Classic in rearview, Elite Series forward

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Darren Jacobson
Skeet Reese (19th, 32-3)

That was not the Classic that I wanted to have.

But, looking back at it, even if I would have caught everything that I thought I could have, Edwin still would have been far ahead of anyone in the end. What can I say? It was Edwin’s time, he performed at his best when he needed to, and took the Bassmaster Classic trophy in front of his home crowd. Congratulations to him, he certainly earned it.

Coming into the event, I did not think that the home field advantage was going to play a big role in this Classic, but with Edwin and Jason Christie dominating the top of the leaderboard all three days, I guess I was wrong.

To be honest, I kind of struggled in practice, but found something that I thought was going to be decent on the Wednesday Official Practice Day when I got eight bites and caught a couple of 4-pounders. I got on two patterns with a 3/4-ounce Lucky Craft spinnerbait that I modified with a larger blade, and also on my SKT crankbaits.

I wasn’t completely dialed in on the first morning of the tournament, but instead of it becoming clearer as the tournament wore on, I still don’t have a completely clear picture of what the fish were doing, and it showed in my catches each day. I ended up finishing the event in 19th place, and while I had the bites to finish in the Top 10, I didn’t execute and that’s what happens when you don’t.

It just goes to show you. I did the math the other day, and I’ve been fishing tournaments now for 32 years. You’d think that a guy with that much experience would have it all figured out, but that is definitely not the case. Even after all of that time, and that many tournaments I’ve fished, I can still start a tournament and be wondering how I’m going to catch them. Some of the best anglers in the world started the Classic in that same frame of mind last week. It’s amazing, that a fish with such a small brain can completely make us wonder what it’s doing; that’s what makes our sport so great and keeps us coming back.

Oh well, the Classic is behind us and now we turn our attention to the new season of the Bassmaster Elite Series, and as always, there is one singular focus.

I’ve got the General Tire / Eagle Claw TroKar Big Rig pointed south to the St. John’s River in Florida, and the land of the giants. It seems that every year, I hear of more 10- and 11- pounders being caught down there on that river, and it always gets your blood pumping to think of battling with one or more of those bigheads. I’m really looking forward to it.

It’s the start of a new season, and the goal is to win the Toyota Bassmaster Angler of the Year title. I really want another one of those.

What have you caught lately? 

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