Former Bassmaster Elite Series Rookie of the Year Josh Stracner of Vandiver, Ala., is leaving Elite Series competition to pursue other career opportunities.
“My number one goal was always to qualify for the Elite Series,” Stracner said. “I got to travel around the country and fish professionally, which I will always cherish. Some of the guys that I got to fish with and travel with will be friends of mine forever.
“It’s weird to consider myself a ‘former’ Elite Series pro, but at the end of the day, that’s still a title that I’ll be able to carry with me for the rest of my life. I never wanted to fish with any other organization because I just wanted to be a Bassmaster, and I got to do that … getting an opportunity to pursue a really good job opportunity has made this an easier decision.”
Stracner qualified for the Elite Series through the 2020 St. Croix Bassmaster Eastern Opens, where he averaged a 13th-place finish across four events. Stracner’s momentum didn’t stop there, as he went on to win the Dakota Lithium Bassmaster Elite Series Rookie of the Year title in 2021. Over the course of his 36-event B.A.S.S. career, Stracner registered 13 Top 30 finishes, 10 Top 20 finishes and qualified for the 2022 Academy Sports + Outdoors Bassmaster Classic presented by Toyota.