Ninety-nine of the most talented anglers in bass fishing began 2011 in the TTBAOY hunt. Eight tournaments offered chances to accumulate points and move up in the standings. With six events complete, now only the top 10 are thought to have a chance for the win.
“Welcome to the tightest Toyota Tundra Bassmaster Angler of the Year race since 2008,” reports Ken Duke, editor of Bassmaster.com (www.bassmaster.com). “Currently, there are four anglers within 100 points of the lead, and as many as 10 anglers with a chance to take home the big prize.”
Kennedy, currently 5th in TTBAOY standings, won the Bassmaster Elite Series event at West Point Lake near LaGrange, Ga., in early May. He also has 2011 finishes in 24th, 5th, 59th, 8th and 60th place. The low finish at a mid-May tourney at Lake Murray near Columbia, S.C., was a disappointing ending after a fast start that saw Kennedy leading the pack after the first day of competition. Bassmaster.com reports, “He started the event 140 points out of the lead, but after Day One had the lead. A poor Day Two and he’s back to where he started.”
Lane stands 10th with 2011 tournament finishes in 7th, 44th, 36th, 4th, 63rd and 11th place.
The title of Toyota Tundra Bassmaster Angler of the Year comes with a $100,000 prize.
Final point standings in the TTBAOY race qualify the top 28 anglers for the prestigious Bassmaster Classic in February, along with other post-season events.
For example, the top 8 anglers in TTBAOY points will be invited to Toyota Trucks All-Star Week, beginning Saturday, July 23, with preliminary competition on Lake Jordan near Wetumpka, Ala. In addition, Bassmaster fans will be able to select four “wild card” competitors from the Bassmaster Elite Series lineup, based on votes cast on Bassmaster.com.
Following the two-day preliminary round on Lake Jordan, the top 8 All Stars will be “seeded” and move to the Alabama River in Montgomery, Ala., for a bracket-style, head-to-head format over three days of competition, July 29-31. After two elimination days, the two anglers left standing will compete for the winner-take-all prize of $100,000.
Here’s the top 12 in points standings in the 2011 Toyota Tundra Bassmaster Angler race (as of May 15, 2011).
(Rank, angler, hometown, points, lbs-oz)
1. Terry Scroggins, San Mateo, Fla, 1,490, 189-0
2. Kevin VanDam, Kalamazoo, Mich. 1,471, 187-10
3. Alton Jones, Waco, Texas, 1,471, 183-8
4. Edwin Evers, Talala, Okla., 1,437, 176-6
5. Steve Kennedy, Auburn, Ala., 1,392, 152-1
6. Davy Hite, Ninety Six, S.C., 1,378, 161-3
7. Ott DeFoe, Knoxville, Tenn., 1,376, 169-9
8. Fred Roumbanis, Bixby, Okla., 1,373, 171-13
9. Casey Ashley, Donalds, S.C., 1,370, 169-11
10. Chris Lane, Guntersville, Ala., 1,353, 162-13
11. Dean Rojas, Lake Havasu City, Ariz., 1,331, 174-4
12. Dustin Wilks, Rocky Mount, N.C., 1,325, 166-9
Bassmaster Elite Series dates, fisheries, locations and winners (to date) include:
March 10-13 Harris Chain of Lakes, Tavares, Fla., Shaw Grigsby of
March 17-20 St. John’s River, Palatka, Fla., Edwin Evers of Talala, Okla.
April 6-9 Pickwick Lake, Florence, Ala., Davy Hite of Ninety Six, S.C.
April 14-17 Toledo Bend, Many, La., Dean Rojas of Lake Havasu City, Ariz.
May 5-8 West Point Lake, LaGrange, Ga., Steve Kennedy of Auburn, Ala.
May 12-15 Lake Murray, Columbia, S.C., Casey Ashley of Donalds, S.C.
June 9-12 Arkansas River, Little Rock, Ark.
June 16-19 Wheeler Lake, Decatur, Ala.
For more details, visit www.bassmaster.com.
Each Bassmaster Elite Series event is taped for broadcast on The Bassmasters, one of the highest-rated outdoors programs on television. One-hour programs air on ESPN2 Sunday mornings at 8 a.m. (ET) and Sunday mornings at 10 a.m. (ET) on ESPN Classic, and re-airs on Outdoor Channel Friday mornings at 9:30 a.m. (ET) and Friday evenings at 10:30 p.m. (ET), and Saturday afternoons at 4 p.m (ET).
2011 Bassmaster Elite Series Official Sponsors: Toyota, Bass Pro Shops, Berkley, Evan Williams Bourbon, Humminbird, Mercury, Minn Kota, Skeeter, Triton, Yamaha
2011 Bassmaster Elite Series Supporting Sponsors: Lowrance, Luck “E” Strike, Nitro Boats, Power-Pole, Ramada
For more than 40 years, B.A.S.S. has served as the authority on bass fishing. The organization advances the sport through advocacy, outreach and its expansive tournament structure while championing efforts to connect directly with the passionate community of bass anglers through its Bassmaster media vehicles.
The Bassmaster brand and its multimedia platforms are guided by a mission to serve all fishing fans. Through its industry-leading publications — Bassmaster Magazine and B.A.S.S. Times — comprehensive website Bassmaster.com, ESPN2 and Outdoor Channel television programming, Bassmaster provides rich, leading-edge content true to the lifestyle.
The Bassmaster Tournament Trail includes the Bassmaster Elite Series, Bass Pro Shops Bassmaster Open Series, B.A.S.S. Federation Nation events presented by Yamaha and Skeeter Boats and the ultimate celebration of competitive fishing, the Bassmaster Classic.
B.A.S.S. offers an array of services to its more than 500,000 members and remains focused on issues related to conservation and water access. The organization is headquartered in Celebration, Fla.