Weimer and Wafford win Bass Champs Central Region Season Opener on Travis and $20,000
|By: Patty Lenderman|
|Bass Champs Central Region kicked off their 2018 season February 3rd on Lake Travis. Chilly and windy weather conditions set the scene for 193 teams to compete for a portion of this 106% payback event. Gary Weimer and Jeremiah Wafford reeled in the winnings taking 1st place and the guaranteed $20,000 purse.While the morning started out on the chilly side with some light drizzle, the temperatures continued to rise as the moist conditions dried by mid morning. These teams were prepared with their spots picked out, and several teams brought in sacks weighing over twenty pounds.
For the winners Gary Weimer and Jeremiah Wafford, their day could not have gone better. “We had about fifteen spots targeted after practicing for four days before the tournament,” Gary explained. “During practice, we averaged about 18 pounds per day. The Saturday before the tournament we even landed an 11.77# bass!” They targeted boat docks near deep water with jigs, and their first cast needed an 8.41 pounder – what a way to start the day. Two casts later, they caught another chunk about 7 ½ lbs. After that they moved to their next spot and put their third fish in the boat. “We weren’t catching a lot of fish, but the ones we did catch were good quality.” They wrapped up a limit in their third spot. “We had all of the fish we weighed by 10am. We broke off one big one, but never culled all day.” Their limit weighed in at 27.56 lbs, the top weight of the tournament. In their 18 years of fishing Bass Champs tournaments, they have cashed many checks. This was their first 1st place win, receiving the $20,000 purse. “We would like to thank the Good Lord for watching out for us and blessing us. We would also like to thank our wives, kids, family and friends for their encouragement.”
Not too far behind in weight were the 2nd place winners Tony Ferdinando and Shane Logan, having 26.02 lbs. Tony explained “We ran to the lower end of the lake where we had probably twenty different spots picked out.” Using jigs, jigging spoons and Carolina rigs they targeted deep ledges. “The first five fish we had in the live well probably weighed about 16 pounds. We hit a few points with Alabama rigs and caught some, but ended up culling all of those. We just hit all of our spots, then started over and hit them again.” Tony landed their kicker, weighing in at 8.52 lbs and winning Big Bass of the day. They were awarded $4,500 for their 2nd place finish, $500 for Big Bass, then Amphibia added another $250 to their day for earning their bonus.
3rd place was taken by Lee Beuershausen and Randy Grounds. “We had a good morning bite,” Randy reported. They started out on a point with a ledge in 15’-25’ using a Carolina rigged Zoom lizard. They put a limit together, including their kicker weighing in at 7.46 lbs. “After that we went to another ten spots by docks, and culled a few times. We only caught about eight keepers throughout the day. Our last cull was at 2:30, gaining another half pound. They were awarded $3,500 for their 3rd place finish, then Skeeter Boats doubled those winnings for being the highest finishing team in a qualified Skeeter Boat. They also won the Sportsman’s Auto Bonus, plus they took home the Lowrance bonus money. Their day on the water paid off more than $10,000!
Rounding out the top five includes (4th) 19.71 lbs, Weston Brown & David Doonan, winning $2,400 plus another $1,000 from the Sportsman’s Auto Bonus. (5th) 19.25 lbs, Byron Albrecht & Michael Johnson for $2,000.
All total 26 teams earned checks, the final $600 went to Daniel & Adrian Barnes with 13.63 lbs.
There’s never a dull moment at Bass Champs – next stop will be Lake Falcon as the South Region starts their season February 10. Remember – all regular season events are open to anyone who would like a chance to fish for BIG winnings! Whether you can fish one or fish them all, come join the fun!
Remaining regular season team schedule: