Bassmasters Classic

Bassmasters Classic

The Bassmaster Classic is a competition in professional bass fishing. It was first held in 1971 in Lake Mead, Nevada. After years of being held in July, the Bassmasters Classic was moved to February in 2006.

The event has turned into a three-day spectacle, complete with a theatrical presentation of the weigh-ins and hours of television coverage. ESPN purchased Bass Anglers Sportsmen Society (BASS), which organizes the event, and increased coverage of the event and the Classic's profile.

First-place money has grown from $10,000 in 1971 to $500,000 in 2006.

Rules and procedures

The field consists of 55 anglers: the top 40 in the season-long BASS standings and 15 regional qualifiers. The 2007 competition included women for the first time. They competed in a separate event.

The Bassmaster Classic takes place over three days. All fish are caught under catch-and-release rules, must measure at least 14 inches, and must be alive at the time they are presented for weigh-in. There is a cut after the second day, in which only the 25 best anglers, based on total weight, advance to the third day. The highest total weight after three days wins the competition.

Contestants can only fish in specified areas at the competition venue. This is usually a lake, but the 2005 competition was held along the Three Rivers that make up the Pittsburgh area.

Restrictions on where anglers could fish were tightened in 2007, resulting in lower total number of fish caught.Fact|date=July 2007

From its inception to 1976, the Classic was held at a "mystery lake," unknown to competitors until they were aboard and aircraft bound for the site. Founder Ray Scott changed then changed the practice, announcing the site in advance so that fans of the sport could plan ahead to attend.

Past winners

*1971: Bobby Murray, Hot Springs, Arkansas
*1972: Don Butler, Tulsa, Oklahoma
*1973: Rayo Breckenridge, Paragould, Arkansas
*1974: Tommy Martin, Decatur, Alabama
*1975: Jack Hains, Rayne, Louisiana
*1976: Rick Clunn, Montgomery, Texas
*1977: Rick Clunn
*1978: Bobby Murray
*1979: Hank Parker, Clover, South Carolina
*1980: Bo Dowden, Natchitoches, Louisiana
*1981: Stanley Mitchell, Fitzgerald, Georgia
*1982: Paul Elias, Laurel, Mississippi
*1983: Larry Nixon, Hemphill, Texas
*1984: Rick Clunn
*1985: Jack Chancellor, Phenix City, Alabama
*1986: Charlie Reed, Broken Bow, Oklahoma
*1987: George Cochran, North Little Rock, Arkansas
*1988: Guido Hibdon, Gravois Mills, Missouri (first winner from outside the South)
*1989: Hank Parker (had moved to Denver, North Carolina)
*1990: Rick Clunn
*1991: Ken Cook, Meeks, Oklahoma
*1992: Robert Hamilton Jr., Brandon, Mississippi
*1993: David Fritts, Lexington, North Carolina
*1994: Bryan Kerchel, Newtown, Connecticut (first winner from the East Coast and the first BASS Federation member to win the classic)
*1995: Mark Davis, Mount Ida, Arkansas
*1996: George Cochran (had moved to Hot Springs, Arkansas)
*1997: Dion Hibdon, Stover, Missouri(Son of 1988 classic champion Guido Hibdon)
*1998: Denny Brauer, Camdenton, Missouri
*1999: Davy Hite, Prosperity, South Carolina
*2000: Woo Daves, SPRING GROVE, VA
*2001: Kevin VanDam, Kalamazoo, Michigan
*2002: Jay Yelas, [Tyler, Texas] [now resides in Albany, Oregon]
*2003: Michael Iaconelli, Woodbury Heights, New Jersey
*2004: Takahiro Omori, Emory, Texas (but born in Japan; first foreign-born winner)
*2005: Kevin VanDam
*2006: Luke Clausen, Spokane Valley, Washington (first winner from a West Coast state; set record for total catch with 52 pounds, nine ounces)
*2007: Boyd Duckett, Birmingham, Alabama (first to win championship in home-state waters)
*2008: Alton Jones, Waco, Texas

Jr. Bassmasters

The Jr. Bassmasters is a Bassmasters Classic competition for children up to 18. The national classic for the Jr. Bassmasters is achieved once an angler has won a qualifying event sponsored by the B.A.S.S association. The Jr. angler then gets to work with a professional on practice day. On the tournament day no help is provided by the pro and the Jr. Angler has to rely on his/her own knowledge and skill. The winner and 2nd and 3rd place all receive scholarships of different value. [ [ ESPN - All about Jr. Bassmaster ] ]


External links

* [ Bassmaster Classic 2008 Update Venue]
* [ BASS official site]
* []
* [ 2007 Classic qualifiers]
* [ 2008 Classic update]
* [ 2008 Classic update]
* [ 2008 Classic update]

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