MOUNTAIN HOME, Ark. – Bass Cat pro Andrew Upshaw of Tulsa, Oklahoma, claimed victory in the fifth event of the 2019 FLW Tour season, held at Cherokee Lake in Tennessee. The eighth-year FLW pro totaled 20 bass for 67 pounds 10 ounces over four days, and led every day of the event, holding off a final day charge to win by a little over a pound. He combined sight fishing and a small swimbait to earn his first tour-level victory and $100,000.
Upshaw fished the 2012 Bassmaster Classic as the first collegiate qualifier and has subsequently competed in two Forrest Wood Cups, but said that this “marquee win” marks a new stage in his career. “It’s something that I always felt that I was missing,” he explained. He was particularly proud that he was able to mix up his presentations, and needed the backup swimbait bite to guard against a weather change.
“I feel like I’ve progressed as an angler,” he said. “Early on in my career I’d live and die with one thing. I was often married to fishing a single way. Now I’m able to adapt and go with what I feel.”
He credited his success in large part to his Bass Cat Eyra, the third Eyra he has run on tour, powered by Mercury’s new Pro XS 250 horsepower four-stroke motor.
“It’s one of the smoothest-riding boats out there, and it’s also faster than most others,” he said. “At take-off, particularly on Days One and Two, I was able to get to and from my spots much faster than the competition. That one guy you pass might be the guy who would have stopped on your best bank.”
He also suffered no fish care penalties, which is critical in an era of small margins of victories.
“Those big Bass Cat livewells make a huge difference,” he added. “A bunch of others seem to lose a few fish every year, but I never have any dead fish. I know the exact sequence of how to set my livewells and they never fail me.”
Bass Cat President Rick Pierce expressed pride in Upshaw’s individual achievements as well as his role on the overall pro team: “I met Andrew several years ago as a young angler and I’m pleased with the progression in how he is developing. It takes internal challenges to earn our own respect of our successes and he’s moving to a good position as the sport grows.”
VIDEO: Upshaw’s Winning Fish
VIDEO: Upshaw’s Winning Moment
About Bass Cat: Bass Cat, owned by Correct Craft, manufactures the industry’s premier bass fishing boats from its headquarters in Mountain Home, Arkansas. Family operated since its founding in 1971, Bass Cat is the longest continuously operating tournament bass boat company in the United States. For more information visit www.basscat.com.
About Correct Craft: Celebrating 94 years of excellence in the marine industry, Correct Craft is a Florida-based company with global operations. The Correct Craft family includes Nautique, Centurion, Supreme, Bass Cat, Yar-Craft, SeaArk, and Bryant boat companies, Pleasurecraft Marine Engine Group, Watershed Innovation, and Aktion Parks. For more information please visit www.correctcraft.com.