Chad Pipkens' roller coaster

Chad Pipkens fishes the Bassmaster Elite Series and is definitely in the top echelon of smallmouth anglers when it comes to the second half of the season. Over the past few years he has used it to his advantage and rocketed up the Toyota Angler of the Year standings and one year he did so enough to make the GEICO Bassmaster Classic.

Last year he didn't make that big jump and was one of the anglers dealt a solemn email confirming they would need to requalify for the Elites for 2017. No problem for Pipkens though as he won the Northern Open points race just days after knowing his Elite Series fate.

Fast forward to this year and it was a similar story. He climbed out of a hole from the beginning of the season, but only climbed to 72nd place, not high enough to guarantee his spot in the 2018 Elites. Not all hope is lost though as he came into this event in 4th in Opens points, but gained a boost from JT Kenney (2nd in points) because he decided not to fish the final event.

Pipkens could lock up his 2018 Elite position this week at Douglas Lake. He didn't get to capitalize on a morning bite that he was hoping to have before the post-frontal conditions rolled through the region. "Time to adjust," he said as he headed to his next spot.