A 20th place finish in the 1995 Georgia Invitational on Lake Lanier marked the top B.A.S.S. performance for Japanese angler Masaki Shimono. In a tournament where just over 10 pounds a day was good enough for 2nd and less than 6 pounds a day earned you a check, he notched exactly 21 pounds.
Shimono earned a check in his first B.A.S.S. tournament, 1991’s Megabucks event on Lake Chickamauga (which was of course won by Larry Nixon), then earned three more over his subsequent 22 tournaments. He fished his last tournament on the circuit on Lake Hartwell in 1996 with career earnings of $8,442.
His time with FLW, where his career spanned the 2002-2005 time period, was slightly more lucrative due largely to the circuit’s deeper payout. In 26 events on the FLW Tour and the EverStart Central Series, plus the 2002 Ranger M1 Millenium, he earned $38,490. Again, though, he had trouble breaking into the upper echelons on the score sheet. His best finish was a 36th in the 2002 FLW Tour tournament on Lake Ouachita.
While Shimono may have left B.A.S.S. after 1996, his influence continued to reverberate there into the next decade.
Do you remember why?