Every bass fisherman that has ever fished a tournament has dreamed of fishing the BassMaster Classic. The Classic is the holy grail of fishing. The Classic is the private playing ground for the pros and will only remain a dream for local angles. Then Kelly Pratt appears, local guy fishes B.A.S.S. Open on the James River and beats all the Pros. This week Kelly Pratt is fishing in the BassMaster Classic. Ha, the little guy can fish in the BassMaster Classic after all.
The road to qualify for the Classic can be driven on several separate paths for an local angler. The most common way that a local angler can qualify for the BassMaster Classic is through the Bass Federation. Another way to qualify is to fish the Pro Tour and finish high enough in the yearly standings. But when reality sets in, most angler find it impossible to compete at that level or find the funding necessary to follow the tour around the country. Some estimates claim it to cost as much as $100,000.00 for just one season, this is generally above the pay scale of many local anglers. Then there is the way Kelly Pratt qualifies for the Classic, Kelly fished as a Pro when B.A.S.S. came to the James River last year. He honed his skills on his home body of water, worked his butt off and when the Tour came to town he put it on them. Many local anglers fish these events when the Tour comes around, most fish hard but fail in the task of beating professionals that make a living angling. Maybe it's nerves, maybe it's having to find enough fish for the whole week but for some reason most local anglers fail to win. None of those reasons stopped Kelly from winning, he won a trip to the big dance of bass fishing, the Super Bowl of Bass Fishing, The BassMaster Classic.
I would like to wish Kelly Pratt of Willaimsburg, Virginia the best of luck in The Classic, we are rooting for you and hope that you have a great time fishing with the big boys for the championship. I would also like to thank you for showing us that it is possible to live out our dreams if you work hard enough. Thanks Kelly, us little guys can fish in the BassMaster Classic after all.