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Date: April 26, 2008
Region: 2008 South Region
Tournament: Lake Falcon
Tournament Trail: 2008 Bass Champs Tournament Trail
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Oldham and Buitron win Bass Champs South Region tournament on Lake Falcon
By: Patty Lenderman

Falcon is pumping out the chunks, and Bass Champs South Region anglers were all over it April 26. The fishing was phenomenal for more than 200 teams – there were ten sacks weighed in over 30 pounds! $55,750 was paid back in cash and prizes to the top 27 teams, and it was Terry Oldham and Jamie Buitron who topped them all with nearly a 40 pound limit!

The wind was howling on Lake Falcon and the skies were overcast with clouds. It was not an easy day to fish, the waves were big and the water was rough most of the day.

Terry Oldham and Jaime Buitron won 1st place with 37.84 pounds. “It started out real slow for us. We just ran around to different spots and fished and fished.” They were using a Zoom Super Fluke and one of Terry’s own baits, a watermelon/copper flake Oldham football head jig. “We were fishing ledges in 20’-30’. We had a limit by around 9am, but it was small.” They picked up a few here and there that helped their creel over the next few hours, but it wasn’t until late in the day when the real action started. “About 30 minutes before it was time for us to come in, the bigger bass started biting. If we had another 30 minutes to fish, we could’ve busted 40 pounds!” They won $20,000 for 1st place plus another $200 from Sure-Life.

John Mills and Scott Burris won 2nd place. “Basically, we went to a spot that Scott has fished for a number of years plus another one real close to it” John explained. It was a point with a little bit of a saddle to it, in 20’-30’. “It was hard to fish there in the morning, but the wind laid down later in the day and we went back to it.” They were also using an Oldham 1 oz football head jig, watermelon with copper flake. “We had a limit in the boat by around 10:30, and put our first big bass in the boat around noon.” At 1:00 they caught their biggest bass of the day, 9.42 pounds. “The bite kept getting better as the day went on.” Their total weight was 34.48 lbs, taking 2nd place overall. Bass Champs presented them with a check for $5,000. They were the highest finishing qualified Skeeter Boat team, so their winnings were doubled with an additional $5,000 check. “We’d like to thank Skeeter and Yamaha, and Oldham Jigs.”

Tim Reneau fished with Judy Churchill and won 3rd place. It was Judy’s very first Bass Champs tournament. Just like the 1st & 2nd place teams, the bite started slow for them. “We found our fish in 20’ at the tops of ledges and patches of rock.” They were also using Oldham jigs, but a different color - green pumpkin with copper flake. “We were fishing in the mid-lake area, and it was rough. We were taking waves over the front of the boat.” After hitting close to 20 different spots and catching one here and one there, they finished the day with 34.06 pounds. “My partner did a great job today” Tim said. Tim and Judy won $3,000.

Rounding out the top 10:
4th $2,000 33.80 lbs JW Lackey & Ron Rickets
5th $1,200 33.72 lbs Travis Owen & Mike Grimes
6th $1,090 33.24 lbs Eugene Fewell Jr & Ronny Perry Sr
7th $1,080 32.32 lbs Vincent Neal & Kyle Rowe
8th $1,070 30.76 lbs Audencio Garza & Gus Escobar
9th $1,055 30.40 lbs Rick Romane & James Bendele
9th $1,055 (tie) 30.40 lbs Roger Slaughter & Carl Ames

There were three double digit bass weighed in. JW Lackey & Ron Rickets caught the biggest of them all weighing 12.10 pounds! They won an additional $1,000 for Big Bass honors.

Bass Champs also offered a “Conservation Bonus”. Anglers where notified as they checked in what the money line was. They were told if they did not have enough weight to potentially earn themselves a check, to go back out in the middle of the lake and release their fish. Any team that took advantage of this bonus would be eligible for a $500 cash bonus. This was a bonus offered by Bass Champs to encourage fish preservation. It worked! Jeff Welch, Vice President of Bass Champs, stated, “This bonus is something we offer in certain situations where the catch rates are extremely high, to help preserve the fishery. Although the results show a lot of zero’s, it was really not the case. I would say that 99% of the teams that show a zero on the results actually had a limit of bass, but chose to release those fish rather than bring them to the scales. I am very proud to say that our anglers did a fantastic job. Although over 2500 pounds of fish were brought to the scales, over 99% were released alive and healthy. Special thanks to the folks at Sure Life industries for producing what we consider to be the best product for ensuring the safe release of bass in the world. During registration all anglers received a complimentary bottle of the “Please Release Me” Formula, and a “how to guide” on the proper way to maintain fish in a tournament situation. The combination of the “conservation bonus”, the use of “Please Release Me” & “Catch & Release” formulas, and the additional education provided by Sure Life owners, Tony and Lane Gergely, we had an extremely high success rate in the releasing of the bass weighed in.”

With only one tournament left to go for the South Region anglers, the Angler of the Year points race is stacking up tight:

707 pts John Mills & Scott Burris
701 pts Derick Kuyrkendall & Forest Wilson
695 pts Felipe De La Garza & Dolores Robles
686 pts Lee Leonard & Michael Bronder
658 pts Scott Gover & Richard Broxton

The last regular team tournament for the South Region will be May 31 on Choke Canyon. Bass Champs next stop will be on Toledo Bend with the East Region May 3. For more information on any Bass Champs tournament, call 817-439-3274 or click to www.basschamps.com
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