For Immediate Release
For additional information
Jeff Patterson or Steve Roth
(402) 437-6400
Dave Kobuszewski, NASCAR
(704) 348-9634

Ranger Boats and NASCAR Partnership Expanded

The newly-formed partnership between Ranger Boats and the National Association for Stock Car Auto Racing (NASCAR) has been expanded with the announcement of a NASCAR/Ranger Pro Fishing Team.

FLIPPIN, AR (July 26, 2002) Ranger Boats and NASCAR Partnership Expanded With Announcement of Pro Team Members

The elite NASCAR/Ranger Fishing Team is comprised of Dion Hibdon and David Fritts two of only three pro anglers ever to who have won both the Bassmasters Classic and FLW Championship; 1999 Alabama Invitational champion Pete Gluszek; and seven-time, top-ten tournament finisher Sandy Melvin. Team members will compete on several major pro fishing circuits including FLW, B.A.S.S., BFL and EverStart.

“The NASCAR/Ranger partnership presents a great opportunity to cross promote the professional sports of fishing and stockcar racing in ways that haven’t been done before,” Ranger Boats Vice President of Sales and Marketing Bart Schad said. “The pro fishing team is enhancing that effort on a more direct level. Fans get a chance to see some of their favorite pro anglers fishing in NASCAR limited series package boats. It’s all about sharing the passion that so many of us have for these two sports.”

“A national survey showed us that NASCAR fans are nearly twice as likely as non-fans to have gone boating or fishing in the past twelve months, and are twice as likely to own fishing equipment,” NASCAR Vice President of Strategic Marketing and Licensing Steve Boguski said. “The NASCAR pro fishing team is just a great addition to the promotional effort that has resulted from our partnership with Ranger.”

The multi-year agreement between Ranger Boats and NASCAR was first announced on July 4, 2002, two days prior to the Pepsi 400 NASCAR Winston Cup race held at Daytona. As part of the announcement, popular NASCAR Winston Cup drivers and avid outdoor enthusiasts, Ward Burton and Bobby Labonte were named as spokespersons for the Ranger/NASCAR limited series boats.

The Ranger/NASCAR limited series boats will come in two models and two different color packages. Consumers will have the option to “dress out”, in NASCAR style, either the new 2003 Ranger 19-foot 519VX or 21-foot 521VX bass boat packages. The limited series boats will include a complete performance package.

Each boat will also be built with custom paint schemes, and exterior decal and design options. These options include custom seats (both bench and pedestal), a unique Ranger/NASCAR logo carpet inlay, console emblems, side decals and trailer fairings. Each boat will also include a plaque bearing the name of the purchaser.

In addition to fishing out of the limited series boats, the Ranger/NASCAR pro team will also be outfitted with specially-designed team jerseys. Ranger and NASCAR will be announcing several more promotions as a result of their new partnership.

Here are capsules of the NASCAR/Ranger Pro Fishing Team members:

Davd Fritts
The third all-time leading money winner on the Wal-Mart FLW Tour, Fritts set a record by winning three FLW tournament events in one year in 1997. Among those victories was the FLW Championship. He is also a five-time qualifier for the Red Man All American. The 46-year old Fritts has qualified for six Bassmasters Classics in his illustrious career, highlighted by a victory in the prestigious event in 1993. In 1994 Fritts was named B.A.S.S. Angler of the Year. In 1999 Fritts placed second in the Ranger M1 Million Dollar Tournament, the richest pro fishing tournament in the world. His career earnings total approximately $1,434,855.

Dion Hibdon
The Stover, Mo., pro is most noted for winning the Bassmaster Classic in 1997. He has qualified for the Classic 8 times and has finished in the top 10 in 19 professional bass tournaments. Hibdon is sixth on the all-time Wal-Mart FLW tour money winnings list, highlighted by his victory in the FLW Championship in 2000. Since 1996 the 35-year old Hibdon has competed in 47 professional tournaments. Hibdon’s career winnings total approximately $891,403.

Pete Gluszek
Gluszek’s career is highlighted by a solid win at the Alabama Invitational at Lake Martin in 1999. The two-time Bassmaster Classic qualifier from Franklinville, N.J., also finished second in the Maryland Eastern Invitational in 1995. With career earnings of $132,400, Gluszek has finished in the top 10 in tournaments 6 times. He was named B.A.S.S. Rookie of the Year in 1997.

Sandy Melvin
Based in Boca Grande, Fla., Melvin has fished in 51 FLW, BFL and EverStart Series events since 1996. He has finished in the top-ten in seven tournaments.

Ranger Boats, headquartered in Flippin, Ark., is the nation’s largest manufacturer of premium fiberglass fishing boats, including a series of bass, multi-species and saltwater boats. Founded in 1968 by Forrest L. Wood, Ranger Boats continues its philosophy of “building legends…one at a time." For more information visit or call 1-800-373-2628.

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Editor’s Note: Images available upon request.

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