OCEAN CITY – The Ocean City Marlin Club’s 37th Annual Canyon Kickoff was once again a huge success with dozens of boats and hundreds of anglers filling out the leaderboard in several categories and collecting thousands in prize money.
The Canyon Kick-Off, held each year on or near the Fourth of July weekend, is the first major event of the season each year for the Ocean City Marlin Club and serves as a prelude to the more high-profile tournaments including the Ocean City Tuna Tournament next weekend, the Big Fish Classic later this month and, of course the White Marlin Open next month. With plenty of billfish releases and tuna and dolphin weighed at the scales all weekend, the Canyon Kick-Off lived up to its name was the first significant offshore fishing event of the season.
In the billfish release division, it was the crew on the Gret’s Three J’s taking first place with 650 points, earning a check for $30,420. The Gret’s Three J’s caught and released five white marlin and one blue marlin and also weighed two qualifying dolphin and three tuna. The Billfisher took second place with 600 points and earned $4,212, while the Buckshot was third with 600 release points and earned $2,808.
In the yellowfin, bigeye or longfin tuna division, it was the crew on the Sindaco taking first place with a 142-pounder worth $12,847. The Canyon Hunter took second with a 112-pounder and earned $13,018 in prize money. The Sindaco also took third in the division with a 95-pounder and earned an additional $2,079.
In the dolphin division, the Makenzie Rae took first place with a whopping 52-pounder worth $22,747. The Lucky Duck II weighed a 19-pounder and earned $3,118 in prize money. The Buckshot and the Head Hunter each weighed 17-pound dolphin and each won $1,039 in prize money. The Fin-Ally took first in the bluefin tuna division with an 87-pounder, while the Husevo took second with a 53-pounder.