This morning, the menehune of the truck dashboard changed the display
from mileage numbers to read “Oil Change Required”.
A quick glance at the sticker in the window revealed that the last one
had been done just before the Kona Kick Off, so driving to and from
work for tournaments (from home) had logged 5,000 miles in about 6 weeks.
On an island.
On one 20 mile stretch of road – on an island. I’d never looked at it
like that before. That is from L.A. to New York and back. I missed some
This revelation occurred today, on the first trip to Waimea for the new
school year, so naturally I reflected on the “old days” when Capt.
McGrew Rice would drive drive down to Honokohau Harbor from Waimea,
climb onto the Ihu Nui and high speed troll down to Miloli’i – every
day, round trip – and of course I wondered how many miles he logged up
and down the island in those days. He said the traveling was when he
could get his thinking done.
I think it a “Big Island way of life” thing. People on Maui don’t drive
like this. Walt Hester of Maui Jim commutes from Ka’anapali into Lahaina
to work. He once told me that if he drove more than 10 miles a day he’d
get the heebie geebies.
I mailed a check to Walt recently for $138,510.00 – purse settlement for
their “two fer” win at the recent Big Island Marlin Tournament. I had to
tear up two checks before I figured out how to write “one hundred thirty
eight thousand five hundred and ten dollars” into the space allotted on
the checks. Writing checks like that gives me the heebie geebies, but I
reckon when ol Walt gets his mail he will be pretty much heebie geebie free.
Walt caught the largest marlin of the 27th BIMT, a nice 674 pound blue
in just 36 minutes. On the last day, his guest Iacopo Mozzoni was back
at the dock before 9:00 AM with a 589.5 pound blue in the boat. Hence
the large check to Maui Jim. Those two fish took First Largest and
Second Largest Marlin in a tournament that pays the Three Largest
Marlin. They also laid claim to most of the optional purse. It adds up.
Iacopo is from Italy, one of 9 countries represented that the 2013 BIMT.
Anglers attended this event from Greece, Scotland, Canada, Japan, China
and the USA. Jack Sanford comes the farthest – from Qatar in the Middle
East, and the way things are over there, who can blame him? I’m pretty
sure Jack appreciates the Kona scenery.
This was his second trip back and forth this summer. 35,463 miles
according to google. 8,865.9 miles one way.
Kinda makes my truck mileage pale in comparison, don’t it?
Third place and $52,020.00 went to Steve Spina and the Rod Bender crew.
Although there were 25 marlin caught in the BIMT, only one other team
ended up in the money. Chinese Angling Association team members Diao
Honghao and Yin Guo Chen teamed up with the crew on Blue Hawaii to take
home $8,730.00 and a huge thirst for more Kona marlin fishing. The CAA
plans to send teams to each HMT Series event in 2014.
John Gamrot of Scotland weighed a 439.5 pound blue on the last day and
Jada Van Mols brought in a 438 pounder on day three as well, but Maui
Jim kept them at a distance from the cash.
For a complete run down and final results of the 27th Annual Big Island
Marlin Tournament click here:
All of the Series Standings have also been brought up to date and posted
ONE MORE TOURNAMENT LEFT IN 2013 and it is the September Challenge,
fishing on September 13, 14 & 15.
The fish are still here too. In the 8 days since the BIMT there have
been 33 marlin caught, including a 700, 678.5, 675, 655 and a 500.
There have also been at least 35 ahi caught too, with one remarkable
load on Five Star – 11 ahi over 100 pounds in one day.
Things are still popping along the Kona Coast, so head on back for the
final chance to catch some fish and win some money at the September
After that, it will be my turn to fly and make the 4,696 mile trek down
under for some giant black marlin fishing on the great barrier reef.
Amazing, isn’t it, how many miles folks like us log looking for truly
The September Challenge has a 400 pound minimum weight requirement, and
the largest marlin will earn 70% of the purse and the second largest 30%.
Hop a plane and head on back to Kona. What’s another thousand miles to
folks like us?