Tournament Bass Video: When 1 Ounce = $250,000

In the recent Redcrest 2022 bass tournament, the difference between $300,000 (first place) and $50,000 (second) came down to 1 ounce — and an official scale that twice didn’t recognize that ounce.

Tournament Bass Video: When 1 Ounce = $250,000

The video below is nearly 17 minutes long, but you can fast-forward to the most important action, which begins at the 8:46 mark. (Be sure to click full-screen mode, too.) Professional bass angler Bobby Lane trails leader Jacob Wheeler by only 5 ounces, and in this format, that means one legal bass (2 pounds minimum). The play-by-play and cheering you hear is happening back on shore at tournament headquarters, SageNet Center at Expo Square in Tulsa, Oklahoma, where fans of Major League Fishing are watching the live action on giant monitors.

At the top of the video screen you can see the event time ticking away. In this tournament format, fishing lines have to be pulled from the water when the clock hits zero, and total weight at that moment wins. Unlike many other bass tournaments where anglers keep their five biggest bass in a livewell and then weigh in their fish later in front of a crowd, in this event bass are weighed on a scale by a boat official as they are caught, then immediately released.

As you watch this scene play out, it helps to understand the prize money involved. The first-place check is $300,00. Second place pays $50,000.

Lane’s boat official quickly gets the bass on the scale, and Lane gasps when he sees the scale read 1-pound, 15-ounces. Again, a bass must weigh at least 2 pounds to be scoreable. A 1-pound, 15-ounce bass doesn’t count.

“No way, no way. We’ve got to re-weigh her,” Lane said.

Bass Pro Tour rules state that an angler is allowed to ask for a re-weigh of any bass they catch, up to a maximum of two times. Just to be clear: A bass is weighed once initially, then it can be re-weighed twice, for a total of three times on the scale.

Lane and his official get the bass back on the scale, but the scale doesn’t reset; it fails to give a weight, so they try again. Important note: By rule, this failed attempt doesn’t count as a re-weigh. 

Seconds later, with the scale reset, Lane and his official get the bass back on the scale and once again it reads 1-pound, 15-ounces.

Lane shakes his head. This is it — his final opportunity to re-weigh his fish. This tournament, and Lane’s $250,000 extra winnings, is coming down to whether the scale remains at 1-pound, 15-ounces, or if it moves to 2 pounds (or more). Only 2 minutes and 38 seconds now remain in the event, and the clock is ticking. While Lane is weighing this fish again and again, his competitors are casting — and maybe catching.

Lane and the boat official try one last time. The numbers “2.0” flash on the scale screen – the bass is scorable!

As the final seconds tick away, the outcome could change if someone near the top can catch a bass weighing at least 2 pounds, but Lane hangs on for victory.

“I’m not getting any younger, I promise,” Lane said. “But today I felt like a 10-year-old winging my bait around and to finally come through to win – it’s just unbelievable. Everything went perfect today.”


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