Jenkins and McMillan cash in on the record season of the 2017 Roland Martin Marine Center Series
CLEWISTON, Fla — The stage was set for the Championship of the 2017 Roland Martin Marine Center Series. The record big checks were ready. All the prizes and preparations were in place. The pre-championship banquet presented by ARK Rods had all the teams fueled and ready. It was go time.
Then Mother Nature decided she wanted a say in the matter.
Day one of the Championship was cancelled when sunrise was accompanied with rain, wind and lightning. Tournament Director, Mike Krause made the call — it would be a one-day shootout for the Championship.
On Sunday, the 106 teams launched under clear skies and a brisk wind that made for some chilly runs as the teams dashed to their waypoints wrapped in layers of gore-tex, buffs and high hopes.
The south end of Lake Okeechobee was a popular choice with the wind but still others braved the run to the north. It wouldn’t be until 3 p.m. that the winning pattern would be revealed.
Two by two, the teams made it to the stage at the host Roland Martin Marina with M.C. Chris “Peanut” Brill keeping the crowd entertained. Teams took the hot seat in the Ranger Z520c as the weights started to climb. Then when the final fish was weighed, the team of Frank Jenkins and Brandon McMillan were a pound and a half better than the rest.
“I always love competing here,” McMillan said. “This is where it all started for me I’m always excited to come back here and hang out with friends and fish with my buddies.”
“It’s a heck of a feeling,” echoed Jenkins. “I honestly didn’t think it would happen with the weather and we were so jacked up yesterday to go fishing but the right decision was made and we made the right decision to go out and do what we did today.”
With a record payout of $20,000, the team of Jenkins and McMillan are the 2017 Roland Martin Marine Center Series Champions.
In second place, just a pound and half back were the team of Santos Solis Jr. and Mark Lundgren that collected $7,000. And in third place was the father and son team of Brian Prowant and Brice Prowant that took home $4,000. The U.S. Sugar Big Bass of the tournament went to Dillon McMillan with an 8.45 pound Lake Okeechobee bass.
Season-long consistency was awarded to the team of Jared McMillan and Durand Locke with a season total of 83.69 pounds of Lake Okeechobee bass. As the Team Of The Year, ARK Rods is taking care of all their 2018 RMMC Series entry fees.
All in all, over $51,000 in cash and prizes was awarded to the anglers and fans of the Roland Martin Marine Center Series Championship. As the highest paying Team Tournament Trail in Florida, the RMMC Series continues to reward its anglers with a true 100% Payout. Where do we go from here?
“Honestly, I don’t know,” said Tournament Director, Ramon Iglesias. “But I do know you can be sure we’ll work hard to make it better than the year before. And when the last fish is weighed and we award the big check, you can bet we’re already thinking about how to make next season even better.”
That’s a wrap from Clewiston, FL and the 2017 Roland Martin Marine Center Series. Stay tuned for details on the 2018 season and we wish you all a Happy Holidays and Big Bass in the New Year.