OCEAN CITY- There were no shortage of billfish releases in the Ocean City Marlin Club’s 61st annual Labor Day White Marlin Tournament last weekend.
While it may lack the glamour and high payouts of the White Marlin Open, the Ocean City Marlin Club’s 60th Annual Labor Day White Marlin Tournament trumps all others in terms of history and prestige. The tournament is the oldest among the tournaments held in and around the resort area each summer. The first was held in 1958 and the annual event has endured for six decades and several generations of local anglers.
The tournament got started last Thursday with registration and a captain’s meeting, while the action offshore got underway Friday, the first of three fishing days. As the name implies, the focus of the tournament is on white marlin, but unlike the other high dollar tournaments in recent weeks, there weren’t any billfish weighed at the scale. Instead, the event is largely a release tournament and there was no shortage of billfish released over the weekend.
In the billfish release division, the crew on the Sea Wolf took first place with 1,200 points and earned $13,080. The Billfisher was second with 1,150 points and earned $4,608, while the Voodoo Child was third with 1,100 release points and earned $3,072.
The Fish On took first place in the dolphin division with a 26-pounder worth $10,080. The Billfisher took second with a 25-pounder worth $2,268, while the Par Five took third with a 23-pounder worth $1,512. On day one of the daily billfish release division, Grande Pez took first with 500 points and earned $1,800 in prize money. Voodoo Child won the daily billfish release division on day two with 1,000 points and earned $1,800, while the Pumpin Hard took first in the daily release division on the last day with 750 points and also earned $1,800. Jonathan Duffie on the Billfisher won the Master Angler award with 500 points.