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Tournament Report – The Carolina Redfish Elite

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The Carolina Redfish Elite took place this past weekend, paying out a guaranteed first place prize of $10,000 to Mike Taylor and John Roberts of “Team Taylor Made.”

The Carolina Redfish Elite is perhaps the biggest paying inshore tournament in North Carolina, as 30 of the best redfish tournament anglers paid the $800 entry fee to compete for large payouts. The two-person teams weighed in their best two fish on both Saturday and Sunday for a final leaderboard based on a four-fish aggregate.

On the first day of fishing, Taylor found success on his second cast of the day. That was when he hooked and landed his big fish of Saturday, a hearty 7.41 lb. redfish.

Mike Taylor and John Roberts, of Team Taylor Made, won the 2017 Carolina Redfish Elite with a four fish aggregate of 30.25 lbs. They are pictured with two of their prize winning Redfish, weighing 7.93 lbs. and 7.41 lbs.

On the second day of fishing, this time it was his first cast of the day that produced, finding an even heavier slot fish at 7.93 lbs.

Taylor, of the winning weekend, said with a smile, “Everything worked out just right.”

The duo relied mostly on Top Dog MirrOlures and 4” Gulp soft plastics on 1/8 oz. jig heads, and they fished the weekend on a Ranger Z520 CI with a Yamaha 250. The team’s plan was to fish north, but the weather forecast said that the wind was going to be blowing too hard.

“The key is to have calm winds so you can see the fish,” said Taylor.

After the first fish on day one, the team used their trolling motor to cruise around until about 2:30 pm when they caught their second fish. The tide was high in the morning, so their second fish came on the falling tide.

On the second day, when the anglers pulled into the spot they were going to fish, a kayak and boat were already there. They hung around the general area until their spot opened up, and it payed off big time for the team.

The first day the team ended with a two-fish aggregate of 14.72 lbs. (both fish were right at 26.5”). Then on the second day the team came out with a two-fish combined weight of 15.53 lbs. (both fish measuring 27”), for a four-fish weekend total of 30.25 lbs.

Finishing in second place was Fishn4Life’s Jeff Cronk and Rick Patterson with a 28.30 lb. weekend total, and third place went to Corey Durako and Richard Gilligan, of Team Chasin Gingers, with a 27.48 lb. four-fish aggregate.

More information on the Carolina Redfish Elite, including a full leaderboard, can be found at