As it was reported earlier in March, Derek Hudnall of Baton Rouge, La., was disqualified from the 2019 Bassmaster Elite at Lake Hartwell. He self-reported to B.A.S.S. officials that he had accidently practiced on Hartwell a day after the lake went off limits to Bassmaster Elite Series anglers.
“I screwed up,” he said. “I went through my calendar and marked 28 days before every event. Unfortunately I marked it off from the start of the event, not the first official practice day.”
It was an honest mistake, and he did the right thing by letting tournament officials know of his error.
While he happily and openly admitted his mistake, he wasn’t about to sit at home and pout.
“I asked the staff if I could be of assistance at the event, I was willing to do anything,” he said. “Look, I worked so hard to get here, and I wasn’t about to skip an event because of an oversight. I’ve got to be apart of this. Thankfully Steve Bowman hired me to be his camera boat driver.”
The rookie will spend four days carting Bassmaster photographer and Content Director Steve Bowman around all of Lake Hartwell. You’ll also likely see some blog content from Bassmaster’s Digital VP Jim Sexton — and that will include more insight from Hudnall himself.
That’s a fine example of honesty and passion. Hudnall loves the sport so much he’s willing to work an event he was previously disqualified from.
I’ve got nothing but respect for Hudnall, and his decision to be here and wave the flag.