MONTGOMERY, Ala. - Officials from BASS, the worldwide authority on bass
fishing, announced plans for a Jr. Bassmaster World Championship. For the first
time ever, the Junior Bassmaster World Championship will coincide with
professional fishing's largest event, the CITGO Bassmaster Classic, next July 30-
Aug. 1 on Lake Norman, near Charlotte, N.C.

"It's been an emotional week," said Stacy Twiggs, BASS National Youth
Manager. "Words can't describe this dream becoming a reality for all of us here
at BASS. This is truly a milestone event that will have an immeasurable impact
on the future of the entire sportfishing industry.

"As stakeholders in the outdoors community we are doing our part to ensure that
an affinity for this great sport is being passed on to future generations."

The young anglers will be divided into two age groups, 11 to 14 and 15 to 18.
The anglers come from Junior Bassmaster clubs throughout the BASS
Federations, currently derived from 33 states, Canada and the District of
Columbia. They will qualify, just as Federation anglers qualify for the Classic,
through local, state and divisional tournaments.

The top young anglers from these divisional tournaments will advance to Lake
Norman the week of the Classic to compete for scholarships and the title of
Junior Bassmaster World Champion.

Anglers from both age groups will be paired randomly together along with one of
the top 35 anglers that have qualified for the Classic. The anglers will fish one
practice day in a Celebrity Pro/Am format, followed by a one-day tournament the
weekend before the CITGO Bassmaster Classic. The pro will be there as a
mentor and boat driver only.

"BASS is dedicated to providing opportunities for aspiring anglers," said Steve
Puckett, Director of Operations for BASS. "We want to involve youth to increase
overall fishing participation and help grow sportfishing.

"We are ecstatic about being able to leverage our leadership in the industry, the
historical prominence of the Classic, the outstanding support from the BASS
Federation, and the participation of our Classic anglers to make this a special
event for our youth and the industry."

"This is dynamite!" said North Carolina BASS Federation President Ed Cannon. "I
applaud and support BASS and ESPN in this endeavor. It's an honor for North
Carolina to be the first state to host the Junior World Championship in
conjunction during the week of the Bassmaster Classic.

"Imagine how starstruck the kids are going to be when they get the chance to fish
among and alongside their heroes."

BASS is the world's largest fishing organization, sanctioning more than 20,000
tournaments worldwide through its Federation. In 2004, BASS will introduce
the all-new Bassmaster Elite 50 Series, a four-event, no-entry-fee circuit
featuring a $1.6 million prize purse for the world's best anglers. The CITGO
Bassmaster Tournament Trail is the oldest and most prestigious pro bass-fishing
tournament circuit and continues to set the standard for credibility,
professionalism and sportsmanship as it has since 1968.

For more information, contact BASS Communications at (334) 551-2375 or visit