Tough Classic, busy week


Jerry Cunningham

The 2017 GEICO Bassmaster Classic presented by DICK’s Sporting Goods is history. Before I get into anything else I want to say congratulations to Jordan Lee on being our new Classic Champion. He fished the way a professional is supposed to fish, and he was rewarded for it. 

My own performance was a little disappointing. When we launched on Sunday morning I really thought I had a shot at the trophy. But, it didn’t happen. I just couldn’t get the bites I needed to fill out my limit. That’s the way this business goes, though. Sometimes you get them, sometimes they get you.

If there’s a silver lining to it, it’s that my schedule has been so busy that I haven’t had the time to think about it much. As soon as the Classic was over I had to start work with my sponsors. 

My first obligation was to Hobie. I love working with them, but I have to admit that I get a little jealous every time I do it. Those things are so peaceful and quiet. It’s like what we all dream about when we think of fishing, and that’s a long ways away from my world as a professional bass angler. I can only dream about being able to fish out of one every day.

As soon as I finished with Hobie I moved on to doing some things with Rapala. That’s a lot of fun. I’m able to talk with their experts about what should and shouldn’t be done with most of their products. They take anglers’ suggestions seriously. That’s a good thing. It’s why their products are top shelf. 

The last thing I did before I headed to the Bassmaster Elite at Toledo Bend presented by Econo Lodge is do a little something with Tackle Warehouse. There’s not much to say about them other than that they’re one of the best tackle retailers in existence. They’ll ship quick, and they don’t charge much for next day or two day delivery. And, when you call them you talk with a real angler who knows what you’re talking about. 

Once all that was finished I only had one day to get all my tackle together for this week. It’s a good thing that I’m familiar with Toledo Bend. I got it done, but it was close. One day sounds like a lot, but it isn’t. Setting things up right takes time. 

When that event is over I have a Toyota Media Event to work, and then it’s home for Easter and a few days of rest and relaxation.

I just read this over. I guess it sounds a little bit like I’m complaining. I’m not. What I am is worn out — with a considerable ways to go yet. This is a blessed life. I could be in a position where I didn’t have all this stuff going on. That would definitely be a lot worse.

On a completely different subject: You might want to keep a close eye on the happenings at Toledo Bend. It looks like a lot of the bass will be on the beds. That means plenty of individual big bass and heavy sacks.

Mike Iaconelli's column appears weekly on You can also find him on Facebook and Twitter or visit his website,