By MITCH TRAPHAGEN
Although some of the anglers reported that “the fish were well-fed” — in other words, not biting, the Inshore Fishing Association Redfish Tour tournament held last weekend at Little Harbor Resort in Ruskin, was considered a huge success.
Seventy-five boats headed out into beautiful but ominous-looking clouds at first light on Saturday morning seeking to catch the biggest redfish. The payoff for success was large: In addition to a nearly 200 percent registration fee payoff, the winning anglers at each IFA tour event were to receive a new, fully-rigged Ranger boat powered by a Yamaha outboard — a prize valued at $25,999.
And indeed the fish did appear to be well-fed. Of the 75 boats in the tournament, 32 weighed in with a catch.
The winning team of Captain Graham Taylor and Justin Ownby took home $2,250 in cash along with the new boat for a total prize package of $28,249.
In all, $43,095 in cash and prizes were awarded to 14 winning captains.
On Sunday, the IFA Kayak Fishing Tour took place, launching at the location of the kayaker’s choice and returning to Little Harbor Resort for weigh-in. The top cash prize was $1,500. No kayak results were available as of press time.
The IFA Redfish Tour is presented by Cabela’s. The IFA Kayak Tour is presented by Hobie Fishing.
The tour promoters say the event draws anglers from Texas to the Carolinas.
In addition to Cabela’s and Hobie Fishing, sponsors making the event possible included Ranger Boats, Yamaha Outboards, Minn Kota, Hummingbird, Boat U.S. and a number of other marine, sporting goods and nutritional companies.
For more information about the IFA Redfish Tour, visit www.ifatours.com. To learn more about kayaking and Hobie Fishing visit www.hobiefishing.com. For more information about Cabela’s, visit www.cabelas.com. For more information about Little Harbor Resort, visit www.staylittleharbor.com.