In a column leading up to this year’s Classic on Alabama’s Lay Lake, Mike Bolton of the Birmingham News wrote that he liked the chances of the “local” boys in the contest. This was a fairly bold prediction, given that no home-state angler has ever won the event in its entire 37-year history. But Boyd Duckett broke the curse and proved Bolton right. Here’s the latter’s report:

_Rookie Classic angler Boyd Duckett of Demopolis broke the curse to become the first angler to win a Bassmaster Classic in his home state. With confetti falling and “Sweet Home Alabama” blaring over the loudspeakers this afternoon, Duckett lifted the Bassmaster Classic trophy over his head before a delirious crowd of about 15,000 in the BJCC Arena. Duckett’s win on Lay Lake marked the first time an Alabama angler has won the Classic since Phenix City’s Jack Chancellor 22 years ago. California’s Skeet Reese finished second and two-time Classic winner Kevin VanDam finished third. Duckett had a three-day catch of 48 pounds, 10 ounces and beat Reese by just six ounces. _

For more coverage see:
Alabama Angler Wins Bassmaster Classic
Sweet Home Alabama
Boy, Oh Boyd!