One got his nickname after break dancing on the stage of bass fishing’s world championship. The other won the title. Both can sing, play guitar and are always smiling.
Meet Casey Ashley and Marty “The Party” Robinson, who earned that nickname for his chosen entry music at a Bassmaster Classic. Without a thought he went into a break dance, claiming his two young sons at the time liked it when he danced. The crowd roared with approval and the name has stuck ever since.
Ashley, 34, won the 2015 Bassmaster Classic on Lake Hartwell, his home lake in South Carolina. Ashley is a farm boy done well in a sport where it takes more than a smile and aw-shucks attitude to make it.
Robinson, 45, also from South Carolina, has a dozen years on the Bassmaster tours as a perennial contender on the Elite Series. As a sign to come, sons Marshall and Mitchell are already racking up titles and trophies at the high school and middle school level.
The singing, guitar picking and smiling are more than signs of how positive vibes groom success. Read on for more about the brotherhood between Ashley and Robinson.
How, where and when did you meet?
In 2005, we both fished the BFL (Bass Fishing League) tournaments near home. We live about an hour apart and as it went along, we discovered we both shared the same fishing styles.
We started fishing the BFLs in 2005. Once upon a time we tied for third place and had to flip a coin to decide who got the fourth-place trophy. He pulled out a nickel and I lost. He told me you always call “heads” when flipping a nickel, which he did. That was my first Marty Robinson life lesson right there. I was all of about 18 or 19 at the time.
What makes him a competitor?
That joker works hard, gets up before me and stays out there later than me, every practice day. He stays after ‘em all the time.
His natural instincts. I noticed that when we started traveling together at the Bassmaster Opens. Over a period of time he’s elevated faster than me on the mental side of the game. He really stepped it up when we began fishing the Elite Series. He developed those instincts in a short time, especially considering his age.
What’s he like when the game face comes off?
He is calm, cool and collected no matter what. From leading the Bassmaster Classic to hanging out, he’s just laid back.
He’s pretty cool all the time. He doesn’t let anything bother him. He handles pressure really well. He lets it roll off his back like a duck.
What was a defining moment of your brotherhood?
We both share a passion for fishing, but one thing about Marty and me is that we share everything, lures, patterns and all of it. We even share where we are fishing, catching fish, so we know who is doing what and where. Doing that also helps us break down a lake. We started doing that long ago and it defines us.
We had similar styles of fishing, always have. A lot of local BFL anglers are spot, hole fishermen. We were kind of different. We didn’t have many wins between us, but we were pattern fishermen. Even on familiar lakes we looked for patterns instead of hot spots. Casey is a big family man and so am I, so between that and the fishing it defines our friendship.
What do you like about him?
Heck, he’s Marty “The Party” Robinson. Always in a good mood, smiling.
He’s a lot like me, always smiling, always positive. We get accused smiling too much and that’s okay. We both are easy going, let everything come and go, never get bent out of shape about anything.
What about him do you envy?
He’s the Bassmaster Classic Champion, enough said.
He can dance like a fool and I cannot.
What is something most people don’t know about him?
Everybody knows he can dance, but he’s a pretty danged good singer.
He’s kind of a homeboy. We travel a lot and he just likes to be at home. Where he lives they’ve got to pump power out there, it’s kind of at the end of the line. He loves his home, family. He’d rather be at home than anywhere else.