Ok I can't contain myself any more. I keep reading various stories about the fish, and lots of bad info and misconceptions. So I put up the post on www.trophybassonly.com and I'm re-quoting here so we can all learn a little more about the facts and the myths
Javad first made it onto the radar about 2 years ago. He had caught some big bass at Spring Lake and somehow gotten in touch with Chuck Bauer from worldrecordbass.com. He snail mailed pictures of his fish to Chuck and they went up on the website.
The article is in reference to the 16.5lber shown on the photo page. There has been MUCH confusion about the story vs. what fish it is associated with. The story is in reference to the 16.5 in the picture, and that picture has been online for some time.
Also on that photo page is a picture of Leah Trew with a very large bass. Originally this bass had a caption next to it that said 18.1 pounds. To me, this fish looks every bit of 18.1lbs. This was the fish where, per the story, they had only one picture left on the camera and Javad took the picture of his mom holding the fish. Again, this has caused confusion because this story is similar to the current pending WRB story in that they only had one pic left on the camera both times. Hope this clears that up.
After a year or so of the pics and article being up on the site Chuck took the link to the pictures off of his site. As someone else already mentioned, something must have gone on to cause him to take the link off the site.
August 2003 the pending world record is caught and weighed on a boga grip scale The scale was certified by the IGFA, meaning that Javad or Leah sent the physical scale to the IGFA and had them certify it and send it back. The fish was subitted in the 12lb test category, but is up for the all tackle world record (hope that clears up the earlier question). The boga grip weighs in 8oz increments. If you have not seen a boga grip before, the distance between the marks on the scale are very small. The weight of the fish was reportedly bewteen the 22-8 and 23lb marks. By IGFA rule, they had to round down and they did. The fish was witnessed by one other person, a camper, who knew nothing about fishing. The Trew's only had one photo on their camera left, hence there was only one picture taken of the fish.
Now, some things to contemplate and some myths to dispel
Q: Do you have to kill the fish in order to secure the IGFA world record largemouth bass Micropterus salmoides? A: No, the fish may be released
Q: Do you have to have photographs showing length and girth in order to get the world record? A: Referring to the rules we find the following:
Photographs showing the full length of the fish, the rod and reel used to make the catch, and the scale used to weigh the fish must accompany each record application. A photograph of the angler with the fish is also required.
In all cases, photographs should be taken of the fish in a hanging position and also lying on a flat surface on its side. The fish should be broadside to the camera and no part of the fish should be obscured. The fins must be fully extended and not obscured with the hands, and the jaw or bill clearly shown. Avoid obscuring the keels of sharks and tunas with a tail rope.
When photographing a fish lying on its side, the surface beneath the fish should be smooth and a ruler or marked tape place beside the fish if possible. Photographs from various angles are most helpful.
An additional photograph of the fish on the scale with actual weight visible helps to expedite the application.
Photos taken by daylight with a reproducible-type negative film are highly recommended if at all possible.
This part is vague because it says, "photographs should be taken of the fish in hanging position and also lying on a flat surface on its side." It does not say you MUST have these photographs, it says you SHOULD have these photographs.
From this statement, the answer to the question then is, NO you do not have to have photographs showing length and girth in order to get the world record.
Q: The fish was reportedly caught on a 7" Storm Wildeye swimbait. Was the hook on this lure legal per the California Department of Fish and Game? A: Checking on Storm's website for Wildeye Swimbaits, we find that there are no 7" Wildeye swimbaits listed:
So unless there are 7" Storm Wildeyes that didn't make any of the online stores, this is either bad reporting by the various reporters who reported on the catch, or Javad and Leah were mistaking a 6" or 9" bait for a 7" one
a) Definition of Gap: For the purposes of this section, "gap" means the distance measured from the point of the hook to the shank.
e) Maximum Gaps for Lakes, the Sacramento-San Joaquin River Delta, and other areas exempted from this subsection (c): No person shall use any single hook with a gap greater than 3/4 inch, or any multiple hook with a gap greater than 5/8 inch in any lake or resevoir, or in the Sacramento River ... etc.
So the answer to this question is, MAYBE because we don't know for sure what lure they were using and therefore what size the hook gap was.
Q: Does the IGFA care if you follow DFG rules or local lake rules? A: Yes, see the IGFA rules again
No applications will be accepted for fish caught in hatchery waters or sanctuaries. The catch must not be at variance with any laws or regulations governing the species or the waters in which it was caught.
Q: Was this catch in variance with any laws or regulations governing the species or the waters in which it was caught? A: Refer to the Spring Lake website
Approved Life Jackets are required at all times while on the lake.
As anyone who has fished at Spring Lake will tell you, you must wear a PDF at all times. However you can't tell if she is standing on the dock in the picture or not, so this again is a MAYBE.
Q: Can this fish get the California State Record? A: No, it was not witnessed by a state official
Q: Can this fish get the Freshwater Fishing Hall of Fame Record? A: No, they require that the fish be examined physically by one of their representatives
And now for a few things to consider...
In Bassmaster magazine, Javad was quoted as saying, "when we got home we were like oh <expletive> we just released the world record."
How could a guy who was featured on worldrecordbass.com and who has no fewer than 4 fish over 15 pounds not know the record?
Javad was quoted in another article as saying that he believed Paul Duclos' 24lb fish from Spring Lake in 1996 was the world record.
How could anyone think this?
What are the odds that twice in these people's lives they would have bass over 18lbs and only have one shot left on the camera?
What are the odds that the very next week, Javad would catch an 18-8 on 4lb test with a 3/8oz jig
I don't care how good you are, setting the hook with a 3/8oz jig on 4lb test without breaking off, is very hard. But the really unbelievable part is that you could land an 18lb fish at Spring Lake in September on 4lb test since Spring is solid weeds that time of year. Just short of impossible. But then again, Javad has the catch and release 2lb test blue catfish length record on a roostertail...
Maybe after reading this you'll see why IGFA is pondering over this for so long. There really is nothing you can look at regarding this catch and say, "nope it's disqualified because of xyz". All that we have is a bunch of MAYBE's.
You know what I would like to see? I'd like to see Leah or Javad Trew come on the site and tell us the whole story from beginning to end. Odds are that they are reading this. If it was you, wouldn't you be reading this?
Thanks for putting your article together. I don't understand how he can state that he didn't know the world record weight when on the article talking about his 16+ fish on the worldrecordbass article he says,
"We took a quick photo and put the bass on a scale, which registered a little more than 16 pounds. Since **she wasnít the world record**, I put her back in the water. The fish of a lifetime swam away. Since then, Iíve showed a lot of people the photo and most of them say, "Youíre too young to have caught a bass that big."
Cool, well maybe the IFGA can go and measure the hook gap and figure out if it's legal or illegal. As stupid as these hook gap rules are, if the hook on this bait is too large, at least that way the have something conclusive to disqualify the fish on.
You sure did your homework Rob, Good article,and shows way too many gaps in his story.It just goes to show how scandaless some people can be.And your rite more than likely he has been reading all the talk thats been going on about his catch on alot of big bass websites,and if it was a totally lagit catch he would be proud and want to share,but I think thats not the case.Some people just bring out the worst in the great world of fishing.
Wow, lots of work and time on your part. Great article and very well put together. Opens up a few windows of thought not previously considered, at least on my part, but I still think the whole thing is bogus. Of course, that is just my opinion on the matter. Hopefully it will all go away soon. Thanks again for the break down. bmc