Alabama’s amateur anglers have expressed interest in a bass tournament team trail for years. Today, the Alabama Bass Trail (ABT) is pleased to announce the debut of the 2014 Alabama Bass Trail Tournament Series. ABT’s highly competitive and high-paying tournament series will provide angler teams a chance to compete on the 11 lakes on the Trail for prizes totaling more than $400,000 to be awarded over the course of the 2014 season.
The Alabama Bass Trail Tournament Series is the best-paying tournament series in the history of the state; nothing else in the Southeast comes close to matching the payouts. The corporate sponsors partnering with Alabama Bass Trail are leaders in the state and the fishing industry. These partnerships, as well as the continuing support of Governor Robert Bentley and the Alabama Tourism Department, are making possible the development of this tournament series as a means of promoting Alabama’s elite bass fishing lakes. Amateur anglers will have the chance to prove themselves as bass fishermen on the top lakes in Alabama.
For the ABT Tournament Series, the 11 premiere bass fishing lakes on the Trail have been separated into a North and South division, with five tournaments in each division plus the championship tournament. The regular season runs from February 1 through June 21, 2014. The championship event will be October 10-11, 2014, on Lewis Smith Lake. Anglers will be fishing for Largemouth, Spotted and Smallmouth bass.
The North division lakes include Lake Guntersville, Pickwick Lake, Neely Henry Lake, Wheeler Lake, and Logan Martin Lake. The South division includes Mobile Tensaw Delta, Lake Eufala, Lake Jordan, Alabama River Millers Ferry, and Lay Lake.
To be eligible to advance to the championship, a team must fish in all five regular season tournaments in either the North or South division. At the end of the regular season, the top 50 teams in each division will qualify to participate in the ABT Tournament Series Phoenix Boats Championship on Smith Lake. In addition, the top 25 student teams that include a youth under the age of 18 will qualify for the championship. There is no entry fee for the championship tournament.
Guaranteed Prizes Total $400,000
Each regular season tournament offers a top prize of $10,000, with a total of $33,500 in cash prizes to be awarded at each event; all of the money is guaranteed. The regular season events are qualifying events for the championship. The two-day, 2014 championship tournament boasts a top prize of a $40,000 Phoenix Bass Boat. In addition to the prizes offered by the ABT Tournament Series, contestants also will be able to claim even more money in the form of contingency bonuses offered by the corporate sponsors of the Alabama Bass Trail.
Priority Status & Early Bird Registration Discounts
Registration for the two-person team tournaments is open on the ABT web site www.alabamabasstrail.org. There is an entry fee of $250 per team for each regular season event, with a maximum field of 200 boats per tournament. Teams that register before December 31, 2013, for all five events in a single division will have priority status over teams signing up for individual events. In addition, an early bird discount of $100 is being offered on the five-event combos purchased before November 1, 2013. Five-event combo registrations between November 1 and December 31, 2013, will pay the regular price of $1,250, but will still receive priority status over single-event registrants. After January 1, 2014, new registrations will be on an as-available basis. ABT anticipates some events to reach capacity quickly and is encouraging teams to register early in order to guarantee a spot.
The Alabama Bass Trail is a cooperative effort between the office of Governor Robert Bentley, the Alabama Tourism Department, the Alabama Department of Conservation and Natural Resources, and the Alabama Mountain Lakes Tourist Association. The Alabama Bass Trail features 11 of the state’s premiere bass-fishing lakes and stretches from the mountains of North Alabama south to the Mobile Delta.