Categorized | Featured, Fishing, Sports

HIBT 2013 Day 3

At a svelte 428 pounds, the Pacific blue marlin weighed in by Port Vila Sport Fishing Club of Vanuatu (Team #14) at Wednesday’s Hawaiian International Billfish Tournament. (Photo courtesy of HIBT)

At a svelte 428 pounds, the Pacific blue marlin weighed in by Port Vila Sport Fishing Club of Vanuatu (Team #14) at Wednesday’s Hawaiian International Billfish Tournament. (Photo courtesy of HIBT)

Hawaii 24/7 Staff

At a svelte 428 pounds, the Pacific blue marlin weighed in by Port Vila Sport Fishing Club of Vanuatu (Team #14) at Wednesday’s Hawaiian International Billfish Tournament was a game changer earning enough points at press time to thrust this team into second place on HIBT’s leaderboard with 871 points.

Though scoreless Wednesday, Laguna Nigel Billfish Club #2 California (Team #5) holds its lead with 900 points.

Fishing aboard Kona Seafari in fishing area Juliet (between Keahole Point and Kailua Bay), both the team and the skipper are former HIBT champs.

Hailing from the island nation of Vanuatu, located between Fiji and New Caledonia, Port Vila won this iconic tournament in 2011 and Kona’s Capt. David Bertuleit was the top scoring charter boat captain in 2009.

Angler Murray Parsons boated the fish using 50-lb test line, a smart move in scoreboard strategy since lighter lines earn more points.

Points vary based on line test and species with the most going to a Blue or Black Marlin or Broadbill Swordfish caught on a 50-lb line and the least going to a Spearfish caught on an 80-lb line.

“Finesse is the key” to using the 50-lb test line instead of the heavier and more durable 80-lb test line, Chris Cawthon, owner and operator of Ohana Sporfishing Adventures, said.

Angler Jim Ramsey boated Wednesday’s second, slightly larger Pacific blue marlin in fishing area Tango (between Kealakekua and Hookena) and tipped the scales on Kailua Pier at 457 pounds for veteran HIBT Team #19 the Pajaro Valley Gamefish Club California.

This team has also won HIBT three times – 2003, 2001 and 1997.

But at press time, Papua New Guinea’s Lae Game Fishing Club (Team #11) aboard High Flyer was still fighting a Pacific blue marlin in fishing area Sierra (between Keauhou and Kealakekua).

Another eight Pacific blue marlin were tagged and released Wednesday by HIBT teams who added valuable points to their tallies.

Most caught fish are tagged and released. A strategic move for fishermen who catch marlin or tuna below the qualifying weight, catch and release also benefits the scientific community. Satellite tagged fish contribute to scientific understanding of the behavior and lifecycle of the fish.

Tagged fish compete in the Great Marlin Race. The team whose tagged marlin from this year’s HIBT travels the farthest within 180 days will win a free entry for up to six anglers in the 55th HIBT.

HIBT judge Rick Gaffney said teams have previously won the tournament solely on tag and release points before.

“I’m delighted that HIBT is able to showcase all that Kona fishing has to offer – its excellent ocean conditions, perfect weather and a highly skilled fleet – to people from places all around the world,” HIBT founder Peter Fithian said.

“The big game fish are out there and our HIBT Chief Judge Albert Threadingham is convinced that the smaller marlin are feasting on the ahi right now,” he said. “He believes a grander might be on the way.”

The prestigious five-day Hawaiian International Billfish Tournament continues through Friday, Aug. 9, 2013.

HIBT will hold its Award Ceremony on Saturday August 10. Though there isn’t a monetary portion to the awards, the teams gain “prestige” and international recognition, said Cawthon.

The Hawaiian International Billfish Tournament is underwritten by the generosity of the County of Hawaii Department of Research and Development and the Hawaii Tourism Authority. The tournament is further supported in part by KWXX Radio and numerous corporate and community donors.

— Find out more:
www.hibtfishing.com

 

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