Toyota ShareLunker Program Delivers a Successful 2023 Season


ATHENS – The 2023 Toyota ShareLunker season was a memorable one, thanks to the 346 anglers from across the nation who entered 497 lunker largemouth bass into the program throughout the year from 89 Texas public waterbodies.

The total included 313 in the Lunker Class (weighing between eight to 9.99 pounds or at least 24 inches), 154 Elite Class (weighing 10 to 12.99 pounds), 18 Legacy Class (weighing 13 pounds or more and caught between Jan. 1 and March 31) and 12 Legend Class Lunkers that were 13 pounds or more caught outside the spawning season. These entries provided valuable data to Texas Parks and Wildlife Department (TPWD) biologists across Texas in their ongoing efforts to manage largemouth bass populations.

In addition to helping produce bigger, better bass for Texas lakes, anglers who enter their big bass catches in the program receive special recognition and prizes, including an entry into a year-end drawing to win a $5,000 Bass Pro Shops shopping spree.

“Thank you to everyone who submitted the lunker bass to the Toyota ShareLunker program,” said Natalie Goldstrohm, Toyota ShareLunker coordinator. “The 2023 ShareLunker season marked numerous milestones, and we’re delighted to conclude it with the year-end grand prize drawing. We’re excited to announce that angler Lee Beuershausen was randomly selected as the winner among all eligible 2023 entries, securing a $5,000 Bass Pro Shops shopping spree. Make sure to submit your Lunker bass through the ShareLunker app or website for a chance to be part of the drawing for the 2024 season.”

Beuershausen reeled in his 13.34-pound Legacy Class ShareLunker 648 on March 11 during a tournament. at O.H. Ivie Reservoir.

“TPWD staff arrived quickly that day to collect her and were very careful handling the fish,” said Beuershausen. “I really respect what TPWD does and think this is an awesome program. The results of the work TPWD is doing are shown in our lakes. We never caught 25- to 30-pound bags up until the last 15–20 years since this program has been in place. This is a big deal to us.”

Beuershausen said it was an incredible surprise to learn that he won the year end prize drawing.

“This Bass Pro Shops shopping spree is really the icing on the cake,” added Beuershausen. “The whole experience with the ShareLunker program since I caught the Legacy Lunker has been amazing. Everyone has been great, and it was awesome to be able to go to the ShareLunker banquet and see the operation firsthand at the Texas Freshwater Fisheries Center in Athens.”

In addition to the 18 Legacy Class Lunkers donated by anglers, Shawn Strength from Raymond, Miss. submitted a massive Legend Class Lunker Nov. 15 from O.H. Ivie. His fish weighed in at 16.65 pounds and joined Texas’ Top 50 biggest largemouth bass of all-time list. Strength also collected a genetic sample from his catch and sent it to TPWD for analysis.

O.H. Ivie led all waterbodies with 75 entries during the 2023 season followed by Toledo Bend (53), Lake Fork (24), Conroe (21) and Possum Kingdom (19) to round out the top five. The complete list of 2023 entries can be viewed on the Toyota ShareLunker archives page.

During the first three months of the season (Jan. 1 through March 31), anglers who reel in a 13-plus pound bass can loan it to TPWD for the ShareLunker selective breeding and stocking program. These anglers can call the ShareLunker hotline at (903) 681-0550 to report their catch 24/7 through March 31, 2024.

Anglers who catch and loan one of these 13-plus pound lunkers earn Legacy Class status, receive a catch kit filled with merchandise, a 13lb+ Legacy decal for their vehicle or boat, VIP access to the Toyota ShareLunker Annual Awards event, a high-quality replica mount of their fish from Lake Fork Taxidermy, and Bass University will provide a swag pack and annual subscription. These anglers will also receive entries into two separate drawings – a Legacy Class Drawing and the year-end Grand Prize Drawing. Both drawings will award the winner a $5,000 Bass Pro Shops shopping spree.

The year-round Toyota ShareLunker program offers four levels of participation for catching bass over eight pounds or 24-inches in Texas.

Anglers who enter data for any lunker they catch greater than eight pounds or 24-inches during the 2024 calendar year also receive a catch kit, a decal for their vehicle or boat, a one-month subscription to Bass University and an entry into the year-end Grand Prize Drawing to win a $5,000 Bass Pro Shops shopping spree. ShareLunker entry classes include the Bass Pro Shops Lunker Class (8 lb.+), Strike King Elite Class (10 lb.+), and Lew’s Legend Class (13 lb.+).

Once a lunker is reeled in, anglers need to enter the catch data on the Toyota ShareLunker mobile app – available for free from the Apple App Store and Google Play – or on the Toyota ShareLunker online app at

In addition to providing basic catch information, anglers have the option to send a DNA scale sample from their lunker bass to TPWD researchers for genetic analysis. Anglers who contribute a sample to the program in 2024 will receive a Lew’s baitcast reel valued at up to $200 while supplies last, with a limit of one reel per angler. Anglers that send in a genetic sample will also get a three-month subscription to Bass University. Instructions for submitting DNA samples are located on the Toyota ShareLunker website.

The Toyota ShareLunker Program is made possible in part by the generous sponsorship of Toyota. Toyota is a longtime supporter of the Texas Parks and Wildlife Foundation and TPWD, providing major funding for a wide variety of fisheries, state parks and wildlife projects.

Additional vital program support comes from Legend class category prize sponsor Lew’s, Elite class category prize sponsor Strike King, Lunker class category prize sponsor Bass Pro Shops, American Fishing Tackle Co., Bass Forecast, Bass University, Lake Fork Taxidermy and 6th Sense Fishing. For updates on the Toyota ShareLunker Program, visit  or

Facebook Comments