When you compete in a catfish tournament with 192 boats a 16th place finish is just not bad at all. It is even better, however, when your team includes the top youth in the event. The Monsters on the Ohio catfish tournament took place on Oct. 8, in Owensboro, KY. When all was said and done, 15-year-old Bryer Blakley had earned the title of Top Finishing Youth.
“We finished 16th out of 192 boats,” said Richie Blakley. a prostaff angler with Warrior Cat Rods and a proud dad. “Bryer got Top Finishing Youth. He was very surprised. He was very excited and honored. Bryer has always loved catfishing, but this award definitely gave him a shot in the arm.”
A couple days later Bryer was still excited. “I’ve never seen him so motivated about the sport since he got that award,” continued Richie. “It’s all he’s talked about. He is asking what are we are going to do next, and that makes me very happy.”
Conversations at the Blakley house now include future tournaments. “He never really talked about upcoming tournaments,” offered Richie. “Now all I’m hearing is stuff like how he can’t wait for the Winter Blues tournament and the JKV Paul Strouth Memorial Tournament on Wheeler. We’ve always talked fishing, but he hasn’t really talked future tournaments. That tells me he’s really excited about it.”
“I couldn’t have been more proud,” concluded Richie. “The award is definitely something that we will never forget, for sure. He’s been my partner ever since we started tournament Catfishing six years ago. I just couldn’t be more proud of him.”
Bryer received a custom rod to commemorate his honor. The rod came from Lyle Stokes at Blackhorse Custom Rods. It is a one of a kind rod with the words “Monsters on the Ohio, 2016” and “High Placing Youth” emblazoned on the blank. It will definitely help Bryer remember his accomplishment.
Richie and Bryer both wanted to thank Aaron Wheatley and his crew for their hard work and an outstandingly ran tournament. “Thank you to our awesome sponsors, Warrior Cat Rods and Elite Rod Holders for your support and your awesome products,” said Richie.