ORLANDO, FL (July 13, 2017) - The new-for-2018 Lew's Mach Crush Speed Spool SLP baitcast combo was voted best rod and reel combo by attending buyers and media in ICAST 2017's New Product Showcase competition, making it four in a row for Lew's in that category. The award was presented during yesterday evening's ASA Chairman's Reception held immediately following the close of the show's first day.
Left to right, Gary Remensnyder, Lew's CEO; Bob Brown, product development director; and Dave Hinke, vice-president product development, accepted Lew's 4th-in-a-row ICAST award for best rod and reel combo
"It's always wonderful to have a product picked best of show because it means the item really separated itself from the pack in the eyes of the voters," said Lew's Chairman Lynn Reeves. "For the honor to be a four-peat makes it especially rewarding, since the continuous recognitions indicate we're not reacting to trends, we're leading them."
The Mach Crush baitcast combo, stunning with its orange highlights complementing a black finish, features Lew's exclusive SLP Super Low Profile compact design in a premium 10-bearing Speed Spool reel with the proven MSB Multi-Setting Brake dual cast control system.
The reel handle has Winn Dri-Tac knobs and the combo's one-piece IM8 graphite rod sports a Winn Dri-Tac split-grip handle. Rod guides are American Tackle's innovative Airwave system.
The Mach Crush professionally matched baitcast combo is considered a high-end outfit, retailing for around $199.99.
Not only did Lew's receive honors during ICAST's day one, it also presented some. Lew's officials recognized Liz Ogilvie, American Sportfishing Association's (ASA) chief marketing officer; Mark Gintert, Future Fisherman Foundation executive director; and the Osceola Anglers High School Fishing Team for their respective support of Lew's new Mach High School Product Grant initiative.
Additionally, the company recognized sales associates who won top achievements during its national sales meeting held in advance of ICAST.
Sales Group of the Year went to Mid America Sport Sales, received by Jeff Watt and Steve Kitchen.
Rob Abers, Wellman Sports Marketing, was named Salesman of the Year.
Zeb Hunter, Tim Hunter and Assoc., was announced to the crowd as being the Mr. Crappie Top Gun recipient. Mr. Crappie Wally Marshal had earlier presented Hunter a Rolex watch Marshall purchased personally for the recognition, continuing a trend he began last year when he cited Lew's salesman Mike Mitchell for the same Mr. Crappie sales distinction.
"It was a great first day for Lew's," said company CEO Gary Remensnyder. "We gave awards, we won an award and, ironically, we ceremoniously saluted our 2018 product launches this afternoon with a raising of Orange Crush sodas as a symbolic toast to our product development team that served up so many great items for the new tackle year, including the Mach Crush baitcast combo.
"We had no idea at that time that our Mach Crush combo would win an ASA best of show award just a few hours later, but obviously it literally served-up a sweet ending to the show's first day. We're looking forward to two more great days on the show floor."
ICAST 2017, being held in Orlando, continues today and concludes tomorrow afternoon.