CELEBRATION, Fla. The Mercury Marine Women's Bassmaster Tour presented by Triton Boats comes to famed Lake Guntersville May 3-5 for a pivotal tournament in the 2007 season.
The third of five tournaments on the nation's premier women's circuit, this Alabama contest is pivotal in two lucrative races the Toyota Tundra WBT Angler of the Year and qualification for the 2008 WBT Championship. Also at stake in this tournament for the winner is a fully rigged Triton/Mercury rig valued at $50,000.
At 69,100 acres, Guntersville is the largest lake in the state and the biggest of the four Tennessee River impoundments in Alabama. And if past BASS history is any indication, it could lay out a giant welcome mat for the pros and their co-angler partners.
Alabama WBT pro Kimberlee Striker believes Lake Guntersville will be kind to the female competitors.
"The fishing should be good," said Striker, a veteran angler from Cullman, Ala. "You can't predict Mother Nature, but the bass should be on a good bite when we get there.
"I think they will be at the end of the spawning season and they'll be backing out in a little deeper water."
Striker predicts that the winner will have a three-day, 15-bass total between 50 and 60 pounds.
With spawning over or almost concluded, Striker expects most of the bass to be caught five to 10-feet deep on Texas- and Carolina-rigged soft-plastics, as well as spinnerbaits.
In the Toyota WBT Angler of the Year race, which will reward the top female angler with a Toyota Tundra Double Cab Pickup Truck, early tournament winners Sheri Glasgow of Oklahoma and Texan Juanita Robinson hold the top two spots. Reigning WBT Championship winner Pam Martin-Wells of Georgia is third, followed by Missouri's Lynda Gessner and Secret York of Kentucky. The remainder of the top-12 includes: Penny Berryman, Ark., two-time WBT winner Dianna Clark, Tenn., Christie Thomas, Ala., Patti Campbell, Texas, Christiana Bradley, Va., Debra Hengst, Texas , and Tammy Richardson, Ark.
The daily weigh-ins take place at Lake Guntersville State Park at.3 p.m. Anglers launch beginning at 7 a.m.
The remainder of the WBT schedule: Kentucky Lake, June 14-16; and Red River, Sept. 20-22.