Picture courtesy of James Overstreet with B.A.S.S. Jasper Engines and Transmissions Pro Angler, Chad Morgenthaler, almost passed up his opportunity for a “Golden Ticket” to fish the 2014 Bassmaster Classic. He debated the merits of fishing the Bassmaster Classic Wild Card on Lake Okeechobee in Florida, until he finally decided to make the commitment with one day to spare. Good thing. Chad won the tournament with 15 fish and a total of 63 pounds, 13 ounces. This was Chad’s first win on the Bassmaster Tournament Trail and it also secured his opportunity to fish in the 2014 Bassmaster Classic, his fourth Classic. Chad’s indecision came from the existing financial commitment he had made to the Elite Series for 2014. In the end, he called sponsor, Jasper Engines and Transmissions, who agreed to pay his entry fee. “We have a great relationship with Chad and place a good deal of faith in his abilities and decision making”, said Tom Schrader, VP of Marketing and Strategic Development for JASPER. “We didn’t have to think too hard about paying Chad’s fee when we received the call”, he added. Chad is, as one can imagine, on “Cloud 9” after his win and has been busy answering congratulatory calls, emails and Facebook postings. “The whole situation is still, to this day, so surreal. I just can’t believe that it fell together the way that it did", he said. “I always thought my first win would come on Lake Okeechobee and for it to be coupled with a berth in the Classic made it even more special. Without JASPER’s help, simply going to the event would not have been possible for me. This win is as much for them as it is for me”, he added.