SPRINGFIELD, Mo.  – Lew’s announces that Missouri’s Dennis Berhorst is the first to win the company’s new Speed Fishing Angler of the Year title, and also that it will be offering the awards incentive program again for 2016.

Berhorst earned the inaugural distinction by accumulating the highest number of points through participation in FLW’s 2015 Bass Fishing League (BFL) tournaments. The Holt Summit angler amassed 1,355 points competing in the league’s Ozark Division. The accomplishment earned him a $1,000 gift certificate redeemable for his choice of Lew’s rods, reels and accessories totaling that value.

Bryan Barnard from Harrison, Ark., finished second in the Lew’s AOY race with 1,320 points. He competed in BFL’s Arkie Division. Barnard was awarded a Lew’s Speed Spool and Speed Stick baitcast combo as runner up.

Michael Smith, of Piedmont, S.C., was third with 1,303 points from BFL’s South Carolina Division. He won a Speed Spool baitcast reel as a consolation prize.

The membership-based Lew’s Speed Fishing loyalty program was launched in early 2015 as a way for participating anglers to earn rewards above and beyond the tournaments’ prizes. The popularity of the first-year program is responsible for Lew’s decision to continue it again in 2016.

The Lew’s Speed Fishing program applies to all BFL divisions and tournaments held across the United States. The program provides reward opportunities for the highest member finishing in the Top 20 of a BFL competition. To be eligible, anglers must be a 2016 Speed Fishing Awards member and meet all program criteria, including ownership of Lew’s rods and reels manufactured since 2013. The $29.95 annual membership fee includes a Lew’s cap and decals.

Prize choices for Speed Fishing members who win a BFL tournament are $250 cash or a $500 Lew’s gift certificate. Otherwise, the highest member making any BFL Top 20 has the choice of $125 cash or a $250 Lew’s gift certificate.

The program’s highest honor is the AOY title like Berhorst won and comes with the $1,000 gift certificate top prize.

Online enrollment for the 2016 Lew’s Speed Fishing Awards Incentive Program is open now at www.lews.com. Refer to the Angler Resources section and then click on Rewards Program. The information includes a full description of program rules and frequently asked questions.

Lew’s is an official sponsor of the FLW. Visit www.FLWfishing.com for FLW’s 2016 BFL tournament information.

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