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MLF Toyota Series Finale Set for Chickamauga

DAYTON, Tenn.  – The Major League Fishing (MLF) Toyota Series presented by A.R.E. is headed to Lake Chickamauga this week, May 20-22, for the Central Division Presented by Neat Companies regular-season finale with the Toyota Series Presented by A.R.E. at Lake Chickamauga Presented by Googan Baits . Hosted by the Fish Dayton and the Rhea Economic & Tourism Council, the three-day tournament will feature the region’s best bass-fishing pros and Strike King co-anglers casting for a top prize of up to $65,000, plus an additional $35,000 bonus if the winner is a qualified Phoenix Boat owner

Bass Pro Tour angler John Murray of Spring City, Tennessee, said that he expects to see a lot of different patterns and techniques in play this week.

“Every day is different on Chickamauga, and I think we’ll see guys doing a variety of things to do well,” Murray said. “So much is happening on the lake right now. Some fish are still spawning, some have already spawned – I don’t think it’ll be just ledge-fishing or shallow-water fishing that will do well. You’re not going to be able to have one key spot, just yet. The guys that do well are going to be in more of a general area or two, with a couple of different patterns going.”

With warm weather on tap for this week, Murray said that he thinks the fishing will be pretty good for the Toyota Series anglers.

“We just had a big bass event this week with hundreds of boats on the water fishing for big ones, and a 9-pounder was the biggest and a 7-pounder finished in second,” Murray said. “That’s a little odd for Chickamauga – the big fish were not biting. But we’re about to go from 40- to 50-degree nights to 60- to 70-degree nights this week and it should change some things up. There will be a lot of options to catch them.”

Murray said that if he was fishing in this event, he’d be throwing a ChatterBait, jigs, a wacky-rigged Senko and a frog.

“I think if you can catch 17 pounds a day you’ll likely make the top 10,” Murray went on to say. “Overall, I think the three-day winner is going to need to average 19 to 20 pounds a day, so my winning weight prediction is 57 to 60 pounds.”

Anglers will take off daily at 6 a.m. ET from the Dayton Boat Dock in Dayton. Weigh-ins will also be held at the Dayton Boat Dock and will begin at 2 p.m. Fans are encouraged to follow the event online through the “MLF Live” weigh-in broadcasts and daily coverage at

In Toyota Series regular-season competition, payouts are based on the number of participants competing in the event, scaling up for every 20 boats over 160 and scaling down for every boat below 160. With a 160-boat field, pros fish for a top prize of $40,000, plus an extra $35,000 if Phoenix MLF BIG5 Bonus qualified. Strike King co-anglers cast for the top prize of a new Phoenix 518 Pro bass boat with a 115-horsepower Mercury outboard (valued at $33,500). With a 260-boat field, pros fish for a top award of $65,000, plus an extra $35,000 if Phoenix MLF BIG5 Bonus qualified. Strike King co-anglers cast for the top prize of a new Phoenix 518 Pro bass boat with a 115-horsepower outboard (valued at $33,500) plus $5,000 cash.

The 2021 Toyota Series presented by A.R.E. consists of six divisions – Central, Northern, Plains, Southern, Southwestern and Western – each holding three regular-season events, along with the International division. Anglers who fish all three qualifiers in any of the eight divisions and finish in the top 25 will qualify for the no-entry-fee Toyota Series presented by A.R.E. Championship for a shot at winning $235,000 cash, including a $35,000 Phoenix MLF BIG5 Bonus for qualified anglers. The winning Strike King co-angler at the championship earns a new Phoenix 518 Pro bass boat with a 115-horsepower Mercury outboard. The 2021 Toyota Series Championship presented by A.R.E. will be held Oct. 28-30 on Pickwick Lake in Counce, Tennessee, and is hosted by the Hardin County Convention and Visitors Bureau.

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