I don't recall ever saying "best" drag, however I have mentioned that some are really good for the money. Charltons are really good, maybe even the best - but they should be for the money. I am not up on current prices (since discontinuation) but if not mistaken I can outfit everything from my trout rod to my Spey rods for the price of one with the other.
As far as stiff rods, you're right to each his own. I would love to have a tight loop / distance / accuracy and most importantly a flats reaction contest with you sometime, a gentleman's bet of course. I am no Lefty Kreh but I can hold my own a bit and I hope we can share a day on my flat or yours someday1
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