Mister Twister’s BUZZ Bug, which the Louisiana company plans to introduce at the beginning of 2016, was in the right place at the right time to make a name for itself before it ever hit the market.
The BUZZ Bug, touted as a swim craw with many other capabilities — Texas rigged, Carolina rigged, jig trailer or trailer on a ChatterBait-type lure — was being brought along slowly by Darryl Laurent and his Alexandria company until Texas’ Albert Collins gave it a big bump in notoriety.
“It’s a lure that we have been working on for almost a year — something that we have been keeping quiet and only worked with very few of our pro/field team in the development,” Laurent said in early November.
It’ll be difficult to keep it quiet now.
The BUZZ Bug made its first-ever tournament appearance Nov. 7 when Collins pitched, flipped and tossed it in the B.A.S.S .Nation Championship on the Ouachita River. The Mister Twister product and Collins were a match made in heaven on one of the biggest bass-fishing stages of the country, because Collins rode the BUZZ Bug and three other artificial lures to a victory and berth in the 2016 Bassmaster Classic.
The angler fished the nationals on the Ouachita River in 2014. After Collins missed the Bassmaster Classic by one spot in that appearance, he set his sights on 2015.
Collins knew what he needed to do. He was pretty sure of the area he needed to fish, and he chose to do it in an aluminum bass boat.
Before the big three-day tournament, Collins had a conversation with Laurent.
“You know, I talked to him a little bit. He said ‘You know, I’ve got this little deal, and I’d like you to look at it,’” Collins said. “He sent me four or five. I said, ‘I definitely need some for the river over there,.”
Collins noted that he wanted to flip cypress trees and laydowns in Bayou D’Arbonne.
Mister Twister equipped him with an ample supply of BUZZ Bugs , and it gave him the fish he needed to forge a come-from-behind win over Louisiana favorite Jamie Laiche, who led the first two days.
“I probably caught seven or eight a day on it,” Collins said of the BUZZ Bug. “Over three days, I caught maybe four fish (that hit the scale) on it — some of my better fish.”
Collins’ three-day total was a whopping 44 pounds, 15 ounces.
“For me, it’s a personal preference. If I can fish that bait with confidence, I will fish that bait,” he said, adding the soft plastic he wanted to go with had to look like a crawfish and that the BUZZ Bug was the only bait he used that fit that mold.
He said the profile was on the slender side but it had enough bulk to trigger bites in murky water.
Laurent said the bulky body allows for larger, extra-wide-gap hooks when punching and flipping. It can easily handle 4/0 EWG hooks, he said.
The action on the brand-new soft-plastic craw worm is such that an angler doesn’t have to work it much to get some movement, Collins said.
“It’s got real good swimming action to it,” Collins said. “I used to try to pick off fish that were finicky. The thing is so versatile.
“They weren’t hitting anything real good. (But) I missed very few fish on them (BUZZ Bugs).”
He flipped a june bug model with a 3/0 flipping hook and a 3/16-ounce worm weight.
“As you can understand, we are really excited about this new lure,” Laurent said. “One tournament fished, one big win.”
Since Collins named the Mister Twister bait as one of the four artificial lures he used to take the title on the Ouachita River, Laurent said his phone rang off the hook.
The 4-inch BUZZ Bug has longer arms that extend beyond the skirts on jigs, ChatterBaits and spinnerbaits, as well as skirted punch weights, Laurent said.
The soft plastic initially will be available in 14 colors, including the company’s hottest color — Red River Special, a laminated color with black neon on top of plum on the underside.
Call 337-377-8818 or go to www.mistertwister.com for more information on the BUZZ Bug and other Mister Twister products.