Walmart Bass Fishing League - Regional
LAKE SHASTA (Oct. 25-27, 2001)
REDDING, Calif. — LeRoy Bertolero of El Macero, Calif., topped 53 competitors from two Wal-Mart Bass Fishing League divisions this weekend on Lake Shasta to win a Mercury- or Yamaha-powered Ranger 518 VX boat with GARMIN electronics, Minn Kota trolling motor and EverStart batteries.
Bertolero caught five bass weighing 8 pounds, 6 ounces Saturday to win the regional's $30,000 first-place prize package in the Boater Division. He also earned a $1,000 bonus from Ranger Boats as the highest finishing participant in the Ranger Cup incentive program and qualified for the Wal-Mart BFL All-American May 29-June 1. On opening day, Bertolero landed five bass weighing 8 pounds, 2 ounces. He then added five more bass weighing 8 pounds, 15 ounces Friday to advance to the final round in third place. Most of his bass, he says, were caught using a shad-colored super spook and zipper worm.
Rounding out the top four boaters were Richard Bennett of Grass Valley, Calif., with five bass weighing 8 pounds, 2 ounces worth $3,500; Greg Guttierrez of Red Bluff, Calif., with five bass weighing 7 pounds worth $2,000; and Michael Bennett of Grass Valley with five bass weighing 6 pounds, 3 ounces worth $1,500.
Jesse Hoover of San Leandro, Calif., took first place and a Mercury- or Yamaha-powered Ranger boat in the Co-angler Division with a final-round catch of five bass weighing 9 pounds, 12 ounces. He advanced to the final round in fourth place after catching 10 bass weighing 14 pounds, 1 ounce during the first two days of competition.
Rounding out the top four co-anglers were Dink Mendez of Campbell, Calif., with five bass weighing 8 pounds worth $1,750; Tyler Brinks of Henderson, Nev., with five bass weighing 7 pounds, 12 ounces worth $1,000; and Fletcher West of Fort Mohave, Ariz., with five bass weighing 6 pounds, 2 ounces worth $750.
Anglers from the Western and Colorado River divisions covering lakes in California, Arizona and Nevada qualified for the regional by placing in the top 30 in points standings after five qualifying events. The top four boaters and co-anglers from the regional will advance to the All-American along with the top eight boaters and co-anglers from five other regional championships. Six additional boaters and co-anglers will advance from the Chevy Trucks Wild Card regional on Kentucky Lake Nov. 2-3.
The Wild Card is open to anglers who entered all five qualifying events in their region but who did not otherwise qualify for post-season competition. A total of 50 boater and 50 co-anglers will compete in the All-American for top awards of $100,000 cash in the Boater Division and $50,000 cash in the Co-angler Division. At the All-American, Ranger Boats will also award a new Ranger 518VX Comanche boat to the highest placing boater participating in the Ranger Cup incentive program.
More than $5.7 million could be awarded across 22 BFL divisions nationwide during the 2001 season based on full fields at each tournament.