The success of last spring’s FLW Stren Series bass finishing tournament has prompted sponsors and organizers to select Payson and Roosevelt Lake as a host site for one of four 2010 National Guard Western Series Tournaments.
Jim Goughnour, who was instrumental in attracting the FLW to the Rim Country said, “This series tournament is the ‘major league’ of the FLW bass fishing and will be a much larger event than the Stren.”
Fans will notice the Western Series tournament is larger than the Stren at the weigh-in, which will be held, as it was last year, in the Walmart parking lot.
“The event will take up half the lot and every major sponsor of fishing equipment will be there,” Goughnour said.
Among those expected to be on hand are Ranger Boats, Evinrude, Yamaha, Lowrance electronics, Chevrolet trucks and more.
The tournament is to be held Sept. 22 to 25, 2010 at Roosevelt Lake.
The change of tournament dates from the spring to fall, Goughnour said, “happened at the last minute due to some kind of permit issue.”
Goughnour discussed the date change with tournament director Chris Hoover and was told, “a lot of planning went into the date selections and they are timed with other FLW events and tournaments.”
The Roosevelt tournament will be the last in a series of four on the Western Series circuit.
Others will be held Jan. 13 to 16 (Lake Shasta, Calif.), May 5 to 8 (Lake Mead, Ariz.) and June 9-12 (California Delta, Stockton, Calif.).
In the Roosevelt Lake tournament format, a field of 150 pros and 150 co-anglers compete the first three days, with the top five pros advancing to the finals on the last day, Saturday.
The total weight from the first three days will determine the winning co-angler and the total weight from all four days will determine the winning pro.
Anglers will compete for the top prize of $50,000 in the pro division and $10,000 in the co-angler division. Payouts will extend through 50th place.
Among those who have competed on the Western Series in past years is Payson pro Clifford Pirch, who lists the National Guard as one of his major sponsors.
Last spring at the Payson Stren tournament nament he finished second behind his good friend Roy Hawk.
For his runner-up finish he pocketed $8,169 in prize money.
Pirch calls the selection of Payson as a Western Series tournament site a real boon for the Rim Country. “It’ll be the biggest event we’ve ever had and to have a televised tournament is special for Payson and the lake,” he said. “It will also give local fishermen the chance to win some big money.”
The inaugural tournament drew a full field of 250 pros and co-anglers, some of which were local fishermen including Chris Purtee, Chris Perkes, John Pelto, Levi Armstrong, Josh Johnson, Buddy Randall and John Browning.
For more information about the upcoming tournament, log on to FLWOutdoors.com or call (270) 252-1000.