Arkansas Pro Wins Third B.A.S.S. Angler of Year in Seven Seasons

SEVIERVILLE, Tenn. ­ (May 15, 2001) ­ Wrapping up his third coveted B.A.S.S.
Angler of the Year title in the past seven years during the recent
BASSMASTER MegaBucks Tournament on Tennesseeıs Douglas Lake, Mark Davis made
winning one of the sportıs most treasured awards look easy.

But the truth is that this Angler of the Year three-peat was anything but
easy for the Arkansas pro.

"I think this one is even more special than the other two because of what I
went through last year," Davis said. "Back in the fall of 1999 after my
surgeries, truthfully, I had doubts about whether or not I would be able to
fish at this level again. I didnıt even tell (wife) Tilly, but I was
seriously worried about my career."

It had to be hard to remain optimistic during the six weeks when he was
forced to wear casts on both arms and couldnıt even feed himself. Davis
underwent surgery on his right shoulder and left elbow to repair the
deterioration of years of wear-and-tear caused by the rigors of competing at
the big-league level. But the pain lingered for months after rehab had been

"Back in those days, I never could have envisioned ever winning another
Angler of the Year," he admits. "So that makes this even sweeter."

It was months later while competing in the rigorous World Championship
Fishing boating/bass summertime events that Davis first began to believe
that he would make a full recovery and return to his past form as one of the
best bass fishermen in America.

Davis, 37, won his first Angler of the Year title in 1995 and then went onto
make B.A.S.S. history by becoming the only fisherman to ever win Angler of
the Year and the BASS Masters Classic in the same season. He followed that
up by winning Angler of the Year in 1998.

This season, Davis began aiming for a third Angler of the Year trophy about
mid-season when he found himself locked into a running battle with
three-time Angler of the Year Kevin VanDam. With his worst finish a
respectable 22nd place, Davis enjoyed a substantial lead over the Michigan
pro entering the final Top 150 event of the 2000-01 BASSMASTER season <

But VanDam never stood a chance as the tournament on Douglas Lake unfolded.
Davis ended any suspense early by winning the qualifying portion of
MegaBucks with 41-plus pounds of bass. (Davis went on to finish fourth after
making the lucrative finals.)

"Iıve had a real solid year, and Iım thrilled to win Angler of the Year,"
Davis said. "I know how hard it is to win Angler of the Year, so I can
really appreciate it."

Now the personable Arkansas angler will set his sights on the upcoming
Classic Aug. 2-4 on the Louisiana Delta near New Orleans < and a chance to
enjoy another unprecedented double (Angler of the Year and the Classic crown
in the same season).

"Iım excited about the Classic and going back to the Delta," said Davis, who
will be competing in his 10th Classic. "Itıs a great fishery and the kind of
place where you can get away from the crowds and do your own thing.  Itıs
going to be exciting."

By sanctioning over 20,000 tournaments worldwide, B.A.S.S. is the worldıs
largest fishing organization. The BASSMASTER Tournament Trail is the oldest
and most prestigious pro bass fishing tournament circuit. It continues to
set the standard for credibility, professionalism, and sportsmanship after
more than three decades.

Sponsors of the 2001 BASSMASTER Tournament Trail include: Ranger Boats,
RangerTrail Trailers, Mercury Outboards, Chevy Trucks, Long John Silverıs,
Kumho Tires, ACDelco Batteries,, Humminbird/Zercom Marine,
Pennzoil Marine, Flowmaster Exhaust Systems, First USA/B.A.S.S. Platinum
Visa, MotorGuide Trolling Motors, Gore-Tex Outerwear, GMAC Insurance and
Armstrong Industrial Hand Tools.

For more information contact:
B.A.S.S. Communications at (334) 272-9530