SYRACUSE, N.Y. — Eight pros earned their way Sunday into the Bassmaster Elite Series postseason, Toyota Trucks All-Star Week set for Sept. 20-23 out of Decatur, Ill.
Beginning Aug. 28, fishing fans can begin to cast their votes for four more Elite pros they believe deserve to be in the 2012 postseason. Voting continues through Sept. 10.
First on the list of the initial eight All-Star qualifiers was Brent Chapman of Lake Quivira, Kan., the newly minted 2012 Toyota Tundra Bassmaster Angler of the Year. The other seven postseason qualifiers were: Ott DeFoe, Knoxville, Tenn.; Terry Scroggins, San Mateo, Fla.; Todd Faircloth, Jasper, Texas; Randy Howell, Springville, Ala; Matt Herren, Trussville, Ala.; Kevin VanDam, Kalamazoo, Mich.; and Edwin Evers, Talala, Okla.
They were the top finishers in the 2012 Toyota Tundra Bassmaster Angler of the Year points race, which reached the finish line Sunday at the Elite Series season finale on New York’s Oneida Lake. They’ll be joined by the four Elite pros who receive the most votes from online voting on Bassmaster.com/vote.
The roster so far includes new names, as well as postseason veterans. VanDam, for example, qualified for his fourth consecutive postseason; he’s been in each postseason since B.A.S.S. created the event in 2009. Evers qualified for his third appearance. Herren and Chapman will experience their first. DeFoe will return as defending champion.
Although DeFoe has been busy fighting for the Angler of the Year crown (he fell 12 points short of overtaking Chapman), he said he’s been thinking ahead to the postseason.
“I’ve thought about it a lot,” DeFoe said. “I’m looking forward to that tournament. The lakes will be hard to figure out. Before cutoff, I talked to a friend there, and it sounds challenging. I like places where you catch a lot of fish, and where 2- and 3-pounders are key.”
Chapman said he knows nothing about the two Illinois fisheries.
“I do know that on most any fishery, September is one of the toughest times to fish,” Chapman said. “I like that. In those tougher tournaments, I usually excel. I’m looking forward to it.”
It’s a two-event, elimination-format tournament that will start on Lake Shelbyville. After two days of eliminations, the competition probably will move to Clinton Lake. The final leg had been set for Lake Decatur, but low water there put Clinton on the schedule as a possibility.
The anglers will compete for a slice of the $100,000 prize pie. The winner will take home $60,000. Second place will pay $10,000, and two third-place prizes of $7,000 will be awarded. Fifth through 12th place will receive $2,000 each.
Fans who go to Bassmaster.com to cast their votes will be entered in the Toyota Trucks All-Star Fan Favorite Sweepstakes. Twelve lucky voters will be virtually paired with the 12 All-Star anglers. The fan whose name is paired with the triumphant pro will win a Skeeter ZX190 bass boat powered by a Yamaha VZ 150 TL motor .
Rules governing the voting and sweepstakes are available online at Bassmaster.com.
2012 Toyota Trucks All-Star Week Roster
1. Brent Chapman, Lake Quivira, Kan.
2. Ott DeFoe, Knoxville, Tenn.
3. Terry Scroggins, San Mateo, Fla.
4. Todd Faircloth, Jasper, Texas
5. Randy Howell, Springville, Ala.
6. Matt Herren, Trussville, Ala.
7. Kevin VanDam, Kalamazoo, Mich.
8. Edwin Evers, Talala, Okla.
9. TBD from fan voting
10. TBD from fan voting
11. TBD from fan voting
12. TBD from fan voting