American Bass Anglers, Inc.
2021 Bass Pro Shops Fishing Tour
Kerr Lake, Clarksville, VA October 16 - 22,2021
1) RULE CHANGES: These rules supplement the 2021 AFT rules. These rules will remain unchanged throughout the National Championship. Interpretation of these rules shall be left exclusively to the tournament director.
2) PARTICIPANTS AND ELIGIBILITY: Participation is open to current qualified members in good standing of American Bass Anglers, Inc. Tournament officials reserve the right to refund any membership and/or entry fee if they shall choose for any reason not to accept the application for entrance.
3) POLYGRAPH: By signing the official entry form, contestants agree to submit to a polygraph/voice test examination. Any person convicted of violating tournament rules or failing to successfully pass a polygraph/voice test will not be allowed membership or entry into any future American Bass Anglers, Inc. event. The administration and interpretation of the polygraph/voice test shall be solely the responsibility of the American Bass Anglers, Inc., and shall be used (or not used) at their discretion. Without limiting the foregoing, the American Bass Anglers, Inc. shall have the sole discretion of the individual(s) who administers such polygraph/voice test and the scope of the questions which may be asked during such test. Failure to take and pass the polygraph/voice test examination, if required, will result in immediate disqualification without recourse.
4) Eligibility: Individuals that have fished two or more tournaments requiring an individual entry fee of $675 or more in the preceding six months are not eligible to fish. Individuals who have guided on tournament waters within 30 days prior to the Championship are not eligible to compete.
5) OFF LIMITS and PRE-TOURNAMENT PRACTICE:
a) Off Limits: Kerr Lake will be off-limits beginning at sunset on October 3rd, until safe light Saturday, October 16th, 2021. During the off-limits periods, Practice, and competition days, other than using publicly available information (e.g., newspaper, periodical, and Internet reports) competitors cannot solicit, receive, or gather any information via phone, electronic devices, or any other means about locating or catching fish on tournament waters. THERE SHALL BE NO EXCEPTIONS. No contestant may enter the tournament water for the purpose of catching or locating possible fishing locations after this meeting or after each day's weigh-in.
a) Pre-tournament practice: Contestants must be paid in full prior to going on the water. Official practice will begin at safe light on Saturday, October 16th, through 3 pm October 19th, 2021. During official practice, contestants may only pre-fish alone, with a member of his/her immediate family, another contestant of the tournament, a national sponsor of American Bass Anglers, or a member of American Bass Anglers staff.
6) ON-SITE REGISTRATION: On-site registration will be Tuesday, October 19th, 2021, from 3-5 pm at the TBD. Failure to sign in with tournament officials will result in disqualification and forfeiture of the entry fee.
7) Safety Briefing: There will be pairings and a safety meeting on Tuesday, October 19th location TBD. MANDATORY SAFETY BRIEFING will be conducted each morning of the event on the water. Anglers must have their boat in the water prior to Mandatory Briefing.
8) LATE FEE: All entries must be postmarked, completed of an online entry, or called in before 5 pm, October 9th, 2021. All entries received after this date will be assessed a $25 late fee. Entries for this event will cease at 12 noon Tuesday, October 19th, 2021.
9) SAFETY: Safe boating conduct will always be observed. All 2021 Fishing Tour Safety Rules are in effect. 2021 AFT Rules Link
10) SPORTSMANSHIP: All contestants are expected to follow high standards of sportsmanship, courtesy, safety, and conservation. Contestants must adhere to all local, state, and federal laws.
11) BOAT OPERATION: Any competitor answering yes to the question: "Will you enter as a boater?" will be expected to make that boat available for the duration of the tournament. Partners must discuss boat operation prior to send-off. Each partner is entitled to an equal number of hours to fish his/her selected waters. The non-boater is responsible for any damages, which may occur to the boater's boat if he/she is granted permission to operate the trolling motor. Any contestant who, in the judgment of the tournament director, operates the boat in such a manner as to unfairly handicap his/her partner shall be disqualified. It is the responsibility of the non-boater to reimburse the boater in the amount of ½ the fuel cost to defray daily expenses (this will be enforced by tournament officials). All boat operations within 200 yards of the launch facility will be by trolling motor or idle speed only.
12) PERMITTED FISHING LOCATIONS: Fishing will be permitted on Kerr Lake only. Fishing is not permitted within 50 yards of a marina gas pump or within 50 yards of another competitor's boat anchored or not. Competitors invoking the 50-yard rule must hold their boat in a steady manner. Any competitor that allows any other competitor to fish within 50 yards of his/her boat has suspended the 50-yard rule and opened the water to all competitors. Off-limits will be an area clearly marked at the Launch Ramp. Additional off-limits areas may be designated and explained at the pre-tournament meeting by the tournament director.
13) OFFICIAL CHECKPOINT: Due to safety precautions, there will be several flights, the tournament director will announce flights and weigh-in times at the pre-tournament meeting. There will be only one official point for checkout in the morning and check-in in the afternoon. Competitors not at the checkpoint at the designated time will be penalized at the rate of 1 lb., per minute, deducted from his/her total weight for the day. Any competitor more than 15 minutes late for a send-off or check-in will be disqualified for the day.
14) SCORING: Pounds and hundredths of each competitor's (three-day total) catch will determine tournament standings and placement. Only largemouth, spotted, or smallmouth bass will be weighed. The creel limit shall be five (5). At no time shall a competitor have in his/her possession more than the tournament limit. Culling must be done immediately.
The Kerr Lake creel size limit will apply for this event (see link). In a limit of five (5) bass the following combinations will apply:
1) – anglers may weigh a limit of bass consisting of two of five (5) bass measuring less than 14 inches but must be over 12 inches.
2) – anglers may weigh a limit of five bass over 14 inches.
A penalty of 1 lb. will be deducted from the total weight for each short fish and a penalty of .50 pounds will be deducted from the total weight for each dead fish. Once submitted to ABA tournament officials will do any needed culling of short fish. Penalty weights will be subtracted from the scale weight. A contestant that presents more fish than the tournament limit will be disqualified immediately. All fish presented at weigh-in become the property of American Bass Anglers.
15) PAIRING OF COMPETITORS: For day one, anglers will be paired, and boat numbers assigned via text message after on-site registration is completed. Pairings for Thursday and Friday will be sent via SMS after each 'day's weigh-in and will appear on your daily weigh slip. All assignments of partners will be by computer drawing. The boater must meet his/her partner at a designated place prior to coming to the launch ramp. The tournament director has no responsibility for finding lost partners. Competitors must stay on tournament waters and insight of each other throughout the tournament day from send-off until weigh-in (Exception: Nature call). Any contestant refusing to take or go with another contestant in his/her boat will be subject to immediate disqualification. The tournament Director may reassign partners prior to morning ooze-off to accommodate problems and/or emergencies.
16) TIE: In case of a tie, combining awards and dividing them equally among the tied contestants shall resolve positions. A form of lottery shall determine trophy positions. The tournament director may decide to break first-place ties with a fish-off. Duplicate points will be awarded to tied competitors.
17) TRANSFERS: There will be no transfers of tournament entry fees. Refunds, minus 10%, will be given through October 8th, 2021, only.
18) NATIONAL CHAMPIONSHIP REQUIREMENTS: After all two-day events are completed, the top 500 national point holders will be invited to compete in the National Championship, in the event some of the top 500 elect not to participate additional anglers will be invited starting with points position 501 and continue until a full field is reached. The top 250 points holders and all divisional "Anglers of the Year" will be guaranteed boater status. All registered non-boaters who meet qualifications will be paired with a guaranteed boater. If there are not enough non-boaters, boaters may fish alone. The top qualifiers (boaters) will be notified of their boater status on September 27th, 2021. The National Championship is worth 2000 points to the winner. Points will be awarded in 5-point decreasing increments depending on the place of finish. Service Team Anglers of the Year will be determined by the best four 1-day district finishes plus the best two-day finish plus points received at the Championship.
19) ANGLER OF THE YEAR: The divisional Angler of the Year from each division who has completed four one-day and one two-day will be eligible and invited to compete for the national title Angler of the Year". Title will be awarded to the highest finishing divisional Angler of the Year competing in the Championship based on their total weight for the three days of the competition. Divisional Angler of the Year is determined by points acquired within 'angler's home division (see season rules for points system).
20) Awards: The same person is not eligible to win more than one prize boat from American Bass Anglers, Inc. during the same calendar year. In the event the winner of the National Championship is also Angler of the Year”, he/she will be awarded the first-place prize boat and second place by place of finish will be awarded the second boat.
21) WAIVER AND RELEASE: As a condition of participation in this tournament, competitors must execute a waiver, release of liability, and a name and likeness release.
22) TAXES: Anglers are responsible for all applicable taxes for both cash and merchandise awards.
American Fishing Tour - Latest News
Michael Smith Takes the Win on Lake Mitchell
January 8, 2022, Clanton, AL. Thirty-three anglers launched from Higgins Ferry Park Ramp near Clanton, AL. Twenty-four of those anglers brought back five-fish limits to the scales, but when the scales closed Michael M. Smith of Andalusia, AL took the victory with 14.71 pounds. For the victory Smith took home $723 in prize money.
Tom and Missy take the win and the GLine Battery $100 Bounty on Cooper River
We couldn’t have asked for a more beautiful day on the Cooper River with mild temperatures and sunny skies! We had eight teams come out to compete with every team bringing fish to the scales. Several teams commented on how clear the water was and how many big bass they watched swimming but couldn’t get to bite. It seems that the most productive bite was on crank baits and worms.
Tom and Missy Bancroft took First Place with 5 largemouth bass weighing 8.15 lbs. earning $360. We caught our bass on crankbaits in the morning and shaky head worms in the afternoon.
Florida South Division To Open On Okeechobee
ATHENS, Ala. – The Florida South Division 7 of the American Bass Anglers Open Series, Presented by Caymas Boats, begins its new season on Jan. 22, 2022, on Lake Okeechobee.
The anglers will run out of Roland and Mary Ann Martin's Marina Resort, located at 920 E. Del Monte Avenue in the town of Clewiston, Fla. Anglers can fish anywhere in the massive lake but cannot lock into the Kissimmee River, Caloosahatchee River, or the Port St. Lucie Canal.
Team Tour Championship Postponed
Out of an overabundance of caution The Team Tour Championship that was scheduled for 10/10-11/2020 on Wheeler Lake has be postponed. The National Weather Service is forecasting winds of 10-20 mph with gust up to 35mph for Saturday, and winds of 10-15 mph with gust up to 20 mph Sunday. The safety of our anglers is the number on concern and factor when making the tough decisions on postponing a tournament. The new dates for the Team Tour Championship will be November 21-22 on Wheeler Lak