The Belize Game Fish Association’s longest-running tournament, the Blue Water Classic, was once again at Blue Marlin Lodge on South Water Caye. Building on the success of last year’s tournament, the BGFA increased the tournament’s prize money. This year, first place is $10,000! With over $30,000 in prizes, the stakes were higher than ever! This year, however, 6 boats from Honduras made the journey from Omoa, Puerto Cortes, and Roatan to compete in this fast-growing tournament. Looking to get into fishing before a Belize vacation? You can also check an interesting article on the best fishing lines on the market today by clicking here.
Blessed with beautiful weather, the fleet of 23 boats headed offshore with eyes set on catching Belize’s elusive Blue Marlin, as well as a host of other species. It didn’t take long before the first Blue Marlin was released by Honduras Team ‘Boatweiser’ near Gladden Spit. However, Team ‘BenAvi’ out of Belize City followed quickly behind them. They released an estimated 250lb Blue Marlin north of Glover’s Reef. The third and final Blue Marlin release came from Team ‘Jolly Mon’ out of Belize City who released another big Blue Marlin estimated at 250lbs only 6 miles from South Water Caye. Later, back at the dock, boats came in with plenty of Dorado for the scale. A total of 21 Dorado and 5 Wahoos had been weighed along with the three Blue Marlin releases for day 1 of the Blue Water Classic.
Then, day two started out just as beautiful as Day One. Most boats headed out from South Water Caye as the sun peaked over the horizon. However, the billfish bite slowed down on the second day, and no other billfish releases were recorded. Although, there were plenty more Dorado and a few Wahoos brought in. After tallying the scores, the crowd gathered inside the restaurant at the Blue Marlin Lodge to also cheer on the winning teams. In total, Anglers released 3 Blue Marlin and weighed 8 Wahoos, 39 Dorado, and 17 Tuna.
Prizes for the winners were as follows:
CATEGORY/PRIZE – WINNERS
- Heaviest Barracuda – Club Boatweiser – Fernando Canahuati (14.5lbs)
- Heaviest Tuna – $500 +Trophy Sangria –Byron Alford (10lbs)
- Heaviest Dorado – $500 +Trophy Pure Delight – Gary McLaughlin (33.5lbs)
- Heaviest Wahoo – $500 +Trophy xXx –Emilio Canahuati (37.5lbs)
- Top Junior Angler – $250 + Trophy Full Strike –Andrew Jaramillo
- Top Female Angler – $500 Lil French – Witny Osorio
- Top Angler – $500 Jolly Mon – Raymond Gillett
- 5th Place – $500 Lil French – 110.5 points
- 4th Place – $1,000 Pure Delight – 130.5 points
- 3rd Place – $4,000 BenAvi – 2,510 points
- 2nd Place – $6,000 Boatweiser – 2,520.5 points
- 1st Place -$10,000 + Trophy Jolly Mon – 2,535.5 points