“The Classic was an awesome event. I learned a lot about the upcoming Classic from Stan (Sloan) and Bobby (Murray) because they’d both fished the first Classic. We only had one day of practice and were limited to 10 pounds of tackle.
Homer Circle and Ricky Green won the Classic “greased pig contest.” I say we bring that one back. Wouldn’t you love to see G-Man and James Overstreet wrasllin’ a hawg prior to the weigh-in?
That’s when I told him we were trailering the boats to Percy Priest Marina and the anglers were on their way. “Everyone said, ‘You said the boats were going to be hauled on the railroad somewhere else'” I replied, “No, I just asked how many would fit on a flatcar – I never mentioned they were going anywhere.”
What we did was have the truck driver back the trailer down under the crane, then the crane would sling the boats off the flatbed and lower it in the water as the truck pulled forward. This was working fine until one of the boats slipped out of the sling and broke in half when it hit the tracks.
Anyway, it was at Leaches where I saw my first actual, dyed-in-the-wool bass boat up close. It was also the place where we bought our first bass boat in 1976 or ’77 – a 15-foot Sea Nymph Jon/bass boat loaded with a 35-horse Johnson and a 23-pound thrust foot-control Pfluegar trolling motor (we didn’t get a depth finder until about a year later).
Before any of this happened, though, I had to make sure the Ranger livewells would operate well enough to keep the fish alive for the weigh-in. I called Mickey Wood at Ranger Boats and told him that I needed to know how good the livewells worked and this is what I needed him to do.