It’s a good bet that there will be many changes before the MidAtlantic scales close at 9 p.m. in Cape May, N.J. and Ocean City, Maryland. Some leading fish are looking secure, but none are invulnerable.
Salty Tiger produced the first 400-pound minimum blue marlin yesterday after Shark Byte’s 791-pounder had to be disqualified due to a shark bite earlier in the week. Yet that 489-pounder is no sure thing. The tournament record is 847 pounds from 2014. I can also testify as to how far even a big blue can fall. I believe I have a MidAtlantic negative record with the only 500-pounder that never won a penny. I was a guest of Bernard and Drew Dinardi on their Absolut-ly from Brielle Yacht Club in 1995 when I caught a 503-pound blue in Wilmington Canyon hat never led, and ended up getting knocked off the board during a summer of huge blue marlin. Since we also had a release, Absolut-ly did end up winning the Blue Marlin Points Trophy.
Blood Money is looking good with their 91-pound white marlin that knocked down the 77-pounder by Big Oil as it’s the third largest in tournament history where the record is 95 pounds from 2009. Don’t shed any tears for Big Oil as Blood Money isn’t in the Roff’s White Marlin Pro Calcutta where Big Oil leads for $634,500.
MJ’S is also in good shape with their 189-pound bigeye tuna. I was expecting those bigeye specialists to come through at the recent White Marlin Open, but the bigeyes seemed to be absent a couple of weeks ago. However, those tuna tend to attack in packs and are commonly over 200 pounds. The tournament record was set by the Dinardi brothers when multiple rods were hit on the last day in the 1993 contest with the biggest being 254 pounds.
The dolphin category looked wide open until Billfisher took a huge lead at 46 pounds yesterday. Yet, at the White Marlin Open it took a WMO record 73.5-pounder to beat out a 54-pound dolphin. Wahoo are always a rare catch, but if anyone has any tricks for them they should be using them today because Canyon Runner currently has the whole division to itself with a 42-pounder.
All of the boat awards are in play. Wave Paver has a good lead over Point Runner in both Total Points and White Marlin Releases. In Most Points Blue Marlin there’s a tie between Big Stick and Take Em, with Michael Jordan’s Catch 23 in third. Blue Runner from Manasquan leads MJ’s in Most Points Tuna.
Today was beautiful. and more of that is forecast for the morning with southwest winds at 5-10 knots.
Check my blog after the scales close at 9 for final results.
The Golden Eagle from Belmar reported excellent bluefish with even a few up 6 or 7 pounds plus some fluke and large porgies.
At Atlantic Highlands, the Sea Hunter reported two fluke limits as fishing was better than yesterday. The pool fluke was almost 7 pounds, and there was also a 6.5-pounder.
The Elaine B. II at Highlands reported a limit fluke catch yesterday up to an 8 7/8-pounder by Mark Mabry of New Holland, Pa.
The Big Mohawk from Belmar had a doormat yesterday of 11 1/4 pounds, but the angler wasn’t in the seasonal pool. .