George Kramer released his annual list of California’s “Top 40” bass anglers on his blog this evening. As promised, the list included 6 anglers who reside in San Diego County, up from 4 a year ago. Todd Holverson, a “top 40” first-timer, took honors as the highest ranked angler from San Diego at #16. Holverson was the “Angler of the Year” with team partner Jason Sleight in the San Diego Team Day Series this year, having won the last tournament of the season to win the points race by a single point!
Leedom had arguably the most dominant year in the local team tournaments, winning numerous tournaments in dominant fashion. As Kramer references in the list, Leedom made a job switch mid-year and that meant he couldn’t make it to the U.S. Open at Lake Mead this summer. A strong showing there, Kramer admitted, would have vaulted Leedom up the list.
Kevin Mattson is the only San Diego angler on the list that is not a regular tournament angler. In fact, he is not really considered a freshwater bass angler by most at all. Instead he made his name throwing swimbaits and slugs at boiler rocks for lunker calico bass. Mattson might be the best overall fisherman on the list. But he is a tireless trophy bass chaser, and puts massive amounts of time and energy into the hunt. His photo gallery on Facebook is littered with big green bass from small waters, and he’s the darling of Bass King’s marketing of their clothing line.
Justin Hanold, who finished 4th at this year’s U.S. Open (which Kramer values highly in determining this list) finds himself making an appearance at #34. Hanold also notched team tournament and pro/am victories this season.
And Garrett Lorenzen, last year’s highest listed angler from San Diego at #21, slid down to #36. Lorenzen, from Fallbrook, has made his name at Diamond Valley but is plenty dangerous on the City Lakes as well. Lorenzen had a bit of a down year, which accounted for his fall. But he turns his focus to bigger tournament scenes as he embarks on the tour, and if he can notch consistent results, he’ll be a staple on this list for years to come.
SDFish.com sponsor Anglers Marine was represented with two of their own on the list; long time boat salesman Joe Uribe Jr. of Mission Viejo just missed the top 10 at #11, and Kyle Grover (son of Anglers Marine owner Rick Grover) showed up at #35.
Another angler with SDFish.com ties, guide Art Hill of Temecula made the list at #38 based on one thing, his reputation as one of the top bass guides in Southern California.
Jeff Michels of Lakehead, CA – the Everstart Angler of the Year in 2013 found himself on the top of the list. Other notables include FLW Tour juggernaut Brent Ehrler of Redlands at #4, Castaic’s trophy bass guru Butch Brown at #5, Bassmaster superstar Skeet Reese at #9 and 2013 US Open Champ Rusty Brown at #12.
Click here to see the full list and breakdown from the source himself; California’s Golden List: Top 40 Bass Anglers.