Just two days removed from the tournament win, the Harvester welcomed Skip Sandell on the 9th and his posse put a whoppin’ on the Sailfish.
Harris ‘El Matador’ Savin kept his hot fishing streak active with a gaggle of great Sailfish releases with Captain Carlos on the 9th.
Sweet work to release these beauties alive and well.
Legendary Carolina angler Dan Johnson was fishing hard during and after the Ship of Fools tournament, and on the 9th he scored two nice Sailfish on the Explorer.
The Explorer also had Blue marlins in the spread but wouldn’t bite, and later nabbed two Groupers and other bottom fish.
“Great day with the fishing team always. Thank you. Dan Johnson”
For the fifteenth straight year the Ship of Fools Tournament attracted Costa Rica’s top anglers to Playa Garza; for the second time in three years the FishingNosara team took home the hardware.
Captain Alex Moreno on the 32-foot mega panga Harvester topped the leaderboard with 1700 points (11 Sailfish releases, one Black Marlin release, and one Blue Marlin release) during the two day event.
“Alex is the dude,” exclaimed Captain Patrick Humphrey of Ft. Lauderdale. “He has the best eyes I’ve ever seen and fishes as aggressively as we do in South Florida.”
Captain Humphrey runs trips for Lady Pamela II Sportfishing in Hollywood, FL. He was joined by wife Jennifer, daughter Amelia, and angling legend Patrick Irwin.
The Ship of Fools Tournament is one of the last true billfish release tournaments in Costa Rica. Each scoring fish must be billed and photographed by hand (no snatch-leader releases) which increases the difficultly tremendously.
On the first day of the tournament, eleven boats set out from Playa Garza and set up shop twelve miles offshore in 2100 feet of water.
Captain Alex was first boat to the spot and put three Sailfish releases on the board in the opening hours of the first day. As the rest of the field lagged behind, the mega panga hooked up a Blue Marlin for a two hour fight.
After the photograph and safe release a second Marlin entered the spread, this time a big bad Black. Captain Patrick belted up for the battle of a lifetime, conquering the fish in two-plus hour fight that saw eight leader grabs before the successful release.
“I had a trip planned for Hawaii in the winter to cross Black Marlin off my list,” said Patrick, smiling. “I guess that’s off”
Their total of 1000 points is a single day record for the event, and lost in the shuffle is that they scored the ultra-difficult Billfish Grand Slam.
The second day was just like the first, with the Harvester scoring early and often. They snagged seven more Sailfish release including one at 3:59pm, one minute before lines-out.
The Harvester’s haul is an all-time best for this tournament, eclipsing the winning score of 1200 posted two years ago by FishingNosara teammate the Explorer.
For Captain Alex it is the culmination of perseverance through years of adversity in this event. In 2011 as mate on the Wanderer he recorded 14 Sailfish releases during prefishing only to get zero during the actual event. In 2016 he had the thing won until the camera with all the proof-photos fell overboard late on the second day.
“I’m incredibly proud of what Captain Alex has done with the Harvester,” beamed Craig Sutton, founder of FishingNosara and architect of the mega panga design. “He pushed himself and his boat to the edge during months before this event.” (ed. note: The Harvester ran 47 trips in February and March)
“He has honed his instincts and advanced his craft,” Sutton continued. “Captain Alex has paid the price to reach to top of the mountain.
The FishingNosara team looks forwarded to challenging the Harvester in the 2020 Ship of Fools Tournament next April and to competing with Alex in the 1st Annual FishingNosara Invitational in early August 2019.
If you and your best anglers are ready to compete, the FishingNosara US office can be reached at 9045912161 USA or FishingNosara.com
Fresh off of his 3rd place tie, Captain Carlos got back to work after the tournament with angler David Honig reporting nice blue water Sailfish action.
Well done by this Jacksonville, FL angler!
Captain David continues to amaze with this monster Sailfish release on the diminutive 23-foot Adventurer:
The Harvester got her last tune-up trip before the tournament on April 3, and the keen-eyed Captain Alex stayed on the fish with three nice Sailfish releases.
Heather did a nice job reeling up the first Sailfish, and then Harris ‘El Matador’ Savin and his mother Maria teamed up for this Sailfish release:
David Shepardson brought a whole group of guys fishing on April 3 and they each tagged the scorecard with a total of four Sailfish releases.
Mate Kevin and Captain Carlos are an unbeatable team and they performed brilliantly on these releases.