Being a superstitious lot, anglers often say they'd rather be lucky than good. For the first-time team aboard Frantic Pace, luck and skill both came into play today. Angler Dave Sanchez and his crew miraculously boated a 465-pound blue marlin during the second day of the 2012 Bisbee's Black & Blue Marlin Tournament after an 80-minute fight and a near-tackle failure. For their efforts, they stand to earn a cash prize of nearly $1.425 million.
"The time in the chair went by really fast," a tired but excited Sanchez said at the scales. "That's my biggest fish ever. But right now I think I'm ready for a nap." This is the first time the Kansas City, Missouri angler has fished the Black & Blue. "I'll definitely be back again next year, though," he promised.
Veteran skippers Josh Temple and Tony Berkowitz were working the cockpit when the marlin pounced on the Hi-5 black-and-purple Cabo Shaker lure. As the fish got closer to the bright-orange 52-foot Pacemaker boat, they realized the heavy snap swivel holding the leader and lure had opened. Temple gingerly leadered the fish and Berkowitz sank the gaff point home. When the fish was finally in the cockpit, they discovered the only thing connecting the line to more than a million dollars worth of marlin was the 1/4-inch bend in the tip of the swivel. The rest of the stout metal wire in the leader was almost straight.
"I'd rather be lucky than good any day," a grinning Temple said afterwards. "But that was just a little too close."
The action offshore definitely picked up Thursday after a slow start to the 2012 event. The chatter on the tournament radio frequency was steady throughout the day. But when Frantic Pace was asked when it was coming to the scales after boating the fish, loud whoops and yells were broadcast throughout the 106-boat fleet. With no qualifying marlin on the first day, the daily jackpot rolled over to Thursday. Since it was entered across the board in all cash divisions, Team Frantic Pace will earn more than $1.422 million for the catch.
This would not be the first million-dollar winner in the tournament. That honor goes to El Gallo in 2003. Last year Tiger Spirit also landed a marlin that was worth more than $1 million. Since its inception in 1980 the Black & Blue, the world's richest fishing tournament, has awarded more than $55 million in cash prizes.
The final day of fishing starts at 8 a.m. Friday morning off the famous Los Arcos rock formation in Cabo San Lucas. The daily jackpot for a team entered across the board is $711,450, another nice payout for the biggest fish over 300 pounds. On Thursday night, however, the Frantic Pace team is feeling really, really good. And lucky.
A Million-Dollar-Plus Blue
October 26, 2012 2:11PM Press Release