First, he caught the fish. Then, it was approved by the IGFA as the new all-tackle world record yellowfin tuna. And now, you might call Guy Yocom fishing's ultimate “lucky one,” having been awarded a symbolic check worth $1 million, presented to him by Mustad Hooks for having caught the monster while registered in the company’s “Hook A Million” world-record contest last year.
Yocom, whose record 427-pound yellowfin supplants a 405-pounder taken three years by Mike Livingston, was recognized for his accomplishment yesterday during the second day of the Fred Hall Show in Long Beach, Calif.
Actually, the California resident already received the first $20,000 installment of the prize — which will be paid annually over the next 50 years — last month, according to the San Diego Union-Tribune. But Thursday brought the big announcement and celebration.
“It was great meeting Guy, his captain Greg DiStefano and the rest of the crew,” said Jeff Pierce, Mustad’s sales manager, who presented the check to Yocom and his team. "What an incredible group of guys. Hardcore anglers and simply great people. Yesterday's event held in conjunction with the Fred Hall Show and the IGFA was fantastic. I love it when a plan comes together."
It was indeed amazing how Yocom's plan came together. He caught the monster tuna last September on a 12/0 39950BLN Demon Perfect Circle Hook while chunking some 100 miles south of Cabo San Lucas, Mexico, aboard his boat, El Suertudo (Spanish for, you guessed it, “The Lucky One”).
The crew was specifically targeting a record yellowfin with the prize in mind -- and they picked a good place to do it. In 2012, an estimated 432-pounder was taken in the same general vicinity off Mexico in January, followed by a 427.9-pound fish three months later. Most recently, after Yocom’s catch, John Petruescu caught the largest yellowfin ever taken on rod-and-reel, a 445-pounder that he landed this month aboard the long-range vessel Excel.
None of those fish, however, were submitted to IGFA for record purposes.
And now Yocom cements his name as perhaps one of fishing’s “luckiest ones” ever.