October 24, 2013 by Shinichi Fukae
(Editor's note: Starting immediately, FLW Tour pro Shinichi Fukae has agreed to make regular blog contributions approximately once a month on FLWOutdoors.com.)
First of all, this is my first blog for FLWOutdoors.com. Honestly I am not really a sit-at-your-desk type of person. And, in addition, there are some language barriers for me so I'm going to do my best to entertain the readers as much as I can. However, despite some of these hurdles, I like a new challenge and will give it a try. It would be great if I could share my thoughts with the readers and I look forward to blogging with FLW from here on out.
My 2013 tournament season is coming close to the end, and my wife and I now have been in Japan for both business and personal reasons. It always pleases us to see our family, friends, sponsors and fans who support us. I have an invitational event here in Japan and that was supposed to be held this weekend but has been postponed due to the fact that a typhoon is coming. As you know, no one can control what Mother Nature will do - sometimes bad weather just follows bass fishermen.
Looking back to the 2013 FLW Tour season overall, I simply had less-than-desirable results. In fact I ended up in 68th place in the AOY standings and missed the Forrest Wood Cup cut this year. That was the first time I've missed the cut since 2005, which was my second season on the circuit. I am not going to complain about the results since I always do my best at every tournament I fish in. I also know quite well that even the best of efforts sometimes go unrewarded during competitions. The only major disappointment for me was that this season marked the 10th anniversary fishing on the FLW Tour and I had expected much better results when the season kicked off.
During the Forrest Wood Cup, I wound up working at my sponsor's booth because I wasn't able to compete. But after the event ended, I realized the Cup to me was all about competing so I told myself I would need to qualify for the Cup next year ... and for many years to come.
Overall, I feel that the field on the FLW Tour has been getting stronger from year to year especially with all of the newcomers. Also, with the spread of high-technology electronics and the use of the internet, there really aren't many secret spots or information anymore. However, I still believe that experience is one of the biggest factors for success while competing in tournaments so I will keep practicing in my own way. Because, when it comes down to it, I would like to keep make a living at this job for a very long time - a job I very much love to do.