At day’s end, a shadow doesn’t die, it slowly fades away. So it is with Rapala®’s new suspending jerkbait, the Shadow Rap®. Combining a horizontal struggle with a vertical fade, it perfectly mimics a minnow’s last moments before its end of days.
“The Shadow Rap® does something I’ve never seen another bait do — I call it the ‘death quiver,’” said three-time Bassmaster Classic qualifier and 2014 Forrest Wood Cup Champion Randall Tharp. “When you pause it on slack line, it shimmies from side to side as it’s suspending there. So even when it’s sitting still, it looks just barely alive.”
Tharp and fellow Rapala pros Michael Iaconelli, Brandon Palaniuk, Ott DeFoe and Jacob Wheeler will all be armed with Shadow Raps later this month in the 2015 Bassmaster Classic on South Carolina’s Lake Hartwell. The baits will be unveiled there to the public for the first time, but the Rapala pros have had them for months. And they are impressed. Big time.
“It could win the Bassmaster Classic,” said Palaniuk, the 2013 Classic runner-up. “You can bet that the Rapala Shadow Rap is going to be in my boat.”
Wheeler, a Forrest Wood Cup champion and runner-up, is equally enthusiastic about the Shadow Rap heading into his first Classic.
“That fading away action I think might just be the ticket to getting those fish to bite down there at Hartwell,” he said. “That bait does stuff that not another bait out there in the market does.”
While most jerkbaits follow a forward trajectory with each twitch of the rod tip, the Shadow Rap’s action stands out. “Not only will it dart side to side, but with a certain jerk, you can make it spin around almost 180 degrees,” Tharp explained. “But it also moves vertically too — it will dive down, then move up.” So a Shadow Rap will trigger bites on its initial kick and its snap back to life, as well on as its slow-fading fall.
“It’s perfect — it’s exactly what I want,” said Iaconelli, the 2003 Classic Champ. “I want that bait to have to have these little tiny movements — little tiny flashes and rolls. Then, on the pause, I want it to just barely lurking out — just barely going down.”
Featuring a minnow body, flat sides and a metallic finish with textured scales, the Shadow Rap is designed to target bass and other gamefish in two to four feet of water. The Shadow Rap Deep targets fish in four to eight feet. Both models come armed with three No. 6 VMC black-nickel, round-bend hooks and are available in 14 color patterns: Albino Shiner, Blue Back Herring, Blue Ghost, Bone, Bud, Carbon, Clown, Ghost, Ghost Shiner, Moss Back Shiner, Olive Green, Purpledescent, Silver and Yellow Perch. Each measures 4 3/8 inches and weighs 7/16 of an ounce.
“The Shadow Rap’s going to be a player for me — both the regular Shadow Rap and the Shadow Rap Deep,” Iaconelli says. “These are great lures at imitating what those fish are feeding on.”
Asked to describe the Shadow Rap in one word, each Rapala pro’s personality was apparent in his answer.
“Trick,” Iaconelli replied. “Because it does things that are very tricked out.”
“Freak-Nasty would be my word of choice,” Palaniuk said.
“Natural,” DeFoe answered.
“Life-like,” Wheeler replied.
“It’s ‘Frickin’ awesome!’” he exclaimed. “Whoops, That’s two words!”
Learn more about the Shadow Rap® and Shadow Rap® Deep Here.