Day One launch on Okeechobee

49 anglers take off in hopes of capturing the final spot in the 2014 Bassmaster Classic.

Gary Clouse rigs up before the Day One launch of the Bassmaster Classic Wild Card presented by Star Tron on Florida’s Lake Okeechobee.
Photo: James Overstreet - Gary Clouse rigs up before the Day One launch of the Bassmaster Classic Wild Card presented by Star Tron on Florida’s Lake Okeechobee.
Chad Morgenthaler straps his rods down in preparation for the Day One launch.
Photo: James Overstreet - Chad Morgenthaler straps his rods down in preparation for the Day One launch.
Britt Myers uses his Rigid Industries to light the deck of his boat.
Photo: James Overstreet - Britt Myers uses his Rigid Industries to light the deck of his boat.
Anglers begin to line the shoreline of the launch area.
Photo: James Overstreet - Anglers begin to line the shoreline of the launch area.
Shaye Baker and J. Todd Tucker visit before the launch time.
Photo: James Overstreet - Shaye Baker and J. Todd Tucker visit before the launch time.
Jeff Kriet is one of several Elite Series anglers fishing the Wild Card.
Photo: James Overstreet - Jeff Kriet is one of several Elite Series anglers fishing the Wild Card.
Heavy punching weights like this one held by Russ Lane will be a popular option this week on Okeechobee.
Photo: James Overstreet - Heavy punching weights like this one held by Russ Lane will be a popular option this week on Okeechobee.
Boats stage for the morning take-off.
Photo: James Overstreet - Boats stage for the morning take-off.
J. Todd Tucker pulls his rods from the rod locker in preparation for Day One.
Photo: James Overstreet - J. Todd Tucker pulls his rods from the rod locker in preparation for Day One.
Kelly Jordon prepares his tackle.
Photo: James Overstreet - Kelly Jordon prepares his tackle.
49 anglers will do battle in the Bassmaster Classic Wild Card.
Photo: James Overstreet - 49 anglers will do battle in the Bassmaster Classic Wild Card.
 Family and fans took photos of their favorite competitors.
Photo: James Overstreet - Family and fans took photos of their favorite competitors.
Florida’s Arnie Lane, brother of Elite Series pros Bobby and Chris Lane, is one of the local favorites.
Photo: James Overstreet - Florida’s Arnie Lane, brother of Elite Series pros Bobby and Chris Lane, is one of the local favorites.
Florida’s Shaw Grigsby was all smiles as he waited for launch time.
Photo: James Overstreet - Florida’s Shaw Grigsby was all smiles as he waited for launch time.
Elite Series pro Jeff Kriet.
Photo: James Overstreet - Elite Series pro Jeff Kriet.
Legendary B.A.S.S. angler Roland Martin is in the field of 49 competitors.
Photo: James Overstreet - Legendary B.A.S.S. angler Roland Martin is in the field of 49 competitors.
Chris Bowes calls the first flight for take-off.
Photo: James Overstreet - Chris Bowes calls the first flight for take-off.
Anglers begin to stage for blast off.
Photo: James Overstreet - Anglers begin to stage for blast off.
Elite Series pro Dave Smith was one of the last boats to leave the launch area on Day One.
Photo: James Overstreet - Elite Series pro Dave Smith was one of the last boats to leave the launch area on Day One.
Elite Series pro and Florida native Cliff Prince has a lot of experience fishing Lake Okeechobee.
Photo: James Overstreet - Elite Series pro and Florida native Cliff Prince has a lot of experience fishing Lake Okeechobee.