BASS Reporter’s Notebook: Thanks, Dad, For Fishing; Bassmaster Northern Open Angler Salutes His Father

Category: press release

 Apr 21st, 2009 by OutdoorsFIRST 

Modified Apr 21st, 2009 at 12:00 AM

Last week was special for Jamie Worth in two ways: He competed in his first professional-level BASS tournament, and he shared the experience with his father, Hugh Worth.

Hugh Worth Jr. and grandson, Hugh Worth IV(Photo Courtesy of BASS)

It gave the father and son some rare time together. Hugh lives in Chelmsford, Mass., while Jamie recently moved from New England to Erie, Pa., so they don’t see each other as much.

Both longtime BASS Federation Nation anglers, Jamie persuaded his father to join him on the Chesapeake Bay for the debut of the 2009 Bassmaster Northern Open presented by Oakley. Hugh entered as a co-angler and Jamie as a pro in the April 16-18 tournament.

From the Bassmaster weigh-in stage on Day Two, Jamie thanked his father for making fishing part of his life. Later, he explained why.

“His reasons for fishing have been to cultivate new friendships, to teach people how to fish, to bring new people into the sport,” Jamie said. “The beautiful thing about him is he has gotten more people into fishing without asking for or receiving any recognition for it.”

Jamie said his father founded the first BASS club in New England. His father is now a member of the Chelmsford Bass Club, which he helped found in 1989, when it was known as Bass Tacklers.

“My father has taken a lot of the new guys in the club under his wing and taught them how to fish, showed them what lures to use, taken them to stores, told them what to buy, even loaned them his 17-foot boat so they can go fishing on their own,” Jamie said. “He’s a competitive person – he’ll try to whip butt in tournaments – but when he’s out fishing for fun, he gets as much from teaching a person how to fish as he gets from winning a tournament.”

Hugh finished in 30th place in the co-angler division of the Northern Open – pretty good, noted Jamie, for a 65-year-old man “kind of living on borrowed time.” His father survived two heart attacks and a stroke when he was 51.

“When he made the cut for the final day, he was like a kid at Christmas. He was so excited about fishing,” Jamie said.

Jamie plans to continue with the Northern Open circuit, despite his disappointing 73rd-place finish in the Chesapeake Bay competition. He said the tour’s other two stops, Lake Champlain in late August and Lake Erie in late September, are more his style. Meanwhile, he’s stepping back from Federation Nation events after competing at that level for years, including qualifying for the 2004 BASS Federation Nation Championship.

“I’m concentrating my efforts on the Opens to try to make the Elite Series,” Jamie said. They might not be together at future Opens, but Jamie said that when he’s fishing, he’ll always be thinking of his father.

“After the tournament was over, he said to me that the time we spent together at the tournament was a time he’s never going to forget, that he’ll always cherish. That was special.”

FAST AND FURIOUS: To milk every minute of competition time, a professional bass angler can drive a boat at speeds of up to 80 mph. To most people, 80 mph in a bass boat is both fast and furious, but in the hands of a skilled pro, boat runs at such speeds are safe and routine.

To professional offshore driver Jeff Stevenson, however, 80 mph is a warm-up. To win in his sport, he must do 200 mph, 190 in a turn. His boat is a catamaran-hull racer designed for such speeds; the engines are twin turbines that produce up to 4,000 horsepower of push.

He’ll appear with his No. 121 JBS Racing Super Cat as part of the festivities surrounding Bassmaster Elite Series events. No. 121 is the same boat with which he and his team won a major race last month in Biloxi, Miss.

While both types of boats are covered with slick graphics, Stevenson’s race boat doesn’t bear much of a resemblance to a bass-fishing boat. No reason it should – they are different tools for different sports. At about 50 feet long, the race boat has a beam of 12 feet and fuel capacity of 345 gallons. A helmsman and a throttleman are needed in the cockpit to steer and control the gas pedal, respectively.

The offshore racing boat, set to appear at a Bassmaster Outdoors Expo in the near future, is one of many displays at Expos slated to provide fans with entertainment and interactive elements. In addition to BASS sponsors, more unique experiences are on tap at the upcoming Advance Auto Parts Blue Ridge Brawl, including a Beer Garden, Fish Ice Cream from local producer Homestead Creamery and Dog Training & Retriever Demos Brought to You by SportDog.

Parkway Marina will host all the activities for the Elite event, including the weigh-ins Thursday-Sunday, which will start at 4 p.m. ET. A full list of activities – all are free – is at Bassmaster.com.

RETURN TO OUACHITA: While this week’s Academy Sports + Outdoors Women’s Bassmaster Tour event on the Ouachita River out of West Monroe, La., is a new stop for the circuit, at least one WBT pro has competed there before in a BASS tournament.

The 2008 Toyota Tundra Women’s Bassmaster Tour Angler of the Year, Kim Bain-Moore of Alabaster, Ala., fished as a co-angler in the 2004 Bassmaster Open Championship on the Ouachita. She finished in 13th place.

Wade Grooms of Bonneau, S.C., by the way, won the co-angler division with a four-day total of 18 pounds, 12 ounces. Since then, both he and Bain-Moore have come up in the world of bass fishing: Bain-Moore is widely known as the first woman to have competed in a Bassmaster Classic; Grooms is a second-year Bassmaster Elite Series pro.

To see how Bain-Moore fares this time on the river, fans can catch the live, streaming video and real-time leaderboard Thursday-Saturday on Bassmaster.com beginning each day at 2:45 p.m. CT. Photo galleries, daily standings and recaps of the competition also will be available daily at Bassmaster.com.

Fans are invited to meet the WBT anglers at the Academy Sports + Outdoors store in West Monroe at 5:30 p.m., Wednesday, April 22.

HOOK UP WITH HOOKED UP: To keep up with the April 23-26 competition at the Advance Auto Parts Blue Ridge Brawl on Smith Mountain Lake, fans can check in at Bassmaster.com daily.

Hooked Up shows are scheduled for Thursday and Friday at noon and 2 p.m. ET; Saturday at 10 a.m., noon and 2 p.m.; and Sunday at 10 a.m. and noon. A final show at 3:30 p.m. Sunday leads in to the finale weigh-in.

ESPN Outdoors personalities Mark Zona and Tommy Sanders host the show, with significant contributions from Bassmaster Elite Series emcee Keith Alan.

Besides the live updates, Bassmaster.com will provide photo galleries, daily results and feature stories surrounding the competition, which includes a $100,000 first-place prize and the awarding of points in the race for the 2009 Toyota Tundra Bassmaster Angler of the Year title. Points also count toward qualifying for the 2010 Bassmaster Classic and 2010 Bassmaster Elite Series.

The 2008 Classic champ, Alton Jones of Waco, Texas, leads the points race going into the Blue Ridge Brawl, the fourth of the regular season’s eight events. He has 813 points. Stephen Browning of Hot Springs, Ark., with 774, is second.

SKEETER EXCLUSIVES: Skeeter Boats, an official boat sponsor of BASS, last week announced three programs exclusive to BASS Federation Nation members.

Federation Nation members are eligible for cash rebates on Skeeter boat purchases through March 2, 2010; a two-year Yamaha Extended Service contract on qualified Skeeter/Yamaha boat packages; and up to $3,000 in incentive rewards for winning a Skeeter-sanctioned tournament.

Should an angler who owns a Skeeter win the 2009 BASS Federation Nation Championship, Skeeter will award that person a $50,000 cash. And, for the Federation Nation member who runs a Skeeter and wins the Bassmaster Classic, Skeeter offers a $100,000 bonus.

For terms of the programs, Federation Nation members should contact their club, a Skeeter dealer or go to http://www.skeeterboats.com.

WHY WE KEEP ON KEEPING ON: “I’ve been fishing competitively for 10 years and it feels great to be able to say I’m a champion now.” – Dave Mansue of Robbinsville, N.J., as quoted on Bassmaster.com after winning the Bassmaster Northern Open

About BASS

For more than 40 years, BASS has served as the authority on bass fishing. With its considerable multimedia platforms and expansive tournament trail, BASS is guided by its mission to serve all fishing fans. Through its industry-leading publications Bassmaster Magazine, BASS Times and Fishing Tackle Retailer and comprehensive Web properties in ESPN360.com, ESPN’s broadband sports network, Bassmaster.com, BASSInsider.com and ESPNOutdoors.com, the organization is committed to delivering content true to the lifestyle. Additionally, television programming on ESPN2 continues to provide relevant content – from tips and techniques to in-depth tournament coverage – to passionate audiences.

The organization oversees the prestigious Bassmaster tournament trail, which includes the Bassmaster Elite Series, Bassmaster Opens, Academy Sports + Outdoors Women’s Bassmaster Tour and the ultimate celebration of competitive fishing, the Bassmaster Classic. Through its grassroots network, the BASS Federation Nation, BASS annually sanctions more than 20,000 events.

BASS also offers an array of services to its more than 500,000 members while spearheading progressive, positive change on issues related to conservation and water access. The organization is headquartered in Celebration, Fla.


More like this