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Oklahoma’s Tommy Biffle Captures Fourth BASS Title at Evan Williams Bourbon Dixie Duel on Alabama’s Wheeler Lake

Category: press release

 Apr 6th, 2009 by OutdoorsFIRST 

Modified Apr 6th, 2009 at 12:00 AM

DECATUR, Ala. – Through a series of flipping and pitching casts from a hidden cove, Tommy Biffle of Wagoner, Okla., accumulated 50 pounds, 13 ounces, on his way to victory at the Evan Williams Bourbon Dixie Duel on Wheeler Lake. Biffle edged Casey Ashley of Donalds, S.C., who amassed 46-4 for second place in the third event of the 2009 Bassmaster Elite Series season.

Tommy Biffle moments after his fourth BASS win on Wheeler Lake(Photo Courtesy of BASS)

With the victory, Biffle earns $100,000 and valuable points in the chase for the Toyota Tundra Bassmaster Angler of the Year trophy. In addition to the prestige of one Elite angler winning the trophy, the top 36 pros in the AOY standings at the end of the season will qualify for the 2010 Bassmaster Classic on Alabama’s Lay Lake.

During the weather-shortened Dixie Duel, Biffle found a secluded spot on Wheeler Lake without boat traffic and remained committed to it throughout the weekend. Friday’s competition was canceled due to unsafe river conditions, and by Saturday the river levels had increased nearly 2 feet compared to the first day of competition Thursday. Biffle, who bagged 14-13 on Sunday’s final day, said he was fishing in about 6 inches of water on the first day and the water was stained for the remainder of the event.

“I was more concerned that the river bottom was going to drop and my area would be dry and that was my biggest fear,” said Biffle, 51. “With the quality of the maps and GPS detail now you can find places that you could never find before. You know this is right up my alley as I don’t like to have others near. I was fortunate no one came in there.”

Tommy Biffle with some of his winning catch (Photo Courtesy of BASS)

Fishing fans can catch all of the on-the-water action from the Evan Williams Bourbon Dixie Duel on The Bassmasters, which airs Saturday, April 11, at 9 a.m. ET on ESPN2. The daily weigh-ins for this and all other regular-season Elite events as well as the two postseason events will air live at 5 p.m. ET on ESPN360.com, ESPN’s broadband sports network, while a wealth of unique content will also be available at Bassmaster.com.

Rounding out the top five were 2004 Bassmaster Classic winner Takahiro Omori of Emory, Texas, in third with 45-10; Brent Chapman of Lake Quivira, Kan., in fourth with 45-4; and 2003 Bassmaster Classic champion Mike Iaconelli of Runnemede, N.J., in fifth with 45-3.

While Biffle’s area was large enough for others to join, he was confident nonetheless of being able to boat at least 15 pounds a day. The former race boat driver said he caught at least 50 fish daily in the event, though he missed a couple of big bites Sunday. He remained committed to his pattern of a black and blue jig with a lizard trailer and was fishing around a lot of structure that included bushes.

“I was able to skip an area if I missed a fish and come back to it later in the day, so it was a key to success,” he said. “The perfect condition would have been sunny all day — and without the water dropping about 8 inches overnight, bigger bags would have been caught.”

Biffle’s last BASS victory was the Empire Chase on New York’s Lake Oneida in 2006, the inaugural season for the Bassmaster Elite Series.

He said Sunday he thought the water temperature affected the bigger fish. On Saturday, he boated 19-14, the largest bag of the tournament.

“When I caught them really good yesterday the temperature was up about 68 or 69 degrees, today the highest it got was 64,” he said.

Ashley made the biggest upward move Sunday, from 15th to second, with a five-fish limit of 19-11, the day’s heaviest bag. He used two jerk baits of different sizes and a jig throughout the event. It paid off for Ashley, who was just short of capturing his second Bassmaster Elite Series title.

The third-year Elite angler was fishing a variety of edges and bluffs in 6 to 12 feet of water, and Sunday he had a limit by 8:30 a.m.

“I was never really able to improve myself until I switched to a jig and caught a 6-pounder,” said Ashley, 25. “I would not have done anything different. I could not tell you the name of where I was fishing today but it was shallow and had some unique structure including grass.”

Ashley was the first pro to the scales Sunday and had to sweat it out in the Toyota Tundra Hot Seat as the leader throughout most of the weigh-in.

“It got interesting towards the end of the weigh-in,” he said. “There were a lot of heavy hitters towards the end who I thought would have caught them today.”

After three events, 2008 Bassmaster Classic champ Alton Jones of Waco, Texas, leads the Toyota Tundra Angler of the Year standings with 813 points. Stephen Browning of Hot Springs, Ark., is second with 774 points, and Mark Menendez of Paducah, Ky., is third with 761.

The next stop for the Elite anglers is the April 23-26 Advance Auto Parts Blue Ridge Brawl on Smith Mountain Lake out of Moneta, Va., which has hosted five previous BASS events, including the 2007 Elite Series event that Ashley won as a rookie.

Complete standings for the tournament as well as the seasonlong Toyota Tundra Bassmaster Angler of the Year standings can be found below.

For more information, contact BASS Communications at (407) 566-2208 or visit Bassmaster.com. Visit ESPNOutdoorsMedia.com for ESPN Outdoors’ latest releases, schedules, other news and photos.

The local sponsor of the Dixie Duel is the Decatur-Morgan County Convention & Visitors Bureau.

Official Sponsors of the Bassmaster Elite Series: Toyota Trucks, Berkley, BOOYAH Baits, Evan Williams Bourbon, Mercury, OPTIMA Batteries, Skeeter Boats and Yamaha Marine

Supporting Sponsors of the Bassmaster Elite Series: Bass Pro Shops, Costa Del Mar, Ramada, Sponge Tech & Triton Boats

About BASS

For more than 40 years, BASS has served as the authority on bass fishing. With its considerable multi-media platforms and expansive tournament trail, BASS is guided by its mission to serve all fishing fans. Through its industry-leading publications Bassmaster Magazine, BASS Times and Fishing Tackle Retailer and comprehensive Web properties in ESPN360.com, ESPN’s sports broadband network, Bassmaster.com, BASSInsider.com and ESPNOutdoors.com, the organization is committed to delivering content true to the lifestyle. Additionally, television programming on ESPN2 continues to provide relevant content – from tips and techniques to in-depth tournament coverage – to passionate audiences.

The organization oversees the prestigious Bassmaster tournament trail, which includes the Bassmaster Elite Series, Bassmaster Opens, Women’s Bassmaster Tour and the Bassmaster Classic, the ultimate celebration of competitive fishing. Through its grassroots network, the BASS Federation Nation, BASS sanctions more than 20,000 events annually.

BASS also offers an array of services to its more than 500,000 members while spearheading progressive, positive change on issues related to conservation and water access. The organization is headquartered in Celebration, Fla.

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Media Contact: Anthony Bartkowski; (407) 744-4566 or [email protected]

EVAN WILLIAMS BOURBON DIXIE DUEL DAY 3

2009 Dixie Duel 4/2-4/5
Lake Wheeler, Decatur AL.
(PROFESSIONAL) Standings Day 3

Angler Hometown No./lbs-oz Pts Total $$$

1. Tommy Biffle Wagoner, OK 15 50-13 310 $100,000.00
Day 1: 5 16-02 Day 2: 5 19-14 Day 3: 5 14-13
2. Casey Ashley Donalds, SC 15 46-04 295 $25,000.00
Day 1: 5 12-11 Day 2: 5 13-14 Day 3: 5 19-11
3. Takahiro Omori Emory, TX 15 45-10 290 $20,000.00
Day 1: 5 17-08 Day 2: 5 16-01 Day 3: 5 12-01
4. Brent Chapman Lake Quivira, KS 15 45-04 285 $15,000.00
Day 1: 5 13-10 Day 2: 5 13-00 Day 3: 5 18-10
5. Michael Iaconelli Runnemede, NJ 15 45-03 280 $14,000.00
Day 1: 5 17-01 Day 2: 5 12-12 Day 3: 5 15-06
6. Bradley Hallman Norman, OK 15 44-13 276 $13,500.00
Day 1: 5 13-01 Day 2: 5 17-13 Day 3: 5 13-15
7. Mark Tucker Saint Louis, MO 15 42-15 272 $13,000.00
Day 1: 5 11-09 Day 2: 5 18-07 Day 3: 5 12-15
8. Mark Menendez Paducah, KY 15 42-08 268 $12,500.00
Day 1: 5 16-01 Day 2: 5 11-00 Day 3: 5 15-07
9. Todd Faircloth Jasper, TX 15 42-03 264 $12,000.00
Day 1: 5 14-15 Day 2: 5 14-14 Day 3: 5 12-06
10. Stephen Browning Hot Springs National Pa 15 41-15 260 $11,500.00
Day 1: 5 11-11 Day 2: 5 16-04 Day 3: 5 14-00
11. Gary Klein Weatherford, TX 15 41-05 257 $11,000.00
Day 1: 5 14-00 Day 2: 5 14-03 Day 3: 5 13-02
12. Rick Morris Virginia Beach, VA 15 40-11 254 $10,500.00
Day 1: 5 16-13 Day 2: 5 11-15 Day 3: 5 11-15
13. Bernie Schultz Gainesville, FL 15 40-06 251 $10,000.00
Day 1: 5 11-06 Day 2: 5 13-15 Day 3: 5 15-01
14. Alton Jones Waco, TX 15 39-10 253 $10,000.00
Day 1: 5 17-12 Day 2: 5 08-12 Day 3: 5 13-02
15. Todd Auten Lake Wylie, SC 15 38-09 245 $10,000.00
Day 1: 5 12-12 Day 2: 5 12-07 Day 3: 5 13-06
16. Randy Howell Springville, AL 15 38-03 243 $10,000.00
Day 1: 5 16-06 Day 2: 5 11-14 Day 3: 5 09-15
17. Jason Williamson Aiken, SC 15 37-07 241 $10,000.00
Day 1: 5 15-07 Day 2: 5 08-15 Day 3: 5 13-01
18. Aaron Martens Leeds, AL 15 37-07 239 $10,000.00
Day 1: 5 13-10 Day 2: 5 09-06 Day 3: 5 14-07
19. Dustin Wilks Rocky Mount, NC 15 37-06 237 $10,000.00
Day 1: 5 11-11 Day 2: 5 11-03 Day 3: 5 14-08
20. Brian Clark Haltom City, TX 15 37-02 235 $10,000.00
Day 1: 5 13-14 Day 2: 5 11-00 Day 3: 5 12-04
21. Marty Robinson Lyman, SC 15 37-01 233 $10,000.00
Day 1: 5 13-11 Day 2: 5 12-10 Day 3: 5 10-12
22. Kenyon Hill Norman, OK 15 37-01 231 $10,000.00
Day 1: 5 12-00 Day 2: 5 13-08 Day 3: 5 11-09
23. Cliff Pace Petal, MS 15 36-13 229 $10,000.00
Day 1: 5 14-14 Day 2: 5 09-12 Day 3: 5 12-03
24. Skeet Reese Auburn, CA 15 36-10 227 $10,000.00
Day 1: 5 15-10 Day 2: 5 07-03 Day 3: 5 13-13
25. Bill Lowen North Bend, OH 15 36-09 225 $10,000.00
Day 1: 5 11-06 Day 2: 5 14-01 Day 3: 5 11-02
26. Edwin Evers Talala, OK 15 36-06 223 $10,000.00
Day 1: 5 13-06 Day 2: 5 15-06 Day 3: 5 07-10
27. Steve Kennedy Auburn, AL 15 36-05 221 $10,000.00
Day 1: 5 12-09 Day 2: 5 10-05 Day 3: 5 13-07
28. John Murray Phoenix, AZ 15 35-15 219 $10,000.00
Day 1: 5 10-04 Day 2: 5 12-03 Day 3: 5 13-08
29. Jason Quinn York, SC 15 35-09 217 $10,000.00
Day 1: 5 13-14 Day 2: 5 09-03 Day 3: 5 12-08
30. Matt Herren Trussville, AL 15 35-09 215 $10,000.00
Day 1: 5 12-12 Day 2: 5 12-07 Day 3: 5 10-06
31. Jeff Connella Bentley, LA 15 35-08 213 $10,000.00
Day 1: 5 13-03 Day 2: 5 12-11 Day 3: 5 09-10
32. Kevin Short Mayflower, AR 15 35-07 211 $10,000.00
Day 1: 5 08-01 Day 2: 5 15-10 Day 3: 5 11-12
33. Denny Brauer Camdenton, MO 15 35-07 209 $10,000.00
Day 1: 5 10-11 Day 2: 5 12-05 Day 3: 5 12-07
34. Greg Hackney Gonzales, LA 15 35-06 207 $10,000.00
Day 1: 5 11-09 Day 2: 5 12-12 Day 3: 5 11-01
35. Ish Monroe Hughson, CA 15 34-13 205 $10,000.00
Day 1: 5 15-02 Day 2: 5 07-12 Day 3: 5 11-15
36. Russ Lane Prattville, AL 15 34-06 203 $10,000.00
Day 1: 5 13-13 Day 2: 5 13-01 Day 3: 5 07-08
37. Terry Butcher Talala, OK 15 34-03 201 $10,000.00
Day 1: 5 11-04 Day 2: 5 12-13 Day 3: 5 10-02
38. Charlie Hartley Grove City, OH 15 34-00 199 $10,000.00
Day 1: 5 11-06 Day 2: 5 11-15 Day 3: 5 10-11
39. Timmy Horton Muscle Shoals, AL 15 33-13 197 $10,000.00
Day 1: 5 15-02 Day 2: 5 08-14 Day 3: 5 09-13
40. Vince Fulks Purcell, OK 15 33-11 195 $10,000.00
Day 1: 5 11-03 Day 2: 5 12-11 Day 3: 5 09-13
41. Mark Davis Mount Ida, AR 15 33-09 193 $10,000.00
Day 1: 5 14-07 Day 2: 5 08-07 Day 3: 5 10-11
42. Shaw E Grigsby Gainesville, FL 15 33-05 191 $12,000.00
Day 1: 5 08-02 Day 2: 5 14-10 Day 3: 5 10-09
43. Kotaro Kiriyama Moody, AL 15 33-05 189 $10,000.00
Day 1: 5 10-11 Day 2: 5 13-12 Day 3: 5 08-14
44. Jared Lintner Arroyo Grande, CA 15 33-00 187 $10,000.00
Day 1: 5 10-12 Day 2: 5 11-08 Day 3: 5 10-12
45. Kevin VanDam Kalamazoo, MI 15 32-09 185 $10,000.00
Day 1: 5 12-02 Day 2: 5 10-02 Day 3: 5 10-05
46. Matthew Sphar Pavilion, NY 15 32-07 183 $10,000.00
Day 1: 5 12-11 Day 2: 5 10-10 Day 3: 5 09-02
47. Guy Eaker Cherryville, NC 15 32-06 181 $10,000.00
Day 1: 5 10-09 Day 2: 5 12-02 Day 3: 5 09-11
48. Mark Burgess Norton, MA 13 31-06 179 $10,000.00
Day 1: 3 10-07 Day 2: 5 12-12 Day 3: 5 08-03
49. J Todd Tucker Moultrie, GA 15 30-13 177 $10,000.00
Day 1: 5 13-05 Day 2: 5 11-01 Day 3: 5 06-07
50. Scott Campbell Springfield, MO 15 29-08 175 $10,000.00
Day 1: 5 14-12 Day 2: 5 08-04 Day 3: 5 06-08
———————————————————————–

BIG BASS
Day
1 Alton Jones Waco, TX 07-00 $0.00
2 Shaw E Grigsby Gainesville, FL 07-02 $0.00
3 Brent Chapman Lake Quivira, KS 06-07 $0.00

———————————————————————–
Totals
Day #Limits #Fish Weight
1 97 495 1147-08
2 95 484 1055-06
3 50 250 592-13
———————————-
242 1229 2795-11

TOYOTA TUNDRA BASSMASTER ANGLER OF THE YEAR STANDINGS

Evan Williams Bourbon Dixie Duel
Lake Wheeler – Ingalls Harbor – Decatur, AL 4/2/2009 – 4/5/2009

Points Standings – Post Tournament

Pl Name St Pts
1 Alton Jones TX 813
2 Stephen Browning AR 774
3 Mark Menendez KY 761
4 Gary Klein TX 751
5 Kevin VanDam MI 748
6 Mark Tucker MO 738
7 Skeet Reese CA 734
8 Brent Chapman KS 726
9 Cliff Pace MS 720
10 Todd Faircloth TX 705
11 Tommy Biffle OK 704
12 Casey Ashley SC 701
13 Kevin Short AR 698
14 Jason Williamson SC 691
15 Denny Brauer MO 688
16 Bill Lowen OH 675
17 Randy Howell AL 647
18 Bradley Hallman OK 641
19 Michael Iaconelli NJ 640
20 Jared Lintner CA 634
21 Aaron Martens AL 629
22 Matt Herren AL 626
23 Edwin Evers OK 621
24 Mike McClelland AR 620
25 John Murray AZ 619
26 Timmy Horton AL 619
27 Greg Hackney LA 619
28 James Niggemeyer TX 615
29 Jami Fralick SD 613
30 Todd Auten SC 599
31 Dean Rojas AZ 598
32 Kenyon Hill OK 595
33 Fred Roumbanis OK 592
34 Boyd Duckett AL 580
35 Takahiro Omori TX 574
36 Terry Butcher OK 573
37 Russ Lane AL 569
38 Chris Lane FL 566
39 Greg Vinson AL 565
40 Brian Snowden MO 565
41 Pat Golden NC 563
42 Kevin Wirth KY 563
43 Jason Quinn SC 555
44 Jeff Kriet OK 553
45 Rick Morris VA 546
46 Bobby Lane FL 543
47 Kelly Jordon TX 539
48 Mark Davis AR 539
49 Matthew Sphar NY 537
50 Steve Kennedy AL 537
51 Brian Clark TX 536
52 Bernie Schultz FL 535
53 Ish Monroe CA 529
54 Marty Robinson SC 527
55 Chad Griffin TX 525
56 Charlie Hartley OH 523
57 Gerald Swindle AL 517
58 J Todd Tucker GA 505
59 Shaw E Grigsby FL 503
60 Billy Mccaghren AR 496
61 Jon Bondy CAN 495
62 Jim Murray GA 489
63 Dustin Wilks NC 487
64 Guy Eaker NC 485
65 Byron Velvick TX 473
66 Davy Hite SC 465
67 Dave Wolak NC 465
68 Kotaro Kiriyama AL 463
69 Mark Tyler OK 455
70 Matt Reed TX 445
71 Vince Fulks OK 445
72 Terry Scroggins FL 433
73 Marty Stone NC 433
73 Paul Elias MS 433
75 Pete Ponds MS 431
76 Jeremy Starks WV 419
77 Ken D Cook OK 407
78 Yusuke Miyazaki TX 403
79 Britt Myers SC 391
80 Jeff Connella LA 391
81 Clark Reehm AR 379
82 Zell Rowland TX 379
83 Mark Burgess MA 377
84 Wade Grooms SC 369
85 Derek Remitz AL 369
86 Scott Campbell MO 369
87 Morizo Shimizu JPN 365
88 Scott Rook AR 365
89 Elton Luce Jr. TX 365
90 Jeff Reynolds OK 361
91 Peter E Thliveros FL 361
92 Mike Wurm AR 357
93 Jimmy Mize AR 347
94 Rick Clunn MO 335
95 David Smith OK 333
96 John Crews VA 329
97 Grant Goldbeck MD 322
98 Luke Gritter MI 317
99 Brent Broderick OH 307
100 Kevin Langill NC 304
   

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