Stage is set for Future Pro Tour's Berryessa Opener

The climax to an awesome season came to a head last November with the crowning of Future Pro Tour champions Phil Hart and Mike Johnson, the best amateur team in the west. Fighting the odds and battling an average of 133 teams per event, these two anglers, new to tournament fishing, accomplished no small feat in 'winning it all' at the year end finale.

But that was then and this is now. And while Phil and Mike certainly deserve all respect and honor due them, it?s now time for those that want their 'day in the sun' to dust off those rods and prepare for a new season of exciting competition on what has become the largest and most exciting amateur bass fishing circuit in the west!

The Future Pro Tour, presented by People's Folsom Lake/Stockton Chrysler-Jeep-Nissan-Isuzu-Hyundai dealerships, is an amateur level team circuit that offers a great opportunity to learn the basics of competitive bass fishing, meet lots of great people, and just have fun. Our goal simply put, is to provide a venue in which entry/amateur level anglers can improve on their bass fishing skills in a friendly yet competitive environment. Requiring only a nominal entry fee, we encourage all participants to share information, and be part of making our events a fun experience for all.

The events are hosted in a team format and feature 2 divisions, Div I (0-90hp) and Div II (91hp and above), where anglers in each division fish for that division?s prize money. At the end of the year, teams with the most points from each division will qualify for the end of year - Future Pro Only - tournament of champions dubbed the Future Pro Tour Classic!

The Tour will kick off its 2005 season on March 12, at beautiful Lake Berryessa nestled deep in the Sonoma costal mountain range. Spanish Flat Resort and Marina, the host for the previous two years events, will be the launch site for an event that is certain to top last years 143-boat affair.

Lake Berryessa warms up much quicker than most lakes in northern California, which brings on a pre-spawn bite in March that is usually no less than phenomenal. Fish will be caught cranking, throwing plastics and jigs, and just about every which way you can think of as the fish begin to move up into the shallows for the pre-spawn feed. To give you an idea about how good the bite is in March, last year, only four teams out of 143, failed to weigh in fish!

This year the Future Pro Tour, presented by People's Folsom Lake/Stockton Chrysler-Jeep-Nissan-Isuzu-Hyundai dealerships, will bring back it's full list of sponsors with a few new companies joining into the mix. One of which will be West Marine Products Inc., the nation's largest specialty retailer of boating supplies and apparel, which will be expanding their assortment of items specific to the bass fishing market, including an updated bass tackle section, the newest in color electronics and mapping, the highest quality foul weather and safety gear as well as maintenance, engine, boat care and bass boat trailer accessories.

This year's 2005 Future Pro Tour Classic will also see its champions take home a fully rigged Ranger boat with Evinrude Outboard, Minnkota trolling motor, and Hummingbird electronics!

Ranger Cup money, up to $7,000, will be back again paying out BIG dollars to those enrolled in the Ranger Cup program, where if you win a Future Pro Tour event and own a Ranger boat, you will receive $1,000 dollars cash! And .if you don't win but are the highest finishing Ranger boat owner you will receive $500 dollars cash!

In addition, you will have the opportunity to win free entries into FLW?' Everstart Series events, qualify for limited sponsorships from major tackle manufactures such as Lamiglas, Lucky Craft, Reaction Innovations, SnagProof, Docwaters and attend informative seminars prior to each event featuring top pros such as the west's all-time money winner Gary Dobyns, 4-time B.A.S.S delta champion Robert Lee, Freshwater fishing Hall of Fame inductee Dee Thomas, seasoned delta pro Tony Franceschi, top delta guide Andy ?Cooch? Cuccia, and the ?Frogmaster? Bobby Barrack just to name a few!

The newly designed Future Pro Tour website is now up and funtional and you can obtain official information on membership, rules, eligibility, and host marinas. With this new site you can even register and pay for an event online!

So don't miss out..there's still time to sign up and enjoy fishing what is sure to be a fun and exciting event!