The Trinidad and Tobago Game Fishing Association hosted its annual Budget Marine Wahoo Blowout tournament the 24th & 25th of February 2018. The tournament attracted 10 boats this year comprising of 46 anglers who, despite rough seas, braved the inclement weather in a show of good sportsmanship.
Although the Budget Marine Wahoo Blowout tournament focuses on Wahoo as the primary species, the committee opened up the event to include other species this year due to a continuous decline in fish stock from unregulated fishing in and around the coastal waters of Trinidad & Tobago. As it turned out, it was a good decision as only two wahoo were successfully brought to the scale during the tournament, both by Captain Dominic Wallace with crew Dean Fakoory and Glen Charlotte on board the vessel Roller Troller giving them the well-deserved first place in this year’s tournament.
Roller Troller braved the weather on day one by going as far as fishing of the Sisters in Tobago which resulted in two Sailfish releases and a Wahoo weighing in at 11.9 pounds, narrowly making the 10 pound minimum weight and bringing in the only Wahoo on Saturday. On Sunday, even with fishing being poor and many boats opting to cut their day short and head back for a swim, they stuck it out till the end, trolling up and down the southern coast of Chacachacare Island. As the five ‘o’ clock cut off approached, it was now time for everyone to pull up their lines and head back to dock for the ‘weigh in’ where no one had caught any fish for the day. While retrieving their lines in order to head back to port, the right rigger line gets bit and the line is screaming off the reel sending Wallace and Fakoory into a state of excitement and most of all disbelief. When the dust settled the crew found themselves back at the weigh station with seconds to spare. Their Wahoo weighing in at 62.6 pounds was the biggest catch of the tournament. According to Wallace, he had to dig deep into his tackle box for this last catch, finding the most hideous red and yellow Sea Witch, a favorite of the late, great, local captain, Gary Story and set out the line saying “This one’s for you Gaff”. Whether the late Captain Gary Story helped out or not, the wahoo reinforced the win of the boat Roller Troller with Dominic Wallace earning the prize of Best Male Angler.
Chelsea Lock on the boat Queen B also graced the scale on Saturday with a Dorado weighing in at 11.75 pounds making her Best Female Angler and giving Queen B with Captain Trevor Bhagwansingh enough to win second place in the Budget Marine Wahoo Blowout Tournament. A total of 143 pounds of fish were caught and two sailfish released in two days with over 80lbs of it donated to the Christ Child Convalescent home.
The Trinidad and Tobago Game Fishing Committee thanked the anglers for good sportsmanship despite rough seas and their sponsors Budget Marine, Carib and the Ministry of Sport for their continued support in this tournament as well as their support of sport fishing and conservation in Trinidad and Tobago.