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Douglas Lake Elite Series

Brent Chapman -- Competition Recap
Friday, May 04, 2012

> Day 2: 5, 9-04 (10, 20-06; 68th place)

Unfortunately, it was one of those days Iím going to want to forget. Iím going to dread it a lot this year, I fear. I had an opportunity to have the kind of day an Angler of the Year does and I didnít have it. Itís the type of day where you see those chances go down the drain. It was a disappointing day.

On top of that, I went to cull a fish and shut my livewells off and forgot to turn them back on and killed two fish. Thatís the kind of day it was. Iíve been real fortunate the last few tournaments to get some big bites, but I havenít caught a good fish this entire tournament, even in practice. Itís just been frustrating.

I had one point where I caught some deeper fish. Thatís where I caught my limit yesterday and I talked to some other anglers and they gave me some pointers about different baits. I shouldíve had a better bag yesterday and I thought, for sure, today with what I learned yesterday I couldíve at least had a day to just get into the money cut. It just didnít happen. I caught a ton of fish today. They were just all the same size.

Itís just one day, and we still have half a season to go. The good thing is Iíve already made the (Bassmaster) Classic. Iíve had a great season so far and there are still four tournaments to go. Thereís no saying everyone else in the Top 10 could go have a tournament like this and make it an interesting season.

Brent Chapman - Competition Day 1
Thursday, May 03, 2012

B.A.S.S./Seigo Saito
Photo: B.A.S.S./Seigo Saito

> Day 1: 5, 11-02 (55th, tie)

Weíve got tomorrow, so I hope I can put a few more fish in the boat. I had a 2 1/2-pounder jump of and broke another one off on hookset that my marshal said was maybe a 4. Fishing a jig in the rocks up here is brutal, but you just canít do that.

Iím not out of it by any means. If I can go have a respectable day tomorrow, I can work back into it. (Iím surprised) at the weights. Whenever I guess a weight anymore, Iím going to need to tack on a few pounds. I suspect they might come down some tomorrow though. There are certain community holes and sweet spots that are getting plenty of attention. Obviously, I donít have any of those.

Iíve got one deep spot that I started on and caught a limit off of, but Iím not fishing as deep as some other guys. Iíve conferred with some other anglers and thought about what changes I need to make so weíll see what happens tomorrow.

Aaron Martens Ė Practice Wrapup
Wednesday, May 02, 2012

Itís hit and miss. Iíve spent a lot of time without seeing or catching any fish. Iím hoping Iíve found enough. I feel good. Iím excited. Iíve got butterflies.

There are quite a few fish out there up off the bottom chasing the shad spawn. A lot of bait is suspended over deep water so there are a lot of fish up underneath the bait. Theyíre a little hard to catch, but you can catch them. Theyíre not easy.

Iím ready for the tournament to start. Itís been too much looking for them and finding them. Iíve been graphing a lot. Itís driving me crazy. Iím ready to fish for them. Itís been a lot of work. I feel good. I feel more prepared and I feel like I have a chance, I guess.

Brent Chapman Ė Practice Wrapup
Wednesday, May 02, 2012

Iím definitely not having the kind of practice that Iíd like to be having, but I think Iíve said that a couple times this year. It is what it is. Now itís just time to go fishing and hope for the best.

Itís a lot tougher than what I had expected. It seemed like last time we were here, you could catch a lot more fish and all the reports Iíd been hearing were that the fishing is way better now than 10 years ago. I sure donít think so. I hope the weights indicate that, too. I hope I still catch them, but I hope the weights, overall, arenít as good as what people are predicting.

If I had something that maybe hurt my practice, itís that I probably tried too much. When you canít get anything going, you have to keep trying. When I would get a few bites, Iíd get away from it because I wouldnít feel like it was what I needed to be doing. In hindsight, maybe I shouldíve stuck with it and tried to find more water.

You can tell itís a good pattern lake so the biggest thing will be to hopefully get off to a good start and make the most of my days.

Aaron Martens Ė Practice Day 1
Monday, April 30, 2012

B.A.S.S./Seigo Saito
Photo: B.A.S.S./Seigo Saito

I feel alright. Itís not as good as it was when I pre-practiced. I actually came here twice. Itís the first time in 8 years that Iíve pre-practiced a lake so weíll see if it works out. I need a check, at least for my confidence. Thereís a shad spawn going on right now so thereís a lot of bait up shallow and the fish are chasing the shad. Itís a tough bite overall for this place because thereís so much bait up shallow. Itís making it tricky.

Itís a cool lake. It reminds me a lot of Castaic Lake in California even though Castaic is only 2,400 acres. Itís a lot like it because of the clay and rock and mud. Theyíre real similar and the fish actually look similar, too. Theyíre thick and healthy.

You could almost fish your strength here and do well. I had 12 rods on the deck today and caught fish on almost all of them.

Brent Chapman Ė Practice Day 1
Monday, April 30, 2012

B.A.S.S./Seigo Saito
Photo: B.A.S.S./Seigo Saito

It was pretty slow today. It definitely didnít seem to be like it was the last time, but granted that was a long time ago. I expected it to be easier to find fish. It really reminds me a lot of Bull Shoals and Table Rock. A lot of it looks the same and it seems to be one of those lakes that should fish a pattern really well. I never really got on anything today that I felt like I could start a pattern on.

I donít know a lot about the lake, but I know from talking to friends who have friends that know the lake, theyíre saying itíll take 20 pounds per day to win and 15 to 16 a day just to make the Top 12.

Momentum is everything. Itís do or die. Thatís what Angler of the Year is. Heís the guy who goes out and has eight awesome events. Iíd sure love to get out of here with a Top-25 if I donít win it.

It took 8 or 9 pounds a day to finish 40th here back in 2001 at the (Bassmaster) Megabucks tournament. Thatís more like what I saw today than what everybodyís saying. Iím going to get out there tomorrow and keep trying. Thereís no doubt this tournament will play in Ott Defoeís and David Walkerís and Brandon Cardís hands. Those guys are going to have an upper hand on knowing those deep areas.

I think weíre a little early for them to be out deep really strong. I think, ultimately, weíre shaping up to have a tournament where the fish are really scattered. The guys who know the deep places and get that deal going have a lot of potential.

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