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Boyd Duckett: The Man Who Won the 2007 Bassmaster Classic and How He Did It

The Boatyard Interview

Click to enlargeEditor’s Note: Boyd Duckett of Demopolis, Alabama, the 46-year-old owner of a tank trailer leasing and repair company and avid bass fisherman, never attended a Bassmasters Classic until the one he won in February, 2007 at Alabama’s Lay Lake near Birmingham. “I made a decision when I started professional bass fishing that I wouldn’t attend a Classic until I could fish in it,” explains Duckett. How did Duckett win the 2007 Bassmaster Classic, and what can we learn from Duckett? We saw other tournament pros use this same tactic that Duckett did – not fish for ghost bass. That’s why Duckett didn’t practice on Lay Lake. Then he wouldn’t try to catch bass in the same places where he’d caught them when and if he pre-fished the lake. Actually Duckett probably spent less time on Lay Lake this year than any other tournament pro who fished in the 2007 Classic. But rather than telling Duckett’s story, let’s let him tell you how, why and where he won with 48 pounds, 10 ounces and took home $500,000, beating out second-place Skeet Reese, who had 48 pounds, Click to enlarge4 ounces and won $45,000 and third-place Kevin VanDam, who won $40,000 with his 45 pounds, 4 ounces.

Phillips: Before Boyd Duckett rode his boat into the Birmingham/Jefferson County Civic Center on the last day of the 2007 Bassmaster’s Classic and bass-fishing history, I interviewed Duckett in the boatyard. Boyd, what did you do today?
Duckett: I managed to boat my fish. I caught them good the first day, I missed a couple of bass the second day of the tournament and today (the last day of the tournament) I was able to hook and boat every bass that bit my lure. And that’s what I had to do if I expected to win this Classic.

Phillips: You caught a 6-pounder, didn’t you? On what did you catch him?
Click to enlargeDuckett: Yes, I did, and I caught him on a Berkley PowerBait Chigger Craw. I caught the majority of my bass on the Chigger Craw during this Classic. The rest of the fish I caught on a Rat-L-Trap.

Phillips: Boyd, how did you qualify for the Classic?
Duckett: I qualified for the Classic through the B.A.S.S. tour events last year.

Phillips: How long have you been fishing professionally?
Duckett: I don’t know what you consider professional. I’ve fished on and off competitively for a long time. I actually started traveling and fishing in the 1970s, while still working my other job.

Phillips: What’s being in contention to win the 2007 Bassmasters Classic like?
Duckett: This experience has been fantastic and a dream come true. I was really excited about qualifying for the Bassmaster Elite circuit. I’d qualified for the tour twice before, but my work schedule just wouldn’t allow me to fish all the tournaments. My real goal was to be able to compete for the Angler-of-the-Year title on the B.A.S.S. circuit. But then I was here at the Classic with a chance to win. I’m really excited about that.

Click to enlargePhillips: Have you fished Lay Lake very much?
Duckett: Yes, since I’ve lived in Alabama I have, but it’s not a very good lake for me as compared to Lake Martin.

Phillips: Where at Lay Lake have you caught your fish during the Classic?
Duckett: I caught them in the mid-lake section of Lay Lake. I threw a Rat-L-Trap and a crankbait early in the morning. Next I flipped the Chigger Craw later in the day.

Tomorrow: Duckett’s Classic-Winning Pattern

Check back each day this week for more about "Boyd Duckett: The Man Who Won the 2007 Bassmaster Classic and How He Did It"

Day 1: The Boatyard Interview
Day 2: Duckett’s Classic-Winning Pattern
Day 3: What Duckett Accomplished
Day 4: How Duckett Planned to Fish the Classic
Day 5: The Rest of the Classic Details



Entry 394, Day 1