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Wednesday, October 18, 2023
First EQ class graduates to Elites
By Mike Suchan
Congratulations and welcome to the 2024 Bassmaster Elite Series.
There were 172 aspiring anglers who competed in the first year of Bassmaster’s Elite Qualifier series, which was comprised of nine St. Croix Bassmaster Opens. The top nine anglers in EQ points graduated to fish the top circuit in B.A.S.S.
While three anglers ran away from the pack, the final spots in the EQ series came down to the final day of fishing.
J.T. Thompkins, John Garrett and Trey McKinney were virtually assured of reaching the Elites before the last Open this past weekend on Florida’s Harris Chain of Lakes.
With the eighth through 17th EQ spots separated by only a couple dozen points, several anglers were nervous as they leap-frogged one another through the weather-shortened tournament. It went down to the final moments, and the last several had to sweat it out before the reveal.