Quinn Expands Sponsor Deal with Evan Williams Bourbon, Remains a Leader in BASS Tournament Trails

CELEBRATION, Fla. – This month, charismatic angler Jason Quinn accepted his invitation to fish in the 2006 CITGO Bassmaster Elite Series and extended and expanded his sponsorship contract with a major whiskey label that will support his goal to reach the CITGO Bassmaster Classic and take home the coveted trophy.

Quinn joins other Elite Series anglers in his quest, including Marty Stone, Greg Hackney, Gerald Swindle and Shaw Grigsby. “This season’s competitors are really going to get to show their true colors,” said Quinn. “It will be grueling but rewarding.”

The 33-year-old Clover, S.C. pro has kept busy during the off-season selecting boat and truck wraps with his non-endemic title sponsor Evan Williams Bourbon.

Evan Williams signed Quinn in 2004 and, following the recent announcement of the Elite Series, the brand extended and expanded its contract through 2007. The added exposure offered to Elite Series anglers through same-day coverage on ESPN2 – with anglers fishing from their own sponsor-wrapped boats during the Bassmaster Majors – was all the Louisville, Ky.-based label needed to increase its commitment and become Quinn’s title sponsor.

“Jason Quinn’s commitment to the BASS Elite Series is a reflection of his hard work and dedication to being one of the finest young anglers in America,” said Kirstin Jackson, brand manager Evan Williams Bourbon. “Evan Williams is proud to be affiliated with Jason and his values, along with the finest pro fishing series in the world.”

Quinn’s other sponsors include Mercury Marine, Procraft Boats, Bass Pro Shops, CS Motorsports Audio Excellence, Pflueger Fishing Tackle, All Star Graphite Rods and Costa Del Mar Sunglasses.

“One appearance on TV is worth a lot. Evan Williams saw the value in TV during prime time and jumped all over it,” said Quinn. “We’re a traveling billboard out there. All of the miles we run, all over the United States … non-endemic sponsors are looking everyday and Evan Williams liked what I had to offer. I fit the mold they were looking for.”

Fishing other BASS tournament trails in the off-season keeps Quinn’s mind and body focused on the upcoming Elite Series season, he said. Currently, he is ranked ninth in the CITGO Bassmaster Southern Open Division points standings. If he finishes in the top 25, he’ll advance to the CITGO Bassmaster Open Championship on the Alabama River in Alabama, Dec. 1-4. If Quinn finishes in the top five in the Open Championship, he will advance to the 2006 CITGO Bassmaster Classic on Lake Tohopekaliga in Kissimmee, Fla., Feb. 24-26.

Quinn also fishes the ESPN Outdoors Bassmaster Series, where he recently won the Bassmaster Series Regional tournament on the Tombigbee Waterway in Columbus, Miss. and took home $50,000. Quinn will fish the ESPN Outdoors Bassmaster Series Championship – the date and location have not yet been announced – and that winner also will earn a berth to the 2006 CITGO Bassmaster Classic.

Among the lakes BASS will visit in 2006, Quinn most looks forward to Lake Wylie, site of the Bassmaster American, July 27-30.

“This year the fishing has been better than it has in 10 years,” said Quinn of his hometown lake and site of the 2004 CITGO Bassmaster Classic. “Being local, once you’ve established a pattern you know the places to run. I’m really looking forward to going back there.”

The 2006 CITGO Bassmaster Elite Series schedule is:

The Southern Sprint #1 March 9-12 Battle on the Border - Lake Amistad, Del Rio, Texas #2 March 16-19 Lone Star Shootout - Sam Rayburn Reservoir, Jasper, Texas #3 March 30 – April 2 Santee-Cooper Showdown - Santee-Cooper, Manning, S.C. #4 April 20-23 Southern Challenge - Lake Guntersville, Guntersville , Ala. #5 May 4-7 Pride of Augusta - Clarks Hill Reservoir, Columbia County, Ga.

The Turn #6 June 1-4 Sooner Run - Grand Lake, Grove, Okla. #7 June15-18 Bluegrass Brawl - Kentucky Lake, Kentucky Dam Village, Ky.

The Northern Swing #8 July 6-9 Empire Chase – Oneida Lake, Syracuse, N.Y. #9 July 13-16 Champion’s Choice - Lake Champlain, Plattsburg, N.Y.

The Final Charge #10 Aug. 10-13 Capitol Clash - Potomac River, Charles County, Md. #11 Sep. 14-17 The Rock - Table Rock Lake, Kimberling City, Mo.

BASS is the worldwide authority on bass fishing, sanctioning more than 20,000 events through the BASS Federation annually. Guided by its mission to serve all fishing fans, BASS sets the standard for credibility, professionalism, sportsmanship and conservation, as it has for nearly 40 years.

BASS stages bass fishing tournaments for every skill level and culminates with the CITGO Bassmaster Classic. Through its clubs, youth programs, aquatic resource advocacy, magazine publishing and multimedia platforms, BASS offers the industry's widest array of services and support to its nearly 550,000 members. The organization is headquartered in Celebration, Fla.

For more information, contact BASS Communications at (407) 566-2208 or visit www.bassmaster.com.