Record crowds were out at the 2013 Bassmaster Elite Series Sabine River Challenge presented by STARK Cultural Venues to see Todd Faircloth win a decisive victory over his peers in the first Elite Series event of the season. It was his second win in less than one year.
After Faircloth's triumph last summer on the Mississippi River, he answered fan questions through a Twitter chat here, doling out advice and telling the story of his Mighty Mississippi win. He did the same thing again today following his Sabine River victory, answering multiple questions about the best techniques or lures to use given certain conditions.
What follows is a transcript of today's Twitter chat, lightly edited for spelling and clarity. You can check out Twitter chat transcripts from other pros, including Cliff Pace, Chris Lane, Mike Iaconelli, Kevin VanDam, Aaron Martens, Boyd Duckett, Jonathon VanDam, Brent Chapman, Randy Howell, Ish Monroe, Brandon Palaniuk, Jeremy Starks and Alton Jones.
Keep up with Twitter chats, tournament news and bass fishing advice by following B.A.S.S. on Twitter at @BASS_Nation.
Welcome, Todd Faircloth! Congratulations on your win on the Sabine, and thanks for joining us today for the chat.
Thanks @Bass_nation! I appreciate it. Glad to be here.
Todd, if you had to choose one bait for spring bass would you go with jerkbait, crank or drop shot?
I'd probably go with a crankbait because it's a more flexible lure. You can use it in clean, stained or dirty water.
It was great 2 be a Marshal on Todd's boat last year @lakeshelbyville Do u like the Marshal program as a pro?
I like the Marshal program. We get a lot of people that want to learn to use different techniques & fish a tournament. It’s a great for someone trying to learn more about the sport to get an up close and personal experience.
Todd, you're a rather quiet guy. What's something you think most fans don't know about you?
I used to be a carpenter for my dad growing up. I worked for him before I started fishing tournaments.
Hey Todd, is braid for crankbaits the next trend?
I’m not sure if it’s the next trend, but there are certain situations I will use braid for cranking. But, there will always be a spot for fluorocarbon and mono.
How did you rig the caffiene shad on the sabine?
I was rigging it Texas rig style with a 1/16-ounce weight in front with 30-pound Sunline braid. And, I swam it through the grass and some pads. Those were the better areas.
How about bringing me along for a practice day sometime throughout the year?
Well, if B.A.S.S. rules would allow it, I would. But during official practice, we aren't allowed to do that.
I'll travel to fish with you somewhere for an "unofficial day on the lake!" Let's go!
Alright, sounds good!
Who is Todd Faircloth’s college Bball team?
It should be kentucky wildcats all day #bbn
Do you prefer dogs or cats?
Hey Todd, real quick! Are you a dog or a cat person?? Great win by the way
I knew he was a Lab guy. I knew it, Jody!!!
Hi, Todd! It seems like Sabine is a HUGE fishery. How did you decide how far to run? Were you worried about timing?
It’s a vast body of water, but there weren’t any boundaries. I spent time getting familiar with different areas.
Hi, Todd! It seems like Sabine is a HUGE fishery? How did you decide how far to run? Were you worried about timing?
The area I found was the most fertile. I always try to give myself extra time coming in when I’m making big runs.
What is your favorite color (general purpose, not lure color)?
Todd, how will winning the first event of the year change your approach to the rest of the season? You are on quite a roll!
The way I go about my practice and how I fish, I'm not going to change. The only thing is I don't have that pressure of trying to qualify for Classic. That would free me up a little in a tourney I have a chance to win.
When do you find that the use of square billed crankbaits are important on the water? I’ve been working a lot of vegetation flats.
If you're fishing vegetation, the depth at which it will run be determined by your line size. Pay attention to line diameter and the depth of grass you're fishing. And, you're welcome!
How are you catchin the fish? What's your favorite lure to use this time of year?
I caught 85% on @StrikeKingLures Swimming Caffeine Shad, pearl/bluegill back or watermelon red/crystal belly. The other was @StrikeKingLures 5-inch Ocho. Every fish was on those two lures. This time of year I'd go with a 5-inch green pumpkin Ocho.
Big fan Todd any tips on picking flipping baits like when should i use a jig or creature bait etc
It depends on the lake you're fishing & the water clarity & on the size of fish that are in that body of water.
There is an abundant supply of 3-5 but i know theres a 10lber in there. few foot visibility to muddy water 2 acres at most.
What is the biggest fish you have ever caught and on what lure?
I caught an 11 1/2-pounder on Toledo Bend on a lipless crankbait.
So, Todd, do you have anything exciting planned for your Sabine winnings? Maybe a new car?!!
Actually, we're trying to buy some land here in Jasper. We don't have it picked out yet.
That's great! So, what other Elite Series tournament are you most looking forward to competing in this year?
I'd probably say the Mississippi River. I won there last year and had a great time. It fits my style pretty well.
What's your thoughts using "California style" baits in small private lakes? Like an Uptons 19" worm or a big Hudd?
If the smaller lakes offer big fish, then yeah! Generally, if you're using those you're targeting the heaviest.
Hey Todd, you're stuck on a deserted island with one other pro of your choosing... who do you pick and why?
And, what are your weapons of choice?
I don't know if I'd want to be stuck on an island with any of them for any length of time! I think we'd get along for 2 to 3 weeks but that's all! I could fend them off pretty well with a Castaway 7-foot Mag rod. It would be heavy action too.
Do you like to mix things up and fish for other species such as carp or gar?
Yeah, I fish for other species! I love to take the kids crappie fishing. Jeff Kriet has an offshore boat, and I go there once or twice a year with him.
When fishing deep clear water like Lake Lanier how do you catch them when they are anywhere from 1-90' any tips?
It's hard to beat a drop shot. You can fish it vertically or cast it to targets. I would put a Strike King finesse worm on the business end of it.
How would you approach a lake you have never been to? How can an angler break it down quicker.
Depending on the stage of spawn, I'll choose where to start -- main lake or creeks, coves or pockets. Then I take a section and spend my entire day there trying to figure out what depths & techniques are working
Swim bait setup preferences?
I like to use 20lb Sunline Shooter & 7'6" Castaway rod & Shimano Calcutta 200 or 300 reel - it holds more line.
Thanks! I have the Douglas open next week and needed a new setup!
I will be fishing Lake Okeechobee next week and how should i spend my time there this time of year? Flippin? wacky?
There's always a good flippin' bite on Lake Okeechobee. There should be eelgrass and hydrilla. Throw a topwater or a @StrikeKingLures Red Eye Shad.
If you could have one bait to finish out the season what would it be?
I'd go with the @StrikeKingLures 5-inch green pumpkin Ocho.
Alton or Dean?
I wasn't there. No response.
Yeah, I always have a jig tied on and a crankbait! Those are the two best baits. What would be your two best baits?
Hey Todd, congrats on your well-deserved victory. Not only are you a great angler, you are a great man!
Any good ways to target Crappie from a 1 acre lake where the bass are also abundant. there are some slabs in there
I like to use 6- or 4-pound line, black/chartreuse mini jig. Once you catch one, replicate everything you did.
I started fishing the Ocmulgee River because I go to Mercer Unv. any tips on fishing in muddy water with current?
Fish shallow, and use a big, bulky bait like a 3/8 or 1/2-ounce jig.
What are your expectations for Bull Shoals? Will you look for an area to fish or a special spot like Brandon found last year?
I will be looking for an area to fish, and hope to find specific spots within that area. There were lots of fish caught last year. I'm excited about it.
Water 2-5 feet up from normal. cold40-50 degrees and muddy water small ponds 1/2 acre at most to large lakes? baits and techniques
I would fish the original bank line. I'd use some type of Texas rigged Ocho or stickworm with 1/8oz weight on it.
Hey Todd, what size hook were you throwing with that caffeine shad? Looked like a shark hook!
It was a 5/0 offset VMC. It was a heavy gauge wire, and that's important.
Cold and warm front conditions? Tips, baits, techniques? Pre front, during and post front?
A @StrikeKingLures RedEye Shad will get a reaction bite and cover a lot of water during, pre or post front.
Thanks Mr. Faircloth, you’re such an amazing fisherman and guy thanks for all the tips best of luck in your season
I appreciate it, and thanks for the questions! Hopefully, I've helped you out a bit.
Thank you, fans, for joining, and we appreciate you, Todd, for taking the time to chat with us today!
I appreciate everyone interacting today! I enjoyed the questions, and good luck with your fishing!