Gallops Completes Second SLAM to take Lightweight Tackle Division; Raskub Takes Fly Competition
ISLAMORADA, Fla. – Completing his second five-species SLAM at the Florida Keys Outfitters IGFA Inshore World Championship, Mike Gallops lapped the lightweight tackle division field Thursday capturing his second title in the event. A Naples, Fla., family physician, Gallops, the 2003 champion, was in his comfort zone in the multi-species competition and was able to formulate a solid, concise strategy to maximize his fishing time and score victory.
In the fly division, 19-year-old Jacob Raskub, a local guide, landed four of the five scored species and took the victory based on his points accumulation of 1,950. Both Raskub and Gallops won the competition by virtue of their banner performance on Wednesday, the penultimate day of competition.
The Championship event was recently integrated into the ESPN Outdoors Saltwater Series presented by TakeMeFishing.org. Coverage will be presented on ESPN2 and ESPNOutdoors.com will be the tournament home for stories, photos and video content.
Due to a recent tweak in the scoring format by the IGFA, the scoring was tilted towards catching multiple species and completing a SLAM – landing at least three of the five species – as opposed to loading up on one category. The tweak prevented anglers who specialize in a certain technique to tally up points and Gallops, expectedly, approved the change.
Just needing one permit to round out his second SLAM, Gallops exclusively targeted the species Thursday.
“We had a sound strategy and we learned how to work together really well,” said Gallops of the rapport between he and guide Larry Sydnor. “It’s very important in a tournament like this to set your strategy and stick with it.”
The key day for Gallops and Sydnor was Wednesday. The middle day of the competition, Gallops was able to pick off four species and amass a number of points, effectively clinching the competition.
A key to their success was their ability to maximize their fishing time by cutting down on their travel to particular spots. Considering Gallops is most comfortable working for redfish and snook, Wednesday morning they targeted the species and were able to capitalize with three reds and two snook and still have half their fishing day left over.
While Gallops landed a clear-cut victory, Raskub had to sweat it out. As a group, the fly division had a much tougher time and though Raskub was able to accumulate a ton of points – mainly due to eight reds – he couldn’t complete a five-species SLAM, only landing four.
Still, Raskub eliminated the permit from his initial strategy plans feeling that no angler could land both a permit and a bonefish. The local was right on with only one competitor, Alex Cruz, landing a permit. While Raskub had set up the pins with a strong Wednesday, Thursday he knocked them down, landing a bonefish and the elusive snook to go with three reds.
The snook, which satisfied his fourth category, didn’t come easy.
“At 9:30, I hooked up with a huge snook and it pulled off,” said Raskub. “I thought the day was over and was obviously frustrated. But we stuck with it and were able to get one on again at 12:30 p.m. That’s the toughest fish to catch so it was huge.”
Finishing second in the lightweight tackle division was Tony Pruitt and guide Rob Fordyce. In second in the fly division was Carlos Duncan and guide John Donnell.
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