UPCOMING EVENT: TOYOTA SERIES - 2020 - Ft. Gibson

Nelson Wins ROY

Nelson Wins ROY
Ron Nelson

Ron Nelson blanked on the first day of his first FLW Tour event. Then he got things on track – so on track that he finished the season ninth overall in the standings and above every other rookie to earn the Polaris FLW Tour Rookie of the Year award. Winning ROY is typically a career-setting accomplishment, and to go with the hardware Nelson will also receive a Polaris Sportsman® 570 ATV.

“Rayburn was an upside-down disaster the first day,” says Nelson. “I had trolling motor issues, I struggled, and I kinda panicked. I said ‘Hey, if you can fall off the horse and get back on, that’s how you show some grit.’

“Day two, I fished the same area and caught 16 pounds and a hundred fish in two hours,” says Nelson. “It would have been the easiest paycheck spot, and I just had to re-group mentally.”

After finishing 120th at Rayburn to start the season, Nelson righted the ship in a big way. Making the cut and finishing 23rd at Toho was his first taste of success on Tour. From there, he earned a check at Seminole, finished 74th at Grand Lake, and then ripped off three straight cuts to end the season.

“Chickamauga was a blast,” says Nelson. “I made a lot of mistakes and lost a lot of fish and still had a chance to win.”

Ron Nelson

Nelson has qualified for the Tour in each of the five years he’s fished the Costa FLW Series Northern Division, so it was no surprise to see him do well. However, he entered into the Tour season finale at Champlain with legitimate expectations on him – he’d won the last two
Costa FLW Series events on Champlain.

“I knew coming into Champlain it wasn’t quite right,” says Nelson. “The region of the lake I like to fish wasn’t firing. But I’m happy to make the cut, even though I knew I didn’t have a chance to win it.”

Still, even though Nelson is on the sidelines for the final day at Champlain, it doesn’t mean he’s dissatisfied. A Rookie of the Year award is nothing to sneeze at, and $57,000 in earnings and an FLW Cup berth have made the year an unqualified success.

“The goal was to have a shot at Rookie of the Year and be consistent,” says Nelson. “The way I started off the season I thought I might not make the Cup. But you’ve just got to be consistent and keep your chin up and where the chips fall are where they fall.

“I love FLW, I love all the staff; I feel real blessed to be a part of it,” says Nelson. “I don’t want to sustain myself fishing the Tour paying for everything out of pocket, that’s not good for my retirement, but there are a lot of good guys on the circuit and I love the competition.

“It was a fun year, it was challenging, but fun.”

With any luck, there will be many more like it.

Ron Nelson

Tags: jody-white  headline-story  2019-06-27-lake-champlain 

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