The Bass Federation - National Championship
Bull Shoals Lake (March 29-31, 2012)
BRANSON, Mo. – Marc Snyder of St. Johns, Mich., recorded a whopping 20-pound, 5-ounce sack to snag the lead on day one of the 2012 Federation National Championship, presented by the National Guard.
Ninety four of North America’s best bass club anglers will continue to battle this week on Bull Shoals Lake, in Flippin, Ark., in an effort to be crowned TBF National Champion. In addition to the title, the TBF national champion in the Boater Division will earn the coveted $100,000 “Living the Dream” prize package, including cash and prizes, fully paid entry fees into the FLW Tour, travel funds and use of a wrapped Ranger Boat and Chevrolet truck for the year.
The 14 division champions will receive automatic berths into the 2012 Walmart BFL All-American. The national champion boater and non-boater will also receive berths in the 2012 Forrest Wood Cup. After Friday’s competition, the final cut will be announced and the top 14 division champions – seven on the boater and non-boater sides – will vie for 2012 Federation National Champion titles.
Snyder, who rose atop the leaderboard with an impressive 20-pound, 5-ounce bag, started out slowly but remained consistently strong all day.
“I caught fish pretty much all day once I started to figure out what they were doing,” Snyder said. “Started out slow; everything was dead on the water until about an hour and a half or so when I caught my first fish.”
By 10:30am, Snyder had four fish in the boat, but not any large fish like the 6-pound beauty he brought in around 11am.
“I just have to figure out where they’re going to be at,” Snyder said. “And I think I can go back tomorrow and catch at least five.”
Snyder has advanced to the Northern Division Championship four times, but this is his first time he’s qualified for nationals.
“If everything works out for me tomorrow, I plan to lay off of them,” he said. “I’d like to catch five, maybe 12 to 15 pounds, then go find something else and go from there.”
“It was just a grind all day,” Webster said. “I caught two keepers pretty early. Later in the afternoon, the fishing got better. The fish are just moving shallow.”
Webster caught seven keepers and culled two.
“I don’t know if I have anything left for tomorrow," said Webster. "I do have some areas I didn’t fish today where I caught some in practice.”
This is Webster’s third trip to the national championship, but the first time he’s been in contention for a title.
“I have not been this close before,” he said. “I just hope more fish show up tomorrow. These fish are all pre-spawn so I hope more pile in and set up and we can catch ‘em. Tomorrow, we’ll just see how it all falls in place.”
The top seven co-angler (or non-boaters) from each division will advance tomorrow to battle for the national title and all that comes with it. The tournament field consists of the top two anglers from 45 states, the top two anglers representing the Canadian Bass Federation, and the two BoatsUS Collegiate National Champions – all of whom competed at local, state and regional qualifiers to advance to the national contest. For most, the road to nationals has been a two-year process and, for many, it’s taken several years of federation fishing to finally make it this far.
Friday’s take-off is scheduled to take place at 7 a.m. at Bull Shoals Lake Boat Dock. Weigh-in begins at 3pm.
Take offs and weigh-ins are free to the public.
For a complete list of results in the Boater Division, click here.
For a complete list of results in the Co-angler Division, click here.