Paul Castellano and Taro Murata Win Big at 2014 Bass Pro Shops Lake Simcoe Open!
For Immediate Release: Oct 22, 2014
Orillia, Ontario Canada: 63 boats and 126 anglers fishing as two person teams blasted off on the relatively calm waters of Lake Couchiching October 18th to compete in Canada’s premier one day bass tournament. All teams would strive to find, catch and ultimately bring back in their livewells the heaviest five bass that they possibly could - but only the winners would take home the guaranteed $10,000 cash payout. Everyone was aware that winds would be the deciding factor and as the strong breeze shifted from the Southwest to Northwest those northerly gusts would force some teams to turn around and call it a day before it ever really started.
Yes the 2014 BPS Lake Simcoe was like so many before it – where hard core tournament anglers battle wind and weather to see who comes out on top. Fish an area on Lake Simcoe where you can cope ... and maintain enough control to catch the trophy sized smallmouth this lake is renowned for – and you might just reap the glory. Fail to do so – and you don’t have a prayer. But for the newly crowned champions of Paul Castellano and Taro Murata their prayers were answered when their waters were not only fishable (barely) but even more importantly their big bass cooperated. Paul and Taro ended up with 24.10 pounds of smallmouth to take home that $10 grand plus an additional $2,000 for the Minn Kota/Humminbird contingency award and $500 from Shimano. Both men are experienced fishing guides. Paul from the Niagara Region and Taro out of Toronto.
Paul Castellano and Taro Murata
Finishing within a hairs breath from victory, the Barrie Bassmasters team of Pat Campbell and Matt Holland slammed a pile of big bass and their heaviest five tipped the scales at an even 24 pounds. For their efforts and a 2nd place finish, they took home a $4,000 cheque.
The Bass Pro Shops Lake Simcoe Open, hosted by the Aurora Bassmasters capitalizes on one of the world’s finest smallmouth fisheries. As good as Orillia’s Couchiching is ... Simcoe is bigger and so too are it’s smallmouth bass. In 2010, the winning team of Mark Moran and Joey Muszynski set the all time Canadian record with an incredible 31.5 pounds worth of smallmouth bass. Unfortunately for them ... in 2014 their primary destination was simply unfishable and they had to turn back before even making a cast. During that same BPS Lake Simcoe Open event, a Canadian tournament record 8.05 smallmouth bass was also weighed in. This year’s event did not see one quite as big, but 3rd place finishers Ben Sabourin and Glenn Thompson who weighed in 19.75 had a 6.30lb smallmouth that won overall big fish. They received $2,000 for 3rd and $1,100 for the heaviest single bass.
As title sponsor Bass Pro Shops lends their their marketing expertise to partner with the Aurora Bassmaster volunteers to host this event. Platinum sponsors Jack Links Beef Jerky and BoaterExam.com are long time sponsors and were a big player once again in 2014. Shimano supplied their live release boat and in water weigh-in system. Additionally, they kicked in $500 if a member of the winning team wore a G Loomis hat and a $500 Gift card for the team just out of the money. Product sponsors included Berkley, Rapala, Set the Hook and Lake Fork Tackle. Mustang provided four floater suits for the early bird prize which was won by the team of Bruce White and Steve Huber as well as Pete Garnier and George Saliba.
Together with staff from Bass Pro Shops and the many volunteers from the Aurora Bassmasters everything ran smoothly from morning blast off and throughout the weigh in. This year’s weigh-in ceremonies were MC’d again by BIG JIM McLaughlin who did an outstanding job entertaining the crowd and anglers. Additionally, we’d like to thank the Competitive Sport Fishing League (CSFL), led by Andy Pallotta and his wife Vita for their expertise, logistical support and tournament equipment. Both anglers and tournament organizers always love coming to the fish-friendly community of Orillia and appreciate their excellent no charge launching and parking facilities. A key figure who helped with so much of the behind the scenes work in Orillia was Doug Bunker of the Orillia Chamber of Commerce.
For more information or to see photos of the BPS Lake Simcoe Open, please visit www.aurorabass.com
2014 BASS PRO SHOPS LAKE SIMCOE OPEN TOP 25 TEAMS
|Angler & Co-Angler
|Paul Castellano / Taro Murata
|MINN KOTA HUMMINBIRD, 2,000
|Patrick Campbell / Mathew Holland
|Ben Sabourin / Glenn Thompson
|BIG FISH 1,100
|Simon Frost / Melanie Frost
|Derek Strub / Mike DesForges
|Carl Linker / Mike Linzmajer
|Chris Vandermeer / Wes Roffey
|John Sheilds / Shawn Grim
|Kirk Sullivan / Kevin Sullivan
|Greg Klatt / George Schneide
|Frank Rotundo / Roy Leuzzi
|Jason Clay / Matt Belzil
|SPLIT SHIMANO FIRST OUT, 250
|Russ Watkins / Gary Miller
|SPLIT SHIMANO FIRST OUT, 250
|Peter Savoia / Scott Murison
|John Whyte / Bob Izumi
|Dave Johnson / Drew Sokolowski
|Mike Reid / Brian Gardy
|Gerry Heels / Wil Wegman
|Brian Milne / Greg Gilson
|Ryan Johnson / Callum Johnson
|Bill Walker / Kal Vaisenen
|Alex Campbell / Todd Currie
|Jim Venizelakos / Joe Cutajar
|Pete Garnier / George Saliba
|Harold Nesbitt / Amy Nesbitt
Mustang Floater Suits: Bruce White, Stevehuber, Pete Garnier, George Saliba