With about 30 minutes left in his fishing day, Austin Felix came into Championship Monday of the Guaranteed Rate Bassmaster Elite at Chickamauga Lake in 10th place. There were many storylines surrounding the Minnesota rookie on the final day of the event.
Felix leads fellow rookie, Kyle Welcher, by 20 points in the Bassmaster Elite Series Rookie of the Year race. Welcher went out one spot ahead of Felix today.
Felix is second to David Mullins by 10 points in the Bassmaster Elite Series Angler of the Year standings. As we noted in an earlier blog, Mullins is not fishing today; therefore, today served as a great opportunity for Felix to make up a little ground on Mullins with one event remaining in the year.
At this point, the Siteline Pro isn’t likely to have one of those storybook afternoons of an epic bag coming all the way from 10th to hoist the blue trophy, but today may be looked back on as the day that Felix was able to make great strides in locking up the Rookie of the Year and pushing Mullins for the Angler of the Year.
Don’t get lost on the fact that with two fish to his credit, Felix stood behind the weigh-in stage on Sunday waiting for Gerald Swindle as the G-Man was the final angler to weigh in on Sunday. With Felix sitting tied for 10th with Kyle Welcher (29-6), Swindle needed 9-12 to bump Felix from the Top 10 (Welcher was ninth as a result of t tiebreaker with Felix) but only weighed in 9-10.
In a game of ounces, Felix was able to punch his ticket for Championship Monday where he’s gone out today, boated seven fish (roughly 12 pounds) and potentially improved his positioning where a mere two ounces could be the difference in driving home to Minnesota today or winning the Rookie of the Year and perhaps the Angler of the Year.