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Tuesday, 20 October 2020 14:47

Andy Villarreal Wins Hobie Owners' Corpus Christi Tournament

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October 12, 2020, saw the Hobie Owners' Corpus Christi Tournament hosted by the Fin Factory Kayak and Tackle Company. The event proved to be a huge success with nearly 150 anglers, ranging from newcomers to the sport all the way to national names, taking place.

Of the participants, 75 measured 120 fish, but first place went to 39-year old Andy Villarreal of San Antonio, Texas. His brace of reds tallied a total weight of 14.18 lbs, which was enough to secure his victory. Second place went to 39-year old Poco Cedillo of Corpus Christi, Texas, whose pair of redfish weighed a combined 13.14 lbs. In third place was 28-year old Nathaniel Hutchinson from Corpus Christi, with two redfish weighing 11.75 lbs. The Texas slot limit for each species was used for the weigh-in for the one-day event, which meant 20 to 28 inches for redfish and 15 to 25 inches for speckled trout.

 

Villarreal took home prizes to the value of $7,099.99 for his efforts. This included $4,000 in cash along with a Hobie Outback. Cedillo won himself $1,500 in cash as well as a Texas Power Paddle propulsion system, which brought the value of his prize up to $3,750.00. On top of that, he also earned an additional $880 for the 7-pound, 6-ounce red that earned him the heaviest fish award. Hutchinson won $700 cash for his third-place finish along with a 2019 Hobie l11, which boosted his total prize value to $3,269. The tournament also raised $500 for Make-A-Wish Texas Gulf Coast and Louisiana by raffling off a custom rod and reel combo.

 

Tournament director, Capt. Mike Morales, expressed how great it was to see such a big turnout of Hobie Kayak owners and mentioned that most of the better scores came from the flats. He also stated that almost all of the catches were recorded within three or four miles of Bluff Bay Marina. Villarreal credits his 2018 Hobie Outback with MirageDrive for being able to reach the waters that he wanted to probe. According to him, he tried a few other kayaks before switching to Hobie but felt like they couldn't take him where he needed to go. For this event, he used a popping cork with a four-inch, New Penny, Berkley Gulp! shrimp on a 1/8-ounce jighead to work sand holes.

 

Cedillo had a rough start to the day when the spot where he did solid pre-fishing void of any fish. This prompted him to switch to plan B, which involved some deeper water that he found nearby. He believes that the big redfish he hooked with five minutes to go in the tournament could have pushed him over the top, but it slipped the hook just five feet from his kayak. Hutchinson credits his success to the fact that the tournament boundaries were close to his favorite fishing area, which meant he could rely on his familiarity with his surroundings.

 

All the anglers agreed that the event was run smoothly and that camaraderie was good, especially considering the number of entrants.

 
Naomi Bolton

Yakangler's Community Manager and Editor - in charge of sourcing news and articles for the website. ┬áIf you have any ideas for new content, please do get in touch with me at: [email protected]

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