WORLD RECORD TOURNAMENT – Leg I of the first annual Los Sueños Signature Triple Crown will go down in history with over 90 fish an hour released by 42 teams in 3 days
Los Sueños Resort and Marina, located on Costa Rica’s Central Pacific Coast, was once again home base for one of the world’s foremost billfishing tournaments, the first annual Los Sueños Signature Triple Crown, presented by Poms & Associates. The first leg of this three-leg tournament series was held January 22-25, 2014 and welcomed 42 participating teams, comprised of 156 individual anglers. Over three days of fishing, the teams jointly released a total of 2,170 billfish, including 11 marlin and 2,159 sailfish, very clearly solidifying the event as a World Record Tournament that will go down in the history books.
Going into the first day of fishing, it was very apparent that this would be a tournament like no other. Sea Angel, the Saturday before, had released 76 billfish of 111 bites and other teams were reporting between 30 and 50 releases with a catch rate of about 50%. When lines in was called at 8 am the morning of January 23rd, it was Uno Mas calling in with the first fish of the tournament at 8:05 am, followed immediately by back to back doubles at 8:06 am, the first by Uno Mas and the second, Clean Sweep. What a way to start! By 9:15 am, the teams had already released 135 sailfish and by 10:33 am had doubled that number. It was Family and Friends who released the first marlin at 10:22 am, a mere three minutes after calling in the hook up. With 35 minutes to go before lines out was to be called at 4 pm, the teams had already released a record 648 billfish, including 646 sails and 2 marlin; the last fish of the day going to Irish Ayes at 4:05 pm. Once the scorecards had been checked at the end of the day though, it was official – 696 billfish had been released, including 692 sails and 4 marlin. Pelese finished in first for the day with 3000 points (30 sails), Pescadora in second with 2800 points (28 sails) and Muy Caliente in third with 2500 points (25 sails), winning out over Gunsmoke on time, also with 2500 points (25 sails).
Day 2 was well underway by 9:43 am, with 821 accumulative billfish released, and 2 more marlin on Day 2 alone. Nearing 12:00 pm the teams had reached 944 billfish overall, and 246 for Day 2 only. Fishing picked up in the afternoon though, by the end of the day 674 billfish had been released with a two-day total of 1,374 billfish, including 1366 sails and 8 marlin.
There were eight releases within the first six minutes on Day 3, making it very apparent that this would be yet another record day. Sea Fix released fish number 1555 at 10:03 am and Enjoy brought the total number of releases to 1729 by 12:09 pm. Participants and spectators alike were rallying for a 2000 billfish tournament, which was “easily” achieved by Xta Sea at 2:38 pm with an exciting triple. After all the scorecards had been accounted for, it was official – the first annual Los Sueños Signature Triple Crown tournament was a World Record Tournament, with 2170 billfish releases, including 2159 sails and 11 marlin, representing 52 fish per boat, 14 fish per angler, over 90 fish an hour and 1.5 fish a minute. On top of all that, the second and third place teams ended up tied for points, with the tie being broken on time, Spanish Fly beating Sea Angel to 6800 points just four minutes ahead. Xta Sea took first overall with 7800 points and a commanding lead.
Xta Sea is the first boat from Nicaragua to win one of the Los Sueños tournaments. Angler and boat owner, Alexis Chamorro, is an avid fisherman and has participated in numerous tournaments along with his cousin Julio Chamorro. This year a new member of the team was added, Emilio Munkel, who will probably stay with them for some time now. Captain John Lagrone, has been with Alexis for nearly a decade and knows the waters around Los Sueños like the back of his hand.
Spanish Fly shared their touching story during the awards banquet on Saturday night. Just two years ago angler and owner Larry Drivon fell down and broke his back, angler Richard “Bimmy” Lebo was diagnosed with esophageal cancer and angler J Godwin underwent a triple bypass. Like Larry said to the audience on Saturday, “We went through all this and were able to come here and win second place against the best teams in the world. If that’s not a comeback story, I don’t know what is!” Who could argue with him?
Sea Angel is no stranger to the winner’s stage, having placed first at the Los Sueños Signature Billfish Series in January 2011, angler and owner Greg Angel was the top angler for the second leg of the 2013 Billfish Series, son and angler Austin Angel was the top angler for the first leg of the 2013 Billfish Series and has won the WBS World Champion Angler title two years in a row. The Angel family is a well oiled tournament machine.
Congratulations to all of the participating teams for breaking all kinds of records and on an outstanding job well done!
CASH PRIZES & AWARDS
The awards ceremony was held under the stars on the white sand in front of the Los Sueños Beach Club. The weather was perfect, and about 500 anglers, captains, observers and sponsors were treated to a delicious buffet dinner, a performance by the rock band, Mustang 65, a fantastic dock show filmed and edited by Fischer Productions, and an incredible fireworks display by Faisa. Tournament winners took to the stage to receive a total of $135,000 in cash, as well as other prizes provided by tournament sponsors.
1st $65,000 Xta Sea, 7800 points: 78 sails
2nd $39,000 Spanish Fly, 6800 points: 68 sails
3rd $26,000 Sea Angel, 6800 points: 63 sails, 1 marlin
Trophies by Gray Taxidermy
Other prizes and awards by: Costa Rica Dreams- a fishing trip with accommodations in a Del Mar condominium; Tunaskin- apparel; Rick Bogert- framed prints of the 1st annual Triple Crown tournament art; Vanmark, Inc.- gold pendants; and Flor de Caña- aged rum for winning teams and top angler.
No one was able to guess who would be crowned Top Angler for the first leg of the 2014 Triple Crown. So much so that the Top Angler himself missed the awards ceremony! It must have been the exhaustion from reeling in 36 sailfish in just three days all by himself that put him to bed early. Congratulations Phil Arklin of Gunsmoke on achieving this honor.
The entire tournament organizing committee would like to take this opportunity to thank all those who came together to support this event. Our gratitude goes out to all the anglers, captains, mates, observers, technical advisors, cameramen and videographers, Los Sueños staff and of course, our sponsors (in alphabetical order): BLP Abogados, Bristol Marine Supply, Caterpillar/Gregory Poole, Costa Sunglasses, Costa Rica Dreams Sport Fishing, Costa Rica Luxury Rentals & Tours, Durman, Flor de Caña, Fortis Accounting Services, Galati International Yacht Sales, Gray Taxidermy, Los Sueños Resort and Marina, Lucantha, Marriott, MTU/Tractomotriz, Rick Bogert, Scotiabank, SeaDream, Sevenstar Yacht Transports, Smith-Merritt Insurance, STCR – Fidelity, Travelers Insurance, Tunaskin Aquatic Apparel, Vanmark Inc., Viking Yachts, Weather Routing Inc. For more about our sponsors, please visit www.signaturetriplecrown.com and click on Links.
WBS QUALIFYING EVENT
The Los Sueños Signature Triple Crown is sanctioned by the World Billfish Series (WBS). Anglers competing in the Los Sueños tournaments who wish to earn points for the WBS World Tour and compete for points in the Pacific Rim Division need to become a WBS Member. For further information, please visit www.wbs.com.
OWC QUALIFYING EVENT
The top team from each leg of the Los Sueños Signature Triple Crown will be eligible to compete in the 2014 Offshore World Championship.
ABOUT THE LOS SUENOS SIGNATURE TRIPLE CROWN
2014 marks the 1st Annual Los Sueños Signature Triple Crown billfish tournament series. The Triple Crown consists of three annual tournaments, in January, February and March each year, and is fished out of the world class Los Sueños Resort and Marina in Costa Rica. The dates for 2014 are Leg I: January 22-25, 2014, Leg II: February 26 – March 1, 2014, and Leg III: March 12-15, 2014.
ABOUT LOS SUEÑOS RESORT AND MARINA
Los Sueños Resort and Marina is the premier luxury real estate resort in Costa Rica. Nestled on the Central Pacific Coast, Los Sueños is an 1,100-acre oasis offering incredible ocean, rainforest and golf course view properties; a gorgeous waterfront Marina Village commercial area with restaurants, shops and lively entertainment; a large private beach club for residents; an 18-hole championship golf course; a superb 201-room Marriott Hotel; and much more – all within close proximity to what is the world’s best sport fishing waters. Information on Los Sueños Resort and Marina is available online at www.lossuenos.com.
For further information, please contact Ashley Bretecher, Executive Director of Marketing and Communications, Los Sueños Resort and Marina, Toll-free: 1-866-865-9759, Direct Tel: 011-506-2630-4005, Fax: 011-506-2630-4010, or e-mail: email@example.com.