Angler Bill Pino of Squidnation reels in 577-pound blue marlin to claim first place in Cabo San Lucas.
CABO SAN LUCAS, Mexico—The 39th annual Bisbee’s Black and Blue Tournament wrapped up on the final weekend of October with a record amount of payouts – and quite the large catch to take first place honors in the tournament.
Angler Bill Pino of Squidnation made headlines with his 577-pound blue marlin catch, which he reeled aboard Tranquilo after a 44-minute fight. The catch resulted in a $1,411,375 payout for Tranquilo.
This year’s tournament was also the first time it featured three consecutive days of $1.3 million (or more) payouts.
Pino caught his 577-pounder on day three of the tournament; more than $3 million in payouts were made during the first two days, preceding the Tranquilo win.
Paul Beaullieu headlined the first day of fishing with his 466-pound black marlin, which was caught aboard Wild Hooker. The marlin was reportedly valued at $1,751,462. Wild Hooker edged out Tranquilo in total winnings as the former’s catch included the Chupacabra jackpot.
The second day of fishing was highlighted by Jim Putnam, who caught a 498-pound black marlin aboard True Grit. The catch was worth $1,296,062 in prize money and jackpots.
Rounding out the Top Five were Stella June and Los Tapatios. Stella June was paid $11,070 for its 466-pound black marlin, while Los Tapatios earned $7,380, also for its 466-pound black marlin catch.
Three teams earned more than $100,000 in the Costa Release Division. El Suertudo walked away with a $69,615 payout, followed by Chupacabra ($24,097.50) and Quitena ($13,387.50). All three teams scored 1,500 points in the division.
The cash prizes totaled $4,584,450 – a record payout. This year’s tournament drew 862 anglers aboard 126 boats, all of whom fished the waters of the Pacific Ocean and Sea of Cortez, just south of Cabo San Lucas.
Tournament organizers said about 7,000 pounds of fish were caught throughout the competition, equaling 17,500 meals. Those meals were reportedly donated to local charities by the anglers.
Bisbee’s Black and Blue Tournament had humble beginnings, with a grand total of $10,000 of prize money awarded at the outset. The cash prizes – and entry fees – have steadily grown ever since. The first seven-figure payout – $1,165,230 – was made to Que Sera in 2003.