Event pays out more than $41,000 in winnings
NEW SMYRNA BEACH, FL – Kevin Akin and Bartt Caron, both of Corpus Christi, Texas, weighed a two-redfish limit that totaled 17.46 pounds to win the first regular-season event for the Texas Division of the IFA Redfish Tour presented by Cabela’s on April 2 at Port Aransas, Texas. The winning anglers took home a brand new, fully rigged Ranger 1862 with a Yamaha outboard. Along with contingency prize money, the duo earned a total of $29,597 in winnings.
The team spent the majority of their day fighting rough conditions in the Upper Laguna Madre area, approximately 20 miles south of Port Aransas. The anglers exclusively sight-casted Berkley Gulp!.
“We knew the weather was going to be rough,” said Akin. “It made fishing very difficult with north winds blowing 25 miles per hour plus.”
Despite the difficult conditions the anglers managed to pull off a win and catch a 9.44-pound giant – the heaviest of the tournament. The lunker won the $500 Berkley Big Fish Award.
“We got lucky,” said Akin. “We fished great together.”
Second-place finishers Jay Watkins of Rockport, Texas, and Ryan Watkins of Selma, Texas, weighed a total of 15.72 pounds of redfish. The two managed to bring home $3,968 in winnings, including $1,420 in Anglers Advantage cash.
The father-and-son team ran 15 miles north to Mosquito Bay to catch their limit. The anglers made long casts and worked potholes with twitch tails. The team was more than happy with their performance this tournament.
“Our performance was excellent,” said Jay Watkins “A dad fishing with his son is priceless.”
Marcus Russell and Matt Merrell, both of Portland, Texas, won the $1,405 third-place prize. The team weighed a total of 15.62 pounds. The anglers fished hard all day with Berkley Gulp! in the Carlos Bay area.
Ninth-place finishers Elliot Stevens and Clint Smith won the $250 Run and Win with Lucas Oil contingency award while 37th-place finishers Tony Gonzalez and Travis Hawkins won the $100 BoatUS Contingency Award for being members of BoatUS.
The next stop for the IFA Redfish Tour is for the IFA Lucas Oil Redfish Open event at Houma, Louisiana, on April 15-16. All teams that enter at least a minimum of two events and compete in at least one event will qualify for the 2016 IFA Redfish Tour Championship.
IFA events are made possible through the sponsorship and continued support of these well-respected brands: Hobie Fishing, Ranger Boats, Cabela’s, Lucas Oil, Yamaha Outboards, RAM, Berkley Gulp!, Berkley Gulp! Alive!, PENN Reels, Spiderwire, Minn Kota, Humminbird, Power-Pole, BoatU.S., Amphibia, Arctic Ice, Protect the Harvest, General Tire, SuperClean, Valley Fashions, ENGEL Coolers, T-H Marine, ATLAS, G-Juice Powertex Group and Audubon Aquarium of the Americas.
For more information or to become a member of the IFA, visit www.ifatours.com.
IFA Redfish Tour – Texas Division
Port Aransas, Texas (Top 10)
Kevin Akin/Bartt Caron – 17.46 lbs.
Jay Watkins/Ryan Watkins – 15.72 lbs.
Marcus Russell/Matt Merrell – 15.62 lbs.
Andy Fleshman/Jeff Holt – 15.14 lbs.
Frank Townsend/William Townsend – 15.04 lbs.
Joseph Sneed/Jimmy Menn– 14.75 lbs.
Leslie Littles/Demetrie Wells – 14.75 lbs.
Brandon Smith/Van Critendon – 14.61 lbs.
Elliot Stevens/Clint Smith – 14.31 lbs.
Paul Braly/John Bresmer – 13.20 lbs.