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Lincoln County’s Brandon Lester has finished his first year of fishing the Bassmaster South Opens.
Lester finished 24th out of a field of 250 anglers in the Angler of the Year points race.
“When I decided to fish the 2012 opens, I knew it was going to be some tough competition,” Lester said. “Most of the guys and girls who fish these tournaments are people like me, whose goal is to one day be a touring professional whose sole income is made with a rod and reel.
“Although I’m proud of my finish this year, I’m not satisfied,” he added. “Professional bass fishing is a very competitive sport, and if one ever gets satisfied, his or her success is bound to go down hill.
“Without the support of my wife, family, friends and sponsors, there is no way I could possibly chase my dream the way I’m doing,” Lester continued. “A lot of dreams came true for me this year, but most of all I proved to myself that I can compete at the top level of the bass fishing world. I’m excited to see what kind of new opportunities await me in the 2013 season.
“Until then I’d like to say thank you to my sponsors, Mercury Outboard and Fredricks Marine in Priceville, Ala.,” he added. “I want to remind everyone to take a kid fishing if you get a chance, because it might be the best thing you could ever do for them.”
For information concerning sponsorships for the 2013 season, contact Lester at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Brandon’s passion and heart for fishing began at the early age of five when his papa and daddy took him fishing for the first time.
“In all honesty, we know God had a plan for Brandon all along,” said his mom, Kim Lester Bentley. “His words, ‘let’s go sishing’, started way before age five.
“Brandon loved to practice his casting by sitting on Nana and Papa’s front porch, casting into a mason jar. One of my favorite memories is of him holding and carrying around one of his first caught fish in a jar. For reasons I don’t have to explain, the fish and smell had to go …”
Fast forward a few years and along came questions of, “Can I have this new rod and reel”, or even bigger, “Can we buy a bass boat?” – “For his dad and me, any dreams we could help make come true for Brandon, we would work hard, trust God, and agree with him to make just that happen,” she continued.
Brandon began fishing local tournaments with his best friend, Robby Crosslin, at age 16, and his passion for fishing only grew stronger with each cast, said his mother. He even allowed his sister, Brooke, to pull in the big ones with him on occasion.
“It’s no surprise to anyone who knows Brandon that his drive, determination and most importantly, his faith, have lead him to living his dream,” she added. “From a mother’s heart, I couldn’t be more proud or happier of and for Brandon, and I know without a doubt I will see him on the Bassmaster Classic stage some day soon. Brandon is an incredible testament to all of us to follow your dreams – they do come true!”