Seelhoff Leads FLW Walleye Tour Championship

Category: Tournament

 Sep 25th, 2008 by OutdoorsFIRST 

Modified Sep 25th, 2008 at 12:00 AM

BISMARCK, N.D. (Sept. 25, 2007) – Pro Ron Seelhoff of Burlington, Colo., and co-angler Del Ringling of Valley, Neb., caught five walleyes weighing 18 pounds, 8 ounces to lead day one of walleye fishing's most lucrative event – the Wal-Mart FLW Walleye Tour Championship – on the Missouri River in Bismarck.

One hundred and eight anglers representing 18 states and Canada are competing for top awards of $150,000 in the Pro Division and $20,000 in the Co-angler Division.

Rounding out the top five pros and co-anglers are Brett King of Claremont, Minn., and Edward Piekutowski of Moorhead, Minn. (five walleyes, 17-15); Ted Takasaki of East Gull Lake, Minn., and Nate Brunz of Madison Lake, Minn. (five walleyes, 17-11); Chris Gilman of Chisago City, Minn., and Chuck Jones of Michigan City, Ind. (five walleyes, 16-12); and Mark Michael of Princeton, Minn., and Darrell Martin of Forest Lake, Minn. (five walleyes, 16-02).

"We had an awesome day," said King, who is only 9-ounces behind first place leader Sheelhoff. "Fishing is tough on the river and you have to make the right decisions."

King turned 12 bites into a second place position at Bismarck

King said that he didn't have a bite until 11:30 this morning and only a total of 12 bites all day. Two main factors that affected his bite were the water levels and the water temperature falling to 62 degrees.

"The first spot I decided to fish was a big fish spot half way down the river about 20 miles," King said. I thought I would stop there since I caught some fish there in practice and that was a mistake. The rest of the boats came through and muddy up the water. After staying there an hour I decided to head south and fish 15 miles from the South Dakota border."

King pulled crawlers and spinners for the first hour of fishing then switched to pulling cranks.

"What I am doing that is a little different from the other anglers is playing with my speed," King said. I am also paying close attention to the current."

Overall, there were 237 fish caught by all 108 anglers with a total weight of 601 pounds, 6 ounces. The catch included 38 five-fish limits.

WWR #1 angler Chis Gilman in fourth after Day One

MacLean Bottoms, Riffle Range, will host daily takeoffs at 7:30 a.m. Daily weigh-ins will be held at the Bismarck Civic Center, located at 315 S. 5th Street., beginning at 4:30 p.m. The community is invited to attend takeoffs and weigh-ins as well as the Family Fun Zone, which opens at 2 p.m. on Friday and noon Saturday. Saturday is free fishing rod and reel day at the Fun Zone, where the first 200 children 14 and under receive a free fishing rod and reel courtesy of 103.3 US Country.

The winning pro at the FLW Walleye Tour Championship is guaranteed a cash award of $100,000. If the winner is a qualifying Ranger or G3 boat owner, he will earn a $25,000 bonus, and if the boat is equipped with a qualifying Evinrude or Yamaha outboard, he will receive another $25,000 bonus for a total cash award of $150,000.

The winning co-angler is guaranteed $10,000 cash and is eligible for a $5,000 bonus from Ranger or G3 if he is a registered owner. The winning co-angler will also receive a $5,000 bonus from Evinrude or Yamaha if his boat is equipped with a qualifying Evinrude or Yamaha outboard.

Pros and co-anglers are randomly paired each day and fish for a combined boat weight. Pros compete against other pros, and co-anglers compete against other co-anglers. The full field competes for two days and then is cut to the top 10 pros and top 10 co-anglers for day three. Anglers in both divisions start from zero on day three, and co-angler competition concludes with the winner determined by the day's heaviest catch. Pros carry their weights over to day four, and the winner is determined by the heaviest accumulated weight from days three and four.  

Tournament anglers aren't the only ones winning big this season. With the introduction of FLW Fantasy Fishing™, FLW Outdoors® offered anyone the opportunity to enter for their chance to land the catch of a lifetime with the opportunity to win $7.3 million in cash and prizes. Players could become a virtual pro angler by signing up for Player's Advantage, which provided them with exclusive insider information that could have guided them to a $100,000 victory at every Walmart FLW Tour® stop and the Forrest Wood Cup. Player's Advantage gave them an edge over the competition and increased their shot for the $1 million cash grand prize awarded to the FLW Fantasy Fishing cumulative points winner. Visit FantasyFishing.com today to find out more information and to register for next season.

Coverage of the FLW Walleye Tour Championship on the Missouri River will be broadcast to 81 million FSN (Fox Sports Net) subscribers in the United States on Nov. 30 as part of the "FLW Outdoors" television program. "FLW Outdoors" is also broadcast in Canada on WFN (World Fishing Network) and to more than 429 million households in the United Kingdom, Europe, Russia, Australia, Africa, Asia, and the Middle East through a distribution agreement with Matchroom Sport, making it the most widely distributed fishing program in the world. The program airs Sunday mornings at 11 Eastern time in most markets. Check local listings for times in your area.

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. FLW Outdoors is also taking fishing mainstream with the largest cash awards in the history of fantasy sports, $7.3 million.

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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