Jimmy Lankford Takes Top Spot in PVA Grand National Championship
To: National and Sports desks
Contact: David J. Uchic of Paralyzed Veterans of America,
202-416-7667

WASHINGTON, Feb. 28 /U.S. Newswire/ -- Jimmy Lankford of Henry,
Tenn., took top honors in the 2nd Annual PVA Grand National
Championship, A B.A.S.S. Sanctioned Event. The Grand National
Championship, a premier national bass fishing championship for
people with disabilities, was held Feb. 21-23 in Lake Havasu City,
Ariz.

Presented by the Paralyzed Veterans of America (PVA) and the
Lake Havasu Tourism Bureau, the Grand National Championship
represented the culmination of the 2002 PVA National Bass Trail,
which began in February of 2002. Thirty-five anglers from across
the United States qualified to fish in the Championship; 25 within
an open division and 10 within a bank division. They earned their
way to the Championship as the top finishers in the angler of the
year standings and from the six events of the 2002 PVA National
Bass Trail.

"I've grown up with fishing since childhood, and I have loved
fishing all my life," stated Lankford. "Being able to fish on the
PVA National Bass Trail has been fantastic. And having the
opportunity to compete in and win the Grand National Championship
is unbelievable."

Lankford was a mechanic before incurring his T-12-L1 injury in
1983, which resulted in paraplegia. He continues to work on
vehicles in his own shop.

Competing in the open division, Lankford won the competition on
the final day, after the field was narrowed down to the top five
anglers. With a final day fish weight of 14.03 lbs., Lankford won
the tournament by a margin of nearly five lbs. Glen Davis, of Mt.
Airy, Ga., came in second at 9.05 lbs.

Lankford won a new Ranger 185 boat with matching Ranger Trailer,
Mercury 150 h.p. motor and Minn Kota trolling motor for his
victory. He also won a lifetime membership to B.A.S.S., as well as
an automatic spot in next year's Grand National Championship to
defend his title.

With his victory at the Grand National Championship, Lankford
also earned a berth in the CITGO BASS Federation Championship(r)
presented by Busch Beer, scheduled for May 12-17, 2003, on Lake
Tuscaloosa, Tuscaloosa, AL. Lankford will be the only wheelchair
angler to compete at the BASS Federation National Championship(r),
which includes 52 of the world's best Federation anglers.

Chris Hudson, of Greenwood, SC, won the bank competition at the
PVA Grand National Championship on Saturday, February 22. Hudson
won a Polaris Magnum all-terrain vehicle for his victory.

The Paralyzed Veterans of America, a veterans service
organization chartered by Congress, has for more than 55 years
served the needs of its members, all of whom have catastrophic
paralysis caused by spinal cord injury or disease. To learn more
about PVA, visit its web site at http://www.pva.org.

For more information about Lake Havasu, contact Jennifer Shanks
at 928-453-3444, or e-mail: jennifer@golakehavasu.com., or visit
the Lake Havasu Tourism Bureau web site at
http://www.golakehavasu.com.

Note: Photos available upon request.


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02/28 00:00

Copyright 2003, U.S. Newswire