Z-Man® reveals the new 6-inch DarterZ™ … Part swimbait … Part fluke … 100% baitfish …

The Z-Man 6-inch DarterZ …

Description of The Z-Man 6-inch DarterZ:

Designed in conjunction with elite inshore angler Captain C.A. Richardson, the 6-inch DarterZ features a slender profile and forked tail that mimics needlefish, ballyhoo and sand eels — all delectable, desirable prey species for many inshore gamefish.
The DarterZ soft, durable material withstands numerous strikes, even from toothy saltwater gamefish.
The bait’s segmented body amplifies its accentuated swimming and darting action. Belly and dorsal hook slots allow for easy weedless rigging with a ChinlockZ™ SWS weighted hook, or on HeadlockZ™ or Eye Strike® jigheads to canvass the entire water column.
Imbued with salt for extra casting distance and for neutral buoyancy during the retrieve. Richardson calls it “snook spaghetti” for good reason.

The Z-Man 6-inch DarterZ …

Features of The Z-Man 6-inch DarterZ:

  • Slender 6″ profile and forked tail mimics baitfish like needlefish, ballyhoo, and sand eels;
  • Segmented body provides accentuated swimming and darting action;
  • Belly and dorsal hook slots for easy weedless rigging;
  • Durable ElaZtech® material withstands repeated strikes, even from toothy saltwater gamefish;
  • Salt-impregnated for extra casting distance and to neutralize buoyancy;
  • Can be rigged weightless, on a ChinlockZ™ SWS weighted hook, or on HeadlockZ™ or Eye Strike® jigheads to cover the entire water column.

The Z-Man 6-inch DarterZ …

Ladson, SC (August 25, 2020) – In crystalline inshore environs, natural bait movement and silhouette count bigtime toward the endgame of eliciting strikes. Rigid, wooden, mechanical actions get you exactly nowhere amid big fish that put prey movements under a microscope. But retrieve something that articulates, swims, and panics like a living thing and muscular inshore bullies won’t leave you alone, screaming drag and jolting casting arms until you’ve had enough fun for one day.

Enough fun, though, is never enough for legendary saltwater angler, Captain C.A. Richardson. So when his longtime collaborators at Z-Man Fishing asked Richardson to help home-brew a new “live” bait made from ElaZtech®, he answered in the only way he knew how: climbing up on the poling platform and casting to cruising aquamarine missiles. 

“You know you’ve got a special bait when you jump the first few tarpon that see it swimming past their snouts,” confesses Richardson, an exceptional inshore guide and host of Flats Class TV. “It’s not like we necessarily designed the 6-inch DarterZ™ to fool tarpon. But the bait is such a dead ringer for the needlefish and ballyhoo they eat that, well, let’s just say no one’s complaining about 100-pound bonus fish.”

As anglers of Richardson’s ilk recognized early on, Z-Man’s otherworldly ElaZtech material perfectly embodies all the most coveted traits in a soft plastic fluke or swimbait. Molded from the super-soft, buoyant and impossibly resilient substance, the DarterZ melds the two aforementioned bait styles into a single, slender preyfish mimic.

The bait’s fishy, hydrodynamic head slims down toward the tail, meeting two fine swim-segments that articulate like well-oiled hinges as water plays across the DarterZ’ rear flank. A thin, flat wisp of ElaZtech separates the bait’s posterior from its broad, flappy fish tail. The tail itself is horizontally oriented—like a dolphin, rather than a fish—to slow the bait’s rate of fall while adding extra glide between rod shakes. The bait’s buoyant ElaZtech construction enhances its tendency to soar or slowly sink, depending on the added weight of a jig or hook. Z-Man has also endowed the bait with belly and dorsal hook slots to simplify and streamline weedless rigging into a 5-second process.

“Put the DarterZ on a 4/0, 1/12-ounce ChinlockZ SWS™ hook, and you can glide and swim this thing through some pretty skinny water—places you can’t throw anything else except topwater,” notes Richardson, “That’s a big deal.

“When you pump the bait, the flat tail flops up and down, almost gives it a shrimp-like look. On a straight swim, you get a nice tail-wagging action—the nose of the bait slides straight through the grass while the tail hard-kicks like an escaping baitfish. What’s also cool about this presentation is that a keel-weighted ChinlockZ hook makes the bait slowly sink in a natural, horizontal posture.”

Bring together the DarterZ’ slender profile, soft, malleable texture and subtle fish-like movements and it’s easy to see why impressive redfish, trout and snook mistake it for their favorite snacks. To match smaller-sized baitfish, Richardson will occasionally trim the bait’s head, leaving its active tail section intact to deliver the goods.

“Depending on how you rig and retrieve it, the DarterZ instantly resembles a needlefish, ballyhoo, sand eel or even a shrimp.” 

“We call it ‘snook spaghetti,’” Richardson laughs. “Big linesiders get really mad at it. But the DarterZ is so tough and resilient that snook and other fish just can’t tear it up. And like other ElaZtech baits, the more fish that chew it, the better it gets.”

To allow for speedier retrieves that get snook cranking, Richardson likes to rig the DarterZ on a Redfish Eye™ jighead, the weight of which yields greater casting distance. “You can just as easily crawl the same combo near the bottom for big seatrout,” he instructs. “I’ve even put the DarterZ under a popping cork on a 1/8-ounce jighead for bull reds in Louisiana. Love the Smoky Shad color for this. Give it some really violent rips and hang on for dear life.”

Homebrewed in the inshore waters where Richardson and other fanatical anglers ply their craft, the Z-Man DarterZ can be rigged weightless on a ChinlockZ SWS hook, or on a HeadlockZ HD™ or Redfish Eye jighead to cover the entire water column. Available in December, the 6-inch DarterZ shows off ten exclusive Z-Man colours.

See here for other Z-Man products we inventory.

Contact Us for current inventory and ordering details.

Related Products
Jackall B-Crawl Swimmer
A Largemouth Bass with a Megabass Crankbait.
A Largemouth Bass with a Megabass Crankbait.
Guelph Lake Largemouth Bass Ultra Tungsten 12 ounce Spinnerbait AAA
A Largemouth Bass with a Megabass Crankbait.
Snap On Boat Salmon Spoon and Plug Lure Storage Bag Pouch A B
It's Durable PVC and stitched Heavy Duty Velcro construction protects you from

Daiwa SC Shad

Googan Baits



Set The Hook The Drifter ...

WOO! Tungsten

Guelph Lake Largemouth Bass Ultra Tungsten 12 ounce Spinnerbait AAA
Largemouth Bass Rapala Topwater Bait AA.jpg Largemouth Bass Rapala Topwater Bait AAA.jpg
Lucky Craft Pointer
LIVETARGET Golden Shiner Rattlebait series
Z-Man TRD SpinZ Tail Spinners
The Savage 3D Snake
2"Lyman Lure.
Cotton Cordell Gay Blade Bait
The BOOYAH ToadRunner Junior.
The BOOYAH Melee Blade Jig.


The Molix Sculpo DR “USA Special Edition”.
The Molix Supernato.
The Lucky Craft Virtual Kingyo Gold Fish Lure.
The Missile Baits Bomb Shot Worm.
The Molix Venator Spinnerbait.
The Molix Lover Spinnerbait
Z-Man Neko ShroomZ Wacky Rig Nose Weights
Magz Mfg.

Magz Mfg.

Booyah Bait Co.
Molix Lover Titanium Spinnerbait
The Molix Lover Jig
Teckel Lures

Teckel Lures

Rapala Super Shad Rap
Lucky Craft 5” Opti Grub
Berkley Choppo Topwater Propbait
Terminator Fishing Lures Logo
Terminator Shuddering Bait Bladed Jig
The Molix Sneaky Frog.
Duo Realis Duo International Spy Baiting Spinbait 80 90 C
The Lushazer Vertical Jigging Lure.
Z-Man SlingBladz Spinnerbait
River2Sea Bubble Popper 65 & 88
Keitech Easy Shiner
Lucky Craft Teckel USA Brand The Honker Frog
LIVETARGET Hollow Body Shiner
Lunkerhunt® Prop Turtle Soft Bait
Duo Realis v-tailshad_hooks
Ish Monroe River2Sea Bling Spinnerbait
LIVETARGET Hollow Body Craw
Keitech Swing Impact Swimbait
Livetarget Commotion Shad
LIVETARGET Yellow Perch Rattlebait
Lunkerhunt Weedless Cupped Faced Yappa Rat
Keitech Fishing
SteelShad Fishing Lure
The Live Target Skip Shad.
Whopper Plopper River2Sea-logo-white
Jackall Deracoup Tail Spinner
The Megabass Vision 110+2 Jerkbait.
Ned Rig Finesse Fishing.
Lucky Craft Teckel Brand The Sprinker Frog TKL-Sprinker
Molix Trago Vib Blade Bait
Tightlines UV Lures and Soft Plastics
Jackall Riser Bait 009SP
Jackall Chop Cut Topwater Lure
E.G.B. Fishing Lures - The Original Swiss Lure
Lyman Lures
Megabass Hazedong Shad Swimbait
X Zone Pro Series Lures 3" Ned Zone

Bam Baits

Z-Man QuadZilla Collapsible Four-Arm Spinnerbait
LIVETARGET BaitBall Spinner Rig
Westin Danny The Duck Duckling
Anglers Choice Sniper Shad Swimbait
LIVETARGET Hollow Body Popper Frog
Lunkerhunt Dragonfly Finesse Topwater Lure
Jackall Rhythm Wave Swimbait
Jackall Grinch Frog and Paddle Tail Worm
Gary Yamamoto Custom Baits 4” Zako Swimbait
VMC Inline Single X-Strong Large Ring Hooks - Model#7237CB
Walleye Crawler Worm Harness
Ever Green Lures Logo

Lunkerhunt Fetch

Lunkerhunt Prop Turtle
Megabass Candian Edition Top Secret
Duo Realis Vibration Lipless Crankbait Image

Acme Hyper-Glide

Acme Little Cleo Assortment.

Acme Little Cleo

Slipin Style Snag Free Tube Insert Weight AA
Yo-Zuri 3DB Series Knuckle Bait
Jackall Kaera Weedless Frog
Rapala RipStop

Rapala RipStop

Jackall Rerange Lure Assortment.
Megabass Dark Sleeper Swimbait
The Z-Man Jack Hammer.

Z-Man Jack Hammer

Panfish Micro Tubes and Grubs
Weedless Topwater Frogs
Duo Realis images
Nories Fishing Logo
SV Concept by Daiwa Neko Fat Logo
Savage Gear 3D Line Thru Pike A
The Jackall Yammy Fish.
LunkerHunt Prop Series.
Arbogast Lures Logo A
Lunkerhunt Link - Topwater Surface Bait
Gary Yamamoto Senko or Yamasenko
Cotton Cordell Lures
Cotton Cordell Ripplin' Red Fin
Storm Spinbait Arashi Lure B
Ecogear Fishing Lures Logo
Jackall Pompadour
Wacky Rigging Tool
Hook Bonnets

Hook Bonnets

Megabass Funky Flipper B
Trapper Tckle Trapper Hook Assortment

Trapper Tackle

Jackall Binksy Image
Normark Rapala Slab Rap Logo
Duo Realis Cambio Spin Assortment.
Lick Em Lures Sledgetails
Duo Realis - 2017 Great Lakes Colours
2017 Megabass Vision Oneten - Northern Secret

Guru Tackle

Innovative Safety Tools logo
Fuji EZ Keeper & Lindy Hook-A-Loop Hook Keeper Addition.
Custom Poured Gamakatsu Jig Heads Ball Bullet Tear Drop Mushroom Tube Darter Chicklet BB
Assorted Custom Jig Head Selection AA

Stringease Tackle


Mepps Lures

Savage Gear 3D Suicide Duck B