Auburn Hills, Mich. — The Ram Truck Brand today announced that it has reached an agreement in principle to sponsor professional tournament bass angler Ryan Said.
Said, the 2010 Bassmaster Northern Open points champion, will compete in the 2011 Bassmaster Classic and Bassmaster Elite Series under prominent Ram Truck colors; his boat featuring Ram Truck graphics, pulled behind a Ram Outdoorsman tow vehicle and Said wearing a Ram Truck jersey.
"Bass anglers are passionate about their trucks," said Fred Diaz, Ram Truck Brand President and CEO. "They demand unsurpassed capability and proven reliability. They're also very loyal to their sponsor. The introduction of the new Ram Outdoorsman and Ram's sponsorship of Ryan Said are two of the ways we're sharing our passion for the sport and connecting with anglers like ourselves."
Forty-four percent of Ram 1500 owners and 48 percent of Ram 2500 and 3500 Heavy Duty owners call fishing their top hobby, ranking the sport third among owners' favorite non-work-related truck uses.
Ryan Said is a Wixom, Mich., resident and Chrysler Group engineer who has been tournament fishing for more than 11 years.
Said's season will get underway February 18 - 20, at the prestigious Bassmaster Classic in New Orleans, where 52 of the best anglers in the world will compete on the waters of Louisiana's Mississippi River Delta. This invitation-only event is considered professional fishing's premier event, pays the sport's highest purse and is broadcast live on ESPN2.
The eight-event 2011 Bassmaster Elite Series follows the Classic, and begins March 10 with the Sunshine Showdown on Tavares, Florida's Harris Chain of Lakes. The Elite Series hosts the world's top 100 bass anglers, who earned a spot based on past event wins and qualifying results.
Said will be competing in both the Bassmaster Classic and Elite Series for the first time, and outlined his challenges as a rookie.
"Mostly, it's keeping your head on straight," said Said. "There's glitz, glamour, media and 100,000 fans at the Classic. I need to focus on the fishing, because the competition comes from all over the world and they're absolutely the best anglers you'll ever see.
"I have two goals for 2011," added Said. "The first is to further cement the bond between fishermen and Ram Trucks. Our Ram Outdoorsman and our boat are going to get a lot of attention on the road and on the water. It means a lot to our sport and our fans to have Ram here.
"The second is to finish close enough to the top of the standings to earn a qualifying spot for next year's Bassmaster Elite Series. My stretch goal is to win Rookie of the Year. The series has a very strong rookie field this year with more than 20, several of whom are already full-time pros from other series."
Said is preparing for the 2011 season by hitting the books, re-reading back-issues of Bassmaster Magazine. When he's not doing that, he's got his hands full with tackle and boat preparation.
"For me, there's a lot of new water to cover," said Said. "The conditions down south are different than where I usually fish in the north, so there's new tackle to stock up on."
Said will be conducting four bass fishing seminars during the Ultimate Fishing Show at the Suburban Collection Showplace in Novi, Mich., Jan. 13 (7 p.m.), 14 (7 p.m.), 15 (12:30 p.m.) and 16 (3 p.m.) on the National Bass Anglers Association stage. It will be his first event as a Ram Truck Team Member. He expects to make additional Ram Truck dealer appearances throughout the year.
Said's other sponsors include: Dobyns Rods, Lew's Reels, Minn Kota trolling motors, Humminbird electronics, Poor Boy's Baits and Mike's RX Baits.
He's actively involved in community projects, volunteering his support to American Bass Anglers Fish 'n' Friends youth fishing events, FLW Outdoors College Fishing Tournaments and "Fish with the Pros" Life Line fundraising events.
About the 2011 Ram OutdoorsmanRam Outdoorsman takes all of the features most useful hunters, fishermen, campers and boaters, and packages them into one model. Outdoorsman combines convenience, off-road capability and trailer towing hardware in one package with a name that will resonate among its intended users.
Ram Truck engineers — many of whom count hunting, fishing, boating and camping among their hobbies — brought together what they felt would best meet the practical needs of owners who will frequently use their Ram truck for towing or long, remote trips.
Standard trailer-towing upgrades, interior and exterior lighting enhancements, off-road-oriented tires and underbody protection are combined with a unique exterior appearance to distinguish the new Ram Outdoorsman.
Ram Outdoorsman is available in 1500 (half-ton), 2500 HD (3/4-ton) and 3500 HD single rear wheel (1 ton), Regular Cab; Quad Cab, Crew Cab and Mega Cab; four-wheel drive and two-wheel drive; and short- and long-wheelbase models.
Also available for RamBox equipped Ram Outdoorsman is the Mopar RamBox Holster Rod and Gun Rack.
The Mopar RamBox Holster was designed by Chrysler Group engineers to fit within the Ram's two unique locked, lighted and sealed exterior storage bins. The Mopar RamBox Holster gently, yet securely cradles two rifles or shotguns, or can be rotated 90 degrees to hold up to six fishing rods.
The RamBox Holster is the only rack of its kind and the only one offered by a major automaker.
Additional information and news from Chrysler Group LLC is available at: http://www.media.chrysler.com