Tackle Warehouse claims title sponsorship of Elite Qualifiers, Champlain Elite

The St. Croix Bassmaster Opens presented by SEVIIN means a lot of things to a lot of anglers. To some competitors, the series is a way to test their competitive mettle against the best anglers in a region. To many others, the Opens are the singular gateway to the biggest stage in bass fishing: the Bassmaster Elite Series. For the latter group, Tackle Warehouse is stepping up to support this dream by becoming the title sponsor of the Elite Qualifiers division (EQs) within the Opens, B.A.S.S. announced today.

Last year, B.A.S.S. unveiled the EQs, which required anglers vying to qualify for the Bassmaster Elite Series to fish all nine Opens events to be eligible, with the top nine anglers in the Opens EQ Angler of the Year points standings moving up to the big leagues. This new concept sought to ensure that incoming Elite Series anglers would be prepared for the rigorous travel required by the Elite schedule, as well as understand the demands and skill sets needed to compete at the highest level in the sport. In 2023, 175 anglers signed up for all nine events to try and achieve the Elite Series dream. The EQs were a raging success.

“The product of a proud partnership between Tackle Warehouse and Bassmaster, the 2024 Tackle Warehouse Bassmaster Elite Qualifiers are going to be so fun to watch,” said Joey Reggio of Tackle Warehouse. “We will be paying close attention to the EQ leaderboard, which allows viewers to keep track of the high-stakes points race throughout the year to see who’s going to qualify for the 2025 Bassmaster Elite Series.”

For 2024, the Opens have been greatly enhanced. Live coverage from every Open event will be streamed on Bassmaster.com, with expanded coverage on FOX Sports platforms. Also new, EQ anglers will now be competing for a combined Angler of the Year purse of $110,000, which includes an increased first-place cash prize of $45,000. The prize payouts for every event also increased, as one in five competitors (the top 45 anglers) will receive a check. All in all, more than $3.1 million will be paid to competitors throughout the Opens season. Of course, the opportunity to qualify for the Bass Pro Shops Bassmaster Classic remains a tremendous benefit of competing in the Opens.

“The Opens Series has become one of the most challenging circuits on the planet, with well over 200 anglers competing in each event,” said Chase Anderson, CEO of B.A.S.S. “This year, we expect more than 150 of those pros to fish the EQs in an effort to qualify for the Elites. It’s exciting to have Tackle Warehouse supporting these anglers, as they will compete on very different fisheries throughout the nation, each requiring specific gear and tackle for success.”

Along with its sponsorship of the EQs, Tackle Warehouse will also serve as the title sponsor of the Lake Champlain Elite event to be held out of Plattsburgh, N.Y., August 8-11. This will be the eighth event of the Elite season and will no doubt focus on the nail-biting conclusion of the Progressive Insurance Bassmaster Angler of the Year race leading into the final event.

“Here at Tackle Warehouse, we’re tournament anglers and huge Bassmaster Elite Series fans, so we know how much excitement surrounds the stop at Lake Champlain,” said Reggio. “With big smallmouth and largemouth, long runs and unpredictable weather all in play, it’s going to be an action-packed and dynamic stop. We can’t wait to follow the action at the Tackle Warehouse Bassmaster Elite at Lake Champlain.”

The St. Croix Bassmaster Opens presented by SEVIIN kick off Feb. 1-3 on Lake Okeechobee out of Clewiston, Fla. The Tackle Warehouse Elite Qualifiers points race, as well as the complete Opens schedule, can be found on Bassmaster.com.