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billmac

How does age affect tournament performance?

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What is it, specifically, do you think that causes a decline in tournament success as a pro-angler ages?  Inability to keep up with new trends? Simple physical issues?  Concentration?  I know Rick Clunn is still enjoying some success  but he seems to be the outlier.

 

Second question:  Is Roland Martin still fishing tournaments?  I see him talking about tournaments in his Youtube channel but I'm guessing it's not at the elite level.  He was my hero 30 years ago when I thought I wanted to be a pro fisherman.

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First, I don't believe Roland is fishing any tournaments. At least I have not heard of him fishing any tournaments.

 

Second, with age comes experience on the water and insight learned over the years.

 

Yes, we have all the new gadgets and rods, reels, lines, hooks, sinkers, blades, boats, electronics, fish callers, cameras, and special baits and colors for specific presentations and situations.

 

However, with all of the above and much more equipment and tackle,  if the bass are not there you will not catch them.

 

Enter us old goats!

 

We can look at the water for water clarity; note what is above the water to determine what is under the water; use years and years of fishing specific bodies of water over and over again; understand what happens at different times of the day; know what happens at different times of the year; know how the bass behavior in the different seasons; know the impact of cold fronts and blue bird skies; know how the wind impacts the bass; know where the structure is located and what cover is there; know the secret brush piles; know the double secret holes; know the impact of the water temperature on the bass; know what the bass are feeding on; and we cast and retrieve just like everyone else.

 

The difference is hours on the water and the "gut feelings" we get about what to throw and where.

 

Our reflexes may not be up to the speed of our young friends, and we may go slow. But we can set the hook just as good, or better, than the younger guys and gals.

 

I guess we all start to slow down when the old adage, "you know you are getting old when the things you used to enjoy become a chore" kicks in. It is just a part of life we all have, will, or are going through now.

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 Couldn't have said it better @Sam!!

 

I'm 69 and considered a professional co angler. 

I fish Bass Nation and the BFL and have for the last 8 yrs. and Fortunate enough to win a BFL championship at 67. 

 

Its getting harder stepping back and forth on the back deck but until I lose what @Sam so eloquently said I'll keep doing it until I can't lift a leg. 

 

And No he does not fish tournaments any more. 

Hasn't for years. 

 

 

 

Mike

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1 hour ago, Sam said:

First, I don't believe Roland is fishing any tournaments. At least I have not heard of him fishing any tournaments...

 He fished all of the Eastern Opens last year and has fished at least 3 Opens a year since 2013.  He fished 1 Open in 2012 and 4 in 2011.  He hasn't cashed in an Open since 2016 (33rd at Douglas Lake) and his best finish in the last decade was a 5th in 2011, also at Douglas Lake.

 

Ironically, he could fish the Elite series if he wanted to.  Except for KVD, he has the most points to qualify as a legend, so they could give the boot to David Fritts to make room for Roland.

6 minutes ago, Mike L said:

And No he does not fish tournaments any more. 

Hasn't for years. 

 He hasn't this year, his last tournament was in September 2018, again at Douglas Lake.

 

Either that, or there is someone impersonating him & doing a poor job at it.

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"Inability to keep up with new trends."  What does that mean, exactly?  Can't teach an old dog new tricks?

 

Judging solely on my own experiences on the water, I'd say the single factor which most inhibits those old veterans is simply their physical deterioration.  Getting older is simply no fun.  If those old veterans could turn back the hands of time and be as strong and durable as they once were AND retained their amassed knowledge, they'd truly be a force to be reckoned with.  

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I would venture to say it has become more of a job instead of a hobby. I bet Jordan Lee gets so pumped up for an event and can't wait to get on the water. He is young and this is probably a blast for him. I bet KVD doesn't have the same enthusiasm he did 20 years ago. I have been coaching for 13 years and my passion isn't what it once was. 

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heart attacks...arthritis in the hands.....back pain .... diminishing eyesight .... medication for high blood pressure...diabetes ... cancer ... the will and drive to win .... some are different .... but all old male lions come to an end ...

 

good fishing ....

 

https://www.bassmaster.com/news/age-and-pro-angler-part-2

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1 hour ago, OCdockskipper said:

 He fished all of the Eastern Opens last year and has fished at least 3 Opens a year since 2013.  He fished 1 Open in 2012 and 4 in 2011.  He hasn't cashed in an Open since 2016 (33rd at Douglas Lake) and his best finish in the last decade was a 5th in 2011, also at Douglas Lake.

 

Ironically, he could fish the Elite series if he wanted to.  Except for KVD, he has the most points to qualify as a legend, so they could give the boot to David Fritts to make room for Roland.

 He hasn't this year, his last tournament was in September 2018, again at Douglas Lake.

 

Either that, or there is someone impersonating him & doing a poor job at it.

 

You correct obviously. 

When I responded I was thinking about the Elite Series. 

 

 

 

 

Mike

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Clunn has the big win earlier this year but the majority of the time he finishes near the bottom .

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I'd say one of the primary factors is declining energy levels.  The ability to log full days (sun up to sun down) on the water of hard non-stop fishing is going to become much more difficult if not impossible as you get older.  This will mean you can't spend as much time pre-fishing as the younger guys.  

 

Motivation to fish in bad weather will take a hit as one gets older as well.

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7 minutes ago, The Maestro said:

Motivation to fish in bad weather will take a hit as one gets older as well.

I agree with this 100% . When I was 20 I loved fishing in the rain and wind and would fish no matter the conditions, now i have to mentally prepare myself to endure fishing in tough conditions.

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The spirit indeed is willing, but the flesh is weak!

 

Physical ailments slows more seniors down than mental ailments!

Edited by Catt
Operator Error
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9 hours ago, Sam said:

First, I don't believe Roland is fishing any tournaments. At least I have not heard of him fishing any tournaments.

 

Second, with age comes experience on the water and insight learned over the years.

 

Yes, we have all the new gadgets and rods, reels, lines, hooks, sinkers, blades, boats, electronics, fish callers, cameras, and special baits and colors for specific presentations and situations.

 

However, with all of the above and much more equipment and tackle,  if the bass are not there you will not catch them.

 

Enter us old goats!

 

We can look at the water for water clarity; note what is above the water to determine what is under the water; use years and years of fishing specific bodies of water over and over again; understand what happens at different times of the day; know what happens at different times of the year; know how the bass behavior in the different seasons; know the impact of cold fronts and blue bird skies; know how the wind impacts the bass; know where the structure is located and what cover is there; know the secret brush piles; know the double secret holes; know the impact of the water temperature on the bass; know what the bass are feeding on; and we cast and retrieve just like everyone else.

 

The difference is hours on the water and the "gut feelings" we get about what to throw and where.

 

Our reflexes may not be up to the speed of our young friends, and we may go slow. But we can set the hook just as good, or better, than the younger guys and gals.

 

I guess we all start to slow down when the old adage, "you know you are getting old when the things you used to enjoy become a chore" kicks in. It is just a part of life we all have, will, or are going through now.

Roland fishes tournaments. He talks about it on his YouTube channel.

 

Edit: I should read the whole thread before responding. I see that it was already covered.

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Probably the desire to deal with the grind of being a high level pro would be my guess. The knowledge and ability to catch em probably never leaves, especially the knowledge. You can’t replace experience.

 

However I feel like the world is changing in that now a young angler has so much free knowledge out there on social media outlets and forums. Not to mention the high school and college programs. I think that definitely closes the gap between younger and older anglers and definitely helps keep the less experience angler from getting their tails kicked as much. However you can’t replace time on the actual water with any YouTube video but it sure gives me a better starting point when I get out there. This is just all my novice opinion or guess. 

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16 hours ago, billmac said:

What is it, specifically, do you think that causes a decline in tournament success as a pro-angler ages?  Inability to keep up with new trends? Simple physical issues?  Concentration?  I know Rick Clunn is still enjoying some success  but he seems to be the outlier.

 

Second question:  Is Roland Martin still fishing tournaments?  I see him talking about tournaments in his Youtube channel but I'm guessing it's not at the elite level.  He was my hero 30 years ago when I thought I wanted to be a pro fisherman.

Interesting question Bill, 

 As a grandfather yourself, you probably already have a good idea as to at least a few of the challenges we face as we get a little further down the road.  The exact 'reason' for each of us may be a little different, and some seem to get there a little faster than others.  I do not fish competitively but can certainly relate to how different three or four full days on the water in a row feels now compared to 20 or 30 years ago.  

Also, it's very interesting to hear these perspectives regarding 'what happens' to us as we 'get older' from humans who have yet to experience the joys of it.  Be curious to hear if the perspective changes once they do.

:smiley:

A-Jay

 

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As has been mentioned, the business of being a pro has changed, and navigating the crazy world of social media may be a factor also.  If you don't have a boatload of sponsors and aren't making money off social media, you don't seem to be able to make a living being a pro.

That Bassmaster article was interesting.  Looks like Roland was still kicking butt up into his 60s.

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I'm 61 and   better fisherman now then when I was at thirty but intolerance to heat , low blood sugar , arthritic ankle that makes it difficult to keep my balance standing so I have had to sit for the past two years , tendinitis , back pain .I've also had some major illnesses and injuries  that kept me on the sidelines for months at a time . My hats off to Clunn , Fritz and the rest . Three and four day tourneys would not be a cakewalk .

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On ‎4‎/‎7‎/‎2019 at 8:23 PM, OCdockskipper said:

 He fished all of the Eastern Opens last year and has fished at least 3 Opens a year since 2013.  He fished 1 Open in 2012 and 4 in 2011.  He hasn't cashed in an Open since 2016 (33rd at Douglas Lake) and his best finish in the last decade was a 5th in 2011, also at Douglas Lake.

 

Ironically, he could fish the Elite series if he wanted to.  Except for KVD, he has the most points to qualify as a legend, so they could give the boot to David Fritts to make room for Roland.

 He hasn't this year, his last tournament was in September 2018, again at Douglas Lake.

 

Either that, or there is someone impersonating him & doing a poor job at it.

Thanks. Don't remember seeing his name in the Bass Times tournament reports.

 

Hope he wins one, soon.

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46 minutes ago, Sam said:

Hope he wins one, soon.

Me too.  

 

This is a guess, but I think he fished the Opens only for all these years as a way to get a shot at another Classic.  As I mentioned, he could be in the Elite Series just by asking, but that grind may not be what he is looking for.  Back when the opens were a "win one & you are in", Roland had an above average chance to pull that off.  Then, once he was in the Classic, the adrenaline would pull him through the practice, 3 days of fishing and the hoopla.

 

BASS could have a Legends tournament once a year, invites go out to all past AOY & Classic champs only.  Make it like the Classic, no entry fee and all anglers get paid.  I'm sure ESPN could foot most of the bill, they would love to have content that featured Martin, Clunn, KVD & Jordan Lee all fishing the same tournament.  Schedule it at a time that doesn't interfere with other tournaments and I think you will draw just about everyone who qualifies.  Older guys like Martin & Dance would love to see how they stack up against the current pros and youngsters like Lee & Lucas would consider it a dream to fish against guys who were the original superstars.  Those who don't qualify, like Jason Christie or Jacob Wheeler, would be chomping at the bit about not being included, maybe to the point of eventually leaving BPT back to BASS.  Give pro anglers another reason to want to fish your tour.

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April 2019 Bassmaster has Rick Clunn on cover and my 1st thought was he is the face of Bassmaster, it's an iconic photo. Rick Clunn isn't ageless,he is a tournament bass angler for the ages.

Bass tournaments don't have a seniors tour so as we age and slow down physically our ability to compete 3 or 4 day events and practice inbetween becomes more of a demand then aged bodies can perform at a level healthy anglers can do with ease.

God willing you all will experience getting to be senior anglers and understand what it means to get up an hour earlier at 0 dark 30 just to get ready to fish and off the lake at noon, not because the bite has stopped, you are tired and need to get into a hot shower.

Tom

 

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I think the older guys would be on a more even playing field if there was no pre-fishing allowed before the event (say for the 1 or 2 weeks prior). They might even be at an advantage with all of their experience coming into play.  Where the younger guys really have an advantage is their ability to log mega hours figuring out the bite during practice 

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An "Oldies But Goodies" tournament sounds like a fantastic idea.

 

Send a note to BASS asking about it.

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I'm pushing the seventy mark and my brain still doesn't accept the fact it want's to fish all day several days and then go golfing to relax!!  My trouble has been pancreatitis, cancer, diabetes, arthritis (just like mentioned above).  They drain the ol pocket book.  But I have been truly blessed and the good Lord lets me still compete on a smaller level.  I would still love to fish the larger tourneys but the above along with awesome grand kids keep me in check.

Tight Lines all

 

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