Tommy Skarlis Chat 8/7/02

Chatman - Ladies and Gentlemen, a warm Walleye Central welcome for Tommy Skarlis!!!
Chatman - Weeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee!!!
Swede - Clap, clap!!
Chatman - LOL!!!!
curt quesnell - Tommy, what will you do between now and the championship?
Driftr - Welcome Tommy Skarlis!!!
Setter - Tommy if you fish as a amateur, is it a good learning tool?
Tommy Skarlis - Hi Lance!
Lance Lemmen - Good evening Tommy! It is a pleasure to see you!
Tommy Skarlis - Likewise, you gentleman you! 
Chatman - Well Tommy, where do you want to go tonight?
Tommy Skarlis - As long as we don't talk about religion, politics, or her....let's rock!!
Chatman - And, first off, congrats on the Detroit River Win this spring!!!!
Tommy Skarlis - Thank you - and Thanks to all of my partners!
Chatman - I have been trying to get hold of you, off and on, since the spring! You're a busy man.
Tommy Skarlis - It takes a lot to scratch out a living as a pro, but I love it!
Chatman - You are a full time pro, right?
Chatman - One of the few..
Tom (mich) - Tommy, what did you do prior to full-time fishing?
Tommy Skarlis - Yes, I make a living in the Fishing industry. With no other income, except my wife's.
Tommy Skarlis - I was in the Construction business as a contractor.
TEX - Hello Tommy, congrats on a great year!!
Tommy Skarlis - Let me point out right here and now that I would not be able to do what I do without the support of my wife!
Tommy Skarlis - Thanks Tex.
Setter - Tommy, have you ever fished the Iowa great lakes?
Tom (mich) - A supportive wife is the behind the scenes partner.
Swede - What's your favorite bait? Tommy
Tommy Skarlis - Just a little, Eric Naig is the expert there.
Chatman - Any married pro will tell you, a supportive wife is very important. It is really nice when she has a great paying job too!!!! LOL!
Warren MN - Any idea of how many days a year you spend on the road, tournaments and sponsors.
Tommy Skarlis - Around 200 days on the road.
Chatman - I'd better watch it, or I'll get the frying pan of love upside my head from my wife, for saying that....
Driftr - Tommy, does your wife go with you much?
Tommy Skarlis - No, she only gets so much vacation!!!
Setter - What's your favorite place to fish Tommy?
Chatman - Hello Mr. Tim! Angler of the year!
TMinnema - Hello!
TEX - Congrats to ya Tim!!
Tommy Skarlis - Congrats Timmy!!
EyeBoy - Kudos Tim!
Bad Finger - Hey Tommy, can't stay long but wanted to say hello. Saw you doing coverage for the FLW bass show. I thought that was pretty cool.
TMinnema - I just wanted to listen in to Tommy a little tonight....
Tommy Skarlis - The show is the Minnesota Pro Am Bass Tour and it airs on Fox Sports net North.
Warren MN - Tommy, you finding any lure hot this year.
Bad Finger - I stand corrected!!
Warren MN - Or maybe method.
Tommy Skarlis - The hottest lure I've seen this year is the one tied to John Kolinski's Fish Pole!!!
Setter - Tommy how many tourneys did you fish as a am on the P.W.T.?
Chatman - LOL!
Tommy Skarlis - I never fished PWT as an am, almost did. I felt that 3 years in the MWC and 20 other small tourneys was enough.
Chatman - That brings up a question, what differences did you find between the MWC and the PWT, other than the format?
Tommy Skarlis - Gosh, the differences. Fishing the MWC, if you are off of your game, your partner can sometimes pick you up, which also means you can disagree about what to do!
Tommy Skarlis - Fishing the PWT, you will get support from your partners, but you don't know them like you know your Friend.
Chatman - Do you find the same levels of camaraderie and sportsmanship in each group?
Chatman - Among the pros and regular am's that is..
Tommy Skarlis - Yes, very similar.
Chatman - Many anglers cross over so that would make sense.
Chatman - Do you prefer the team format over the Pro or vice versa?
Tommy Skarlis - I am seeing a lot more people fishing as an am, striving to be a pro, than when I first started.
Tommy Skarlis - I like them both, and since I have not been fishing team events, I miss them.
fatboy - Tommy have you ever have a local am save the day with knowing the waters?
Tommy Skarlis - I miss Big Fish Chad Kinkade!! We learned a lot together!
Tommy Skarlis - Oh yea, as far as navigation is concerned. I've relied on my partners several times.
curt quesnell - You, Eric Naig and John Kolinski, all in the top 10! What lit the fuse on the group this year?
Tommy Skarlis - We work awfully hard at breaking down the bodies of water we are fishing, we've got a good chemistry, and Ernie Olson who qualified in the 24th spot really adds a lot of dimension to our team!
curt quesnell - Do you split up or work areas as a team?
Tommy Skarlis - As with any successful partnership, different people need to bring different benefits to the team. Often times we split up and fish our forte.
curt quesnell - What about Ernie, how did he get into the group?
Tommy Skarlis - He fished with us as an am, a friend of the great Cornelius!
Chatman - Has Tommy missed any questions so far?
jigtugger - Tommy, thanks for all the energy at the Merc. Classic this year. It was our first tourney and you made comfortable. 
Tommy Skarlis - The anglers were great, and the tourney is so much fun! Thank you for making it great!
bbigalke - Tommy, will you be running the new 621 next year or stick with the 620?
Tommy Skarlis - I've been running a 619, I will either fish with the 620 or the 621, I have not made up my mind yet.
TEX - Do you have any boats for sale Tommy?
Tommy Skarlis - The new 621 is sweet!! I just saw it last week.
Tommy Skarlis - Yes, my 619 Ranger and Chips Lund are both for sale.
TerryKS - Tommy, have you ever fished the flatland reservoirs of Kansas and the south?
Tommy Skarlis - No I have not. I fished Wolf Creek once though. 
Swede - Dang!! Can't row them boats to Sweden can you Tommy?
Tommy Skarlis - No, but we can ship them!!
Swede - LOL!
Tommy Skarlis - Are any of you going out to Bismarck to catch the PWT Championship?
Chatman - You'd probably have the only 619 in Sweden, Swede!
TEX - Good luck the rest of the year Tommy and I'll see ya at Redwing. Danny Miller.
Tommy Skarlis - Take Care Danny!!
jigtugger - Tommy, how many days do you typically spend pre-fishing for a big tournament? And have you ever gone in cold or without any decent patterns?
Swede - I'm not too sure 'bout that Chatman!! 
Chatman - I said probably...... LOL!
curt quesnell - Good Luck to you and the boys Tommy, see you at Bismarck if not before!!
curt quesnell - Good night.
Tommy Skarlis - Usually I prefer to get 4-6 days a tournament on pre-fishing, and I have almost always had a little idea as far as what I would be doing.
Tommy Skarlis - I don't like to fish a tournament cold, it's a terrible feeling!
Chatman - Tommy, on a new, large body of water, where do you start with only 4 to 6 days to find active fish, and set up a pattern?
Tommy Skarlis - Data is the key, most of the time the hot bite will be circulating around the bait shops, or sometimes even in the fishing reports in the paper.
Tommy Skarlis - A lot of time the info is right here on Walleye Central.
jigtugger - Do you find a lot of "local" approaches helpful, or do you usually try your standard patterns first?
Tommy Skarlis - I like to pursue bites that fit into my favorite presentations.
Tommy Skarlis - Local approaches can be very helpful at times, and at other times they can hurt.
Tommy Skarlis - Take Dunkirk for instance. Deep fish, 30-60 feet down. I got defrayed by wire line and Dipsy's when I should have concentrated on Snap Weights and leadcore!
Driftr - Tommy, tell us about your favorite presentation?
jigtugger - In our first tournament we were too busy flying around from spot to spot instead of focusing on any one presentation. Do you remember those days? 
Tommy Skarlis - Yes, and I sometimes lose my head and revisit those days!
optimax - Tommy what kind of extension handle do you use on your kicker motor or do you use autopilot?
Tommy Skarlis - My favorite presentation is vertical jigging a contour line on a break, when you have got to stay on a specific depth.
Tommy Skarlis - I use a store bought one. A plastic baseball bat and pipe clamps works well too!
Driftr - Howdy Juls!
Tommy Skarlis - I have never used an Autopilot. I feel that I might loose some of the "feel."
jigtugger - I remember having no fish in the box, on Leech Lake, at 1:00pm. I asked my partner what we would do if we weren't in the tourney. He paused and said, "We would have been on Winnie 2 hours ago!" We were not used to being on a tough bite for so long! Can you relate?
TMinnema - Hi Juls!!
Chatman - Hi Juls!!!!
Tommy Skarlis - Hi Juls you fishing stud!!
Juls_OH - Hi Elvis, oops, I mean Tommy...heheh!!
Juls_OH - Hi Tim!
Juls_OH - Everyone...;-)
Chatman - Jigtugger, every tourney angler can relate to that feeling!
Tommy Skarlis - I want to say right now, that I had the pleasure of fishing with Juls at the PWT Saginaw and she is a better angler than most I've met!! Even better than Bigfoot!! (Rick LaCourse)
Tommy Skarlis - Thank you for donating your time Juls.
Juls_OH - LOL!! *blush, blush* Cut it out, I'm the one who is glad to have had the privilege to fish with you!!!!!
Swede - What do you think about non release tourney's, Tommy?
Juls_OH - You're an awesome angler Mr. Skarlis, and a heck of a lot of fun in the boat...;-)
jigtugger - So I assume it is that adrenaline rush from the competition and a good hook set that keeps most of you going on the tourney trail? Or maybe the fear of an inside job with a tie?
Tommy Skarlis - All of the above!
Tommy Skarlis - I was never any good at sports in school, fishing helped me to find something I enjoyed being competitive at.
Juls_OH - It's nice to have a job outside. That's especially true when it's on the water in beautiful places...;-)
Tommy Skarlis - There is nothing as rewarding as a living in the fishing industry, especially if one has the opportunity to teach people, learn and make friends. And hopefully, positively influence the life of a child or two!
TMinnema - Tommy, good luck in Bismarck, You are truly one of the great fishing athletes of our time...
Juls_OH - Tommy, I came in late. Did you already cover your Ice On Tour, and the new magazine you and chip came out with? "Fishing The Wildside" is going to go on to become a great magazine I predict. I saw the first issue and it was jam-packed with good info on a bunch of different species! Good job!
Tommy Skarlis - Thanks Tim, I still think of the old MWC days, and how we've both matured.
jigtugger - Yeah I hear you Tommy. The highlight of my fishing days was netting a 29.5" eye for my 7-year-old son last year on Leech. I can already see the fire in his eye that I remember at that age.
Tommy Skarlis - No, I have not covered either, but to learn more, check out and
Chatman - I was unable to ask him about that Juls, glad you did! Ya want a job??? LOL!
Swede - Are you making any of your baits yourself Tommy?
Tommy Skarlis - He will remember it forever!
Lance - Tommy, I have to agree with Tim. You're a great fisherman as well as a class act! Good luck at Bismarck, you have my utmost respect.
Tommy Skarlis - I used to tie my own jigs, but anymore I've gained enormous confidence in both Fuzz-E-Grubs and Power Bait.
Chatman - As we wind down, Tommy can you list your sponsors?
Tommy Skarlis - Coleman, Mercury, Ranger, Lindy Little Jo, Pinpoint, Berkley Trilene and Powerbait, Fenwick, Offshore, Strikemaster, USL, Aqua Vu,
jigtugger - Thanks for the time Tommy. We'll be cheering for you. And oh yeah, I will visit your sponsors too!
Chatman - Ladies and Gentlemen a warm round of applause for Tommy Skarlis!!!
Eyesrfn - Clap, clap!
Tommy Skarlis - Thanks Jigtugger! Make sure you say hello at next years Mercury Walleye Classic!
Driftr - Thanks Tommy!
Driftr - Clap, clap, clap!!!
Chatman - Clap, clap, clap, clap!!
Lance - Thanks Tommy!! Clap, clap!!
Chatman - You DA Man Tommy!!!!!
Juls_OH - Clap, clap, clap, clap, clap, clap, thanks Tommy!
T-Mac - Applause!!!!
Swede - Clap, clap, clap!
Mark B. - Thanks Tommy! Me bad, me late!
Doreen - Clap, clap, clap, clap, thanks Tommy!
Juls_OH - LOL!! 
TMinnema - Jig 'em up man! Clap, clap!!
T-Mac - Sorry I was late too!
Tommy Skarlis - Thanks to everyone - Remember that we are all in this together, and to "Take a Kid or a senior fishing soon."