Did you know?

The fishing world is eagerly anticipating the 2012 Bassmaster Classic, Feb. 24-26 on the Red River out of Shreveport-Bossier City, La. Here’s some trivia that may or may not play into the competition, but is fun to toss out at any gathering of anglers:

A redemption wish, a positive memory

Michael Iaconelli lost the 2009 Bassmaster Classic on the Red River to Skeet Reese by 11 ounces. Ten years earlier as an amateur, Iaconelli won the 1999 B.A.S.S. Federation Nation Championship on the Red River by 10 ounces.

Experience helps 

Of the 49 qualifiers for 2012, less than half are repeaters from Classic 2009, also on the Red. Twenty-two have the advantage of a Red River Classic experience. Twenty-seven may have competed at some point on the Red, but not in a Classic.

Relief plus momentum

Two 2012 Classic competitors, Chris Lane and Brent Chapman, have secured 2013 Classic entries by winning a 2012 Bass Pro Shops Bassmaster Open event.

Achilles’ heel?

Kevin VanDam, defending champ and owner of four Classic trophies including the past two, had hernia surgery during the off season.

A well-spent youth

Classic rookie Keith Poche’s address is in Alabama, but he grew up in central Louisiana fishing the Red River and other backwaters. He started off his 2012 season strong by placing 12th in the Bass Pro Shops Bassmaster Southern Open at the Harris Chain of Lakes in Florida.