Kayak angler takes home $2,300 in winnings
NEW SMYRNA BEACH, Fla. – Richard Baden, of Cocoa, Florida, measured a combined limit of 47.38 inches to win the first regular-season event for the 2020 Florida East Division of the IFA Kayak Fishing Tour at Titusville, Florida.
The IFA Kayak Tour anglers faced tough conditions during competition with fierce winds, making on-the-water travel difficult. Baden traveled 10 miles total where he fished paddle tails in the No-Motor Zone.
“I had to pedal a lot, but I found a good number of snook, reds and trout,” Baden said.
For his efforts, Baden won a new Ascend 128T kayak plus $1,000 cash. His 23.50-inch redfish was the longest of the tournament, netting the $100 Berkley Big Redfish Award. The angler added $402 in Anglers Advantage cash for a total of $2,302 in winnings.
Second-place finisher Jeff Roberts, of Cocoa, Florida, measured a 22-inch redfish and a 19.88-inch speckled sea trout to take home an Ascend 12T kayak and $100 cash. Roberts also reported strong winds and had to make a change to his original plan.
“The wind was a challenge for sure,” said Roberts. “It forced me to fish a different area than I had planned.”
The angler opted to fish close to Kennedy Space Center traveling approximately 10 miles in his kayak. Roberts began throwing topwater baits before switching to soft baits to catch his limit.
“I am happy with the way I fished,” said Roberts. “I covered a lot of water and made a lot of casts.”
Third-place finisher Eric Henson, of Sarasota, Florida, took home $500 for measuring a total of 39.00 inches. Henson fished the shoreline of Mosquito Lagoon with an artificial shrimp.
“The wind and low water level made it tough, but I always give it my best,” Henson said.
The next stop for the IFA Kayak Tour is Steinhatchee, Florida, on March 8. Anglers who enter at least two events and compete in at least one event will be qualified for the 2020 IFA Kayak Tour Championship.
The fastest-growing kayak fishing tournament trail in the country, the IFA Kayak Fishing Tour events are catch-photograph-release tournaments, offering inshore kayak anglers from a multitude of states the opportunity to participate in competitive fishing tournaments with low entry fees and minimal travel requirements.
For more information or to become a member of the IFA, visit www.ifatours.com.
IFA events are made possible through the sponsorship and continued support of these well-respected brands: Bass Pro Shops, Ascend, Ranger Boats, Cabela’s, Mercury Marine, Lucas Oil, AFTCO, Sunline, Garmin, Berkley Gulp!, Berkley Gulp! Alive!, PENN Reels, Spiderwire, Navionics, Power-Pole, Valley Fashions, T-H Marine, ATLAS, G-Juice, and Powertex Group.
IFA Kayak Tour – Florida East Division
Titusville, Fla. (Top 10)
1. Richard Baden – 47.38 inches
2. Jeff Roberts – 41.88 inches
3. Eric Henson – 39.00 inches
4. Johnny Wigfall – 38.75 inches
5. Joe Komyati. – 38.25 inches
6. Zachary Herold – 37.25 inches
7. Trey Herold – 37.13 inches
8. Justin Rienerth – 27.75 inches
9. Robert Buzaki – 24.75 inches
10. Dustin Murray – 20.25 inches