BassWestUSA - November/December, 2009, Page 37

the future fOr riCk Clunn

At 63 Years old, Clunn remains an active tournament angler. He competes on the Bassmaster Elite Series, and up until this year had entered as many of the Bassmaster Opens as he could. He also entered the U.S. Open this year, and intends to do so again next year. He still has lofty goals. When asked about goals, Clunn said that he would like to be able to win anoth- er Classic, so that his sons can experience the thrill of the event from the perspec- tive of a champion. He also said that he would like to see himself recover some of the form that helped him compete at the highest level in the past. “I remember seeing my daughters come to an understanding of what I did when I won my fourth Classic in 1990,” Clunn said. “They were old enough to understand the accomplishment, and my place in the world. That moment is per- haps my greatest memory, not because I had won the tournament, but because of their response; I’d like to share that with my sons.” “I have fought myself mentally over the past few years, and it has caused me to not fish at my highest levels; that is something I want to change,” he said. “It’s not that I struggle to make good decisions, my struggle comes in stopping having fun. I get on a pattern that is one I enjoy, and I have a hard time changing.” “I will respond by simplifying my ap- proach and my schedule to try and get myself back to being the best competitor I can,” he said in closing. “Tough times have a way of cleans- ing things, and while my past few seasons may have been okay for someone else, they are not for me.” “I’m not a believer in the tragedy of retirement, of minimizing the knowledge that an experienced person has because their body doesn’t work the same,” he said. “I will keep reinventing myself, and creating new neural pathways to make my mind young again. I will do what I have to do to reach the level that I’m accustomed to competing at.” It is, and has always been that dedica- tion that has made Rick Clunn who he is, a pioneer, on his life’s journey, an inspira- tion, a champion, professional angler, the Greatest Angler in the World; Legend of the Sport. BW

rick Clunn up Close

Photo by BaSS Communications - Seigo

Saito

November/December 2009

»

37