The turnout and the fishing were great for Extreme Kayak Fishing’s Exotic Bass Roundup sponsored by Nautical Ventures Marine.
The 61 anglers who competed in the April 23 tournament out of Lake Ida Park in Delray Beach caught a record number of clown knifefish along with peacock bass.
“I would say 80 percent of the tournament caught at least one clown knifefish,” said tournament organizer Joe Hector of Extreme Kayak Fishing, who is also the co-host of the Nautical Ventures Weekly Fisherman radio show that airs from 6-8 a.m. Saturday on Fox Sports 940 Miami and live-streams on the Nautical Ventures Facebook page.
“That tournament was definitely, I would say, one of our best, catch-wise, because everyone was getting fish.”
Unlike Hector’s offshore fishing events, where kayak anglers paddle or pedal far out into the ocean to catch sailfish, tuna, kingfish, dolphin, cobia and wahoo, the Exotic Bass Roundup also featured a record number of young kayak anglers in addition to freshwater anglers new to kayak tournament fishing.
“I did the tournament because I wanted to just cast a net out and try to get some freshwater guys to our brand,” Hector said. “It’s definitely working because out of the 61 guys, I would say only 15 to 20 of them I know from our Summer Slams and our other saltwater tournaments. So we’re definitely getting a new crowd and also a young crowd. So many kids.
“I would say 60 percent of our tournament were kids from age 15 to 7. It was amazing. I never thought I’d see a tournament with that many kids. I guess because I do all the offshore stuff, you kind of forget that if you just made it a freshwater tournament how many of those younger fans that we have that never really were allowed or got to fish the saltwater side of it. It was cool to see that, it really got me excited and gave us some more ideas of where that tournament is moving towards in the future.”
Anglers were allowed to weigh in one peacock bass and one clown knifefish, with the standings based on the total weight. Garrett Myers was the winner with a 4.25-pound clown knifefish and a 3.9-pound peacock for a total weight of 8.15 pounds. He received a $2,500 check from Nautical Ventures and a Powercore Rods fishing rod.
Myers said the key to his victory was using live wild shiners that he had caught near his home in Central Florida, put in a tank in the back of his truck and brought down to Delray Beach.
“You need the best bait possible,” Myers said. “The fish (at Lake Ida) were deep and they wanted fresh, hand-caught live shiners and I believe that was the difference.”
Nick Brent Triolo was second with a clown knifefish weighing 6.98 to finish second and win $1,000 from Crown Wine & Spirits. Nick Young was third with a clown knifefish weighing 6.5 to win $500 from Fishbrain.
Angela Delaney-Roles won $250 from Nautical Ventures for fourth place with a clown knifefish weighing 5.75 as well as a Powercore custom rod for winning the ladies division. Howard Kirk was fifth with a clown knifefish weighing 5.66 to win a PROYAKER fish bag. Tyler Nekolny won the sunshine bass division and $250 from Nautical Ventures for a 3-pounder.
Hector said he was thrilled for Triolo, a veteran of the offshore kayak tournaments.
“Nick has fished my tournaments for a decade and this guy has never won anything. I mean not even a raffle prize,” Hector said. “To see this guy finally win and get on stage, he was crying. It was cool to see. It’s good to see someone that actually really loves the tournament and not do it for the money.”
The next Extreme Kayak Fishing tournament is the Summer Slam on June 4 out of Pompano Beach. For information, visit www.extremekayakfishingtournament.org and listen to The Nautical Ventures Weekly Fisherman radio show every Saturday morning from 6 a.m. to 8 a.m. live on Fox Sports 940 Miami, an iHeart station. If you can’t tune in live, the Weekly Fisherman radio podcasts are available through:
Fox Sports 940 Miami:
https:// foxsports940.iheart.com/featured/weekly-fisherman/about/ (click on podcasts)
You can also watch the show on Facebook Live by liking our Facebook page at:
You can watch past Facebook live shows at:
Sign up for Nautical Ventures EMAIL UPDATES & PROMOTIONS