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Reese gearing up for Classic cast

Auburn angler the only Californian in fishing’s most prestigious tournament
By: Sara Seyydin Journal Staff Writer
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Local bass-fishing champion Skeet Reese will cast his net in New Orleans as he competes for the title of 2011 Bassmaster Classic champion Feb. 18-20. Reese, who lives in Auburn, has been a professional bass angler for 14 years and won the Bassmaster Classic in 2009. He became the California-qualifier through the Bass Master Elite Series, which is comparable to the PGA Tour in golf. The Bassmaster Classic is the most prominent event of the fishing season and is the kick-off to the rest of the angling season. “Its always good to be a part of the world’s largest stage of bass fishing events,” Reese said. Reese has been gearing up for the competition with smaller ones held in California. “This past season we had two events on the California Delta and Clear Lake,” Reese said. “It was nice to be in my own backyard at weigh-ins and to have the local fan support.” While Reese has fans supporting him, he also gives back to the community he lives in. Last month he donated a fishing pole to every student at Sierra Hills Elementary School in Meadow Vista. He is also hoping to raise funds to finish the community center by holding a youth fishing tournament at Meadow Vista Park. On Feb. 9 he will fly to New Orleans, while a driver transports his rig. Despite this being the first Bassmaster in New Orleans since the Deepwater Horizon Oil Spill and Hurricane Katrina, Reese said conditions at the fishery are supposed to be prime. “The spill could have been pretty devastating, but strong flows kept it out of the Mississippi,” Reese said “I have family down there and they said fishing is as good as it’s ever been.” Reese said he hopes to earn another title at the Classic and then continue on with the rest of his season. For the next six months he will be on the road, mainly in the southeast. In his career as an angler Reese has earned over $2 million and placed in the top-10 at the Bass Master Classic four times. As for how he has been honing his skills for next month’s classic he said that comes mainly with experience. “It’s like life- everybody evolves and progresses,” Reese said. “You get wiser and more efficient.” For more information on Skeet Reese visit his website at www.skeetreeseinc.com. Reach Sara Seyydin at saras@goldcountrymedia.com.