2008 Toyota Tundra Bassmaster Angler of the Year runner-up Todd Faircloth is no stranger to success, but he wants more. He posted a win in the 2008 Elite Series season at Lake Amistad, and is sure to pass the million-dollar mark in career winnings during the 2009 season. Here's how the Texan answered his 20 questions:
1. Where are you from, originally?
2. How did you get started in bass fishing?
My dad got me started at Sam Rayburn Reservoir.
3. Who were some of your earliest fishing heroes?
Tommy Martin, David Wharton — guys that were from around here (Jasper).
4. When did you realize you had made it in the bass fishing industry?
I don't feel comfortable saying I've made it yet. Maybe after a Classic win and an Angler of the Year title I'll feel better about that.
5. What's the biggest bass you've ever caught?
11 pounds, 6 ounces. I got it from Toledo Bend.
6. What do you love most about bass fishing?
I like the idea of trying to figure the fish out. It's like a puzzle that you put together a little more each day.
7. What is your greatest strength as a bass angler?
8. What is your greatest weakness as a bass angler?
When we go to lakes a few times in a short time span, I revert back to what worked there in years past, which almost never works.
9. Where is your favorite place to fish for bass and why?
Sam Rayburn, because it's where I learned to fish.
10. What question do you get asked most by fans and how do you answer it?
"How do you become a pro?" That's what I imagine a lot of guys hear a lot, and I think the answer is almost always the same. You've got to take your time and don't rush into it. It took me a long time. I started fishing club events with my dad; then when we started winning, I gradually moved up until I got where I am today.
11. What's the biggest mistake you see from casual anglers?
I think that amateurs fish too fast. When they get a few fish, they just leave when what they're doing quits producing. Stick around and try different baits and wring the area out thoroughly.
12. How big a part does luck play in fishing?
I think that we make out own luck. Practicing efficiently, doing your homework and knowing how to find them all play a part in creating your luck.
13. What has been your greatest accomplishment in the fishing industry?
Besides my two wins, I'd say qualifying for the Classic seven times.
14. What goals have you yet to accomplish in your bass fishing career?
An Angler of the Year and Classic win.
15. What keeps you motivated to reach those goals?
Coming in second last year. That's a tough pill to swallow.
16. When you're not bass fishing, how do you like to spend your time?
At home with my family and deer hunting.
17. What profession (other than your own) would you like to have tried?
There's nothing I'd rather do. I'd probably be building houses with my dad if I wasn't fishing.
18. When it's all over, how do you want people to remember you?
I want to be known as a good guy who worked hard and did things the right way.
19. What's the biggest lesson you've learned in your career?
Patience, especially when it comes to sponsors. I thought that I'd come in here, win a few events and the doors would fly open, but that isn't how it goes. You've got to win a lot to expect things like that to happen.
20. If you could only fish one lure for the rest of your life, what would it be and why?
Oh, that's a tough one. One? Really? Forever? I'd say a Yamamoto Senko because I think I can go anywhere in the country and catch fish with it.