Parker: Challenging weekend of fishing not without benefits
Posted: Monday, March 21, 2011 9:46 pm
By: Kevin Bowden, Staff Reporter
By KEVIN BOWDEN
Round two of the Bassmaster Elite Series didn’t go so well for Obion County native Ben Parker.
After an amazing 27th place finish out of 99 anglers in the Sunshine Showdown earlier this month, Parker wasn’t even able to make the third day cut for this past weekend’s Citrus Slam in Palatka, Fla.
“It was one of those tournaments where everything that could go wrong went wrong,” Parker told The Messenger Sunday afternoon. “It was the first sight tournament I’ve been a part of where the only pattern to catch fish while we were there was to fish where we see them.”
He said he and other professional fishermen used the days leading up to the four-day tournament to scout locations on the St. John’s River in Florida. With the bass spawning and very clear water, fishermen targeted their prey by eyesight. However by the time the tournament started, the tide changed and the water on the river got muddy. Parker said that ruined all the spots he had picked out to fish and he had to resort to secondary locations, which were covered with other fishermen by the time he got there.
After the success he had during the first tournament, he said this past weekend’s tournament is one he’d like to soon forget.
“The first two days I weighed a few fish … I don’t know how much,” he said. “I did terrible, but I learned a lot.”
Parker packed up and by Friday night was headed north to LaGrange, Ga., where he will compete in the Pride of Georgia in early May. He used his down time to scout out West Point Lake in preparation for that upcoming stop on the Bassmaster tour.
Parker’s next stop on the Bassmaster tour is scheduled for April 6-9 at Pickwick Lake — the Alabama Charge.
“I’m really excited about fishing Pickwick,” Parker said. “I know more about fishing the Tennessee River than I do about Florida’s lakes.”
Parker said he was also looking forward to getting back to his home at Paris Landing and getting a few days’ rest after spending the last three weeks competing in Florida.
It will be a short vacation from the tournament, though, as he will be busy competing in two events a month through June.
Published in The Messenger 3.21.11