Professional Fisherman, BHS Class of 1993
More About David & His Family
Click here for some interesting notes and
statistics about David's career
David Dudley - The Closer - Part 1 - December
An in-depth look at why David
Dudley is one of the best in bass fishing.
David Dudley Wins 2008 FLW Angler
Of The Year!
July 11, 2008
5 TIME WINNER ON THE FLW
TOUR AND 2 TIME WINNER ON THE BASSMASTER TOUR.
OVER $2 million in WINNINGS!
2008 Wal-Mart FLW
1st place! - Fort Loudoun-Tellico Lakes
2007 Wal-Mart FLW
Tour Event Highlights:
8th Place - Forest Wood Cup - 8/2/07
2nd Place - Potomac River Competition 6/14/07
16th Place - Beaver Lake Competition 5/17/07
24th Place - Lake Norman Competition 4/26/07
11th Place - Fort Loudoun-Tellico Lakes
Winner of Virginia CITGO Bassmaster Open at Smith Mtn. Lake - October 2004
FLW Outdoors Angler Profile on David Dudley
FLW Outdoors Photo Album for David Dudley
Million Dollar Man - FLW Outdoors Article - October 2003
Wal-Mart FLW Tour Championships - September 2003
A cut above at the M1
by Rob Newell - 7.Mar.2002
Dudley won the big fishing tournament and $700,000 with his
On Sunday, Feb. 24, while practicing for the Ranger M1, David
Dudley walked around the bank of a backwater pond on the Mobile
River. Unbeknownst to him, $700,000 dollars worth of largemouth
bass swam about in the small lake.
Dudley was walking the bank because the tiny creek that connected
the backwater pond with the main river was completely impassable
in a boat. Although the narrow creek was deep enough for a boat,
huge downed trees criss-crossed the ditch from bank to bank. At
some point a storm, or perhaps a tornado, had pushed six or seven
trees down, ensnarling the length of the ditch with a horizontal
When Dudley encountered the wooden barriers that Sunday, his
curiosity festered. He wanted to know the origin of the blocked
creek. At that point, he got out of his boat and began exploring
Initially, Dudley discounted the backwater. From shore, the lake
looked ideal for bass, but it was nearly 90 miles from takeoff and
the miniature forest that rested across the only entrance would
take a logging crew to remove.
But after two more days of fruitless practice, visions of 4-pound
bass began dancing in Dudley's head. And in Dudley's imagination,
those bass lived in the impassable pond.
First attempt: unsuccessful
At daylight on Tuesday, the last day of practice, Dudley set out
to do the unthinkable cut his way into the small pond. Armed
with a chainsaw, he began his long journey up the river.
Dudley spent the day wading in 50-degree water sawing and removing
logs from the ditch. Then his progress came to a sudden halt.
That last major log that guarded the slough was the biggest. As
Dudley sawed into the massive piece of timber, it pinched his saw
and broke the chain. Fortunately, Dudley had a spare chain with
him. But as he was repairing the saw, he dropped the flat blade
(sometimes called the bar) into the creek.
You might say my temper was running a bit hot by then, admits
Dudley, now that the adventure is over. I was almost to the lake,
and due to my own stupidity, I dropped the blade in the water. The
only alternative was to swim for it.
So Dudley, previously wet only from the waist down, now submerged
himself into the chilling water to feel around on the bottom with
his bare hands. The water was pretty cold but I did not feel it.
I guess because I was so mad, he now laughs.
After an hour of searching, a thoroughly disgusted Dudley was
unsuccessful in recovering the blade. Dudley knew he could still
use a saw in the tournament, however, he would not be allowed to
get out of his boat.
So at that point, I just started moving logs with my bare hands.
I knew I had to get the slough clear enough to do my final cutting
from the boat. So I cleared the creek of smaller logs on both
sides of the big log.
So absorbed and exhausted from his efforts, Dudley nearly missed
registration on Tuesday night. I got to registration at 5:50,
only ten minutes to spare, he adds.
Second attempt: unsuccessful
While most anglers prepared tackle on Tuesday night, Dudley
repaired his chainsaw for the next day's adventure.
On Wednesday morning, Dudley again made the 90-mile voyage to his
untapped, yet still unproven, backwater pond. When he got to the
giant log, he brandished his renewed chainsaw and revved it up for
Now bear in mind, I am no Paul Bunyan. I don't know much about
cutting big logs, says Dudley about what happened next. The
behemoth tree again pinched the blade and chain permanently. The
chainsaw was stuck, and I mean stuck solid. I thought I was mad
the day before; this time smoke shot out of my ears.
Dudley was forced into emergency chainsaw removal maneuvers. He
unscrewed the motor portion of the saw from blade assembly and
left the pinched chain and blade in the stubborn tree.
Qualifying with an overlooked pattern
Now that Dudley had wasted at least an hour of valuable fishing
time on a failed plan, he needed a backup area. He ran back down
to an easily accessible oxbow lake he had practiced in. He was not
excited to find four boats already making the rounds on the
primary stretches of cover.
Dudley managed to recompose himself and catch two 3-pound bass.
But it was his co-angler that really tipped him off to an
overlooked pattern. My co-angler lost two big fish that day.
While I was pitching the deeper bushes and trees, he would pitch
up into about eight inches of water and wham a big fish would
bite. When I returned to a shallow twig where he had lost one
earlier, I got a bite, too. Then it hit me, the fish were spawning
and nobody in the oxbow realized it.
new discovery temporarily relieved him from his role as a
lumberjack. On day two Dudley mounted the scales with a catch of
15 pounds, 11 ounces from the backup oxbow pond.
According to Dudley, his competition in the lake was focused
exclusively on the deeper bushes and laydowns. But two days of
bright sun, calm water, and a full moon had the fish spawning in
the shallower unfished pockets of the oxbow.
I know it sounds crazy because the water temperature was in the
low 50s but that is what the fish were doing spawning. Several
times I missed a fish and would come back a few minutes later and
catch her. It was like blind sight-fishing.
Dudley visited the oxbow again on the third day and managed 9
pounds, 11 ounces to qualify for the finals.
Going for all the chips
After qualifying, Dudley had a decision to make: stay in the oxbow
or gamble on removing the obstinate log to fish somewhere that he
knew nothing about. One thing is for sure, I was not going to let
that log whip me again, says Dudley. I went to Wal-Mart, and not
only bought a new chain and blade for my old saw, but I brought a
brand new Poulan chain saw. Now I had a backup if that log ate my
When day four dawned at takeoff, Dudley noticed that the water was
up higher than it had been. With that observation, he decided to
lay it on the line and go for all the chips wood chips, that is.
time's a charm
Now the M1 is history. Dudley finally won his battle with the big
log by sawing his way into the untapped backwater. In doing so, he
won the tournament.
The 4-pounders, which had danced in Dudley's head earlier in the
week, manifested into a catch of 15 pounds, 15 ounces, the
heaviest stringer of the entire tournament.
Much could be said for Dudley's raw determination, but in
retrospect, Dudley says that not getting in the lake earlier in
the week was a blessing in disguise. It was not a very big place.
If I had gotten in there on the first day, I might have fished it
out over three days and had nothing left on day four. By keeping
me out, that ol' log did me a huge favor; it made me save the best
spot for when it really counted.
Statistics and other Miscellaneous Information
As of December 2007
for David Dudley (from www.bassfan.com
only 175 professionals in the world. You have to maintain a top 75
position every year to re-qualify, like golf.
Records set by David Dudley:
- youngest to ever fish the BASSMASTERS CLASSIC, AGE 19
- youngest to ever fish in the FLW CHAMPIONSHIP, AGE 21
- youngest to ever win a professional tournament BASSMASTERS, AGE 19
- ranked in top 10 of final round advances
- youngest to ever reach the 1 million dollar mark in tournament winnings
- quickest to ever reach the 1 million dollar mark
(THERE ARE ABUT ONLY 7 PEOPLE IN THE WORLD TO HAVE DONE THIS)
Publications David appeared in during 2002:
7 national magazines featured articles on David
7 TV shows featured on David ESPN, PAX, OLN.
www.daviddudley.com (on this
site you can find a link to my stats)
Information provided by David Dudley