Review: St. Croix Victory Rods

A breakdown of the latest line of American made rods from St. Croix.

Photos by Jimmy Fee

The name “Victory” on the newest line of St. Croix rods can mean any number of different things, as it’s one of those “in the eyes of the beholder” type scenarios, but as I was getting the scoop on them from St. Croix HQ, one of the things that stood out to me was that their newest product launch signaled a huge, never-before-achieved victory for the company. The Victory line is the result of St. Croix setting out to accomplish three things when they went to work to design a new line in the beginning throes of a global pandemic; combine two of their most popular and cutting-edge technologies together in one rod, build it in the US, and offer it to the consumer for around $200 on average.

They succeeded in all three of those objectives, and when first fishing two very different models from this line, that was immediately apparent. Marrying St. Croix’s advanced SCIII carbon and SCVI carbon technologies together in the design was done to give each model a combination of lightweight performance and extreme durability. Furthermore, each model is designed for a specific technique, so in layman’s terms; SCIII have always built lightweight and durable rods (like in the Avid series) but the SCVI; being too stiff to be the main ingredient of a rod, is strategically integrated along specific sections of each technique-specific model to provide the perfect action, feel and performance of customized to its intended use, while each possessing a noticeable increase in power.

In getting acquainted with the VTS71MF, a 7’1” finesse spinning rod I immediately rigged with a Z-man Ned Rig and went to work in my local pond. Not only did it launch the Ned, I could feel each little roll of it, each hop settling and standing up on the bottom, to the point I knew exactly when I was in some milfoil and when I came out of it. I stopped the Ned at each weedline, which was when  I most often got bit. I also found the rod to excel in throwing smaller jerkbaits giving me precise control of the subtle movements I want to impart in really cold water. I quickly confirmed the rod had plenty of backbone when a nice 3.5-pound chunky bass ate my jerk bait that first day.

On the flip side, for all the same reasons I love the Victory Finesse rod, the VCT74HF aptly named Full Contact which I would be throwing small swimbaits up to 1 ½ ounces with. It’s a 7’4” Heavy rod with fast action that is feather light in your hands with a super-sensitive feel. Instead of feeling each thump of a swimbait tail, you can actually feel the sway from side to side and the most subtle change of nearby water displacement when a fish takes a swipe. Over the few fish I’ve caught with it, I can tell it’ll be extra fun landing a giant on it once the fish get a little more receptive to big baits as the water warms.

In this climate where there’s more competition than ever for getting your hands on new product, if you find them sold out at here’s a list of local St. Croix Retailers that are well-stocked with the new St. Croix Victory line:

Tackle Direct
6825 Tilton Road, BLDG C
Egg Harbor TWP, NJ 08234

Kittery Trading Post
301 US Route 1
Kittery, ME 03904

Fisherman’s World
2 Fort Point St
East Norwalk, CT 06855

Tackle World
174 Route 17 North
Rochelle Park, NJ 07662

Ramsey Outdoors
835 State Route 17 S
Ramsey, NJ 07446

J&H Tackle
4112 Sunrise Hwy
Oakdale, NY 11769

Susquehanna Fishing
3992 Locust Grove Road
Columbia, PA 17512

Fish USA
6960 West Ridge Rd
Fairview PA 16415

For more information on the full lineup of St. Croix Victory Rods, Click Here 

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