With each having 100 IGFA world records or more a trio of devoted and principled anglers will be receiving IGFA Lifetime Achievement Awards for 2008 at the IGFA's Sixth Annual World Record Achievement Awards (WRAA) celebration, April 18, presented by Mercury Marine.
Martini Arostegui, Jodie L. Johnson and Rebecca Wright will be honored along with many other anglers, guides and manufacturers from around the world in the ceremony at the IGFA Fishing Hall of Fame & Museum in Dania Beach, Florida, USA.
The awards ceremony will also recognize the 2008 records by men, women, juniors, and professional captains for the most world records compiled from the Top Ten list published recently in the IGFA's 2009 World Record Game Fishes book.
Tackle, scale, lure and line manufacturers will also be honored based on the number of computer printouts of the anglers using their products in setting the new records in 2008.
Previous Lifetime Achievement Award winners include Mrs. William B. DuVal and Herbert G. Ratner Jr. in 2003; Capt. Jim Anson, Dr. Martin Arostegui, Capt. Ralph Delph, and Capt. R T. Trosset in 2004, Jerry and Deborah Dunaway in 2005, the Shimano American Corporation in 2006, and Capt. Jay Wright Jr. and Jean-Francois Helias for 2007.
Joining his father Martin Arostegui in the prestigious fold will be Martini who at 16 years of age is the youngest person ever to win an IGFA Lifetime Achievement Award. In 12 years since the age of four he has amassed over 120-world records in male smallfry, male junior, line class and fly rod categories, as well as five all-tackle records. The Coral Gables, Fla., USA, high school student has traveled to four continents and numerous exotic destinations to obtain such obscure species as the sorubim, trahira, bluefin trevally and the snakehead.
Ms. Johnson, Peterborough, New Hampshire, USA, can lay claim to having 102 records on fly rod, three of which qualified for all-tackle records. Johnson landed her first record catch in October 2004 and her 100th in July 2008. She's also the only angler to achieve 100 records on saltwater fish while using a fly rod. In less than four years, Johnson has also achieved the century mark in record time. A seasoned traveler, she's presented flies to such species as the narrow barred mackerel in Mozambique, dogtooth tuna in the Seychelles, and the longtail tuna in Australia.
With the exception of seven world records, Mrs. Wright, Hollywood Fla., has set most of her 101 light tackle world records in Florida catching her first off Marco Island in 2002. The winner of several top angling awards Wright continued to make record catches until February 2008 when she retired the dedicated pursuit. Wright obtained records in line and fly rod categories as well as three all-tackle records. She'll be joining her husband Jay who was honored last year.
Tickets for the WRAA banquet are available at $50 and include a barbeque dinner, courtesy of Hugh's Culinary. Numerous fishing celebrities and IGFA Hall of Fame members are expected to make special appearances at the event which begins with cocktails and a silent auction at 6 p.m.