As published on BassFan.com
For the first time in the 14-year history of the BassFan World Rankings, Aaron Martens has ascended to the top slot. He moves into the No. 1 position in the latest edition, which takes in the Forrest Wood Cup at Lake Ouachita and the Bassmaster Elite Series events at the Chesapeake Bay and Lake St. Clair.
Martens, who wrapped up his second B.A.S.S. Angler of the Year title in 3 years with a 6th-place finish at St. Clair, has a lead of nearly 9 points over previous kingpin Bryan Thrift. Former No. 2 Scott Martin moved down one slot to 3rd and Andy Morgan gained one position and sits in 4th. Edwin Evers, like Martens a two-time winner on the Elite Series this year, jumped 11 places and rounds out the Top 5.
The bottom half of the Top 10 consists of Justin Lucas, Jacob Powroznik, Greg Hackney, Jason Christie and Wesley Strader.
Martens, now a three-time AOY for his career, has been both consistent and spectacular throughout 2015. He finished among the Top 15 in seven of the eight regular-season Elite events and claimed victories at the Chesapeake and Lake Havasu.
Todd Faircloth, a former No. 1 who’d had a lackluster campaign this year before winning at St. Clair, gained 14 places to No. 22. Cup champion Brad Knight moved up 15 slots to No. 42.
Chad Pipkens, who logged Top-4 finishes at both the Chesapeake and St. Clair, is up a whopping 65 places to 83rd.
The next tournament that will impact the rankings is the Bassmaster AOY Championship (now misnamed due to Martens’ early clinching of the title), set for Sept. 17-20 at Sturgeon Bay in Wisconsin.