An angler brought in an absolute monster tarpon on the first day of this year’s International Grand Isle Tarpon Rodeo.
The 90th International Grand Isle Tarpon Rodeo might be considered one of the best in the tournament’s history. It certainly was a record-breaker, as the rodeo’s namesake fish beat a long-standing, 46-year-old record.
Guy Cenac was the lucky angler who brought in a massive 208-pound, 14-ounce tarpon on the first day of the Louisiana contest. Cenac’s fish bested the old record tarpon, which was a 206-pounder caught by Johnny Guidry in 1972.
Cenac was fishing aboard the “Blue Monkey” with shipmates Billy Cenac, Al Cenac and Mike Arcement, whom he credited with helping him endure the battle with the big fish.
“When we hooked that fish, we knew it was a good one, but we didn’t realize that it was quite as big as it was,” Cenac told The Acadiana Advocate. “I fought that thing for three hours, and that’s when I realized how big it was. After I got it into the boat, I figured we had a shot at (he record).”
Cenac has been fishing the rodeo since the 1970s, but never made the leaderboard until now.
“It feels great to catch that record fish, and God has blessed me very much,” he said. “I’m very grateful for it.”
Cenac’s catch wasn’t the only record-breaker in the three-day tournament.
Kerry Melancon of New Orleans set the new record for the redfish stringer category with a 40-pound, five-fish limit. Melanson’s stringer beat Jerry Larpenter’s previous record (39 pounds, 4 ounces) set in 2014.
Charles Higgins of Baton Rouge also caught a whale of a yellowfin tuna, which was a whopping 154 pounds, 12 ounces. Higgins’ tuna beat second-place finisher Tyler Smith’s 108-pound, 14-ounce tuna by a mile.
“I didn’t know how big it was,” Higgins said. “We were guessing between 120 to 130 pounds, but a 154-pound tuna is a strong fish. I’m still shocked how big that fish was.”