2015 Bassmaster Classic Expo – Highlightsby Grant Pentiricci February 25, 2015
The Bassmaster Classic is a fantastic tournament for fans to attend. If you go down to watch the pros launching, or are attending the live weigh-ins, it’s a great experience. The expo at the classic is the proverbial cherry on top.
The expo is a great opportunity for the general public to immerse themselves in the world of professional fishing. There are a lot of opportunities to talk to pros, learn about fishing, watch the classic live or interviews, or even get some shopping done! There were large and small tackle companies offering products at substantial discounts, all with pros at hand to speak with fans.
Our team walked the expo and found some great new products we want to share with readers. Although ICAST is the launch of new products, they usually take some time to hit shelves. It’s at the Bassmaster Classic Expo where manufacturers often offer their new items for sale for the first time to the public.
SPRO BBZ-1 RAT
There has been a lot of hype around the release of this topwater rat and Bill Siemantal has been catching some monsters with this bait. A quick search on Youtube will yield tonnes of videos of this rat catching fish. They were on sale to the public at the Expo and our team got to see them in their retail packaging for the first time! These rats weren’t cheap and were retailing for $32.99USD.
RAT-L-TRAP ECHO 1.75 SQUAREBILL CRANKBAIT
This is a new shallow running crankbait from the makers of the Rat-L-Trap. It’s a squarebill crankbait that runs 3 to 5-ft deep. Coming in a unique size, the 1.75 is between a 1.5 and a 2.0. Rat-L-Trap claims that it casts further than a 1.5 by 10 to 20 yards, and maintains a smaller profile than a 2.0. Color patterns are applied using lazer printing technology and the Echo 1.75 also has a blend of low and high frequency sounds differentiating it from other squarebills on the market.
Z-MAN PROJECT Z CHATTERBAIT
This particular bait excited some of our team members. It is a refinement of the Original Chatterbait and builds on all the learnings that the Z-Man team had with the original. A re-designed clasp, upgraded, longer shank hook, dual trailer keepers all make this version of the Chatterbait even better. The Project z Chatterbait was available for purchase for the first time at the Expo and retailed for $6.99. To sweeten the pot, the Z-Man team was giving away free hats with purchase of 3 Z-Man products.
MUSTANG ELITE INFLATABLE PFD
The new Mustang Elite inflatable PFD was on hand as well. This was released at ICAST 2014 and is now available for purchase. This new PFD design improves mobility and comfort and introduces some exclusive materials such as a wicking mesh liner in the back and a lightweight fabric shell. The Elite has Mustang’s Hydrostatic Inflator Technology as well. The big thing about this PFD is that it will stay in place during high speed runs.
BIG BITE BAITS ROJAS FIGHTING FROG
This new soft plastic from Big Bite Baits is available in 4″ and 5″ versions and 22 colors. This bait is designed to be used flipping, pitching, Carolina rigging, or as a jig trailer. It features a compact body with small front legs for subtle action and larger back legs that have swimming action. The fighting frog has hook pockets on the top and bottom, as well as additional groves on the sides. These additional groves are designed to prevent the bait from balling up on the hook and interfering with hooksets.
The Expo at the Bassmaster Classic is an exciting opportunity for retailers big and small to interact with the public and educate them about the industry. Overall the expo was a great experience and for those wanting to do some shopping and perhaps see their favorite angler it was perfect. There were also many other attractions at the expo, but these were our team’s top picks.
About AuthorMore info about author
Grant is the Founder of AnglingAuthority.com. While he primarily fishes for large mouth and small mouth bass, he’s passionate about sport fishing in general and an avid multispecies angler. Learning about new tactics, gear, species and conditions is all part of what makes the sport challenging and enjoyable. Grant also loves to travel, particularly to prime fishing destinations. Grant participates in regional tournaments and is a proud pro staff member of State Apparel, Power-Pole and Gambler Lures. Grant is a member of B.A.S.S, Canadian Bass Anglers Federation and Ontario Federation of Anglers & Hunters.More by Grant Pentiricci