Category Archives: Federation News

BASS Unveils Qualifying Structure for 2012 Bassmaster Classic, Elite Series

BASS announced Monday a new qualifying structure for the 2012 BassmasterClassic and Bassmaster Elite Series, expanding the Classic field toinclude an enhanced cross section of anglers and putting an increasedemphasis on performance in single events.
My comments and thoughts highlighted in red below where I have a take.

While the overall number of Classic spots (36) awarded through the EliteSeries will remain unchanged, in 2011 each Bassmaster Elite Seriesregular-season event winner will receive an automatic berth into the2012 Classic. The Toyota Tundra Bassmaster Angler of the Year standingswill still determine the majority of the Classic qualifiers as the top28 in those rankings will also advance to the Classic.
All the more reason to fish for the Win, guys like Kevin Short wished this rule would’ve been in effect for this year.  I like this twist!

Following the Elite format, each of the nine Open event winners willreceive automatic spots in the 2012 Classic. With each pro-level eventwinner receiving a Classic berth, BASS has upped the cache of the BassPro Shops Bassmaster Opens by allocating nine Classic berths, up fromsix, to the Series. The traditional points system used in the Opens willonly determine future Elite Series qualifiers and will have no bearingon Classic berths.
Not sure, if I am all behind this, but could increase participation, since you are never out of it and could increase jack-potting by locals at events.  I kind of like rewarding the best over 3 total events, but I can live with it.

The Classic field will increase to 54 – assuming all competitors are ingood standing – clearing the way for a guaranteed entry for the 2011College Bass Champion. The entire qualifying structure, for both theElites and the Classic, can be found below.
I think a few more anglers is good, as long as they don’t get too much larger, if its 75 anglers in a few year, loses prestige.

Providing a dedicated avenue for the College Bass Champion, again to beheld in Little Rock, AR, in 2011 and aired on ESPNU, will enhance theprofile of college bass fishing and represent an added, youth componentto the Classic. There are currently 220 colleges registered to competeto qualify for the 2011 College Championship. The qualification processfor college anglers can be found at
Good for the sport, although, not sure how “qualified” these anglers are, guess we will see how they fair in Classic.  Wonder if any pros, will return to school to fish????

The defending Classic champion will automatically qualify as in yearspast. Additionally, six Federation Nation anglers will continue toqualify as well as the Toyota Tundra Bassmaster Weekend Series Championoperated by American Bass Anglers. In the case of double-qualifiers,BASS will work down the Elite Series AOY list.
Good to see Federation Nation spots did not get trimmed

The 2011 Classic and Elite Series qualifying implications will remain aspreviously released. In 2012, the Elite Series field will encompass 90competitors. BASS has a renewed emphasis on restricting the Elites tosmaller fields, putting more focus on individual anglers and creatingincreased brand-building opportunities for the best anglers in theworld.
Like it!

As such, the 2011 Toyota Tundra Bassmaster Angler of the Year standingswill advance 73 anglers into the 2012 Elite Series. The top five inpoints standings in each of the three Open Series will also receive 2012Elite qualifying berths and if any of those competitors decline, BASSwill work down the Open standings to fill the five berths.Additionally, the 2012 Bassmaster Classic champion and the 2011Federation Nation Champion can elect to fish the Elites. Alldouble-qualifiers will work down the Elite Series AOY standings.

As BASS previously laid out, only active Elite anglers have threeexemptions – former Bassmaster Classic champions, former Toyota TundraBassmaster Angler of the Year winners and anglers with 10 or moreClassic experiences – that can be applied if an angler fails to qualifythrough the outlined avenues.

With the revamp of the qualifying structure, the 2011 Bass Pro ShopsBassmaster Open payout has also been revised. In addition to theClassic qualifying berth, the winner of each event will receive $10,000and a $45,000 boat package. The total prize package – including theClassic berth – reflects the prestige of scoring an Open victory.
I have heard some griping here, some guys want an all cash prize, but if sponsors are contributing boats, that is great for sport, also the winners will get an automatic $10k just for showing up to Bassmaster Classic, plus with that automatic berth and publicity, they should be able to convert that to additional cash.

Each event will pay through 40th place with a more even distributiontowards the lower rung. Additionally, with the allure of increasedClassic berths, the potential of sustained full fields throughout eachdivision increases.
This is good, and I think is direct correlation to boat for winner, better for more guys to make money at sport.

Entry fees will be slightly upped – $1,250 per event on theprofessional side and $350 per event on the co-angler side — but BASShas raised the stakes for Open anglers.

The Opens will only feature the top-12 pros and co-anglers on the finalday of competition, which at each event will be held at a convenientlylocated Bass Pro Shops.
LIKE IT!!!  Now they just need to open that new Bass Pro Shops by Mall of America in Bloomington, MN

2012 Bassmaster Classic qualifications:

2011 Bassmaster Toyota Tundra AOY Standings 28
2011 Bassmaster Elite Series Regular-Season Event Winners 8
2011 Bassmaster Classic Champion 1
2011 Bassmaster Southern Opens Event Winners 3
2011 Bassmaster Central Opens Event Winners 3
2011 Bassmaster Northern Opens Event Winners 3
2011 BASS Federation Nation Qualifiers 6
2011 Bassmaster Weekend Series Champion 1
2011 Bassmaster College Bass Champion 1

* Bassmaster Elite Series regular-season winners must compete in all2011 Elite competition days to be eligible for Classic berth
** Bassmaster Open event champions must compete in entire respective Open Series division to receive Classic berth
*** Defending Bassmaster Classic champion must compete in all Elite Series events to receive Classic berth

2012 Bassmaster Elite Series qualifications

2011 Bassmaster Elite Series Toyota Tundra Bassmaster AOY Standings 73
2011 Bassmaster Southern Opens Points Standings 5
2011 Bassmaster Central Opens Points Standings 5
2011 Bassmaster Northern Opens Points Standings 5
2012 Bassmaster Classic Champion 1
2011 BASS Federation Nation Champion 1

* Exemptions include former Bassmaster Classic champions, AOY titleholders and anglers with 10 or more Classic appearances as of March 1,2011. Must be an Elite angler in good standing to use.

TweetGate Rehash

Crazy stuff!  At this point, wishing I would have eaten more sandwiches or Snicker bars instead of goofing off on my phone in those Tonka no-wake zones.  But that is all water under the bridge at this point, Literally! 

Word spread super fast about my diaqualification at the MNBFN TOC.  It appears this happened for a couple reasons:
1. Some people thought it was a very severe penalty
2. Many thought it was interesting and saw as potential first of many instances where this could be a sign of the times, and a slippery slope with Smart Phones, Navioinics maps for phones, potential internet on your GPS units, etc.

Either way, the outcome quickly garnered attention from several media outlets like Dave Mercer’s Facts of Fishing FYI, Wired2FishBass Parade  and numerous fishing forums.  The comments on all these articles and forums varied widely, which I think highlights how this may be the starting point for many rule clarifications for tournaments in the future.

Even if you don’t care about Tweet issue or Dave Mercer, nice picture and reference of Kim Kardashian in this video.

In the end, my stance is that I don’t blame the tournament director, as I put him in a terrible position with my lapse in judgment.  I just got carried away with my constant drive to promote the sport of bass fishing and my sponsors.  I do think there could have been potential to penalize me for the rule infraction with a complete DQ, but that is neither here nor there at this point.  Based on many comments I have read, I think that is one thing that has come to light for me, is that many anglers believe that any and all rule infractions demand an automatic DQ, which I have always heard from many experienced TD’s, they reserve DQ’s for last resort.  No matter your stance, it definitely has spurred some great debates among anglers.

Also, you can hear me talk about this subject on a recent Twin City Limits podcast , but probably more interesting is the interviews with Kevin Short and David Walker.

On a lighter note, there was some good video of me catching a few bass off of docks on day 2 of the tournament.

On a parting note, Careful what you “Tweet” for….  Watch for some posts on some fun fall fishing to come!

2010 MN Federation Nation TOC on Lake Minnetonka

Overall, I had a pretty productive pre-practice and official practice, but there were days that I struggled and days that I really got good bites.  With that being said, I could see scenarios in my mind where I bust big bags and where I struggle to put together a decent limit.  Below are a few pictures of some good fish from official practice.

Got an early fish on Chart / Blue IMA Rock N vibe lipless crankbait

I tried to pull on this 19.25″ doozer on Sunday, but would not let go of my Football Jig & Burton Craw

  My day 1 boat draw was boat 30 and I headed to a 10-12 foot rock spot that I got some really nice bites on back to back casts in practice on Sunday.  After a few casts, I hooked up on a nearly 3lb fish, but that fish jumped off about a boat length away.  I then switched over to a 3/4oz Picasso Fantasy Football jig tipped with a Green Pumpkin Copper Flake Burton Craw.  I boated a 3lb plus fish and another solid keeper pretty quick. My partner got a nice keeper on a drop shot.  I got a few more bites on that, but they just weren’t eating it.  I then deadsticked a 4″ Baby Ring fry on a mojo ring while I tied up a 1/2oz football jig .  That small bait sitting dead still on the bottom was too much for a big ol’ pig to resist and my partner helped me net what I thought was a nice solid 4.5lb plus beauty.  I then put one more nice keeper in the boat on the mojo rig and decided to leave and conserve these fish for day 2.  I ran a handful more deep spots, but got no more fish or bites.  From there i dashed to some wind swept docks and put a nice 2.5lb fish in the boat on a Tru-Tungsten jig , that filled my limit.  Feeling pretty good with my bag, I decided to make the long idle back into some of the darker water to fish more boat docks.  During this long idle, I made a status update from my Blackberry Twitter App.  Long story short, we fished a bunch of shallow cover in the darker water, after catching lots of really small fish and my partner filling his limit, I finally got a couple good bites to give me two solid culls flipping a Beaver bait on a 1/2oz Tru-Tungsten flipping weight and MiHatchii 4/0 hook .  We then decided to roll the dice and tried for some bigger fish in Maxwell and North Arm, that gamble did not pay off.  I ended up the day in 1st place with 17.51lbs and 3rd biggest fish which ended up tipping the scales at 5.84lbs.

Fish on left was 5.84lbs, anchoring the 17.51lb bag

Overall my day 1, went pretty darn well and obviously pleased with my position after day 1, I tied up my lures at Lord Fletchers before I left, got home, ate some dinner, spent some time with family and fell asleep watching Vikes game againts Saints, mainly because i was up until after midnight the night before prepping tackle.

Day 2, i was boat 54, another boat in my flight started right next to me, I quickly caught a 2lb fish on that same football jig combo,but that was the only fish that spot coughed up and I spent a long time there with a bunch of different lures, trying to trigger some strikes.  I then went to the wind swept docks of day 1, worked them harder and longer with beaver and TT jigs until I got my 5th fish.  It was nice to have 5 fish, but in my mind these fish were only half the weight of day 1 and I in no way felt comfortable with that weight on Minnetonka.  My partner on day 2, picked up 2 keepers on that stretch of docks as well.  We bounced around trying a handful of things in that area, even revisiting the starting spot, still no go there.  Well, I felt it was time to head to that dirty water again, I also updated my struggles on Twitter in the channel on day 2.  Right when I started flipping my beaver combo into some dirty milfoil, I got a nice 2lb fish, that got rid of my smallest keeper.  I was thinking things may really go, but that was my only upgrade in the dirty water.  With about 2 hours ago, I ran to the east side of the lake, fishing Wayzata, St. Albans and around big island and never got bite.  As I idled into Fletchers from Crystal, I was feeling pretty bummed, as I was sure in my head that my weight was way too small to keep me in the top 12 and that I had a repeat disaster of last year’s TOC.

Turns out my fish, actually weighed 10.26lbs, not the 8-9lbs I had in my head, which at the time actually put me in 1st place with more then half the field weighed in.  I was actually shocked, that the field had struggled this much.  Not long after this, the Tournament Director flagged me down and asked me to take a walk with him.  I started to get an erie feeling, as this is not usually good news, well it was not, he informed me I was DQ’d for “non-emergency use of a communication device” for my Tweets that broadcasted to Facebook and were relayed to TD by a non-competitor Federation member.  Super sick feeling as I had to inform all my fellow anglers of the news as they all came up to me with smiles to congratulate my efforts.  Towards the end of the weigh-in, Nate Steinbauer of Baxter Bass Snatchers came in with a 17lb plus bag to match his first day catch and blow everybody’s doors off.  It was good to see somebody caught them like I figured every body would have on day 2.  I hung around, chatted and watch all the top 12 anglers and teams get their awards before I left.  It was also tough to watch the teams get their awards, as my club Gopher would have won the team title going away if it were not for my indiscretions.

In the end, tough lesson learned, but above is the X’s & O’s of my TOC, I may follow this up with a little more on the “Tweets” and the ruling, but we will keep that separate for now.  Besides, that would have been my 3rd runner up at the TOC, I don’t want to become the Aaron Martens of the Minnesota Bass Federation do I????

There is plenty of chatter on the internet if you want to find it already.

Federation Nation Northern Divisional – Final Day

Day 3 greeted all anglers with morning wins and myself an 8lb deficit.  I decided to write off Big Bay de Noc and stick with Little Bay and south of Escanaba.  My plan was to try an area north and then head down to the Ford River area where I caught a quick 13lbs the day prior.  We had 5 foot waves right away at the mouth of the harbor.  We managed a few followers early, but could not convert them on spinnerbait and jerkbaits.  My partner had one area to try up there, caught a pike and had another follow.

By the time we got back down past the harbor, we were now looking at 6 foot plus waves, the interesting thing about this area of Lake Michigan, is we never had clean swells, they always had chop all over them and were breakers, which made running large waves particularly difficult.  It took us about 30 minutes to go the 8 miles, we were able to tuck in behind some shoals, which made the area very fishable.  Long story short, we never got any sun, and it turns out we needed that for these fish, 4 hours, a couple shorts and a few follows.  Sound like musky fishing

On the return trip, waves were exceeding 8 feet and we had no fish, what a great feeling.  We got back a little early and ducked into a pocket of water behind the harbor, I actually was able to catch a 15″ largemouth on a tube in a small clump of pads.  That was it, kind of a disappointing end of my tournament.  I ended up in 39th place and the team was 6th out of 8.

Congrats to Randy Wieczorek our National qualifier from Minnesota and Wes Haney, overall winner from WI.  Truthfully, anything less then a trip to nationals would have been disappointing.  Oh well, at least my boat did not end up like the pictures below, those large waves broke a lot of stuff on day 3.  This Wisconsin boat had its jackplate shear off while riding the waves back from Big Bay.

One other note, the America’s Best Value Inn (formerly Travelodge) of Escanaba was a great host to us tournament anglers, outlets all over the place outside, bag lunches for tournament days and spaghetti dinner on the final night, awesome to feel appreciated and welcomed as a tournament angler!

TIme to start preparing for TOC on Pokegama, so I can return to divisionals again and start this process over again.
Rich’s Bassin’ Forum
Bass Fishing Tackle Blog

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Federation Nation Northern Divisional – Day 2

Day 2 brought a little more wind, so we had a good 3-4 foot chop for my 23 mile run to my first area in Big Bay de Noc.  It took around 40 mins.  I had told myself the way to get back into the tourney was to bust a big bag with the swimbait.  The bite I found on Monday had turned into nothing but short fish and few follows.  We fished Big Bay until about noon and neither my partner or I had a keeper fish.  I decided it was time to hit the panic button and run to an area around Ford River that I had found fish around on Tuesday.  It took about 45 mins to get there.

When we got there, it did not take long before we found a large group of fish.  My partner caught a quick limit and I caught a nice limit on a SWL QuickStrike spinnerbait.  Being able to easily swap blades on my spinnerbait this week was a big deal, you really needed to burn your spinnerbaits, so matching smaller blades with heavier heads was the ticket for catching a lot of smallmouth.  I also caught a few nice fish on a Gobie colored Sweet Beaver.  With not much time left, I decided to give my Optimum Swimbait a whirl for a bigger fish.  It only took a few minutes to raise a big smallie that nosed my swimbait, I threw back with the Sweet Beaver and caught a nice 4lb smallmouth.  We each caught a few more fish, but nothing that helped, it was time to head back, we had about a 10 mile run north back to the harbor.
I ended up with 13lbs plus, but still lost ground to the team lead.  I was about 8lbs out, which is a lofty mountain, but it could happen if I could catch a decent bag, as many people caught 20lbs on day 1 and only weighed a single fish on day 2, so really anything could happen.  The fishing was pretty volatile through practice and the tournament thus far.

Rich’s Bassin’ Forum
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Federation Nation Northern Divisional – Day 1

As I waited with my partner in the Escanaba harbor, I had a good bit of excitement at the possibility of what I could catch and my chances to do well in this tournament.  The plan was to head all the way to the east side of Big Bay de Noc and work several of the key spots and areas that we had so much success on during Monday’s practice.

The first area, was an absolute ghost town, no fish or bait.  Probably wasted too much time there.  My next area was a large peninsula/point, there were 2 other boats working the area, I caught a nice keeper on a Quickstrike spinnerbait, then just a few shorts from there.  We hopped around to a few areas, finally I missed and then caught a nice 3lb plus smallmouth on a 6″ BassTrix swimbait.  I then went back through this area only to have a giant smallie climb all over the swimbait and somehow not get a hook.

The next area I caught another keeper on my spinnerbait, I then went to my bigger swimbait, 5″ Optimum Baby Line Thru and pretty quickly hooked and landed a 4lb smallmouth.  To make a long story short, I had about 3 more big smallies go after my swimbaits and not get hooked, very frustrating.  I ended up with 4 fish for 11lb and chance, middle of the pack after day 1 and about 5lbs out of the team lead.  That 5th fish could made a huge difference, but I was still in this thing with 2 days to go.  It was time to go big or go home on day 2, I was up to get revenge on Lake Michigan.

Rich’s Bassin’ Forum
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2009 Skeeter SX190 / Yamaha 150HP

For Bid: 2009 Skeeter SX190 / Yamaha 150HP
Current high bid $17,000 by SA on 03/11/08

*Actual boat up for bidding is equipped with a Yamaha 150HP (carb)*

The Minnesota B.A.S.S. Federation is selling a 2009 Skeeter SX190 dual or single console boat.   This boat will be sold via a silent bid auction with a minimum accepted bid greater than $16,000. This package has a retail value of over $24,000+.  Expected delivery is the last two weeks of April. – BID HERE



Boat Color Scheme

Length on Trailer (w/Swing-away tongue)   20′ 8″   Deck: LAZER (RED)
Width on Trailer   98″   Deck Stripe: BLACK GALAXY
Length Overall   18’5″   Deck Pin: STERLING
Beam   90″   Shadow Pin: N/A
Shaft Length   20″   Secondary Deck: N/A
Height Overall on Trailer   69″   Console: Optional
Interior Depth   18″   Carpet: GUNMETAL
Draft   12″      
Dry Weight   1,390 lbs   Hull: LAZER (RED)
Max H.P.   150 h.p.   Hull Stripe: BLACK GALAXY
        Hull Pin: STERLING
        Double’s: N/A
        Running Surface: BLACK GEL



    Primary Uphol: BLACK
Maximum Weight   1,290 lbs   Insert Uphol: PEWTER
Maximum Persons   5/715 lbs      
Fuel Capacity   36 gals.      

*Actual boat up for bidding is a Yamaha 150HP carb*





Yamaha 150 HP (v150LTR carb)   Two Lowrance X50
MinnKota Edge 70 (24 volt)
3 batteries


Randy Wieczorek edges out Andy Nitchals to become the Minnesota Bass Federation Nation State Champion 2008

Randy Wieczorek edges out Andy Nitchals to become the Minnesota Bass Federation Nation State Champion 2008
Wabasha, MN

Randy Wieczorek wins 2008 Minnesota B.A.S.S. Federation Nation Championship, September 4-5, 2008 on Pools 4 & 5 of the Mississippi River.

Minnesota’s best amateur bass anglers tackled the sprawling waters of the Mississippi River for the Minnesota B.A.S.S. Federation Nation Tournament of Champions. Day one went like clockwork; all the anglers were on the water by 8:00 a.m. The perfect weather proved to be an advantage as the many bags of both largemouth and smallmouth bass brought to the scales prove the Mississippi River is a diverse and fertile bass fishery. Brian Brown of Breezy Point, MN led the pack on day 1 with 4 nice bass weighing over 12lbs, followed closely by Sport Smith of Maple Grove, MN. The field was very tight and most anglers in the Top 50 were in striking distance after Day 1.

Day two, the weather changed overnight and anglers were met with a dense fog cover; everyone got a late start, the first boats were not on the water until after 10am. Weights dropped off considerably on day two for most anglers, probably due to the shortened tournament hours and a cool front that had the fish in a funk.

Randy Wieczorek from local River Rats Bassmasters weighed in as one of the last few boats to bump Andy Nitchals West Central Bassmasters from the top spot. The remaining divisional team qualifiers: Rich Lindgren – Gopher Bassmasters, Dean Capra – 10,000 Lakes, Matt Hanson – Zumbro Valley Bassmasters, John Zvorak – West Central Bassmasters, Jim Pinke – Bass Wackers, Doug Pietzrak – Granite City Bassmasters, Brad Ballard – River Rats, Brian Brown – Range Bassmasters, Scott Fisher – River Rats, John Schlee Jr – Loon State Bassmaters, Tim Vondersitt – Upper Iowa Bassmasters.
2008 TOC Team
Andy Nitchals & John Zvorak of West Central Bassmasters anchored their 4 man team to take the team honors. They beat our very respectable efforts by Loon State & Upper Iowa Bassmasters. Day 1, Tom Borkowski brought in the big fish of the tournament, a beautiful 4.79lb largemouth.

Zumbro Valley Bassmasters hosted the tournament and raised money for the Wabasha Food Shelf, and also collected non-perishable food items as well. The guys really stepped up and help make things work smoothly; so give Zumbro Valley Bass club a big pat on the back – good job guys! Steve Soukup of Skeeter Boats did an awesome job as Master of Ceremonies as anglers weighed their bags at tournament headquarters, which was held Ike’s park right on the banks of the river.

A total of 149 anglers, from 27 different clubs, competed for the top 12 spots to advance to next years divisional tournament on Lake St. Claire near Detroit, MI, fishing against seven other State Teams from Wisconsin, Indiana, South Dakota, Michigan, Iowa, Illinois, and Ohio, in August 2009.

A really fun thing about the Minnesota B.A.S.S. Federation Nation State Championship is that the tournament and its anglers give back to the community. MNBFN sponsors really pitched in for the annual raffle with all the proceeds going to the Wabasha Food Shelf. This years sponsors were; Skeeter/Yamaha Boats, Precision Propeller Works, Slippery’s Bar & Grill, River Crossing BP, Gemini Sports Marketing, Cabela’s, Vicious Fishing Line, Gopher Tackle Company, Minn Kota, MG Lures, Mojo Rods, Sure-Life Laboratories fish release formulas.

See Full Results at –
1 Randy Wieczorek RIVER RATS BASSMASTERS 8/8 4.08 21.17
2 Andy Nitchals WEST CENTRAL BASSMASTERS 8/8 4.54 20.53
3 Rich Lindgren GOPHER BASSMASTERS 8/8 3.42 19.45
4 Dean Capra 10,000 LAKES BASSMASTERS 8/8 3.45 19.2
5 Matt Hanson ZUMBRO VALLEY BASSMASTERS 7/7 3.18 19.16
6 John Zvorak WEST CENTRAL BASSMASTERS 8/8 2.55 18.85
7 Jim Pinke BASS WACKERS 5/5 18.84
8 Doug Pietzrak GRANITE CITY BASSMASTERS 8/8 2.89 18.59
9 Brad Ballard RIVER RATS BASSMASTERS 8/8 3.49 18.33
10 Brian Brown RANGE BASSMASTERS 7/7 3.23 18.08
11 Scott Fischer RIVER RATS BASSMASTERS 7/7 3.41 17.9
12 John W. Schlee Jr. LOON STATE BASSMASTERS 7/7 3.15 17.39
13 Tim Vondersitt UPPER IOWA BASSMASTERS 8/8 2.65 17.21
14 Chad Keller GRANITE CITY BASSMASTERS 8/8 2.77 16.84
15 Paul Shimek WEST CENTRAL BASSMASTERS 7/7 16.8
16 Trevor Rogge CLASSIC SEVEN BASSMASTERS 8/8 16.49
17 Dan Bonneson SPORTSMEN BASSMASTERS 8/8 16.14
18 Jeff Mulholland ZUMBRO VALLEY BASSMASTERS 7/7 3.67 15.93
19 Dale Youngquist LOON STATE BASSMASTERS 7/7 3.01 15.89
20 Greg Halleland ZUMBRO VALLEY BASSMASTERS 5/5 15.69

1 West Central Bassmasters 28 67.71
2 Loon State Bassmasters 26 58.39
3 Upper Iowa Bassmasters 25 55.97

Total Participants: 149
Total Fish Weighed: 635 Avg. Fish Weight: 2.20
Total Fish Released: 632 Avg. Fish / Participant: 4.3
Total Fish Weight: 1,410.68 Avg. Weight / Participant: 9.47

BIG FISH 3: 4.24 Brian Skluzacek – PRIOR LAKE HOOK SETTERS

Minnesota’s best amateur bass anglers set to tackle the Mississippi River

 Minneapolis, MN – August 28, 2008 – Minnesota’s best amateur bass anglers set sights on Mississippi River

On Saturday, August 30th, approximately 200 anglers will arrive in the Wabasha, MN area to practice and prepare for the Minnesota Bass Federation Nation Tournament of Champions on the Mississippi River; Pools 4 & 5.

These 200 anglers have qualified from their local clubs from all over the state. 41 clubs will send teams and individual representatives to the Tournament of Champions (TOC).  In addition to the TOC, an alternate’s tournament will be held on Pool 5a on September 3rd. The weigh-in will be 3:00PM held out of Minnesota City Boat Harbor on the banks of the river. High finishers will advance to the TOC

Wednesday night is the banquet and pairings meeting that concludes with a raffle; with all proceeds supporting a local charity.  This year’s charity is the Food Shelf of Wabasha.
Events culminate with a two-day tournament on September 4th and 5th.  Ike’s Park in downtown Wabasha will host weigh-ins for the event starting at 3:00 PM on Thursday and Friday. 

Anglers come from all over the state for many reasons; foremost is the camaraderie of fellow anglers and secondly to qualify for the 2009 Bass Federation Northern Divisional.  The top 12 anglers from the TOC will advance next year to fish against 7 other State Teams from Wisconsin, Indiana, South Dakota, Michigan, Iowa, Illinois, and Ohio on Lake St. Claire near Detroit, MN in late summer 2008.  At stake there is a chance to fish in the Bass Federation Nation National Championship and take one step closer to a Bassmasters’ Classic berth.

Fish care is an important part of protecting the resource, so for the third consecutive year, the TOC will be utilizing an in-water weigh-in system that reduces stress on the fish.  The Mississippi is a renowned largemouth and smallmouth bass fishery, which emphasizes the importance to return all the fish back to the river in good condition to be caught again for everyone.

”The great thing about the Minnesota Federation Nation State Championship is that we get a chance to give back to the community.  Our sponsors have really stepped up big for our raffle and the local Food Shelf,” says Tournament Director Peter Perovich. “We really appreciate the support we get from Skeeter Boats, MinnKota, Vicious Fishing Line, and Lowrance.” If you are interested in seeing Minnesota’s best anglers, Ike’s Park is the place to be September 4th and 5th.

For additional information on the news that is the subject of this release visit

About Minnesota Bass Federation:
The Minnesota BASS Federation is committed to promoting fishing for all ages and skill levels. We offer our assistance to the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources to improve fishing opportunities, habitat, water quality and preservation of public access to Minnesota’s waterways. The Fed works with state and local government, lake associations and other outdoor organizations to protect our fishing heritage. Through our youth initiatives, it provides education and on the water experiences to foster youth involvement and sustained interest in the sport.

Rich Lindgren, Marketing Director
Peter Perovich, Tournament Director
Minnesota Bass Federation Nation

Minnesota bass anglers crowned top Federation for 2006

Minneapolis -­ February 7, 2007 ­ Minnesota bass anglers crowned top Federation for 2006.


The Minnesota B.A.S.S. Federation Nation was named Federation of the Year at the recent B.A.S.S. Federation Nation Championship held in Gadsden, AL. The prestigious annual award goes to the state organization that best puts together a well-rounded program involving conservation, youth and community service.


“This is really a great award and we are honored to receive it”, said Federation president Paul Becka. “Our goal was always just to run the group as professionally as possible in a politically difficult year, but it is also nice to get recognition for our youth and conservation activities.”


The Minnesota B.A.S.S. Federation Nation is compromised of 400+ amateur bass anglers of all ages and genders from Minnesota and bordering states. Besides fishing competitively, its members participate in a variety of activities that benefit the outdoors.


Federation regional director John Murphy, “It was quite an honor to accept this award on the behalf of all my fellow members.” Murphy represented Minnesota in Gadsden.


The Minnesota Federation hopes to leverage this award and publicity into augmenting efforts that are already in place focused on growing membership. Membership is the key to being able to do more and bigger projects.


For additional information on the news that is the subject of this release visit


About Minnesota Bass Federation:

The Minnesota BASS Federation Nation is committed to promoting fishing for all ages and skill levels. We offer our assistance to the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources to improve fishing opportunities, habitat, water quality and preservation of public access to Minnesota¹s waterways. We work with state and local government, lake associations and other outdoor organizations to protect our fishing heritage. Through our youth initiatives, we provide education and on the water experiences to foster youth involvement and sustained interest in our sport. Skeeter Boats, Fig Rig Rods, and Lowrance are major sponsors of the organization.



Rich Lindgren, Marketing Director

Minnesota Bass Federation Nation

Rich’s Bassin’ Forum
Bass Fishing Tackle Blog

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