Vancleave, Miss., 10 bass, 20-9
4th: Jeffrey Cummins, Marion, Ohio, six bass, 20-1
5th: Patrick Stines, Granger, Ind., seven bass, 20-0
6th: Paul Mueller, Southbury, Conn., eight bass, 19-6
7th: Shane Winchester, Glasgow, Ky., seven bass, 18-5
8th: Matthew Nadeau, Grass Valley, Calif., six bass, 17-0
9th: Dakota Lucy, Hot Springs, Ark., eight bass, 16-15
10th: Guy Williams, Menifee, Calif., eight bass, 16-5
Rounding out the top 20 co-anglers are:
11th: Patrick Bone, Cleveland, Ga., eight bass, 14-14
12th: Matt Hults, Gautier, Miss., eight bass, 14-3
13th: Ralph Myhlhousen, Council Bluffs, Iowa, eight bass, 13-15
14th: Ben Due, Mauston, Wis., seven bass, 13-12
15th: George Kapiton, Inverness, Fla., six bass, 13-1
16th: J.R. Wright, Truckee, Calif., seven bass, 12-6
17th: Rich Dalbey, Greenville, Texas, six bass, 12-2
18th: Ralph Mulleins, Cumberland, Va., six bass, 11-15
19th: Nick Hensley, Cumming, Ga., four bass, 11-7
20th: Mike McDonald, Randleman, N.C., five bass, 10-15
Overall there were 120 bass weighing 252 pounds, 3 ounces caught by 53 co-anglers Friday. The catch included five five-bass limits.
Anglers will take off from Brady Mountain Resort & Marina located at 4120 Brady Mountain Rd. in Royal, Ark., at 6:30 each morning. Daily weigh-ins will be held at Summit Arena & Hot Springs Convention Center located at 134 Convention Blvd. in Hot Springs beginning at 5 p.m.
Fans will be treated to the FLW Outdoors Expo at the Summit Arena & Hot Springs Convention Center prior to the final weigh-ins on Saturday and Sunday from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. The first 1,500 kids 14 and under on Sunday will receive a free Zebco rod and reel combo compliments of US97. Fans can also register to win a fully rigged Ranger Z520 courtesy of the Arkansas Democrat Gazette which will be given away following the final weigh-in. The Expo includes Ranger boat simulators, the opportunity to interact with professional anglers, enjoy interactive games, activities and giveaways provided by sponsors, and fans can learn more about the sport of fishing and other outdoor activities. All activities are free and open to the public.
Coverage of the 2011 Forrest Wood Cup will be broadcast in high-definition (HD) on VERSUS. “FLW Outdoors” will air Sept. 25 from 1 to 2 p.m. ET. “FLW Outdoors,” hosted by Jason Harper, is broadcast to more than 500 million households worldwide.
For regular updates, photos, tournament news and more, follow FLW Outdoors on Facebook at Facebook.com/FLWFishing and on Twitter at Twitter.com/FLWOutdoors.
ABOUT FLW OUTDOORS
FLW Outdoors is the best in fishing, on and off the water. Anglers worldwide can compete for millions over the course of 191 tournaments in 2011. FLW Outdoors has taken fishing mainstream with the world’s richest fantasy sports game, FLW Fantasy Fishing presented by Straight Talk, where competitors can play for free as well as sign up for Player’s Advantage to gain an edge. For more information about FLW Outdoors and FLW Fantasy Fishing, visit FLWOutdoors.com or FantasyFishing.com.