Tom Michael, Captain Camo, is gearing up for the Hobie Fishing Worlds.

Tom Michael, Captain Camo, is gearing up for the Hobie Fishing Worlds. Courtesy photo.

Team USA (plus one Canadian) is headed to Australia for a world-class kayak fishing throw-down against 15 other national teams. Several on the US / Canadian fish-hunting squad are proven winners, boasting tournament honors from across North America. Hobie’s Fishing World Championship will be contested Down Under this year from October 30 through November 3, over a little gamester the home-standing Aussies call bream. Let’s get to know some of the US / Canadian team. -KF

Meet Team USA’s Tom Michael (Plus One Canadian)
Jersey Bass Battler Preps for Hobie Fishing Worlds

As Told To Paul Lebowitz

My name is Tom Michael, Captain Camo. I qualified thru the Jamaica Bay Kayak Tournament. The last few years a weakfish had eluded me for the Slam Division but this year I managed a few and a 30-inch fish help push me in the standings.

It feels amazing to be able to fish along side some of the best in the industry. I have never fished out of the country. Win? I just hope I can get there first.

The Australians surely have the home field advantage but I always like being an underdog. There’s no pressure. Working as a team working to pick up tricks, productive locations and lures should help us catch what they call cracker bream. Hell this is only the third time I’ll haven flown.

I call bream bluegill on steroids. I have a few tricks I’ve been trying in practice. I like to throw the rubber for sure.

Last March, I caught a 7-pounder on day one of the open. I would have earned a berth in the KBF Invitational, but I forgot the picture identifier and could not score it. Ugh! I was happy to shake it off, catch more and qualify. I proved to myself that I can compete in these tournaments.

I started kayak fishing in 2009 when my charter boat was damaged in a storm. I took one test ride in Hobie Outback and was hooked. I love the up close and personal style of fishing out of a kayak.

I’m proud of the South Jersey Kayak Bass Fishing Club. It was the first of it’s kind in New Jersey. I fish for Rootbeer Barrell Surf and Kayak, North Point Marina, and Absecon Bay Sportsman.

All in all this will be a great event and I for one am humbled and thankful for the opportunity.

Hobie's worldy anglers will compete in identically rigged Hobie Mirage Pro Angler 14's outfitted with Lowrance electronics, Ram Mounting Systems and Power-Pole micro-anchors. Live weigh-ins will take place on each of the three days of competition with anglers weighing three fish per day. Follow the action on the web at

Meet Team USA’s IFA Champion Benton Parrott.