Angler Spotlight: Richard Carbon


Our next angler interview goes to Richard Carbon of Team Georgia.  Richard has not been on the scene long, and I have personally been lucky to judge him at two events this past season.  Read below for his interview.

 Ben- “How long have you been competing and what brought you to the competition scene?”

Richard- “The 2018 season was my first year fishing competitively so I’ve been competing for about 8 months so far. When I began to get serious about fly fishing, particularly tight line nymphing some friends I met on the river mainly Scott Brown told me I should consider competition fishing after fishing together a few times. Before this I really didn’t know much about the competitive fishing scene except a few bits and pieces I came across on the internet by mistake. A friend told me about the team he was on called Team Georgia, so after a bit I tried out for the team and made it. I competed in my first comp, the Helen Classic held in late June on the Chattahoochee River in Helen hosted by Team Dead Drift, in which I placed 5th. After this event I really caught the bug for fishing competitions and started really locking in trying to see how far I could go.”

Ben- ” What were your goals for last season and did you accomplish them? If so what were the keys to your success.”

Richard- “I’d have to say my main goals for 2018 were just to perform well, learn as much as possible, and win an event. I wasn’t fortunate enough to win an event this season but achieving top angler on my team is something that I’m very proud of, as well as the team taking a third overall in the league. I spent a lot of time on the water practicing techniques, experimenting, reading water, and just trying to piece it all together which I think definitely contributed to my success in my first season.”

Ben-” What are your goals for this season and how do you plan to achieve them?”

For the 2019 season I plan to pick up where I left off in 2018 and keep grinding and striving to learn, win a comp, and maybe repeat as the team top angler. I plan to spend as much time as I can on the water practicing and doing as many comps as I can in the coming year. I also want to fish different bodies of water outside Georgia to experience some different water types. I’ve begun to notice what my weaknesses are as an angler and what I need to work on to become better, so I want to turn my weaknesses into positives this year.

Ben- “Do you have a favorite fly Pattern?”

Richard- “I’d have to say I have 2 favorite patterns, first is a walt’s worm. When I first started fly-fishing another angler, Pat Brechbill showed me the walt’s worm while teaching me how to euro nymph and I did well with them. From that day on they became one of my confidence patterns and I carry them in a bunch of variations with me on the water still. My other favorite is a micro wolly bugger, I can fish it in numerous ways when I really need a bite and they nearly always produce for me.”

Ben-” What is your go to technique when competing?”

Richard- “My go to technique would have to be euro-nymphing when in a competition and for my regular fishing as well. It has proven to be a great technique to catch fish especially when numbers of fish matter like in competitions.”

Ben- ” For someone interested in competing or starting out, what would be your advice to them?”

Richard- “For someone starting out I would say the best thing you can do is put time in on the water, there is nothing that can beat that in the beginning. Read internet forums, jump in ask questions on the boards and read old threads. I spent many nights at work reading through old posts when I first got started looking for information on comp techniques, rigs, flies, and anything else I could find out there. After that just find the nearest comp, sign up and do your best.”

Ben- “Why did you choose to compete in the SEFFL and after its first year what do you think about the league in general?”

Richard- “The SEFFL gives anglers in the south a place to get started competing without having to travel far, which was perfect for me. One thing I like about the SEFFL is that there’s some pretty strong competition to gauge yourself against which is great. The competition can range from the new guy doing his first comp to members of both adult and youth Team USA at any event. Also the friends I’ve met who fish competitively all compete in the SEFFL so I’m able to compete with them and see them at events which is cool.”

Ben- “You were the top angler on your team, do you believe the team aspect of competitive angling is a unique outlier that makes the sport more fun than just individual angling?”

Richard- “Yes it makes it more unique in that the team aspect brings comraderie and ability to learn from others, that if you’re going about it solo you would never get to experience fully. You always have other people to fish with and exchange tips with which is what we do a lot of on my team to all grow. I’ve built friendships on my team as well as with members of other teams that compete in the SEFFL that I probably would not have made otherwise.”

Ben-  “Open forum, anything you want to add, you can add below.”

Richard- “Want to say thanks to Ben and the other guys behind the scenes that started the SEFFL and are keeping it going. I haven’t been on the competitive scene for long but it seemed like it was starting to die off here in the south, but you guys have turned it around. I don’t know how much goes into running the league, planning events, gathering sponsors and all the other involvement but thanks for all you guys do to keep competitive fishing alive in the south.”

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