Fishing & Boating News

BASS ADJUSTS QUALIFYING CRITERIA FOR BASSMASTER ELITE 50 SERIES


(Mar. 18, 2004 - MONTGOMERY, AL.) Tournament officials for the CITGO Bassmaster Tournament Trail presented by Busch Beer announced today that the qualifying criteria for the new Bassmaster Elite 50 series will be adjusted for anglers qualifying through points standings.

The Elite 50 field will consist of the top 20 active anglers in BASS All-time money winnings, the 2003 CITGO Bassmaster Classic Champion, the 2004 CITGO Bassmaster Angler of the Year, the 2004 BASS Rookie of the Year and the top 27 in cumulative points standings from the 2002, 2003 and 2004 tour seasons. The change will affect the top 27 points qualifiers.

After meeting with the BASS Athletes Advisory Council (BAAC), anglers expressed some concerns with the Elite 50 qualifying criteria. BASS determined that two primary changes are necessary. First the 27 anglers will qualify based on their end-of-season rank at the conclusion of the 2002, 2003 and 2004 seasons (rank determined by Angler of the Year points standings). For example, if an angler finished fifth in the standings in 2002, 48th in the standings in 2003 and 19th in the standings in 2004, they would have 72 points. The anglers with the fewest points will qualify.

Second, the ranking will be based on the full season standings for the past three years, rather than the first six events of each season. The change affects the standings from 2003, when the Tour season was 10 events rather than the six of 2002 and 2004.

"After many suggestions from the anglers, BASS has decided to go with the finishing position in the points for the past three years to give more balance to the Elite 50 qualifying," said BASS Tournament Director Trip Weldon. "BASS has also decided, through the help of the BAAC, to let the standings reflect the entire 10-event season in 2003, thus letting the true standings of the entire Tour determine the qualifiers."

The updated standings for the Bassmaster Elite 50 series are as follows.
ELITE 50 Top 20 All Time Money
PL Angler Name Winnings
1 Denny Brauer $1,721,439.21
2 Rick Clunn $1,537,144.53
3 Larry Nixon $1,532,533.58
4 Jay Yelas $1,253,632.00
5 Shaw E Grigsby, Jr $1,212,480.23
6 Kevin VanDam $1,202,983.33
7 Gary Klein $1,163,418.97
8 Roland Martin $1,007,142.16
9 George Cochran $977,501.45
10 Ron Shuffield $973,921.00
11 Mark Davis $947,071.30
12 Davy Hite $846,500.00
13 David Fritts $829,905.00
14 Zell Rowland $784,115.90
15 Tom Biffle $746,278.80
16 Jim Bitter $739,168.60
17 David Wharton $714,380.80
18 Randy Blaukat $683,392.70
19 Alton Jones $677,941.67
20 Peter Thliveros $671,654.00
Top 27 -- 2002, 2003, 2004
Angler of the Year
Combined Standings
PL Angler Name Total
1 Brent Chapman 34
2 Tim Horton 43
3 Kelly Jordon 49
4 Edwin Evers 57
5 Bud Pruitt 69
6 John Murray 73
7 Dustin Wilks 82
8 Skeet Reese 102
9 Mike Wurm 109
10 Kevin Wirth 119
11 Brian Snowden 126
12 Gerald Swindle 131
13 Randy Howell 143
14 Chad Brauer 154
15 Mike Auten 155
16 Kenyon Hill 158
17 Mark Menendez 159
18 Stacey King 160
19 Bernie Schultz 163
20 Ishama Monroe 165
21 Robert Lee 166
22 O T Fears III 167
23 Todd Auten 168
24 Dean Rojas 170
25 Paul Elias 177
26 Elton Luce Jr 178
27 Scott Rook 180

Top 10 on Bubble for Money
PL Angler Name Winnings
1 Ken Cook $642,367.20
2 Tommy Martin $624,176.51
3 Woo Daves $538,210.80
4 Takahiro Omori $478,550.00
5 Guy Eaker $410,072.40
6 Harold Allen $386,118.69
7 Joe Thomas $369,448.47
8 Aaron Martens $368,672.33
9 Tom Mann, Jr $357,075.80
10 Jimmy Houston $342,374.00
Top 10 on Bubble for
Angler of the Year
Combined Standings
>
PL Angler Name Total
1 Brett Hite182
2 Todd Faircloth 183
3 Ben Matsubu 186
4 Takahiro Omori 188
5 Kotaro Kiriyama 189
5 Joe Thomas 189
7 Tommy Martin 193
8 Jeff Kriet 195
9 Guy Eaker 196
10 Jack Wade 200

Tie Breakers:
1st - Combined 3 year weight total
2nd - Highest individual season weight