Day Two: Notes and quotes


That's just mean

The anglers were not only fishing for themselves on Friday, they were fishing for their observers. The observer in the boat with the angler who caught the biggest fish won a fully rigged Triton Mercury, valued at over $45,000.

Stephen Browning, of Hot Springs, Ark., hooked a big fish early and his observer started to sweat.

"I was tugging on him, but I was having trouble getting him in," Browning said. "I yelled out, 'C'mon baby, my partner needs a new boat!' and my partner yelled back, 'Yes I do!'"

Browning eventually got the fish close enough to the boat and started to pull him in, but not without a little tormenting.

"I lost him," Browning said, looking at his observer in disappointment.

"No you didn't," the observer said back.

Browning then smiled and pulled the 4-pound bass over the side of the boat.

Unfortunately, Browning's bass fell 12 ounces short of Alton Jones' largest pull of the day.

Never let a man do a woman's job

Jimmy Mize, of Ben Lomond, Ark., had trouble out on the river. He made the trek to familiar waters in Pine Bluff both days, bit it didn't leave him enough time to fish.

His wife, Lucy, on the other hand, sat in third after fishing Thursday in the Mercury Marine Women's Bassmaster taking place in Dardenelle, Ark., this week, and she is currently seventh in the Angler of Year race.

"I guess I'm going to have to get her to teach me how to fish," Mize said.

Angel Anglers

Throughout the entire Bassmaster Elite Series season, monetary contributions have been made to local charities, fund-raising organizations, and hospitals. Carol Bailey, the wife of Lee Bailey, and other angler wives stop each angler at the end of every registration process and ask them to dig deep in their pockets for a good cause.

"Up until this event we have collected for local orphanages and children's homes," said Bailey. "We have raised almost $10,000 collectively and we've really helped out in a lot of places that need necessity items such as clothing and food."

Gerald Swindle and Marty Stone are also hitting up each of their fellow competitors to support a good cause. Tommy Quinn from the Dallas, Texas area was paralyzed during a helicopter accident while serving in the Unites States military force. Swindle and Stone have vowed to raise enough money to buy him a couple of acres of land to build a home on.

"This is our chance to give back to the people that have served our country and preserved our freedom," stated Swindle. "We want to get enough land for Tommy to build a house so he and his family can live under the same roof again."