July 12, 2020 (Sturgeon Bay, Wis.) – Major League Fishing (MLF) pro Justin Lucas crushed a third MLF record to win the day and secure an automatic berth into Wednesday’s Championship Round. Eight anglers in Group A scored over 100 pounds in the two-day Qualifying Round, including David Dudley who leapt from 37th place after Friday to finish in fourth place with a 100-pound day. Bass Pro Tour 2020 Season Points contender Jacob Wheeler moved 15 places up SCORETRACKER® to finish in 12th place and Bass Fishing Hall of Famer Gary Klein landed nearly 70 pounds for the day to move from 39th place to 18th place and secure a spot in the Knockout Round.
Twenty anglers fell below the Elimination Line concluding their 2020 Bass Pro Tour seasons. Fletcher Shryock fell short, which ended his run for the Bass Pro Tour 2020 Season Points Champion. Aaron Martens, who returned to the Tour after undergoing treatment for brain cancer, fell from 12th place to 24th place missing the chance to advance to the Knockout Round by 9 pounds.
Covercraft Stage Five Presented by Abu Garcia continues Monday when Group B returns for their final day of Qualifying Round. Keith Poche will start the day 23 pounds over second place.
Berkley pro Justin Lucas set his third record in two days of competition with a two-day weight record of 205 pounds, 6 ounces. The 34-year-old set the record for most weight in a single day on Friday with 141-9 as well as the most weight in a Period with 78-12. With a 45-pound lead over second place finisher Scott Suggs, Lucas won the Group A Qualifying Round, earning him the first of 10 spots in Wednesday’s Championship Round. With his lead locked, Lucas stopped fishing 30 minutes before lines out to search for waypoints he can use Wednesday.
“What an incredible couple of days,” Lucas said. “The Berkley MaxScent Flat Worm caught every…single…fish. I can’t wait for Wednesday. I get a couple days off and look forward to getting back out here to fish for the Championship.”
Arkansas-resident Scott Suggs leveraged his 119-pound Day 1 weight to maintain his second-place finish with an additional 12 scorable bass for 41-3. Today’s catch brought Suggs to a two-day total of 160-7. Suggs was one of eight anglers who exceeded 100 pounds in their two-day total: Lucas, Suggs, Josh Bertrand (132-03), David Dudley (111-15), Mark Rose (102-03), Randall Tharp (102-03), Fred Roumbanis (102-00), and James Elam (101-05).
Virginia-resident David Dudley, who caught 102-4 today– the only pro to exceed the century mark in Sunday’s competition –finished in fourth place. Dudley fought back from 37th place after only catching 9 pounds on Friday. The 2019 FLW Angler of the Year reflected on the significance of today’s competition for him as a professional angler.
“Today was a really big day for me,” said Dudley. “I made REDCREST; I caught a 4-10 to secure my spot in Heavy Hitters 2021; I passed the two-day ‘century’ mark and then finally caught 100 pounds in a single day. Today secured a lot of payouts for me in the future and did a lot for my professional career.”
After Dudley, Jacob Wheeler caught the second-highest single-day total at 71 pounds, 5 ounces, which allowed him to climb from below the Elimination Line at 27th place to finish in 12th place. Wheeler, who came into Stage Five in third place for 2020 Bass Pro Tour Season Points Champion, will advance to Tuesday’s Knockout Round furthering his effort toward 2020 Points Champ.
Bass Pro Hall of Famer Gary Klein climbed above the Elimination Line today with 69 pounds, 12 ounces, the third-highest in single-day weight of the day. Klein finished Day 1 in 39th place – next to last – after catching only three fish for eight pounds, four ounces.
The field of 40 pros caught 453 scorable (2 pounds or greater) bass for a single day total weight of 1,401 pounds, 7 ounces in this event hosted by Destination Sturgeon Bay. Randall Tharp caught the Berkley Big Bass of the day weighing in 5 pounds, 2 ounces.
The Top 10 of Day 1, Qualifying Group A finished as follows:
|Place||Angler||Two-Day Total||Two-Day Total||Largest Fish over Two-Day Round|
For complete results, visit MajorLeagueFishing.com, Bass Pro Tour, Results.
The competition continues Saturday when Group B takes to the water for the second day of their Qualifying Round, including current Season Points leader Jordan Lee and current Group B leader Keith Poche who enters Day 2 with a 23-pound lead over Alton Jones Jr.
Pending no weather delays, the day begins at Sawyer Park Boat Launch, Sturgeon Bay, Wisc., 6:15 a.m. CT when the field reports to pick-up their MLF Official and camera operators before trailering to the ramp of his choice. With lines in at 8:00 a.m. CT, the competition consists of three, 150-minute periods.
Fans can catch all the action every day of competition (July 10-15) on MLF NOW! live stream on MajorLeagueFishing.com or download the MLF App for your Apple or GooglePlay device or on MyOutdoorTV (MOTV).
About the Bass Pro Tour:
The Bass Pro Tour began in 2019 and features 80 of the best professional anglers in the world, including Kevin VanDam, Edwin Evers, Aaron Martens, Mike Iaconelli, Jordan Lee, and Skeet Reese. Each Stage includes six days of competition using the Major League Fishing, catch-weigh-and-immediately-release format, where every bass over a variable minimum weight, which is 2 pounds on Lake Fork for Stage Three, toward a cumulative weight total for the day. Variable minimum weights are determined by fishery, akin to a golf course handicap. The field of 80 anglers is divided into two groups of 40 (Groups A and B) to compete on days one through four for the Qualifying Round. The winners of each Group earn an automatic berth the Championship Round. The anglers finishing in places 2-20 from each group in the Qualifying Round (40 total) advance to the Knockout Round on day five (Tuesday), which determines who will compete on that final day, the Championship Round (Wednesday), for the Stage title and $100,000.
Each Stage of the Bass Pro Tour has the following payout schedule: 1st $100,000; 2nd $42,000; 3rd $30,000; 4th $24,000; 5th $18,000; 6th $16,800; 7th $15,600; 8th $14,400; 9th $13,200; 10th $12,000; 11th – 40th $6,000; Big Bass Daily $1,000; Big Bass Overall $1,000.
In addition to the economic impact for the host community, Destination Sturgeon Bay / Door County, Major League Fishing showcases the region through their award-winning, live and linear programming. Each Stage of the Bass Pro Tour is broadcast live on the Major League Fishing app, MyOutdoorTV (MOTV), and majorleaguefishing.com, totaling more than 325 hours of original programming. Fans can follow the fast-paced nature of the MLF format as it unfolds on the live leaderboard through “SCORETRACKER® updates.”
Highlights from each Stage of the 2020 Bass Pro Tour air on Discovery Network beginning in July 2020 and Sportsman Channel in early 2021. Covercraft Stage Five presented by Abu Garcia will premiere as two, two-hour episodes on Discovery Channel October 3 and 4, 7-9 a.m. ET/PT.
“MLF offers the strongest broadcast presence in the industry to fans and sponsors,” said Jim Wilburn, President and CEO of Major League Fishing. “And with these lakes planned for this coming Bass Pro Tour, we know 2020 will be our best year yet as we continue to capture a broad audience of both longtime fishing fans and those new to the sport, thanks to our fast-paced, fan-friendly format,”
About Major League Fishing
Founded in 2011, Major League Fishing (MLF) brings the high-intensity sport of competitive bass fishing into America’s living rooms on Outdoor Channel, Discovery, CBS, CBS Sports Network, World Fishing Network, Sportsman Channel, and on-demand on MyOutdoorTV (MOTV). The Bass Pro Tour consists of eight events and a championship streamed live on www.MajorLeagueFishing.com and MOTV.
In late 2019 MLF acquired FLW, which expands their portfolio to include the world’s largest grassroots fishing organization, including the strongest five-fish format professional bass fishing tour, the Tackle Warehouse Pro Circuit, as well as the Toyota Series, Phoenix Bass Fishing League presented by T-H Marine, and Abu Garcia College Fishing presented by YETI, and High School Fishing presented by Favorite Fishing.
For more information on the league and anglers, visit www.MajorLeagueFishing.com and follow MLF on Twitter, Instagram and Facebook.