The Bassmaster Classics – 1971 through 1980

Bobby Murray would be the first angler to win a Bassmaster Classic. The event, held on Lake Mead, NV would start the fire that continues to this day.

Bobby Murray would be the first angler to win a Bassmaster Classic. The event, held on Lake Mead, NV would start the fire that continues to this day. Photo Bassmaster Magazine.

[Editor’s note: To read Part Two, Classics XI-XX click here]

Of all the weeks in the bass fishing world this week is probably the most followed by fans of the sport. It’s Bassmaster Classic week, the time when the world championship of bass fishing takes place. Over the years the Classic has been held in the autumn, summer and now the later winter. But the season doesn’t matter – it’s the biggest event in our sport and one that has made household names out of nobodies for decades.

In the spirit of Classic week, we’re going to finish out the week looking back at the first 30 years of Classic history. We’ll look at the winners, the near misses, and the techniques/patterns that cemented the winners in Bassmaster Classic history.

So let’s move on to the first 10 years [Read more…]

Monday Trivia – Ranger Boats Answer and WInner (December 15,2014)

Guess who has a new owner?

Guess who has a new owner?

Congrats to Rob Melendez for winning this week’s trivia contest sponsored by Gary Yamamoto Custom Baits! For the answers to this week’s contest, please read below.

Seems like all the talk in the bass fishing world for the past several days has been about the new owner of Ranger Boats. Keeping this week’s trivia question timely, and perhaps a bit easier than the past couple, you’ll need to answer these 4 questions related to Ranger Boats in order to claim this week’s trivia prize, sponsored by Gary Yamamto Custom Baits. Good luck.

  1. The new owners now become the 5th entity to have owned Ranger boats since their start. Name all 5 company owners to date.
  2. May 1971 was a significant date in Ranger history. Why?
  3. Shortly after orders in the new Ranger Boat Co. took off, expanded operations were moved into a former dance hall in town. What was the  name of that old hall?
  4. Now a long time member of Triton Boats Pro Staff, what Elite Series pro traveled with Basil Bacon while he was on Ranger’s pro-staff back in the 80s?

The answers follow: [Read more…]

The Whole Flippin’ Story

The Whole Flippin' Story as written in Fenwick's 1976 tri-fold pamphlet. Printed in the March/April 1978 issue of American Bass Fisherman. Page 1 of 5.

The Whole Flippin’ Story as written in Fenwick’s 1976 tri-fold pamphlet. Printed in the March/April 1978 issue of American Bass Fisherman. Page 1 of 5.

I will readily admit, I am a Dee Thomas groupie. I give all the credit to him for the flipping technique and concept, amidst the hate mails I get from others who say he didn’t invent it. I’ve taken a lot of time on this site to write pieces pertaining to the subject because I feel the whole story, although it’s been written and told over the years, hasn’t been told in a long time and needs to be consolidated in one place – preferably here at the Bass Fishing Archives.

On this site you’ve undoubtedly seen and hopefully read; Controlled Structure Fishing, Flippin’: A Concept 1, Flippin’: A Concept 2, Flippin’: A Concept 3, The Birth of the Flippin’ Stik 1 and The Birth of the Flippin’ Stik 2. As I said, we’ve devoted a lot of space here to the subject. [Read more…]

Monday Trivia – Shearer Answer and Winner (Jan 13, 2014)

Photo May/June 1982 issue of Bassmaster Magazine.

Photo May/June 1982 issue of Bassmaster Magazine.

There were two people that submitted answers for this week’s Bass Fishing Archives Monday Trivia Contest sponsored by Gary Yamamoto Custom Baits. One of them had a more correct answer and that was John Karbowski. Congrats John on winning! For the answer read below.

Today Kentucky angler Ron Shearer may be best known for his TV endeavors, but in the 1980s he was a solid competitor on the B.A.S.S. trail, with two wins to his credit and five Classic appearances. In fact, he made the Classic five times in six years between 1980 and 1985, missing only the 1983 championship.

His rise in the sport was quick – according to an article by Bob Cobb, in the mid-70s Shearer quit his job in a factory after reading an article about Roland Martin’s career. He started fishing B.A.S.S. events in 1978, and two years later led a tournament on Guntersville before faltering on the final day and finishing 6th in the first of Basil Bacon’s two career B.A.S.S. victories. [Read more…]

Monday Trivia – Shearer (Jan 13, 2014)

Photo May/June 1982 issue of Bassmaster Magazine.

Photo May/June 1982 issue of Bassmaster Magazine.

Today Kentucky angler Ron Shearer may be best known for his TV endeavors, but in the 1980s he was a solid competitor on the B.A.S.S. trail, with two wins to his credit and five Classic appearances. In fact, he made the Classic five times in six years between 1980 and 1985, missing only the 1983 championship.

His rise in the sport was quick – according to an article by Bob Cobb, in the mid-70s Shearer quit his job in a factory after reading an article about Roland Martin’s career. He started fishing B.A.S.S. events in 1978, and two years later led a tournament on Guntersville before faltering on the final day and finishing 6th in the first of Basil Bacon’s two career B.A.S.S. victories. [Read more…]

Monday Trivia – A Second Win for Hains Answers and Winner (December 2, 2013)

Jack Hains 1975 Classic winner. Photo Bassmaster.com

Jack Hains 1975 Classic winner. Photo Bassmaster.com

Congratulations to Keith for winning this week’s Monday Trivia Contest! For the answers read below.

Louisiana pro Jack Hains is certainly best known for his win in the 1975 Bassmaster Classic on North Carolina’s Currituck Sound. While Hains was from Louisiana and had guided on Toledo Bend, he clearly took a liking to that part of the country, because the next time he won in B.A.S.S. competition it was just a few hours up the road in South Hill, Virginia, at Kerr Reservoir (AKA, Buggs Island). Seventeen years after his first win, Hains outlasted Basil Bacon by a mere 5 ounces to win the 1992 Virginia Bassmaster Invitational. [Read more…]

Monday Trivia – A Second Win for Hains (December 2, 2013)

Jack Hains 1975 Classic winner. Photo Bassmaster.com

Jack Hains 1975 Classic winner. Photo Bassmaster.com

Louisiana pro Jack Hains is certainly best known for his win in the 1975 Bassmaster Classic on North Carolina’s Currituck Sound. While Hains was from Louisiana and had guided on Toledo Bend, he clearly took a liking to that part of the country, because the next time he won in B.A.S.S. competition it was just a few hours up the road in South Hill, Virginia, at Kerr Reservoir (AKA, Buggs Island). Seventeen years after his first win, Hains outlasted Basil Bacon by a mere 5 ounces to win the 1992 Virginia Bassmaster Invitational. [Read more…]

Season at a Glance – The 1976 Bassmaster Classic Contenders

in 1976 Jimmy Houston wold win the Bassmaster AOY award in only his second full-time year on the Trail.  Photo 1976 Sept/Oct issue of Bassmaster Magazine.

in 1976 Jimmy Houston wold win the Bassmaster AOY award in only his second full-time year on the Trail. Photo 1976 Sept/Oct issue of Bassmaster Magazine.

[Editor’s Note: This is the fourth story on the 1975 Bassmaster Trail season. To read part one of the 1976 Season at a Glance click here, to read part two click here and to read about the Federation National event click here.]

The 1976 Bassmaster Classic and its contenders have a lot of interesting history packed into it. For one, there were four 5-time Classic contenders, one 4-time contenders, five 3-time contenders and seven 2-time contenders. To say the field was stacked would be an understatement. That’s 17 out of 25 anglers, or 68% of the 1976 Classic contenders had Classic experience.

As amazing it was for so many past-Classic anglers to qualify, it was just as amazing who didn’t qualify. For example, Roland Martin, who’d made every (5) Classic since its inception, missed qualification by 6 points and finished in the 26th spot. The other 5-time qualifier who didn’t make it was Tom Mann who finished in 38th place. [Read more…]

The Making of Stars – The Hibdons

The 1978 BCA Lake of the Ozarks Top 5. Guido Hibdon (winner) and Basil Bacon (3rd-place). Photo November/December issue of BCA The Lunker Hole.

The 1978 BCA Lake of the Ozarks Top 5. Guido Hibdon (winner) and Basil Bacon (3rd-place). Photo November/December issue of BCA The Lunker Hole.

Earlier this week I posted a piece where I credited a friend of mine, Clyde Drury with sending me some magazines. In that piece I talked about him sending me some Bass Caster’s Association magazines called ‘the Lunker Hole.” In a previously written piece here I’d also mentioned the magazine and asked if anyone here had ever heard of or even had subscribed.

Well, Clyde was kind enough to send me a year’s worth of them and so far they’ve turned out to be pretty cool. Right now I have the November/December 1978 through November/December 1979 issues – seven in all – and we’ll be featuring a number of pieces from them in the near future.

In the meantime I’d like to share with you a couple of pictures I found in the Lake of the Ozarks tournament report from the Nov/Dec 1978 issue. [Read more…]

Season at a Glance: 1976 Bassmaster Tour – Part Two

JImmy Houston would win the Bassmaster AOY in only his second year as a full-time pro.

JImmy Houston would win the Bassmaster AOY in only his second year as a full-time pro. Photo February 1977 issue of Bassmaster Magazine.

[Editor’s Note: This is Part Two of a three-part series on the 1976 Bassmaster Tournament Trail. To read Part One click here.]

By the halfway point of the ’76 season, there had been two rookies win events, Jimmy Houston had secured his first Bassmaster win and Roland Martin and Tom Mann were out of the AOY hunt for the first time since its inception.

The Bassmaster AOY race was headed by two-year pro Jimmy Houston with Bill Dance in a close second. Tommy Martin, Don Mann and Roger Moore rounded out the top 5.

The second half of the season would take the anglers to two familiar waters, Buggs Island and Bull Shoals, along with a body of water B.A.S.S. had never ventured to before, Cordell Hull in Tennessee. In the July/August 1976 issue of Bassmaster Magazine, Bob Burnette wrote a piece about Hull – a newly impounded reservoir in the central part of the state. The lake had only been formed four years prior, was riverine and offered nearly 400 miles of shoreline. It was formed by the Cumberland River and the Obey River directly below famed Dale Hollow. This event should be about as even a playing field as any in the past since the inception of B.A.S.S. [Read more…]

Season at a Glance: The 1976 Bassmaster Trail – Part One

Bassmaster Tournament Trail advertisement from 1976. March/April Bassmaster Magazine.

Bassmaster Tournament Trail advertisement from 1976. March/April Bassmaster Magazine.

[Editor’s note: This is Part One of a three-part series on the 1976 Bassmaster tournament trail. Part One will cover the first half of the season, Part Two will cover the second half and Part Three will cover the 1976 Bassmaster Classic. Also to be included are the 1976 Federation Championship and a look into the Classic contenders.]

The announcement of the 1976 Bassmaster Tournament Trail was given first in the November/December issue of Bassmaster Magazine and was touted as being the biggest ever with over $400,000 in prizes – the biggest payout in B.A.S.S. history. To start out, there would be six qualifying tournaments that would feature $50,000 in prizes and money paid out plus another $50,000 dedicated to the Federation and another $50,000 towards the year-end Bassmaster Classic. Extra money would be put towards the Bass Research Foundation to take to 1976 total over the $400K mark. [Read more…]

Scorecard Snapshot – Lone Star Learning Answer and Winner (May 20, 2013)

Photo Bassmaster.com

Photo Bassmaster.com

Congratulations to Art Miller for giving the correct answer to this week’s trivia contest sponsored by Gary Yamamoto Custom Baits! For the answer read below.

Denny Brauer’s victory in the 1984 Bassmaster Texas Invitational was the first of his 17 wins with B.A.S.S. Over the next three decades, he achieved just about every milestone possible, including a Megabucks win, a Superstars win and a Classic win. He even won at Rayburn again, just two years later, but that was his last B.A.S.S. victory in the Lone Star State. He liked the Nation of Texas enough to retire there upon leaving the Elites and managed an EverStart Texas Division victory on Toledo Bend earlier this year. [Read more…]