Classic Week is exhausting and incredibly demanding. Those that handle the pressure best are likely to excel during the competition.
It's substantially colder at the ramp than it was at the hotel in Tulsa. Overstreet's taunting of the weatherman has come back to haunt us. Fortunately tournament director Trip Weldon made the executive decision to have everyone to come in an hour early. That may limit some competitors' practice plans, but if they don't have it figured out yet it may be too late. Looking forward to some heat in the truck and a hot cup of coffee.
Pre-tournament favorite Jason Christie is conspicuous in his Rayovac-wrapped boat, but don't expect him to play possum today. "I'll definitely be checking stuff out," he said. "I'm not going to be like Tommy Biffle and mow my grass." He said he'll check out key areas looking for "one little bitty cast on one little bitty stretch:" he claimed that the off-colored water reduced the local advantage-- I'd like 3 feet of visibility and I can barely see the lower unit on my trolling motor."
“But what about the weather?” That’s been the $500,000 question surrounding the 43rd Bassmaster Classic since the event was announced 15 months ago.
After launching his boat this morning, Brent Chapman called over friend and fellow competitor Alton Jones: "Hey Alton, can I get a little bit of help." ,Jones motored over. "You'd think this was my first rodeo,&,p.quot; Chapman continued. "I left my transom saver on." Jones helped him to get it off, then offered Chapman some words of advice: "If you ever win Angler of the Year, maybe you'll figure it all out." Seems that even stars get a few jitters at the Classic.
Overstreet and I had planned to meet in the lobby at 4:30 for the drive to the lake. Then we changed that to 4:15. By 4:05 we were both there, ready to rock and roll. Walking out into the 37 degree air, he commented "this isn't bad at all." I'm happy he's punctual but not particularly thrilled that he taunted the weather gods.
Covering a Classic leads to obscene wake-up times, but you know what they say about the early bird … they miss out on sleep.
While the weather won't be as apocalyptic as many fear it' will challenging. When asked if he was concerned about ice on the launch ramp, frozen boat locker lids and frigid hands, Iaconelli replied, "All of the above.”
2013 Bassmaster Classic rookies and champs of Classics past register in Tulsa.
The 2013 Bassmaster Classic is unofficially under way for the current field of anglers.