Sunday, October 24, 2010



I prefished on Monday, 4 days before the start of the event. Monday was a so-so day – hunting and pecking. Tuesday, I went with a fellow pro staffer from Canyon Plastics, Jeff Klicka, and we had wind and nice chop, which made for a nice reaction bite. I chucked my spinner bait combo from D and M Custom Baits Sniper and Bayou Tackles Thin Shad with special blades. Klicka was dialing in his Gitzit bite with a 3/8” tube head and a 00B Gitzit, both by Canyon Plastics. It was a good day. Wednesday and Thursday were calm and slick water and the bite was hard to come by.

Day 1 –

I drew the veteran pro, Todd Woods. The night before, at partner pairing, he told me we would be on a reaction bite and I looked at him in dismay and said “You’re kidding me – I haven’t caught any reaction fish in 2 days.” He said the water I’m fishing, the bass are on a reaction bite. As I loaded my gear into his boat, I ran back into the houseboat to grab my chatter bait tackle box. We blasted off and proceeded to his 1st stop. Todd told me to be ready for a back up bait for any followers. While he was throwing his reaction bait – a wake bait – I followed behind him throwing the 00B Gitzit, waiting to see who got the first bite. We were in a large cove as we worked our way around, neither of us enticing any strikes. We came upon some shallow cuts in the back of the cove, which was very similar to what I had fished on Day 3 of the US Open. I set the tube down and picked up my Brush Buster, the same one I used at the US Open, and BAM! Our 1st keeper was in the live well. We moved to Todd’s 2nd location, targeting the back of the coves. Todd had a nice large mouth following his wake bait, and he yelled “Chris - back up bait”! So I picked up the Gitzit. I set down the chatter bait, picked up the Gitzit, threw it in where he last saw the fish, waited, nothing happened. Todd picked up his Gitzit, tossed it in, sets the hook and reels in a nice small mouth for keeper #2. We don’t know what happened to the largemouth.

We proceeded to fish throughout the day with a similar pattern, targeting back pockets and coves and Todd’s wake bait connected with another nice small mouth for fish #3. We pulled into what was spot 5 or 6 by now, and in quick succession; the Brush Buster put 2 more keepers in the boat. We had our limit somewhere between 12 and 1:00 in the afternoon. We fished for the next couple of hours to no avail. We proceeded to head back to Calville. Todd pulled up on a spot with another 20 minutes to go, and the Brush Buster put another nice keeper in the boat, which culled. After our high fives, we headed to the scales with a 5 bass limit – weighing 8.44 pounds, which put us both in 11th place after Day 1.

Todd did a superb job of boat control and covering water – that was the key -covering a lot of water - to bring our 8 pounds and change to the scales.

Day 2 –

I drew Tim Blanchard, an accomplished professional and one who I consider a local, since he’s based out of Havasu and is very familiar with the lakes on the Colorado River.

We went to his 1st location, and I started the day off with the Brush Buster and the first stretch produced 3 shorts. We worked our way to the back of the bay, Tim was drop shotting. I noticed a couple of big boulders with a space between the 2, and put the Brush Buster down and picked up the 00B, dropped it into the crack, and hoisted out a nice 2 pounder. I kept the Gitzit in hand, picked up another short. Tim worked hard with the dropshot, but to no avail.

We proceeded to make a long run. When we got to location #2, we fished hard without even a bite. We moved again with another long run, and nothing. We proceeded to run and gun as the hours ticked by. I finally made a cast into a shallow grass pocket with the Brush Buster and put keeper #2 in the boat. By now, it’s well after 1:00 and all we have to show is 2 keepers so far.

We continued to run and gun, with him throwing his dropshot relentlessly as I alternated between the Brush Buster and the Gitzit and my spinner baits. Time ran out and all we could muster to the scales were 2 bass for 2.98 pounds.

I ended the tournament in 24th place – and managed to take home 2 plaques – 1 was for 3rd place Angler of the Year, Southern Division. The other plaque was for 3rd place Angler of the Year, Northern Division.

It was an awesome season and I’m already “jonesing” . Can’t wait to get back on the water in January. I want to give a special thanks to WON Bass and Billy Egan for putting on the best TLC Awards Ceremony that I’ve ever attended!


It was an exciting event and preparation for the grand finale was even more exciting!!!

Excitement was due to the Angler of the Year race between Geoff Peterson and myself. I knew I had my work cut out because Geoff is a tough adversary and I’m coming into this tournament with a 2 point deficit in the Angler of the Year race.

I pulled out all the stops utilizing all my sponsors - Canyon Plastics, Bayou Tacke, D and M Custom Baits and Lubina Lures. Everything I requested was sent. I arrived at the Delta 2 weeks prior to the tournament armed to the hilt. With the help of Dale from D and M, suggesting that the bass are chasing, chewing bait fish, we decided to target the bass using the Golden Shiner pattern.

Dale customized my spinner baits. One was a ¾ ounce with double gold blades with a golden shiner skirt. The other was a 1-1/2 ounce Triple Threat with 3 golden blades and golden shiner skirt. Both were on a sniper frame. Dave from Bayou Tackle did the same with the Thin Shad spinner bait with the special blades. And that blade is designed to glide through the grass. Canyon Plastics sent me Swim Doctors in the Golden Shiner pattern.

The ace in the hole was my prototype from Rico, called Ricci’s Recipe and that arrived 4 days before the tournament. All baits were working, I’m pumped and I’m ready to rock and roll!!

Day 1 –

I’m psyched. I drew a very proficient professional, Sean Lee. This is the 4th time I drew Sean and I have always done well fishing behind him. His pattern held up all day - which was fishing current, running over tulle points, and runways around Frank’s Track. We followed the tide from Frank’s all the way down south, fishing nothing but moving water. The Sniper put the 1st keeper in the boat, while Sean’s crankbait produced 2 more keepers. Throughout the day, I must have caught 30 bass using the combination of all the baits above. I did lose 2 bass – 1 being a 3-1/2 pounder, the other being just a keeper. I generally don’t make long casts in the Delta, because the longer the cast the more chance the bass has to run into the tulles, bury itself in the grass, and generally have too much time to shake the lure. That was MY bad and I knew better. Another 3 or 4 pounder broke Sean off, as well as another keeper. Sean did a great job! It was an excellent pattern. We had our bites. We only managed to bring 3 large mouth to the scales for a weight of 5 pounds and change.

Day 2

I drew Champion Zach Thompson. His pattern for the day was punching the grass with some reaction thrown in. We started the morning fishing Frank’s, fishing one of Zach’s favorite areas, throwing blades, swimbaits, and chatter baits. Zach managed to put our first keeper in the boat, while my blade combination kept getting bumped, but no takers. We made several moves inside the Track, but to no avail.

We proceeded to Little Frank’s and started to fish some runways and Zach managed to put our 2nd fish in the boat. Meanwhile, everything I’m throwing, the bass are hitting but not eating. It was a long day with very few bites – the total opposite of Day 1. We ran south and we ran north to fish some of Zach’s favorite grass beds to punch. He positioned the boat so he could punch, while I concentrated on throwing my arsenal on the outside grass line. That worked for producing bites and getting bass in the boat, but all I could produce were shorts.

Zach managed to punch our 3rd fish and into the livewell it goes. It’s 1:30, tides changing, we left north and went back to Little Frank’s to fish some runways. Zach managed to punch our 4th fish in the boat, while I proceeded to catch more shorts, stripers and everything else but our 5th bass!! I decided to switch colors on my blade and used a combination of Bayou Tackle Thin Shad with special blades and D and M’s Sexy Shad skirt. The blades were silver/gold combo and this seemed to do the trick. The shorts were getting bigger – 12 to 12 ¾ inches – and when Zach had to re-tie, I took the trolling motor, and positioned the boat to run parallel with the stone wall, made my cast and BAM, got our 5th fish which completed our limit, with minutes to spare. When we took our bass to the scales, we weighed 7.93 pounds.

It wasn’t enough to win the Angler of the Year title, but 2nd place isn’t too bad!

I want to thank, from the bottom of my heart, all my sponsors that rallied to help me try and bring home the Angler of the Year title.

BE ON THE LOOKOUT - The Rico Ricci’s Recipe should be on the shelves within a month!

I want to congratulate AAA Geoff Peterson and Pro Paul Bailey for bringing home the Angler of the Year titles!

For the last tournament of the year – I’ll be at Lake Mead for the Won Bass Classic Championship on November 5th and 6th and that will put an end to an exciting 2010 season!!!!

Fish on,


1 comment:

Ryan said...

That's a pretty check! Good for you! I have yet to develop that kind of skill. =)

The Average Joe Fisherman