What Truck, Boat and Outboard does Paul Tony run?
2014 20 XS Triton, Mercury 250 PRO XS, 2013 Toyota Tundra
I promote and use companies that provide quality products or services. I am proud to be a part of the American Bass Anglers team and would like to thank them for their dedication and hard work they do providing multiple tournament trails for us, the weekend anglers. Also, I would like to thank ABA for the support and confidence they have shown in me throughout the years. I would like to thank each of them, for the support in making my fishing experiences a success.
The Tackle Trap in Boaz, AL
The Boat House in Athens, AL
What Paul Tony does for a living:
I am a manufacturing supervisor for Mueller Company, a fire hydrant manufacturer, in Albertville, AL and I have worked for Mueller just over 30 years.
What you should know about Paul Tony:
I am blessed to have a very close and supportive family. My parents have been married for almost 60 years! I have one younger brother and three wonderful children. Best of all, I have seven beautiful grandchildren, two girls and five boys.
How Paul Tony started fishing
My grandmother carried me on my first fishing adventure when I was about three years old. I caught my first fish in the creek in front of her house and I fell in love with both of them that day! I started fishing against my granddad for ice cream at five years of age and took a break at 17 years of age to raise my children. I bought a Triton in 2005 and started fishing local ABA tournaments. The American Bass Anglers organization has a trail to fulfill any angler's competitive needs.
Aspirations or goals with fishing
I would like to be able to work less and fish more. My goal is to win the Ray Scott Championship.
Favorite way to fish
Slowly and patiently. I like to back away from my targets and make long casts. I try to be as stealthy as possible. I will often shut down, troll, and fish my way up to where I think the sweet spot of my target is located. I enjoy fishing blind, without any practice time. I enjoy finding that one piece of small hidden structure, whether it is a rock, stump, submerged log, or small patch of deep grass that you normally overlook. These hidden targets are where I expect to catch the biggest fish. I really enjoy fishing with a jig.
Most exciting fishing experience
While in the Navy, a buddy and I were fishing in Chesapeake Bay out of a 16' john boat. We fell asleep and when I woke up, it was around one o'clock in the morning. The outgoing tide had taken us several miles out to sea and I was unable to see any lights from shore to use for navigation. We were in waves 8-10 feet high. I don't know why I chose to take the route that I took back, but I had to throttle the motor just enough to get over the waves at an angle and not spear them on the way down. Four or five hours later, while my friend laid in the bottom of the boat sea sick, we finally made it back into the bay close enough for me to see the Chesapeake Bay Bridge. We ran out of gas a couple of hundred yards from the ramp.
How Paul Tony prep for a tournament
If it is a body of water I have never seen, I try to make at least one trip to the area even if I don't get to fish. I will try to learn my way around, find a place to stay that's boat friendly, places to eat, tackle stores, and purchase my fishing license. This way, I am able to concentrate on on my practice when I come back for the tournament. I also research any articles about the lake that I can find for the time of year I will be there.
Three favorite search baits
Jigs, lipless crankbaits, and Shad Raps.
Best tournament finish and what you did that day when you were fishing
I've won events in both the American Bass Angler's AFT and Weekend Series. I won the 2014 Weekend Series Division 1 two-day championship. That was a special event for me because my family was there, cheering me on. Also, I won a Toyota Tundra fishing the Oakley Big Bass Tournament on Lake Guntersville.
Most challenging part of tournament fishing
For me it is staying competitive with a limited amount of practice time. This is especially true when fishing a body of water that I'm not familiar with.
When tournaments don't go my way
I always try to stay positive and learn from the things that have had a negative impact on my tournament fishing. Tournaments that have not gone my way are what drives me to improve and do better.
Advice to give to an aspiring tournament angler:
Set goals of what you want to accomplish. Stay positive and stay focused on your objective. Believe in yourself and your dream. Be patient and learn from your mistakes.
Some shared general bass fishing techniques for people just getting into the sport
A jig is my confidence and go-to bait around grass and wood. I like to use a dark colored jig when trying to provoke a reaction strike. Water clarity doesn't matter. I want the bait to stand out and be very noticeable. When I think my bait is in a area that a bass might be hiding, I will make quick and erratic retrieves with a sudden pause. I want the bait to look like it is trying to escape. Most strikes will occur during the pause.
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