Lavictoire Wins BFL on Lake Champlain
Jun 23rd, 2008 by OutdoorsFIRST
Modified Jun 23rd, 2008 at 12:00 AM
PLATTSBURGH, N.Y. (June 23, 2008) – Boater Thomas Lavictoire Jr. of West Rutland, Vt., won the Wal-Mart Bass Fishing League® Empire Division tournament on Lake Champlain Saturday with a five-bass catch weighing 18 pounds, 9 ounces. The victory earned Lavictoire $3,407 plus a $601 Ranger contingency bonus and placed him one step closer to qualifying for the Albemarle Sound Regional Championship in Elizabeth City, N.C., Oct. 9-11, where he could ultimately win a new 198VX Ranger boat and a Chevy truck.
Lavictoire caught his fish near Mallets Bay on tubes and a drop-shot. He focused on bass that were spawning on beds.
Rounding out the top five boaters are Eugene Gagner of Highgate Center, Vt. (five bass, 17-15, $2,005); Mike Kozell of Lancaster, N.Y. (five bass, 17-00, $1,336); Raymond Gratton of Swanton, Vt. (five bass, 16-12, $935) and Dana Perrotte of Winooski, Vt. (five bass, 16-08, $802).
Gagner took home the Boater Division Snickers Big Bass award, earning $550 for a 4-pound, 15-ounce bass he caught on a Senko.
James Morgan of Barre, Vt., earned $2,005 as the co-angler winner Saturday thanks to five bass weighing 15 pounds, 3 ounces that he caught near Rouses Point on a Senko and spinnerbait.
Rounding out the top five co-anglers are Michael Fairchild of New Hampton, N.Y. (five bass, 13-14, $835); Larry Lafaver of Watertown, N.Y. (five bass, 13-14, $835); Herb Brown of Fryeburg, Maine (five bass, 13-13, $434) and William Wood of Montoursville, Pa. (five bass, 13-13, $434).
Morgan earned $365 as the co-angler Big Bass winner after catching a 5-pound bass he caught in 8-15 feet of water on a Senko.
Empire Division anglers will visit 1000 Islands in Clayton, N.Y., July 12 for their second regular-season event. The division’s third qualifying event will be held on Lake Chautauqua in Bemus Point, N.Y., Aug. 2. Oneida Lake in Brewerton, N.Y., will host the division’s fourth event. A two-day Super Tournament, the division’s fifth and final event, will be held on Lake Champlain in Plattsburgh, N.Y., Sept. 20-21.
Following the end of regular-season competition, the top 40 boaters and 40 co-anglers based on year-end points standings in the division will advance to the no-entry-fee Albemarle Sound Regional Championship where they will compete against top qualifiers from three other BFL divisions. At the Regional Championship boaters will fish for a new Ranger boat and Chevy truck and co-anglers will fish for a new Ranger boat. The top six boaters and top six co-anglers at the Regional Championship will also advance to the All-American presented by Chevy. With a total purse of $1 million, a potential $140,000 cash prize going to the winning boater and as much as $70,000 going to the winning co-angler, the All-American is one of the most prestigious and lucrative events in bass fishing. The winning boater and winning co-angler at the All-American also advance to the no-entry-fee $2 million Forrest Wood Cup. This event, featuring a top award of $1 million, is the sport’s biggest championship.
The $8.8 million Wal-Mart Bass Fishing League features 28 divisions nationwide. In BFL competition, boaters and co-anglers are randomly paired. Boaters supply the boat and fish from the front deck against other boaters while co-anglers compete from the back deck against other co-anglers.
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.
Total awards are based on a full field of 200 boats in every tournament.