Kayak angler takes home more than $2,200 in winnings
SPRINGFIELD, Mo. – Francis Tran, of Starkville, Mississippi, measured a combined total of 46.50 inches to win the first of two regular-season events for the 2020 Louisiana Division of the IFA Kayak Tour on June 14 at Lafitte, Louisiana. For first place, the angler won an Ascend 128T kayak and $1,000 in cash.
In just his second year of fishing the IFA Kayak Tour, Tran repeated last year’s win at Laffite with another strong showing in this year’s competition. Like all the IFA Kayak Tour anglers, Tran faced high winds, making for a difficult day on the water in a kayak.
Tran concentrated on the marshes and the pass at Grand Isle. He caught his limit with top-water baits and a popping cork over a plastic shrimp. The angler’s added $325 in Anglers Advantage cash and won the $100 Berkley Gulp! Big Redfish award.
Second-place finisher Douglas Menefee, of Lafayette, Louisiana, measure a combined total of 35 inches to win an Ascend 12T kayak for a total of $700 in winnings. The wind also played a critical role in where he would be able to fish.
“It was windy,” said Menefee. “So much that it blew out the pass and made it unfishable. I fished Grand Isle at both ends of the island and traveled probably 15 miles.”
Menefee targeted trout with a top-water bait and employed a Carolina rig with Berkley Gulp! on a circle hook.
“It was a tough event,” said Menefee. “I’m happy I squeaked out a second place. The weather was beautiful, but the wind made it difficult to fish most of my spots.”
Another newcomer to the IFA Kayak Tour is Graves Bayard. The angler’s 28.38 pounds was good enough to win the $160 third-place prize. Bayard was also awarded the $100 Junior Angler award. Bayard fished a popping cork for trout and soft plastics for redfish.
“Fishing was great and challenging,” said Bayard. “I lost three fish that would have helped my placing, but it was still awesome. I never imagined getting third place fishing against these veteran anglers.”
The next stop for the IFA Kayak Tour is Port Lavaca, Texas, on July 12. 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: Ascend, Ranger Boats, Bass Pro Shops, Cabela’s, Mercury Marine, Sunline, AFTCO, Garmin, Lucas Oil, 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 – Louisiana Division
Lafitte, La. (Top 6)
- Francis Tran – 46.50 inches
- Douglas Menefee – 35.00 inches
- Graves Bayard – 28.38 inches
- Christopher Weaver – 27.00 inches
- Matthew Vann – 25.75 inches
- Brendan Bayard – 16.63 inches