The Royal Palm Bassmasters held its end-of-the-year classic fishing tournament Nov. 10 and 11 on Lake Okeechobee, out of Belle Glade. The tournament is a team tournament, but individual weight is used to determine the Classic Champion for those who qualified.
First place was awarded to the team of Rick Eaton (boater), with 10 fish weighing 16 lbs., 5 oz. and partner Mike O’Connor (co-angler), with 10 fish weighing 13 lbs, 8 oz., for a team weight of 29 lbs., 13 oz.
Second place was awarded to the team of Herman Parker (boater), with 10 fish weighing 13 lbs., 12 oz. and partner Bill Latham (co-angler), with 10 fish weighing 14 lbs., 4 oz., for a team weight of 28 lbs.
Third place was awarded to the team of Larry Payne (boater), with 10 fish weighing 18 lbs., 14 oz. and partner Phil Northrop (co-angler), with seven fish weighing 8 lbs., 1 oz., for a team weight of 26 lbs., 15 oz.
The Big Fish on the first day of the tournament was caught by Chris Schultz, with a bass weighing 3 lbs., 2 oz. The Big Fish on the second day was caught by Larry Payne and weighed 4 lbs., 5 oz.
Twelve members qualified for the chance to be crowned Classic Champion. The individual weights over two days of fishing for each qualifier were totaled for the following results: Classic Champion – Larry Payne, 18 lbs., 14 oz.; second place – Rick Eaton, 16 lbs., 5 oz.; and third place – Ed Singleton, 15 lbs., 2 oz.
Above: Rick Eaton and Mike O’Connor