LA CROSSE, Wis. - A tournament largely dominated by a 25-year old was ultimately won by one of the Bassmaster Elite Series' veterans, 55-year old Tommy Biffle.
"It feels good," Biffle said. "Everybody said it was going to be close, so it had me worried, but it turned out good."
An 18-time qualifier, Biffle weighed-in with 16 lbs., 13 ounces on the tournament's final day, for a four-day total of 64 lbs., 2 ounces. With the win, Biffle earns $100,000 (surpassing $2 million in career earnings) and a 2014 Bassmasters Classic berth.
"It's really good just to make the Classic, that's the best feeling."
Biffle took the lead on the tournament's final day, but everyone in the field benefited from the disqualification of Brandon Palaniuk, who held a big lead after two days, but was caught culling in Minnesota waters.
"I feel for Brandon because he was catching them good," Biffle said. "Just a bad deal, but he's young and he'll remember that and he'll come back and he'll win a bunch of them."20685102
Aaron Martens (61-1), who held a 7 oz. lead entering Day Four, finished second. Last year, he trailed by 7 oz. heading into the tournament's final day.
2012 Mississippi River Rumble champion Todd Faircloth finished 6th.