The Star Rods 2018 Carolina Redfish Elite Tournament will fish from the Big Rock Landing on the Morehead City Waterfront June 1st and 2nd. This is the fourth year for this tournament. The tournament was started by PointClickFish.com and Chasin’ Tails Outdoors. The 2017 tournament format was a success, so the tournament has returned, and has increased the prize money and expanded the field.
The Star Rods Carolina Redfish Elite is a two day team fishing event. Teams of two anglers will compete to weigh their largest two slot redfish each day and the winner will be the team with the heaviest aggregate weight of all four fish combined. In addition to the two tournament fishing days, the tournament will also feature a youth fishing event, redfish seminars, vendors, entertainment and food. While the tournament fishermen focus on catching the largest fish, other parts of the event will focus on youth fishing, family, community, and charity. The Chasin Creation team will film all the action for their TV show
The Star Rods Carolina Redfish Elite will begin on May 31, with a Captain’s meeting and dinner. Tournament days will be Friday and Saturday, June 1 and 2, with weigh-ins beginning at 3:00 PM at Big Rock Landing on the Morehead City waterfront. Teams are required to bring their catch to the weigh-in location alive and the fish will be released after being weighed.
The Star Rods Carolina Redfish Elite features big cash prizes that attracts many of the best redfish anglers from across North Carolina and several states beyond. All have their eyes on fat Crystal Coast redfish and the $15,000 guaranteed winner’s check. The tournament pays to 10th place, plus $1,000 daily prizes for the largest and smallest redfish of the day.
With the number of teams expanded from 30 in 2017 to 40 in 2018, there were still a couple of spots available in mid-May. Team Taylor Made, with Capt. Mike Taylor and John Roberts, won the 2017 Carolina Redfish Elite and received the winner’s check for the $10,000 guaranteed first place prize. They were one of the first teams to register for 2018 and hope to repeat their fishing success and pocket the 2018 winner’s share of $15,000, an increase of 50 percent.
“This is a great tournament for this area,” Taylor said. “They asked fishermen what we wanted in a tournament and designed their tournament incorporating most of those ideas. It has a nice winner’s prize, but also pays well to fishermen that are only ounces behind.
“Last year’s tournament went almost perfect for us and we weighed 4 heavy fish and topped 30 pounds,” Taylor added. “That will be more difficult to do this year, but we’re looking forward to giving it a try. This area has some of the best fishermen we compete against all year and all across the country and you’ve done something to win against these guys. We’re looking forward to it and it’s only a couple of weeks away.”
The fishing days of June 1 and June 2 will begin at first safe light (actual time will be announced to competitors at the Captains Meeting). Each boat will file past a checkpoint at tournament headquarters at Big Rock Landing and show their number, with all boxes open for inspection, before going fishing. There are no north and south boundaries, but competitors are not allowed to enter the ocean. Participants must return to the checkpoint by 4:00 P.M. for weigh-in. Weight will be deducted for late arrivals and any fish that are not alive.
Festivities at Big Rock Landing will begin Friday at 10:00 A.M. with vendors, games, music and fun. Weigh-in will open at 3:00 P.M. and continue until completed. This should be interesting and spectators should expect to see lots of big, heavy fish. In 2017, all but one of the teams weighed their two fish limit on Friday. Dinner for anglers and youths taking the fishing seminar will begin at 5:00 P.M. Immediately after dinner, Cross Trails Outfitters will present a youth fishing seminar. Cross Trail Outfitters is a 501C3 charity that provides youths age 7 to 17 with opportunities to enjoy the outdoors by hunting and fishing and is the primary beneficiary of Star Rods Carolina Redfish Elite Tournament proceeds.
Shortly after the tournament fishermen blast off Saturday morning, Cross Trails Outfitters will begin their Kids Fishing Challenge at Big Rock Landing. This will continue through noon, with a weigh-in from noon until 2:00 P.M. Big Rock Landing festivities will also begin at 10:00 A.M. on Saturday, with another day of vendors, plus more games, music and fun. The Star Rods Carolina Redfish Elite Tournament weigh-in will begin at 3:00 P.M. and be followed by the Awards Presentation at 5:00 P.M.
PointClickFish.com co-founder and Carolina Redfish Elite Tournament co-director Jay Feimster said, “The festivities around the Carolina Redfish Elite Tournament will offer activities for everyone in the area, especially youngsters who will be treated to a fishing seminar Friday evening followed by a fishing tournament Saturday morning. We have been working hard to make this year’s event bigger and better. Our goal has always been to build a format that involves fishing, charity, youth, and the community. We want to encourage the entire family to come out and take part and watch some of the best Elite Redfish Anglers in the Carolinas.”
Fishermen interested in the remaining couple of spots in the Star Rods Carolina Redfish Elite Tournament should contact Chasin’ Tails Outdoors to verify they are still available. The phone number is 252-240-3474 and the e-mail is [email protected]. These will be filled by the first teams to register and pay the entry fee.