Congrats to Steve M for winning this week’s Monday Trivia Contest sponsored by Gary Yamamoto Custom Baits. Come back again next Monday for the next round of Monday Trivia. For the answers, please read below.
We’re starting to see more women fishing the B.A.S.S. Opens, trying to qualify for a shot at the Elites Series. Just a couple years back, Janet Parker made a very strong run, falling out of the cut in the final event. Others, like Trait Crist, are both fishing and writing over at B.A.S.S. The history and story behind women in B.A.S.S. is an interesting one, which we’ll touch on in this week’s trivia questions. There have been several “firsts” and high marks in this regard, and so we’ll focus on those. To win this week’s contest sponsored by Gary Yamamoto Baits, you’ll need to answer the following 4 questions.
- Who was the first lady to fish a B.AS.S. Invitational, and give me the event/lake and year?
- Who was the first woman to cash a check in a B.A.S.S. event, and again, event/lake and year?
- Who was the first woman to ever fish the Bassmaster Classic?
- To date, what is the highest finish registered by a woman in a B.A.S.S. event (Invitational/Open, etc.), and who holds that distinction?
Here are the answers, along with more details.
Four years after Helen Sevier took over as head of B.A.S.S. (1990), the decision to allow women to enter B.A.S.S. professional events was made. While it seemed like a simple decision, it only took about 2 months before everything kind of blew up. It was stated that a lot of the wives of tournament trail competitors were against the decision, with scenarios of “hanky panky” thrown out, not to mention the whole “bathroom” issue. Some pros even expressed concern that if allowed, women would take away some of the big sponsorship dollars from the men due to their unique marketing position, thereby financially hurting their ability to compete and provide for their family. A petition was circulated and a vote taken, and with over 75% of the responses against, the idea of allowing women to compete was scrapped before a single such event could be held. However, it wouldn’t stay that way for long.
Per a NewsOK story that was published May 5, 1991:
“BASS was granted a permit last September for the May 8-11 Top 100 tournament at Bull Shoals Lake, Ark. But a registered letter to BASS officials from the Corps threatened to pull that permit and revoke or deny permits for future BASS tournaments unless women were allowed to compete. Six of the organization’s 13 tournaments next season are scheduled on Corps lakes.
The letter was signed by John B. Rintoul, head of the Corps’ Mountain Home, Ark., office, and gave BASS 10 days to comply. BASS hastened to do so.”
Helen was able to get Vojai Reed, wife of Classic Champion Charlie Reed, to be that first woman to fish that Bull Shoals event. Later that month, at another B.A.S.S. event on Truman Res., Conny Jenkins would be the second lady to compete with the guys.
Neither of those ladies would cash a check in their respective events, In fact, it wasn’t until the following year that women’s champion Linda England would break that barrier when she cashed a $1,000 check at the 1992 Virginia Invitational on Buggs Island Reservoir.
For the answer to our third question, we have to wait until the very recent past to find Kim Bain-Moore as the first lady to compete in a Bassmaster Classic. Back in 2008, Kim won the Toyota Tundra WBT AOY title, and with a change in B.A.S.S. Classic qualification guidelines that same year, she cashed her ticket to the 2009 Bassmaster Classic. The very next year, Pam Martin-Wells would be the second woman to fish in the Classic, narrowly missing the Day 3 cut and ending up 22nd in the field of 51 pros.
Finally, for our last question, to date, that honor goes to Christiana Bradley who finished 4th in the 2013 Bass Pro Shops Southern Open on Douglas Lake.
Congrats to our winner, and be sure to come back next Monday for a chance to win in our next trivia contest sponsored by Gary Yamamoto Baits.