When I was 7 years old, I played a Bassmaster video game and I won the Bassmaster Classic in that game. Now, I am really fishing the Bassmaster Elite Series and won the blue trophy at the St. Lawrence River.
It’s been almost a week, and it still doesn’t seem real.
My dream has come true.
Thanks to Bassmaster, my life has changed.
Big Bass. Big Stage. Big Dreams. Bassmaster!
I want to bring the blue trophy back to Japan to show my families and fans. But I do not know if I can carry it on a flight back to Japan. It is too heavy.
As many of you saw, it was hard for me to hold the trophy on stage. I appreciate the power of Dave Mercer to help me out.
The fans’ love is also my power. I receive so many messages through social media — from Japan, U.S., Canada, all over the world. After a day is over from fishing, I enjoy going through these messages. That gives me power for the next day.
I would love to thank each one of the fans that spend time to send me messages.
The power of those messages has helped me through some very long days.
I always fish — practice, tournaments and pre-practice. So, I do not rest much. After each tournament, I drive to the next lake and practice from 30 minutes before sunrise to 30 minutes after sunset every day.
I do not have much experiences on U.S. lakes, so I needed to be on the water more than other Elite anglers to get that blue trophy.
When I fish, I am always alone. But the love I feel from great distances sustains me.
Like the fans, my family is always with me. I video chat with them every day. I really appreciate my family is following my dream with me. Now I’ve got a blue trophy and my family are happy with me. I also get many help from American friends — and without their help, I can’t fish Bassmaster Elite.
I still have much to learn about America. English is very hard for me, and I try to get better every day. But the smallmouth bass speaks Japanese, so it is easier for me to fish.
I also still have much left I want to accomplish as an angler. I want to win at the Bassmaster Classic! I would love to win the Angler of the Year also, but I think I need more experiences to do that.
So, my goal for now is to get qualified for the Classic every year and hoist that big World Champion trophy!
I want to do all of these things. Thirty years from now, I want people to say, “Oh, Taku, that funny Japanese guy! He was a great angler!”
Our Elite season is done and my dream — at least one of them — has come true.
I would love to thank each one of the fans of Bassmaster and mine, in the U.S., Japan or anywhere in the world.
Without your voice, I couldn’t stand where I am right now.
Your voices are my energy for what I am doing.
I want people to smile while watching me fishing the Bassmaster tournaments.
Fishing is fun — and life is good.