Brad Knight – 2018 Tournament Season, Here I Come!
Hey folks, Brad Knight here. As I welcomed the new year with my family I began to really look forward to the upcoming tournament season.
I dedicated the Christmas-to-New Year timeframe to my wife, Becky and daughter, Tinsley. Tinsley started school this year and Becky has a job as secretary at the school.
I’ll be traveling without them so that will be a little different. I’m used to having them there with me.
Shortly after New Year’s I went down to Okeechobee to get a look around and see where the changes were after the hurricane.
I wanted to see any changes to the grass, where there’s dirty water, clear water, that sort of thing, just trying to stay on the water as much as possible.
Business-wise, things are good. I actually got ahead of schedule this year, which is a big change for me.
I got my boat before Christmas. Normally, it’s the end of January or first of February when everything is about to happen and you’re rushing to get a boat wrap put on and you’re
rushing to get your electronics installed and it’s ‘go, go, go’ and you’re not able to take your time and it seems like you leave and hit the road and you’re still rushing.
This year I got to take my time because I got my boat early.
I also got a new Lance camper and I got that set up. I actually enjoyed the process. For the first time in 10 years it wasn’t a headache to get prepared for the season. It was enjoyable.
I’m hoping that relaxed mindset carries over into the Tour where you sometimes feel like you don’t get a chance to catch your breath before the year even gets started.
This year though, I’m ready to go. My tackle is in order. My rods and reels are in good shape. I am dialed-in! For the whole year.
The 2017 season did not go as well as I had hoped. I didn’t qualify for the Forrest Wood Cup. People who don’t compete don’t have a clue how hard it is to even qualify for the Cup.
I don’t think I needed any extra motivation, but after watching this one from the sideline last year, I can assure you I want to be in every single one of them going forward.
That said, it was really cool to do media coverage of the Cup from my boat with AnglersChannel.com and the Progressive Bass Wrap Up TV Show and to see, from an outside perspective, how good these anglers are.
Getting my Head Right
One way I cleared my mind of the bass tournament season was by hunting.
You see, my world changed after I won the Cup in 2015. I had fished for a long time but I always went back and worked at the pharmacy here in town full-time after the season wound down. After I won the Cup, that was the first time
I was able to fish full-time and I’m not the kind of guy who needs to be immersed in the fishing industry 12 months out of the year. I need a break.
Some guys fish every day, all day and they love it; can’t get enough. I’m not that type. I can’t keep my intensity level high enough if I do it all the time.
So by September I’m burned out on the tournament fishing and I want to start hunting. And then, by the end of December, I’m burned out on the hunting and I’m ready to go fishing again. So it kind of cycles around and keeps me interested.
Plus, with technology being what it is today, I can just about do all of the checking and returning emails from a tree stand that I could sitting at home in my office so that helps a lot to free up my time so I can go recharge my
mental batteries, so to speak, for the upcoming tournament season.
Once I get into a season I want to fish a lot because momentum is a big deal in any competitive endeavor. I want to get on a roll. I don’t want to sit around 3 weeks between events.
For instance, this year I am fishing the FLW Tour as well as the Northern Costas and the Bassmaster Eastern Opens. It’s like this deal we had in basketball where you shot until you got in the groove and when you got in the groove you shot some more.
I’m going to fish a lot until I get in the groove and then fish everything.
Controlling the Variables.
Being away from my family is hard but at the end of the day, bass fishing is what I do for a living.
One important aspect of successful fishing involves taking control of all controllable variables. There is so much we can’t control. The weather is a great example, even though we can prepare for whatever weather we may face.
Using the best quality gear is one way to control what is within your grasp. For me it’s an overall system that includes everything including my rods which match, not only my reels, but even the lures themselves.
The electronics on my boat are a big part of it. I demand excellence from all of my gear. Even where I sleep while on the road is a big part of my system.
As for rods, Lew’s and Strike King have joined under the same umbrella now so I expect to see even more perfectly matched combos and lures for certain techniques.
While on Okeechobee recently I enjoyed the new 9-foot flipping stick – talk about power! Now that’s taking control of a controllable variable. HUGE leverage!
This year I am happy to be back with Lowrance Electronics. The Carbon units, well, I can operate them even with gloves on. I run a 12-inch unit on the bow and a 16 at the console. I know what things look like on them and I have a comfort level with Lowrance electronics.
That will definitely make me more efficient this year.
My Lance camper is my home away from home. It has all the comforts I could want. I am 6’3” and weigh 240 pounds and I can stand and take a shower.
I can cook all my meals right there and control what I eat – no worries about food poisoning from some of those restaurants we’ve all eaten at.
I have a propane generator so I can watch satellite TV and charge my boat batteries. Best of all, I don’t even need to find a campground because I’m not pulling a 40-foot trailer.
Where I park the truck is where my camper is so I can just stay in the parking lot at the boat ramp. It doesn’t get any more convenient. And I don’t have to worry about getting to the ramp in the morning with traffic, flat tires, all that stuff.
With the Lance camper I can pack everything that I might possibly need. You really can take it all with you.
Again, it’s a matter of controlling everything I can.
Well, With that said, I’m moving forward and looking to have a great 2018. I wish y’all one as well!