Caleb Sumrall’s professional bass fishing career continued its steep upward trajectory Wednesday, as the Louisiana pro announced he’s been signed to the pro staff at Xpress Boats.
Sumrall becomes the fourth Bassmaster Elite Series angler — joining Bill Lowen, Dale Hightower and Harvey Horne — to sign with the Arkansas-based company after finalizing the deal in Hot Springs Monday.
He made his official announcement on at Xpressboats.com and on his social media platforms.
“Three things told me I wanted to be part of Xpress,” said Sumrall. “The people, the boats and the company itself were the reasons for me.
“The morale here is so good, and that’s the kind of environment you need to succeed in this sport. I think this is a big step for me in the development of my career.”
Sumrall burst onto the pro-fishing scene in 2017 by winning the 2017 B.A.S.S. Nation Championship, which gave him a berth into the 2018 Bassmaster Classic.
After a tough start to the 2019 Bassmaster Elite Series season, Sumrall’s career began trending upward with an 11th-place finish at the Elite Series event on Winyah Bay in April. That positive trajectory continued with finishes of 24th at Lake Fork, fourth at Guntersville, 18th at the St. Lawrence River, 36th at Cayuga Lake, 21st at Tenkiller Lake and 17th at Lake St. Clair.
The fourth-place showing at Guntersville was his third career Top 10 and his highest-ever finish in a major B.A.S.S. (Open or Elite Series) event. When all was said and done, Sumrall finished 21st in the 2019 Toyota Bassmaster Angler of the Year standings, earning his second berth in the Academy Sports + Outdoors Bassmaster Classic presented by Huk, which is scheduled for March 6-8 on Aabama’s Lake Guntersville with weigh-ins in Birmingham.
“Caleb caught my attention in a big way during the 2019 season,” said Clay Connor of Xpress Boats. “We already have Bill Lowen on our team — one of the most-respected anglers in the sport. And after talking to Caleb, I honestly felt like he’s just a 29-year-old version of Bill Lowen.
“He’s going to do big things, and we’re proud to have him be part of our team.”