Set Sail

Rigging a boat for effective sailfishing.
Fishing for sailfish
Improve your sailfish catch rate with these must-haves. George Poveromo

George Poveromo took up residence on the Salt Water Sportsman masthead way back in 1983, at only 23 years old. He is renowned for his flats, inshore and offshore fishing prowess, leading the Salt Water Sportsman National Seminar Series for 35 years now. One of his specialties is sailfish, landing more in a season than most will in a lifetime. Want to catch like George? Add some of his sailfish must-haves to your boat. 

Good Sonar and Great Charts 

“Both are a must for ­locating reef bottom jutting out into current, wrecks, bait ­concentrations and surface-­temperature readings. Learn to look for places where north-­flowing blue current washes over structure like this.”

A High-Powered ­Livewell

“My twin 34-gallon livewells are fed by a Hooker sea chest. Two 4,500 gph pumps circulate the water inside the chest itself, eliminating air infusion, dry pumps, and pump failures at all boatspeeds. The volume and velocity of water feeding each well, important for certain bait types, is controlled by a dial on my console. Another huge plus: The pumps are external and easily replaced.”

A Whole Lot of Rod ­Holders 

“A total of 26 gunwale-based Lee rod holders enables us to slow-troll live baits or drift a full spread complete with dual kites and flat lines. For trolling, I’ve got two 30-degree Lee swivel rod holders and one 15-degree Lee flush-mounted holder per side and within the aft gunwales. From there, eight more Lee holders are positioned along each gunwale and aimed seaward for drifting baits. A pair of Lee swivel rod holders occupy the bow, giving me the freedom to pivot as needed. Four ­zero-degree Lee holders are within the transom cap.”

A Way to Spread Baits 

“Outriggers are ideal for spreading live baits and kites when slow-trolling. They’re excellent for placing additional baits. For example, my Lee 20-foot carbon-fiber poles and 15-foot carbon-fiber ­center rigger are each rigged to accommodate two baits per pole. When you use all three riggers, you can spread out six live baits behind the boat. Add in a pair of weighted flat lines, and you’re up to eight baits (with more if you add a fishing kite).”

Tridents for Kite Rigs 

“Trident rod holders are excellent for keeping outfits close to a fishing kite for easy station management. Strategically positioned gunwale rod holders can accomplish the same. To power electric kite reels, four 12-volt Hubble electrical outlets are positioned under the gunwales—two in the bow and a pair in the cockpit. That lets us drift or slow-troll a single kite off the stern, or drift a pair of kites utilizing both the bow and cockpit stations.”

Slow Your Drift

“To counter a fast drift and give baits more soak time within a zone, deploy a ­parachute anchor sized to your vessel. For example, I keep a 15-foot, 20-pound ­Para-Tech Sea Anchor Parachute within the console of my 33-foot Mako.”