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Boyd Duckett breaks ties with E-21

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Classic Champ Says Rod Construction, Financial Instability Issues At Heart Of The Split

Story furnished by Randy Coleman

The following story was sent to the BZ by Randy Coleman on Monday, July 13th. The story includes statements made by Boyd Duckett concerning his departure from E-21. Attempts were made to contact E-21 management after receiving the story. Management based in the Toronto, Canada office was not available for comment.

Demopolis, AL – Boyd Duckett, the 2007 Bassmaster Classic champion and one of the top professional anglers on the ESPN B.A.S.S. Elite Series tour, announced today that he is parting company with E-21, one of his primary sponsors for the past three years.

Duckett said he has severed ties with E-21 because of “strong disagreements over construction of the Carrot Stix series rods” and “because of the financial instability” of the Toronto, Canada-based company. Duckett said he believes his reputation as an angler and businessman would have been damaged had he maintained his relationship with the company.

The Demopolis, Alabama-based Duckett and rod-designer Ken Whiting created the concept that became Carrot Stix rods. In 2007, E-21 began manufacturing and distributing the popular, orange rods.

Duckett learned recently that the Carrot Stix rods being sold in stores are not built as Duckett and Whiting had originally discussed. The rods are different from the prototypes that won iCast in 2007. The rods are also different than the Carrot Stix rods Duckett uses while fishing on tour.

“I’ve learned this from my own experience with the new rods E-21 gave me. I have also learned this from other people. During the past few months I have voiced my rod concerns as well as concerns about E-21’s financial status, and E-21 has not satisfied those concerns. It bothers me a lot to part ways with a sponsor I’m attempting to work with as a partner. But one of the primary reasons I’ve taken this action is that, up to now, these rods had my name on them. My reputation is at stake,” Duckett said.

“The bottom line is that we have strong differences of opinion over the whole Carrot Stix concept. For example, I’m concerned about the general quality of the rods being made and how warranties are being honored. And I’ve learned that there are too many warranty claims being made for me to continue putting my endorsement on the Carrot Stix. I don’t want any part of the direction E-21 is now going.”

Duckett also said, “In business sometimes you have to overlook profits to maintain the integrity of both the product and your reputation. And that’s the position I feel I’m in. So I felt like even though it’s going to be a financial loss, parting ways is the right thing to do.”

Duckett, who had previously “tournament fished” for more than 20 years, burst on the national stage in 2007 when he won the Bassmaster Classic and the Bassmaster Legends, a “major” tournament. That year, Duckett set a single-season B.A.S.S. earnings record. Duckett also owns a successful product-transport business: Southern Tank Leasing, an Alabama-based enterprise with terminals in 14 Southern and Midwestern states.

“My goal as a business-owner and an angler is to make sure my partnerships and alliances are with companies that offer business and moral integrity. If integrity is jeopardized, you have to take action. That’s why I’ve chosen to sever my partnership with E-21, and I’ve demanded that any association to my name or likeness be removed from Carrot Stix,” Duckett said.

“On a more personal level, I go to tournaments, fishing seminars and shows all over the country. People often look to pro anglers to give them advice about our sport and the products we use. I want to be comfortable that I’m offering the right advice.”

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Saw this earlier. I like the move, he had a lot vested into them and if he doesn't agree with the quality they are putting out there or the customer service then he doesn't want to have his name associated with them. Can't blame him and it will end up going a long ways to having the image that he only backs quality products that he believes in.

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wonder how much this will hurt Carrot sticks?
I wouldn't be surprised to see Carrot Stix go under if this story is true. Days before iCast none the less

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A lot of places have been blowing them out. Wonder if something wasn't already in the works

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Glad mine hasn't busted yet. Sounds like it will soon. If they won't replace it maybe it'll be worth something as a sort of limited edition or something...?

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Dang, I was thinking about getting one of these, but now im going to have to think twice about it. Has anybody had to deal with their customer service and if so, how was it?

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I really hate to hear this i have 2 right now and i love them. I also broke one completly not the rods fault and they still sent me a new one in like a week. I thought they were great to work with they really worked with me to get my new rod quick because i had a tournament comeing up and it was rushed at no cost to me. I really hope they make i through this

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I wonder what the difference was between how they wanted them to be made and how they are made now... Hopefully this was the right decision for him, it sounds like it was.

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