Market Wrap: New Product Launches Before the Classic

The Bassmaster Classic is a kickoff party for fishermen around the country. Its arrival foreshadows the coming of spring and fine fishing weather throughout North America. It’s no surprise that many companies are launching new product lines for anglers to feast on like tortilla chips at a football game. Here’s a breakdown of what we know as we descend upon the Classic:

Rapala is unveiling a new Shadow Rap to much ado. Will the bait live up to the hype? We’re not sure. But it’s worth keeping an eye on, as the Rapala hype-machine has been in full swing surrounding this launch. Rapala is swinging for the fences, hoping the new bait will help bring home a win in the Bassmaster Classic.

Shadow Rap Deep_Bud

Max Bait Trays is launching a new, aluminum bait tray. The Max Bait Trays are made in the USA from .080 powder coated aluminum. Standard trays are 2.3-inches deep and range from 12.5″x7.5″ to 27.5″x11″. Max Bait Trays says the trays “use a design where interlocking trays conduct cold from one tray to the next,” and they claim the technology keeps bait cold and dry all day even in the sun.

Max Bait Trays
Max Bait Trays

Avedon & Colby launched a Kickstarter project to bring a new field shirt design to life last October. That shirt, which was fully funded in just 10 days, earned a “Gray’s Best” award from Gray’s Sporting Journal in January. “Our objective was to create the most comfortable, most functional field shirt you’ll ever wear”, Avedon explained. “So, when it came to quality and attention to detail, we spared nothing. From our 100% cotton long-staple bush poplin – in historic “tea-dyed” British Tan – to quality details found only found on fine-tailored shirts, we’re confident our Signature Field Shirt will live up to the standards of those who require the very best – and then some.”

That sounds like a lot of praise for a shirt, but we’re inclined to take Avedon seriously—he was a Navy fighter pilot in WWII that went on to become an instructor at Top Gun.

Z-Man has launched a new Project Z chatterbait along with an accompanying webisode series. Z-Man says the new Project Z chatterbait is their “top of the line” bladed swim jig. It comes with a built-in black nickel Mustad hook and super-sharp, double-keeper jighead barbs among other features.

Bullet Bobber is weighing in on the coming spring with new Prowler Planer Board Bobbers. The design features a SSTL screw for weight balance that can be moved by hand to any of three locations. Prowler Planers are engineered to plane left or right, or to flip directions when given a pop. They come in 3″ and 4″ varieties and MSRP at $4.49 ea.

Garmin has a slew of new technologies including a new, in-hull kayak mount; an update to their popular marine app in BlueChart Mobile 2.0; new GPSMAP for their 7400 and 7600 series; and the new Garmin Panoptix All-Seeing Sonar.

Panoptix is Garmin’s heavy-hitter here. It features a multi-beam transducer that gives near-shore and freshwater fishermen the ability to see all around their boat in real-time—front, back and below. MSRP on that tech is $1,499.

Of course, these aren’t the only companies debuting products at or around the Classic. The list is long, and we’ll be scouring the floor at this year’s show to bring you more info on the latest hot lures and apparel for your store.