UPCOMING EVENT: TOYOTA SERIES - 2020 - Lake Cumberland

Why I Chose FLW

Why I Chose FLW
Richard Dunham

Hi everyone. My name is Richard Dunham, but most people know me as Dicky D. I currently live in Palm Harbor Florida where I work for the Folsom Corporation, one of the largest fishing distributors in the country. In 2020 I am fishing as a boater in the Southern Division of the FLW Series.

I still remember the first time I won a tournament. I guess that’s something most people don’t forget. It was a seven-boat tournament that my college club hosted on Crab Orchard Lake near Carbondale Illinois. I hadn’t had a bite all day. With twenty minutes left to go, I made the decision to run to a bank that had some matted bank grass. It was a gutsy decision as it only left me a few precious minutes to fish. I took my time, positioned the boat to make the right cast, and fired my bait into the heart of the thickest mat. I still get a jolt of adrenaline thinking about how hard that bass hit my lure. That lone 5-pounder was enough to take the win on a brutally tough day. Even after fishing for 25 years, my passion for the competition has never faded.

My passion for tournament angling has led to a career in the fishing industry. For the last fifteen years, I have worked in a variety of positions. Most of that time has been working for the country’s largest fishing distributors. I have been able to completely immerse my life in fishing. I literally live and breathe fishing. My personal goal has always been to help people become more successful at catching more fish.

I have also been fortunate enough to participate in just about every level of tournament fishing. I have competed in just about every college series, I was a boater and co-angler in the Phoenix Bass Fishing League (BFL), a boater in the B.A.S.S. Opens, a boater and co-angler in the FLW Series and a co-angler on the FLW Tour. Except for fishing the highest levels as a boater, I’ve just about done it all over the last fifteen years.

My career has moved me all over the eastern half of the country. These moves have given me the opportunity to spend time on some of the country’s most storied lakes. These lakes include Lanier, Erie, Guntersville, the Harris Chain, Hartwell, Kissimmee, Logan Martin, Kentucky Lake, Okeechobee and many more. Each career move has allowed me to study these different types of lakes, observe the habits of different species of fish, learn new techniques, and gain valuable lessons about how to adapt.

Today I want to talk about why, after fishing so many different tournaments, I’ve decided to come back to fish the FLW Series.

A couple months ago, FLW announced a lot of changes to the 2020 FLW Series that favor the angler. Among other things, they lowered entry fees (for both boaters and co-anglers), added three divisions (from five to eight divisions in 2020) and increased the payouts at the championship.

For most of us at the Series level, we do not make our living from fishing. While you can make money fishing the FLW Series, it is meant to be a stepping stone on the way to the FLW Pro Circuit and MLF Bass Pro Tour. By lowering entry fees, FLW has taken some of the financial burden off of my shoulders. At the same time, payouts are still as strong as ever with the boater of each regular season event leaving with $40,000.

The addition of the three new divisions keeps tournaments closer to home. The tournament series I fished in 2019 required 5,600 miles of travel just to get to the events. That is over 80 hours behind the wheel. In 2020 I will travel 1,200 miles, which works out to about 20 hours of driving. TOTAL! Staying closer to home keeps costs down, allows for more practice time, and reduces wear on my truck and trailer.

Finally, and best of all I think, FLW increased the prize for winning the FLW Series Championship to $200,000! The top 25 anglers from each of the eight divisions will qualify for this event. This will be the largest payout that most of us will ever fish for. Additionally, FLW is also paying the top finisher from each division another $10,000. In total, the championship is going to pay out over a half a million dollars.

Today anglers are fortunate to have choices where they can fish. Lower entry fees, less travel, and bigger opportunities made my decision to fish the 2020 FLW Series a no-brainer.

I look forward to bringing you all along with me in 2020, as well as bringing you some insight into what it is like to work inside of the fishing industry.

Tags: florida  -st-johns  -okeechobee  richard-dunham  blog 

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