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GENERAL TIRE MAKING A SPLASH IN PRO BASS FISHING

GENERAL TIRE MAKING A SPLASH IN PRO BASS FISHING
• Sponsoring Four Bassmaster Elite Series Pro Anglers
• Partnering with FLW and the Bassmaster Elite Series
• Continuing Sponsorship of Major League Fishing

FORT MILL, S.C. – (February 24, 2016) General Tire wants to be a known brand among professional bass anglers and fans of the ever-growing sport of bass fishing. In an effort to accomplish that goal, the tire brand has created an aggressive strategy that includes the sponsorship of four top pro anglers on the Bassmaster Elite Series, partnering with B.A.S.S., Fishing League Worldwide (FLW) and Major League Fishing (MLF).

General Tire is joining forces with the 2009 Bassmaster Classic champion and the 2007 Toyota Bassmaster Angler of the Year, Skeet Reese. The Auburn, California resident will prominently feature the General Tire brand on his eye-catching Ford F650, on his signature bright yellow Ranger boat and in the center of his tournament jersey.

“I'm really excited to be working with such a respected company like General Tire,” stated Skeet Reese. “They’ll be a great asset to our sport and will help expose fishing to a whole new consumer.” “I look forward to sharing General Tire’s message with our loyal bass fishing fans,” said Reese.

Joining Reese on the General Tire roster is 10-time B.A.S.S. winner and three time runner up to the coveted Angler of the Year award, Edwin Evers. The Talala, Oklahoma native will feature the General Tire brand on his Nitro boat, his Toyota Tundra and on his tournament jersey.

"I couldn't be more excited to be with a company who is going to be so involved with fishing,” said Edwin Evers. “They have made a big commitment to support bass fishing and I am looking forward to our partnership together.” “I've been a customer of General Tire through the years and can confidently say that they make a great tire," revealed Evers.

Both anglers will be featured in new television and print advertising campaigns for the brand. The powerhouse anglers of Reese and Evers will be joined by fellow Bassmaster Elite Series anglers John Crews and Britt Myers who both were part of General Tire’s entry into pro angler support in 2015. Crews, of Salem, Virginia; has eight Bassmaster Classic appearances and a win in the always tough Bassmaster Elite Series. Myers of Lake Wylie, S.C. is a regular on the Bassmaster Elite Series and also owns and operates CS Motorsports which customizes the trucks of many of the pro anglers who compete on tour.

To complement the pro angler support, General Tire will join B.A.S.S. as a media partner that will feature print ads in both Bassmaster magazine and B.A.S.S. Times in addition to television commercials on ESPN2 and ESPN Classic. The partnership will also allow General Tire to activate at four Bassmaster Elite Series events on the 2016 schedule.

“We applaud General Tire for selecting four of the top-performing professional anglers on the Bassmaster Elite Series to represent the brand,” said Bruce Akin, B.A.S.S. CEO. “And we’re thrilled that the company is reaching out to its potential customers through our Elite Series events, which recorded an average attendance of nearly 20,000 per tournament in 2015.”

To be sure General Tire is plugged into all corners of the pro bass fishing world, they will also join Fishing League Worldwide (FLW) as an ‘Official Sponsor.” As part of their package, General Tire will become the presenting sponsor of all Walmart FLW Tour event take-off ramps that will feature signage and an inflatable arch located near each boat ramp on the tour. The tire brand will also have a branded boat participating in each Walmart FLW Tour event, hospitality and activation opportunities along with television commercials within each broadcast.

“We’re excited to announce our partnership with General Tire and welcome them to the FLW family,” said FLW president of marketing, Trish Blake. “FLW’s members and fans are among the most loyal consumers available and General Tire will now have access to the hundreds of thousands of anglers that we reach each month.”

General Tire will also continue their role as the exclusive tire sponsor of Major League Fishing that they began in 2013. The tire brand will remain as the title sponsor of the General Tire Summit Cup, support the Summit Selects, offer a branded boat in each event and be featured in television commercials.

"General Tire has been a fantastic partner of MLF and as we have grown, General Tire immediately responded and has grown with us," stated Jim Wilburn general manager of Major League Fishing.

“We are thrilled to have these opportunities to get more involved in the sport of bass fishing,” said Travis Roffler, director of marketing for General Tire. “Our family of products fit perfectly with the needs of bass fishing enthusiasts and we are elated to have these relationships in place to help us connect with them.”

For more information or to locate a tire dealer, visit GeneralTire.com.

Tell us about your fishing adventures @GeneralTire using #AnywhereIsPossible

About B.A.S.S.
B.A.S.S. is the worldwide authority on bass fishing and keeper of the culture of the sport. Headquartered in Birmingham, Ala., the 500,000-member organization’s fully integrated media platforms include the industry’s leading magazines (Bassmaster and B.A.S.S. Times), website (Bassmaster.com), television show (The Bassmasters on ESPN2), social media programs and events. For more than 45 years, B.A.S.S. has been dedicated to access, conservation and youth fishing.

The Bassmaster Tournament Trail includes the most prestigious events at each level of competition, including the Bassmaster Elite Series, Bass Pro Shops Bassmaster Open Series, B.A.S.S. Nation, Carhartt Bassmaster College Series presented by Bass Pro Shops, Costa Bassmaster High School Series, Toyota Bonus Bucks Bassmaster Team Championship and the ultimate celebration of competitive fishing, the GEICO Bassmaster Classic presented by GoPro.

About FLW
FLW is the world’s largest tournament-fishing organization, providing anglers of all skill levels the opportunity to compete for millions in prize money in 2016 across five tournament circuits. Headquartered in Benton, Kentucky, with offices in Minneapolis, FLW conducts more than 235 bass-fishing tournaments annually across the United States and sanctions tournaments in Canada, China, Mexico and South Korea. FLW tournament fishing can be seen on the Emmy-nominated “FLW" television show, broadcast to more than 564 million households worldwide, while FLW Bass Fishing magazine delivers cutting-edge tips from top pros. For more information visit FLWFishing.com and follow FLW at Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, YouTube and Periscope: @FLWFishing.
About Major League Fishing Major League Fishing is a partnership that includes some of the world’s most talented influential professional bass anglers and Outdoor Channel. For more information about the new game with new rules and no limits, visit www.majorleaguefishing.com.
About General Tire
For 100 years General Tire has offered a complete quality line of ultra-high performance, passenger, light truck, off-road and commercial tires to meet all your needs. General Tire is a proud supporter of ARCA; Best in the Desert Racing Series; Major League Fishing; King of the Cage; Lucas Oil – Off Road Racing Series, Late Model Dirt Series, Pro Pulling League, Modified Series, Drag Boat Racing Series and ASCS Sprint Car Dirt Series; Expedition Overland; FreestyleMx.com Tour; Zero One Odyssey; and Spec Tire of JeepSpeed. Team GT supports athletes: CJ Hutchins, Jim Beaver, Jeff Proctor, Chase Motorsports, Doug Fortin, Jim Riley, Camburg Racing, Lee Banning Sr., Bryan Folks, Jerett Brooks, Carl Renezeder and Stan Shelton.
About Continental AG
Continental develops intelligent technologies for transporting people and their goods. As a reliable partner, the international automotive supplier, tire manufacturer, and industrial partner provides sustainable, safe, comfortable, individual, and affordable solutions. In 2014, the corporation generated sales of approximately €34.5 billion with its five divisions, Chassis & Safety, Interior, Powertrain, Tire, and ContiTech. Continental currently employs more than 208,000 people in 53 countries.

For media information, visit www.ctamedia.com.

FISH WITH EDWIN EVERS

FISH WITH EDWIN EVERS You could win a fishing trip with Bassmaster Elite Series champion Edwin Evers, a Nitro/Mercury bass boat and Edwin’s gear!

Classic lessons learned

When you think about it, tournament bass fishing can be one of the most frustrating sports in the world. Most of our casts go untouched. Even the best anglers only win a very small percentage of the tournaments they enter, and it’s easy to get fixated on the stuff that goes wrong rather than on the things that go right.

It would be easy to fall into a very negative outlook about such things, but I try hard to be positive and to think that all of the things that don’t work out are really just endless opportunities to learn. If you don't take that approach, it could drive you crazy.

In 2013, the GEICO Bassmaster Classic was on Grand Lake O’ the Cherokees (just as it is this year). It was the closest the Classic had ever come to my home in Oklahoma, and I had high expectations for myself. I truly thought it could be “my tournament to win.”

I finished 25th – inside the cut, but well out of contention. It was very disappointing, but I learned a lot and hope to use what I learned to help me have a much better Classic in 2016 … maybe even win it.

MEDIA
I think my biggest surprise in 2013 was the amount of media coverage and the media demands that were placed on me because I was fishing close to home and wound up on a lot of people’s short lists to do well. The attention was flattering, but it was also extremely distracting and took up a lot of time.

I know what to expect this year, and I can’t let the media attention take my eyes off the ball again.

FAMILY
Anyone who knows me knows how important my family is to me. In 2013, because the Classic was here in Oklahoma where a lot of my family lives, I had aunts, uncles, cousins, in-laws and a lot of other people near and dear to me converging on the event. Many of them had never been to a bass tournament before. Lots of them stayed at our home. During practice and even during competition I tried to have dinner with them and spend time with them. It was actually a lot of fun for me.

But do you know how tough it is to get a party of 18 or 20 seated at a restaurant for dinner? Do you know how much time that takes or how much time it takes away from tournament preparation … in the Bassmaster Classic?!

And that doesn’t even factor in the pressure I felt to do well and make a good showing in front of my family. I didn’t want to disappoint them. It’s not often they all gather to watch a tournament. The least I could do is win, right?

Well, this year I hope that everyone understands I won't be able to join them for dinner – at least not during competition. I’m thrilled that family is coming out for me and supporting me, but I’ll do them a lot prouder if I can treat the Classic like a regular tournament and save the family reunion for our regular summertime get together.

PREPARATION

Who's in the 2016 Classic?

2016 GEICO Bassmaster Classic will kick off at the BOK Center in Tulsa, OK.

Day on the Lake with Edwin Evers

Bassmaster’s reality series puts Edwin Evers to the test on a small lake with seven hours to locate and catch bass. This is the veteran pro’s second “Day on the Lake” — during his first outing on May 4, 2004, Evers overcame unusually severe cold front conditions to boat five bass weighing 13 pounds, 11 ounces. Here’s what happened on Sept. 2, 2014. If you’re among the legions of anglers who find the summer/fall transitional period a particularly tough time of year to catch bass, what follows should prove enlightening. 7:35 a.m. Shortly after launching on Lake H, Bassmaster Elite Series pro Edwin Evers hooks a small bass on a square bill crankbait.

http://www.bassmaster.com/slideshow/2016-elite-series-schedule

The 2016 Elite Series travels familiar roads and a few new ones for the 2016 season. Here's a look at where you can find the best fishermen in the world next year.

Kelly Bostian: Tragedy, triumph in Edwin Evers' New York event illustrates best of the outdoors

A veteran's heroism, a child's death and a professional angler's pursuit illustrate the worst and the best of life and fishing.

Evers marks history with win

With his win at the Evan Williams Bourbon Bassmaster Elite Series event on the St Lawrence River, Edwin Evers reached a pair of historic milestones.

For one, he became the first angler in the history of the Elite Series to win back-to-back tournaments. In 87 events, it had never happened before, though a few anglers — notably Aaron Martens, Derek Remitz and Kevin VanDam — came close.

For another, Evers claimed his 10th career B.A.S.S. victory, a double-digit milestone that only Kevin VanDam (with 20), Roland Martin (19), Denny Brauer (17), Rick Clunn (14) and Larry Nixon (13) have reached.

Undeniably the most accomplished angler in B.A.S.S. history who has yet to win a major title (Toyota Bassmaster Angler of the Year or the GEICO Bassmaster Classic), in 2007 Evers became the youngest ever to earn $1 million in B.A.S.S. prize money (his record was broken by Casey Ashley earlier this year), and he's the only angler ever to win B.A.S.S. events with catches of all largemouth bass (several times), all smallmouth bass (Lake Erie in 2007 and the St. Lawrence River in 2015) and all spotted bass (Alabama River in 2013).

But we're not talking about a guy who's fading into the sunset. At 40 years old, Evers is in his prime.

Evers doubles down

Confidence means a lot to a tournament bass fisherman, and Oklahoma pro Edwin Evers said his was sagging a bit after a couple of tough events earlier this year. A win last month at BASSfest made Evers feel much better — and with a renewed sense of confidence, he went out and claimed his second victory in a row in this week’s Evan Williams Bourbon Bassmaster Elite at St. Lawrence River. With a four-day total of 77 pounds, 10 ounces, Evers became the first angler to win back-to-back events in the 10-year history of the Elite Series. He cemented the victory with a Sunday catch of five smallmouth bass that weighed 17-8. Evers said the victory at BASSfest — and the automatic berth into the GEICO Bassmaster Classic that came with it — played a major role in his New York strategy. “Last time we were here, I went upriver every day,” said Evers, who chalked up his 10th career B.A.S.S. victory at Waddington. “But I didn’t think I could win there. I felt like this year coming back, everybody was going to try to go that way and get as close as they possibly could to where Brandon Palaniuk won the last time we were here (in 2013). So I went the other direction, and it was hard.” Evers said he fished extremely long days during practice, taking advantage of a northern sun that often stays out from 5 a.m. to almost 10 p.m. But despite the long hours, he only got seven bites the first day of practice, four the second day and seven the third day. He said he stuck with his decision, partly because his Classic berth is already in the bag. “It made it a lot easier to do what I did this week, because I was not getting many bites,” Evers said.

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