FLW Outdoors today announced the 2011 FLW American Fishing Series schedule, along with the paybacks and entry fees. Pros will compete for top awards of up to $35,000 and co-anglers will vie for a new Ranger 177TR with a 90-horsepower outboard. If the angler is Ranger Cup-qualified, the pro will also win a new Ranger 198VX with a 200-horsepower outboard and the co-angler will win an additional $5,000.
The AFS will expand to five divisions – Central, Northern, Southeast, Texas and Western – with the new Western Division replacing the FLW Series Western Division. Each division will consist of four qualifying tournaments with the season culminating with a no-entry-fee championship.
“The American Fishing Series is an extremely popular circuit, and we think the changes we’ve made will make it even more popular going forward,” said FLW Outdoors Operations Division president Kathy Fennel.
Here's a look at the schedule for each division:
> March 10-12 -- Lake of the Ozarks -- Osage Beach, Mo.
> March 31-April 2 -- Kentucky Lake -- Gilbertsville, Ky.
> July 14-16 -- Detroit River -- Trenton, Mich.
> Oct. 6-8 -- Table Rock Lake -- Kimberling City, Mo.
> June 23-25 -- Lake Champlain -- Plattsburgh, N.Y.
> July 28-30 -- 1000 Islands -- Clayton, N.Y.
> Aug. 18-20 -- Lake Erie -- Buffalo, N.Y.
> Sept. 29-Oct. 1 -- Potomac River -- Marbury, Md.
> Jan. 6-8 -- Lake Okeechobee -- Okeechobee, Fla.
> Feb. 24-26 -- Lake Guntersville -- Guntersville, Ala.
> April 28-30 -- Lake Eufaula -- Eufaula, Ala.
> June 9-11 -- Pickwick Lake -- Florence, Ala.
> Jan. 20-22 -- Choke Canyon -- Calliham, Texas
> Feb. 10-12 -- Sam Rayburn Reservoir -- Jasper, Texas
> March 17-19 -- Toledo Bend -- Hemphill, Texas
> May 12-14 -- Lake Texoma -- Pottsboro, Texas
> Jan. 13-15 -- Lake Shasta -- Redding, Calif.
> Feb. 17-19 -- Lake Roosevelt -- Payson, Ariz.
> May 5-7 -- California Delta -- Stockton, Calif.
> Sept. 22-24 -- Clear Lake -- Clearlake, Calif.
> Oct. 27-30 -- Kentucky Lake -- Buchanan, Tenn.
Pro entry fees will be $1,000 per tournament and co-angler entry fees will be $400 per tournament, with awards of $1,100 and $450 extending through 50th place, respectively. Anglers can begin registering for the circuit on Tuesday, Oct. 26.
The fields in the qualifying events will consist of 150 boats fishing Thursday and Friday and the top 10 pros and top 10 co-anglers advancing to Saturday. Winners will be determined by total weight from all 3 days.
The no-entry-fee championship will consist of 200 boats – the top 40 pros and co-anglers in points from each division, fishing the first 2 days of competition. The top 20 pros and co-anglers based on total weight from the first 2 days will advance to Saturday, with the co-angler champion being crowned based on total weight from the first 3 days. The top 10 pros will advance to Sunday, and the winner will be determined by total weight from all 4 days.
The winning pro, who could earn $50,000 and a new Ranger boat, and co-angler, who could take home a new Ranger boat plus $5,000, will qualify to compete in the 2012 Forrest Wood Cup.