The 41st running of the Sea Horse Anglers Club Billfish Tournament once again represented the final leg of the Bermuda Triple Crown Billfish Championship. The weather turned a little sour with low pressure kicking up the wind and seas on the first two days of fishing, but the bite did turn on for several teams. One of those teams was Fa La Me who had not yet caught a blue marlin in the series until the first day of the Sea Horse.
Owner Frank Rodriguez released a blue on day one but day two proved to be an epic experience for the team on Fa La Me. Rodriguez released a blue at 9:47 am and mate Taylor Beckford caught one at 11:27 am moving them into contention. At 2:39, captain Rob Moore called in a double header with anglers Dave Berard and Frank Rodriguez doing battle. As with most double headers in Bermuda, one of the fish was a smaller male which Berard brought to leader in 7-minutes with Rodriguez’s fish being a much larger female. The fish was released 167-minutes later and appeared to be a near 600-pounds. This release brought team Fa La Me to 2500-points which was enough to win First Place Team honors.
Fa La Me also took the Day Two Release Jackpot, Overall Release Points Jackpot and Frank Rodriguez was the High-Point Angler. A little icing on the cake was awarded to Dave Berard’s 52.8-pound wahoo that won the game fish division. Team Fa La Me including owner Frank Rodriguez, Captain Rob Moore, Taylor Beckford, Tyler Beckford, Dave Berard and Jeffrey DeSilva received total winnings of $75,900 and an invitation compete at the Offshore World Championship.
Another team scoring big was Weez in the Keys with owner and angler, Scott Robins, besting a 598-pound blue on the first day which turned out to be the only qualifying marlin on the dock during the tournament. Angler, Keith English, brought two other blues to leader to add to the boated fish scoring a total of 1598-points. Team Weez in the Keys including owner Scott Robins, captain Chris Zielinski, Ray Rosher, Andy Moyes, Keith English, Roy Huff and Chris Ricco swept all of the on the dock money and earned second place team honors wining a total of $115,650.
The first day of this year’s Sea Horse will also be memorable for Dan Doyle Sr. and Dan Jr., owners of Blank Check, who hooked up on a double header and fought side by side with both releasing blues to win the day one release jackpot. Teammate Chad Harrod released a white on the final day giving the team enough points to earn Third Place Team and the Second Place Overall Release Jackpot. Team Blank Check included owners Dan Doyle Sr., Dan Doyle Jr., Madeline Doyle, Captain Danny Hern, Jason Gaylord, Kevin Gaylord, Chad Harrod and Clemente Travieso with winnings totaling $40,080.
Other teams earning checks were Chasin with Captain Bennett Griffin and teammates Paul Spencer, Buddy Spencer, Phillip Fender, Trey McMillan and Adly Thebaud taking the Third Place Overall Release Jackpot worth $9720. Team Wound Up including Captain James Robinson, Gethin Adderley, Shane Adderley, Mark Munt and Robert Wheatly took the Day Three Release Jackpot worth $16,800.