Kentucky Lake, site of the 2015 Zippo BASSfest presented by A.R.E. Truck Caps, has been selected to host another special B.A.S.S. competition — the 2016 Toyota Bonus Bucks Bassmaster Team Championship.
Top anglers from participating team tournament trails across the country will have a chance to win a national team title and a berth in the 2017 GEICO Bassmaster Classic when they compete in the third annual team championship tournament Nov. 30-Dec. 3, at Kentucky Lake.
“Team tournament fishing is growing rapidly across the nation, and we’re glad to offer a championship that enables the most outstanding pairs of anglers from throughout the country to prove their skills in a test of the best bass teams,” said Bruce Akin, B.A.S.S. CEO. “Kentucky Lake is a great tournament lake that is popular with the Bassmaster Elite Series pros, and these grass-roots bass anglers will love it, too.”
The Henry County Alliance will host the championship at Lake Kentucky in Paris, Tenn. The daily takeoffs and weigh-ins will be held at Paris Landing State Park. Takeoffs will be at 6:45 a.m. ET, and weigh-ins will be at 2:45 p.m. ET each day.
“Henry County is excited to host the 2016 Toyota Bonus Bucks Bassmaster Team Championship at Paris Landing on beautiful Kentucky Lake,” said David Hamilton, CEO of Henry County Alliance. “Kentucky Lake is considered one of the top lakes for bass fishing and will provide the perfect setting for the anglers to compete for the championship.”
The four-day tournament will qualify one angler for the 2017 GEICO Bassmaster Classic. The top two-angler team will also be crowned as the national champion of the event.
Teams across the nation qualify for the championship through various independently operated team trails sanctioned by B.A.S.S. (A list of sanctioned trails is available at Bassmaster.com.)
The team portion of the competition, Nov. 30-Dec. 1, pits the two-angler teams against one another to determine the national team champion. On Dec. 2-3, the six anglers from the Top 3 teams will compete individually in the Bassmaster Team Championship Classic Fish-Off. The winner of the individual competition earns a bid to the Super Bowl of Bass Fishing the following year.
In last year’s championship at Lake Guntersville, Alabama, teammates Chris Risner and Timothy Eaton from Michigan were crowned the best duo in bass fishing and advanced to the Classic Fish-Off. However, Thomas Martens of Lago Vista, Texas, won the fish-off and qualified for the 2016 GEICO Bassmaster Classic presented by GoPro that was held on Grand Lake O’ the Cherokees out of Tulsa, Okla.
“Last year’s tournament was a huge success with nearly 400 anglers competing,” said Jon Stewart, director of the B.A.S.S. Nation. Stewartexpects this year’s event will be just as large.
“Kentucky Lake is a perfect location for the Toyota Bonus Bucks Bassmaster Team Championship,” he said. “We will have teams competing from Maine to California and Minnesota to Texas, and the central location of the lake is ideal. And it doesn’t hurt that its one of the best bass lakes in the country and ranked No. 12 on Bassmaster Magazine’s 100 Best Bass Lakes.”
The team championship will mark 12th time for B.A.S.S. to conduct professional Bassmaster tournament on Kentucky Lake, a 160,000-acre impoundment of the Tennessee River that straddles the border between Tennessee and Kentucky.
For more information on how a team trail can be sanctioned for the Toyota Bonus Bucks Bassmaster Team Championship, contact Stewart at [email protected].