LAS VEGAS–Bassmaster fans have chosen Michael Iaconelli of Pitts Grove, N.J., Jeff Kriet of Ardmore, Okla., Aaron Martens of Leeds, Ala., and Skeet Reese of Auburn, Calif., to complete the field of 12 for Toyota Trucks All-Star Week, July 23-31, in Alabama.
These final four All-Star anglers were revealed by B.A.S.S. at the ICAST trade show in Las Vegas. The announcement was covered live at www.bassmaster.com.
Iaconelli, Kriet, Martens and Reese will join the top eight from the 2011 Bassmaster Elite Series regular season. They are, in order of their points finish: Kevin VanDam of Kalamazoo, Mich.; Edwin Evers of Talala, Okla.; Gerald Swindle of Warrior, Ala.; Ott DeFoe of Knoxville, Tenn.; Steve Kennedy of Auburn, Ala.; Terry Scroggins of San Mateo, Fla.; Casey Ashley of Donalds, S.C.; and Davy Hite of Ninety Six, S.C.
Together, this slate of 12 anglers will meet first on Lake Jordan near Wetumpka, Ala., on July 23-24. The top eight anglers after the Jordan leg will move July 29 to the Alabama River out of Montgomery, Ala., for a three-day bracketed competition. The July 31 finale will pit just two anglers for a winner-take-all prize of $100,000.
Coverage of the postseason events will be provided on www.bassmaster.com. Fans are invited to Wetumpka and Montgomery to watch the weigh-ins and get in on free fan activities. For details, visit www.bassmaster.com.
Over a three-week voting period, fans cast more than a half-million votes at www.bassmaster.com. Fans were permitted to vote once a day in each of four regions.
The closest race was in Region 2, where Missouri’s Denny Brauer led from June 21-30 until Kriet overtook him July 1 and held the lead until the polls closed July 10. Kriet edged out Brauer by 551 votes, garnering 17.8 percent of Region 2 votes to Brauer’s 17.4 percent. Rick Clunn of Missouri was third in Region 2 with 10.3 percent of the vote.
“I am very surprised and humbled that I got as many votes as I did,” said Kriet, whose Facebook page set up by his daughter likely helped his bid. “It means a lot to me that people would take the time to vote for me. There were a lot of really, really good fishermen in my region.”
Results in the other three regions were not as tight. In Region 1, Iaconelli pulled 26.5 percent of the vote, easily passing two Elite pros from Florida: Shaw Grigsby with 15.3 percent and Bobby Lane, who had 7.1 percent.
Region 3 winner Martens collected 16.6 percent of his region’s vote. Second was Alabama’s Tim Horton with 9.5 percent and third was Louisiana’s Greg Hackney with 8.6 percent.
Reese’s 23.4 percent in Region 4 was a wide margin over Alton Jones of Texas, who ended with 13.4 percent, and Brandon Palaniuk of Idaho with 11.3 percent.
As the final four anglers were announced, 12 fan finalists in the Toyota Trucks Fan Favorites Sweepstakes were “virtually paired” with the pro anglers for a chance to win a bass boat valued at $30,000. When the All-Star champion is crowned July 31, the fan paired with him will win a Triton 18XS bass boat with a Mercury 150 OptiMax engine. All 12 finalists will win a tackle pack from Berkley and Havoc.
The names of the 12 fan finalists and their pairings will be announced after all are contacted by B.A.S.S.
2011 Bassmaster Elite Series Official Sponsors: Toyota, Bass Pro Shops, Berkley, Evan Williams Bourbon, Humminbird, Mercury, Minn Kota, Skeeter Boats, Triton Boats, Yamaha
2011 Bassmaster Elite Series Supporting Sponsors: Lowrance, Luck “E” Strike, Nitro Boats, Power-Pole, Ramada
For more than 40 years, B.A.S.S. has served as the authority on bass fishing. The organization advances the sport through advocacy, outreach and an expansive tournament structure while connecting directly with the passionate community of bass anglers through its Bassmaster media vehicles.
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