Victoria’s Robinson earns $75K package in Classic Kickoff

Published 6:26 pm Sunday, February 26, 2017

Mark Robinson didn’t have to sweat out the final minutes before the deadline to report back to the dock.

He caught his prize-winning fish on his last cast at about 12:30 p.m. Sunday on Sabine Lake.

“I caught that last one and went on ahead to the dock about 1 o’clock,” he said. The deadline to return to the dock was 3:30, with the weigh-in on Procter Street starting at 4.

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“I knew I couldn’t catch any more than what I had,” Robinson said. “I was doing so good, I just left.”

Robinson entered Sunday morning as the second-day leader of the Elite Redfish Series Classic Kickoff and left Port Arthur on Sunday afternoon as the champion, taking a victory back to his hometown of Victoria. He caught three fish weighing 23.8 pounds and finished with a three-day total of 64.95.

“The last two days were great,” Robinson said. “I got on my spot, and everything worked out just perfect.”

Robinson had overtaken Shane DuBose of Tomball for the second-day lead and won by more than 8 pounds, a sizable margin of victory in the series. Robinson, now a two-time winner on the tour, earned a $75,000 prize package that includes a Yellowfin boat and Ameritrail trailer.

“I might keep [the boat]. I might sell it,” Robinson said. “I’m not sure. I’ve got to take it for a joyride, at least.”

David Christian of The Woodlands came in second at 56.03 after turning in a 16.25-pound bag. He earned $10,000 for his efforts.

Christian said Robinson found a great spot for his winning catches.

“I call it my spot, but I don’t think I can call it my spot anymore,” he said. “I might need it again. This won’t be the last time I fish over here.”

Trent Brady of Larose, La., was third at 52.6, while DuBose — who didn’t weigh any fish Sunday — still took fourth at 40.26.

“I caught three fish, but I had one fish go over [the 28-inch] limit and one go under [the 20-inch minimum],” DuBose said.

Jeff Steckler of Rockport was the fifth-place angler at 39.88, but won the $1,500 Big Bag award with a 23.35 round.

The tournament was only open to 30 qualifiers from the 2016 season, with the top five after Saturday able to compete Sunday for the championship. It’s the fourth time since last April the Elite Redfish Series held a competition on Sabine Lake and the first time the weigh-ins were held at Mardi Gras of Southeast Texas.

Mike Frenette of New Orleans actually had the biggest round with a first-day lead of 25.29, but he was not registered for the Big Bag prize.

The series will return to Port Arthur for Border Wars June 29-July 1.

I.C. Murrell: 721-2435. Twitter: @ICMurrellPANews

About I.C. Murrell

I.C. Murrell was promoted to editor of The News, effective Oct. 14, 2019. He previously served as sports editor since August 2015 and has won or shared eight first-place awards from state newspaper associations and corporations. He was born in Memphis, Tennessee, grew up mostly in Pine Bluff, Arkansas, and graduated from the University of Arkansas at Monticello.

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