Gear

Inside Elite Boats: Ken Iyobe

Bassmaster Elite Series angler Ken Iyobe, of Tokoname, Japan, was a rookie for the 2015 season. The highlight of his 2015 season was a Top 12 finish at the Sacramento Bassmaster Elite.<p>  For the 2015 season, Iyobe drove a Skeeter FX-20 equipped with a Yamaha SHO 250.
Photo: Seigo Saito - Bassmaster Elite Series angler Ken Iyobe, of Tokoname, Japan, was a rookie for the 2015 season. The highlight of his 2015 season was a Top 12 finish at the Sacramento Bassmaster Elite. For the 2015 season, Iyobe drove a Skeeter FX-20 equipped with a Yamaha SHO 250.
For shallow water, Iyobe called on a 101-pound thrust Minn Kota trolling motor.
Photo: Seigo Saito - For shallow water, Iyobe called on a 101-pound thrust Minn Kota trolling motor.
The front of the boat included one electronics unit.
Photo: Seigo Saito - The front of the boat included one electronics unit.
The Humminbird 999 unit was center installed on the bow.
Photo: Seigo Saito - The Humminbird 999 unit was center installed on the bow.
The boat's left rod storage locker was packed with rods and reels by Shimano Japan. Iyobe liked to have approximately 15 rods on hand for competition.
Photo: Seigo Saito - The boat's left rod storage locker was packed with rods and reels by Shimano Japan. Iyobe liked to have approximately 15 rods on hand for competition.
Iyobe said his favorite setup was a Shimano 6-foot, 8-inch medium prototype rod with a Metanium DC reel.
Photo: Seigo Saito - Iyobe said his favorite setup was a Shimano 6-foot, 8-inch medium prototype rod with a Metanium DC reel.
The boat's front center storage held various tackleboxes and pouches that were always kept on the boat.
Photo: Seigo Saito - The boat's front center storage held various tackleboxes and pouches that were always kept on the boat.
Here, Iyobe showed off Gary Yamamoto Heart Tail swimbaits in both U.S. and Japanese colors.
Photo: Seigo Saito - Here, Iyobe showed off Gary Yamamoto Heart Tail swimbaits in both U.S. and Japanese colors.
Iyobe stored his Hayabusa hooks in their original packaging to help prevent rust.
Photo: Seigo Saito - Iyobe stored his Hayabusa hooks in their original packaging to help prevent rust.
Hayabusa hooks started distribution to the U.S. in 2016.
Photo: Seigo Saito - Hayabusa hooks started distribution to the U.S. in 2016.
To further prevent rust, all the packaged hooks were stored in a plastic, sealed box.
Photo: Seigo Saito - To further prevent rust, all the packaged hooks were stored in a plastic, sealed box.
Iyobe's company 10FTU is based in Japan, and it offers hand-poured swimbaits called Head Bomb.
Photo: Seigo Saito - Iyobe's company 10FTU is based in Japan, and it offers hand-poured swimbaits called Head Bomb.
This yellow is one of Iyobe's favorite colors for the Head Bomb bait.
Photo: Seigo Saito - This yellow is one of Iyobe's favorite colors for the Head Bomb bait.
Iyobe showed off some swim jigs he fished that were hand tied by friends.
Photo: Seigo Saito - Iyobe showed off some swim jigs he fished that were hand tied by friends.
As this box of colorful frogs shows, Iyobe loves frog fishing. Black, silver, pink and green...Iyobe was prepared for any set of conditions.
Photo: Seigo Saito - As this box of colorful frogs shows, Iyobe loves frog fishing. Black, silver, pink and green...Iyobe was prepared for any set of conditions.
The color dye and scent was stored in a tight plastic bin to avoid spills or leaks.
Photo: Seigo Saito - The color dye and scent was stored in a tight plastic bin to avoid spills or leaks.
Another selection of tackleboxes was stored in the driver center storage area.
Photo: Seigo Saito - Another selection of tackleboxes was stored in the driver center storage area.
This box was packed with the Hayabusa Shooting Ball jig, Iyobe's signature model.
Photo: Seigo Saito - This box was packed with the Hayabusa Shooting Ball jig, Iyobe's signature model.
Iyobe is all smiles for his line of colorful jigs.
Photo: Seigo Saito - Iyobe is all smiles for his line of colorful jigs.
This box held some WEC/Bagley shallow crankbaits...
Photo: Seigo Saito - This box held some WEC/Bagley shallow crankbaits...
...but these Widell cranks were made by 10FTU and designed by Iyobe.
Photo: Seigo Saito - ...but these Widell cranks were made by 10FTU and designed by Iyobe.
Iyobe definitely earned some checks with these weathered Bagleys.
Photo: Seigo Saito - Iyobe definitely earned some checks with these weathered Bagleys.
This storage compartment held even more boxes of crankbaits.
Photo: Seigo Saito - This storage compartment held even more boxes of crankbaits.
Iyobe's crank collection included crankbaits from different countries and in different colors.
Photo: Seigo Saito - Iyobe's crank collection included crankbaits from different countries and in different colors.
Here, Iyobe shows off a favorite buzzbait made by Gary Yamamoto.
Photo: Seigo Saito - Here, Iyobe shows off a favorite buzzbait made by Gary Yamamoto.
The storage compartment on the right side of the boat held a push pole, a spare prop, life jackets and tools.
Photo: Seigo Saito - The storage compartment on the right side of the boat held a push pole, a spare prop, life jackets and tools.
The boat's day box held important plastics that Iyobe wanted near for tournament fishing.
Photo: Seigo Saito - The boat's day box held important plastics that Iyobe wanted near for tournament fishing.
The small box in front of the passenger seat held sunblock, extra line, rope and some emergency items.
Photo: Seigo Saito - The small box in front of the passenger seat held sunblock, extra line, rope and some emergency items.
Though they may be small items, Band-Aids, sunblock, flares and rope can all be important during four Elite days on the water.
Photo: Seigo Saito - Though they may be small items, Band-Aids, sunblock, flares and rope can all be important during four Elite days on the water.
The center storage area was home to Iyobe's culling tags and balance beam.
Photo: Seigo Saito - The center storage area was home to Iyobe's culling tags and balance beam.
In 2015, Iyobe's boat was equipped with an LED lighting system.
Photo: Seigo Saito - In 2015, Iyobe's boat was equipped with an LED lighting system.
Iyobe definitely looked comfortable in the pilot seat of his Skeeter FX for 2015.
Photo: Seigo Saito - Iyobe definitely looked comfortable in the pilot seat of his Skeeter FX for 2015.
The Humminbird 999 in the console was mounted for deck mapping, and the 1199 side was utilized as a fish finder.
Photo: Seigo Saito - The Humminbird 999 in the console was mounted for deck mapping, and the 1199 side was utilized as a fish finder.
The box behind the driver's seat had some important items for Iyobe.
Photo: Seigo Saito - The box behind the driver's seat had some important items for Iyobe.
This box held good luck charms from Iyobe's family and friends.
Photo: Seigo Saito - This box held good luck charms from Iyobe's family and friends.
This Japanese flag was adorned with messages from family, friends and fans as well.
Photo: Seigo Saito - This Japanese flag was adorned with messages from family, friends and fans as well.
A few other good luck charms were also in the box.
Photo: Seigo Saito - A few other good luck charms were also in the box.
This bag was packed with maps from different lakes.
Photo: Seigo Saito - This bag was packed with maps from different lakes.
Iyobe agreed that toilet paper is a must for any day on the water.
Photo: Seigo Saito - Iyobe agreed that toilet paper is a must for any day on the water.
Iyobe kept this intimidating face mask for boat rides in extreme conditions.
Photo: Seigo Saito - Iyobe kept this intimidating face mask for boat rides in extreme conditions.
The box behind the passenger seat was also packed with more tackle.
Photo: Seigo Saito - The box behind the passenger seat was also packed with more tackle.
Iyobe posed with a bag of his favorite plastic, a Gary Yamamoto Medium Craw in a black/blue color pattern.
Photo: Seigo Saito - Iyobe posed with a bag of his favorite plastic, a Gary Yamamoto Medium Craw in a black/blue color pattern.
A good pair of shades is another must. These KIOB BIN5 sunglasses were actually designed by Iyobe.
Photo: Seigo Saito - A good pair of shades is another must. These KIOB BIN5 sunglasses were actually designed by Iyobe.
Domo arigato for the tour, Ken!
Photo: Seigo Saito - Domo arigato for the tour, Ken!