Angler a ‘rookie’ no longer

After making Bassmaster Classic history live on ESPN2 and being cheered by 15,000 fans in Birmingham, Ala., Boyd Duckett went back to work at Southern Tank Leasing in Demopolis, the tanker dealership he cofounded in 1991. Duckett won the $500,000 first prize Feb. 25 for a three-day catch on Lay Lake totaling 48 pounds, 10 ounces. Duckett is the first Classic winner to qualify through open tournaments – hence his dismissal, by some competitors, as a mere “rookie” – and the first to win in his home state. Guess which Lynyrd Skynyrd song was played as he held aloft his trophy.

At 3 a.m. on Jan. 9, B.J. Evans and Paul Skaer, headed home to Dallas from a Seattle hotshot run, hit an 800-pound elk on I-80 in Wyoming, knocking out their Ford F350 and its radio. Evans then suffered a heart attack. Most troubling were the 90 minutes that Skaer struggled to get a signal on his cell phone as their fellow truckers sped past. “It was 10 degrees and 4 feet of snow out there, and nobody – nobody – would stop to help us,” says Evans (pictured), now recovered. “If this is what truck driving is all about, then somebody needs to teach men and women what a wreck is all about.”

Nine big trucking fleets and the American Trucking Associations have called for mandatory devices that will cap the speed of big rigs, and one in nine readers of agree with them. Most readers, however, would veto the restriction.

“He is our shining star.”
– Matt Neal of Western Express brags on dispatcher Willie Frye, who spent three hours on the phone navigating a new driver through New York City – from his office in Atmore, Ala.

“I’ve never seen the bridge lose.”
– Sgt. Michael Colclasure, 22-year Davenport police veteran, tells the Quad-City Times that the infamously low “truck-eating” Iowa Interstate Railroad Bridge just claimed another one.

“We’re putting the fun back in San Diego driving!”
– Slogan of the new South Bay Expressway, a privately owned toll road to open this summer; the toll for a big rig will be $11.25, or $1.12 a mile.

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