Miss Billfish Application

The 58th Annual Hawaiian International Billfish Tournament
Saturday September 9, 2017 - Sunday September 17, 2017

Surfside Marina - Team Miss Behavin Wins 2017 HIBT
Henry Chee Award For Top Captain Goes To 5-Time Winner Jeff Fay


Surfside Marina - Team Miss Behavin congratulates each other on Final Day as the winners

Kona, Hawaii (Friday Final, September 15, 2017) – After moving in and out of the top spot on the leaderboard throughout the week, Surfside Marina - Team Miss Behavin wins the 2017 Hawaiian International Billfish Tournament. Team members include Captain David Finkelstein and anglers Stephen “Montauck” Weitzen and Jon Niiyama.

Surfside Marina - Team Miss Behavin> is perhaps new to the iconic Kona fishing tournament but definitely not new to fishing. Coming to Kona to fish the HIBT has been a collective dream for this team and their tag and release on the final day sealed the win. Surfside Marina - Team Miss Behavin’s tag and release strategy kept them on the leaderboard all week and propelled the team to victory in its first appearance at the tournament.

On the final day of the tournament, Surfside Marina - Team Miss Behavin headed south aboard the 45-foot >Silky. In under two hours, team captain David Finkelstein successfully tagged and released an estimated 125-pound Pacific blue marlin in an impressive 8 minutes. These valuable tag and release points secured their win for the Texas-based team.

“It was our team’s dream to fish this tournament. To come here the first time and win it is pretty special,” said David Finkelstein. Fellow angler Stephen Weitzen who earlier in the week garnered tag and release points for the team noted how special Kona is and the people that make this tournament happen. “The win hasn’t really sunk in yet, but we are so thrilled to have been a part of all of this.”

Surfside Marina - Team Miss Behavin topped the leaderboard with 1,300 points. Three teams finished with 900 points. Tournament judges break ties by determining which team got to 900 points first. Japan’s Core Marlin Club took second place, Old South Marlin Club – International in third place, and New Britain Game Fishing Club climbed the leaderboard to finish fourth.

Jeff Fay Wins Henry Chee Award For Fifth Time
Captain Jeff Fay will again be added to the coveted list of Hawaiian International Billfish Tournament Henry Chee Award recipients. The Henry Chee Award was established in 1965 to honor the charter boat captain upon whose vessel the most number of billfish points have been scored at HIBT.

Captain Jeff Fay, earning an impressive 1,700 points, rewrites the HIBT record book again by winning Henry Chee Award for the fifth time. Jeff Fay fished with his son and crewmember Brett Fay aboard the 37-foot Humdinger.

In second place Kila Kila’s Captain Brian Wargo earned 1,350 points and Ihu Nui I’s Captain McGrew Rice took third place with 1,100 points.

“To our elected officials and sponsors, thank you for continuing to support the Kona Coast as a world-class big game fishing destination. To the anglers from around the world who travel here to fish our famous waters, thank you for your competitive spirit. To the Hawaii Island community, thank you for sharing your aloha with the fishing world since 1959,” said HIBT founder Peter Fithian.

Next year’s 59th Annual Hawaiian International Billfish Tournament is slated for August 4 through 12, 2018. Anglers and teams are invited to apply for entry as a full tournament is anticipated. Learn more at >www.hibtfishing.com.

TEAM STANDINGS POINTS
(inc bonus)
Surfside Marina-Team Miss Behavin , USA 1300
Core Marlin Club, Japan 900
Old South Marlin Club-International 900
New Britain Game Fishing Club, Papua New Guinea 900
Newport Game Fish Club, Australia 850
Kona Game Fishing Club-Osaka, Japan 850
Malibu Marlin Club, USA 786.6
Pajaro Valley Gamefishing Club, USA 650
Olympian Dream Fishing Club, Japan 600
Old South Marlin Club-Masters, USA 600
Mermaid Anglers Club-Team Saegusa, Japan 600
Kona Game Fishing Club-Kusatsu 550
Mission Bay Marlin Club , USA 550
South African Deep Sea Angling Assoc. 550
Hilton Grand Vacations Fishing Club-Ohana, Japan 400
Bay of Islands Swordfishing Club, New Zealand 300
Moreton Bay Game Fish Club, Australia 300
TOP BOATS CAPTAIN POINTS
(inc bonus)
Humdinger Jeff Fay 1700
Kila Kila Brian Wargo 1350
Ihu Nui I McGrew Rice 1100
Silky John Bagwell 900
Northern Lights II Kevin Nakamaru 900
Lightspeed Rob Ellyn 900
Kona Blue David Crawford 600
High Flyer Guy Terwilliger 600
EZ Pickens Chuck Wigzell 600
Bomboy’s Toy Bomboy Llanes 600
Anxious Neal Isaacs 600
Topshape Al Gustavson 300
Maverick Trevor Child 250
Kona Concept Kerwin Masunaga 100

SURFSIDE MARINA - TEAM MISS BEHAVIN RETAKES LEAD
CORE MARLIN CLUB AND OLD SOUTH MARLIN CLUB - INTERNATIONAL A CLOSE SECOND


Four-time HIBT Henry Chee Award recipient Captain Jeff Fay, Humdinger

Kona, Hawaii (Thursday, September 14, 2017) – It shouldn’t come as a surprise to anyone that when you pair Kona’s great fishing grounds with competitive gamefish anglers and many of the world’s most experienced charter boat captains you’ll catch fish. Mid-September fishing at the 58th Annual Hawaiian International Billfish Tournament is proving to be better than expected through four days of fishing with 32 billfish tagged and released, a Pacific blue marlin over 486-pounds boated and two ahi caught.

With one more day of tournament fishing remaining, every team but one has posted points on the leaderboard.

Surfside Marina – Team Miss Behavin tagged and released its way back to the top of the leaderboard with 1,000 points. David Finkelstein fishing aboard the 47-foot Northern Lights II, tagged and released an estimated 140-pound Pacific blue marlin with less than an hour to go before the stop fishing call.

New Players Move Up Leaderboard
After a pulled hook earlier in the day, Old South Marlin Club – International angler Jason Boger tagged and released an estimated 130-pound Pacific blue marlin in just 11 minutes to garner the needed points to move into a second place tie with yesterday’s leader Core Marlin Club. Both clubs now have 900 points on the leaderboard.

Newport Game Fish Club climbed into contention with 850 points with two tags today. A mere eight minutes after start fishing began, Newport Game Fish Club, fishing aboard 37-foot Humdinger, hooked up with the first Pacific blue marlin of the day. Ten minutes later, team captain and angler David Trask successfully tagged and released an estimated 150-pounder. A few hours later, team angler and David’s son, Bryce Trask took just one minute to tag and release his estimated 75-pound Pacific blue marlin. Both tags propelled Newport Game Fish Club into the fourth place spot.

"Teams are very aware of how close the standings are and what it will take to win the tournament," said HIBT Founder Peter Fithian. "HIBT anglers and the highly skilled captains of Kona's fishing fleet will tackle tomorrow’s final day of fishing with everything they’ve got."

Another Henry Chee Award In Sight
The perpetual Henry Chee Award was established in 1965 to honor the charter boat captain having the most number of billfish points have been scored on his boat during the HIBT. The award’s namesake, a pioneer fishing captain, set an unprecedented number of gamefish catch records and helped establish the Kona coast as a world-famous fishing destination.

Each year, the Hawaiian International Billfish Tournament awards the coveted Henry Chee Award to the captain and crew with the largest number of billfish points scored. The Henry Chee Award scoreboard has been a story unfolding this week. After four days of fishing, Captain Jeff Fay and his son and crewmember Brett Fay sit soundly in first place with 1,400 points and are poised to take the coveted award again.

If Jeff Fay’s name sounds familiar, it might be because he’s won the Henry Chee Award more than anyone else. He started fishing in the HIBT in 1966 and has won the title a total of four times, in 1971,1977,1993 and again in 2006.

TEAM STANDINGS POINTS
(inc bonus)
Surfside Marina-Team Miss Behavin , USA 1000
Core Marlin Club, Japan 900
Old South Marlin Club-International 900
Newport Game Fish Club, Australia 850
Malibu Marlin Club, USA 686.6
Mission Bay Marlin Club , USA 550
South African Deep Sea Angling Assoc. 550
Kona Game Fishing Club-Kusatsu 550
Kona Game Fishing Club-Osaka, Japan 550
Pajaro Valley Gamefishing Club, USA 400
Hilton Grand Vacations Fishing Club-Ohana, Japan 400
Mermaid Anglers Club-Team Saegusa, Japan 300
Bay of Islands Swordfishing Club, New Zealand 300
New Britain Game Fishing Club, Papua New Guinea 300
Old South Marlin Club-Masters, USA 300
Olympian Dream Fishing Club, Japan 300
Moreton Bay Game Fish Club, Australia 300
TOP BOATS CAPTAIN POINTS
(inc bonus)
Humdinger Jeff Fay 1400
Kila Kila Brian Wargo 1050
Northern Lights II Kevin Nakamaru 900
Lightspeed Rob Ellyn 900
Ihu Nui I McGrew Rice 850
Silky John Bagwell 600
High Flyer Guy Terwilliger 600
Anxious Neal Isaacs 600
Topshape Al Gustavson 300
Kona Blue David Crawford 300
EZ Pickens Chuck Wigzell 300
Bomboy’s Toy Bomboy Llanes 300
Maverick Trevor Child 250
Kona Concept Kerwin Masunaga 100



JAPAN’S CORE MARLIN CLUB JUMPS BACK INTO LEAD
MALIBU MARLIN CLUB BOATS 486-POUND PACIFIC BLUE MARLIN ON DAY 3

Malibu Marlin Club members enjoy photo with Buzz’s catch.
L to R: Sam Spinello, Fred Duerr, Steve Spina, angler Buzz Colton, Miss Billfish Kelina Wolfe, Steve Chow and HIBT Founding Director Peter Fithian.

Kona, Hawaii (Wednesday, September 13, 2017) – After three days of tournament fishing, the top two teams exchanged scoring positions today with Japan’s Core Marlin Club jumping ahead of yesterday’s leader Surfside Marina-Team Miss Behavin. Several teams are within striking distance with Core Marlin Club leading the tournament by a mere 200 points.

The third day of tournament fishing action netted one boated 486.6-pound Pacific blue marlin, a boated 125-pound ahi (yellowfin tuna) and 5 other Pacific blue marlin were tagged and released.

Catch of the Day
The catch of the day is Malibu Marlin Club's big fish. Fishing aboard the 35-foot Rod Bender and having just recovered from quadruple bypass surgery earlier this summer, angler Buzz Colton came along this year to support his team and not fish. But that’s not what happened today. Buzz was reeling in a line because one of the other team anglers was fighting a fish.

“The lure got ten feet from the back of the boat and this big marlin came up and jumped it. I’m reeling so now I’m stuck and had to take it on,” said a tired but happy Buzz Colton. Note, IGFA rules do not allow an angler to pass off a rod once he touches it. Buzz was now committed and four hours and 22 minutes later, he boated a 486.6-pound Pacific blue marlin—the first caught and boated billfish of the tournament. "Although I've caught billfish elsewhere, this fish means the most to me because I was born and raised here in Hawaii."

Second Ahi Caught by Bomboy’s Toy,
Less than a half hour after the start of today's tournament, Japan's Kona Game Fishing Club-Osaka reported a hook-up on the Bomboy’s Toy. Team captain and angler Keiji Matsuba successfully boated a 125-pound ahi in just 27 minutes, exactly 10 minutes less than yesterday’s ahi catch by the same boat.

Tight Leaderboard
Less than 300 points separate the top four places on the HIBT tournament leaderboard with Core Marlin Club leading the way with 900 points followed by Surfside Marina-Team Miss Behavin with 700 points, Malibu Marlin Club with 686.6 and Old South Marlin Club-International with 600 points. Only two days remain in this iconic tournament and it’s anyone’s tournament to win.

TEAM STANDINGS POINTS
(inc bonus)
Core Marlin Club, Japan 900
Surfside Marina-Team Miss Behavin , USA 700
Malibu Marlin Club, USA 686.6
Old South Marlin Club-International 600
Mission Bay Marlin Club , USA 500
South African Deep Sea Angling Assoc. 550
Kona Game Fishing Club-Kusatsu 550
Kona Game Fishing Club-Osaka, Japan 550
Bay of Islands Swordfishing Club, New Zealand 300
New Britain Game Fishing Club, Papua New Guinea 300
Newport Game Fish Club, Australia 300
Old South Marlin Club-Masters, USA 300
Olympian Dream Fishing Club, Japan 300
Pajaro Valley Gamefishing Club, USA 300
Moreton Bay Game Fish Club, Australia 300
Hilton Grand Vacations Fishing Club-Ohana, Japan 100
TOP BOATS CAPTAIN POINTS
(inc bonus)
Kila Kila Brian Wargo 950
Lightspeed Rob Ellyn 900
Ihu Nui I McGrew Rice 850
Humdinger Jeff Fay 850
Northern Lights II Kevin Nakamaru 600
Anxious Neal Isaacs 600
Topshape Al Gustavson 300
Silky John Bagwell 300
Kona Blue David Crawford 300
High Flyer Guy Terwilliger 300
EZ Pickens Chuck Wigzell 300
Kona Concept Kerwin Masunaga 100



SURFSIDE MARINA-TEAM MISS BEHAVIN TAKES THE LEAD ON DAY TWO

Surfside Marina-Team Miss Behavin capture their two-tag and release and top of the scoreboard.

Kona, Hawaii (Tuesday, September 12, 2017) - The leaderboard continued to heat up on this second day of the 58th Annual Hawaiian International Billfish Tournament (HIBT) as a new leader emerged. USA's Surfside Marina–Team Miss Behavin surged into the lead with 700 points.

It was a near perfect Day Two of fishing in Kona's waters. The top teams are locked in a very tight race with almost every team logging points on the leaderboard.

"Eighty three percent of our HIBT teams have already posted points on the leaderboard and we’ve only just completed two days of tournament fishing," said HIBT Founder Peter Fithian. "With so much angler action, any team could pull ahead in the days to come."

New Leader After Day Two
Surfside Marina–Team Miss Behavin moved to the top of the leaderboard with the only double tag and release of the day aboard 45-foot Ihu Nui I. Angler and Team Captain David Finkelstein fought an estimated 250-pound Pacific blue marlin for only 8 minutes before tagging and releasing the fish.

Surfside Marina angler Steve Weitzen tagged and released a second Pacific blue marlin estimated at 150 pounds in 15 minutes. The team chose this second blue marlin to launch an electronic satellite tag as part of the International Game Fish Association's (IGFA) Great Marlin Race. This partnership between the IGFA, HIBT and Stanford University pairs recreational anglers with cutting-edge science to learn more about the basic biology of marlin and how they utilize the open ocean habitat. These pop up archival tags increase understanding of where these animals go and how they use the pelagic ecosystem.

"I'm from New York and as a child growing up on the East Coast I looked at black and white photos of the anglers fishing in the HIBT," said angler Stephen Weitzen. "My whole life, where other kids wanted to be an astronaut or fireman, I always wanted to go fish the HIBT! And I'm just so happy to be here." The Surfside Marina–Team Miss Behavin team strategy going into mid-week is to have a good time fishing no matter what happens.

Tag and Release
Day Two saw eight Pacific blue marlin tagged and released. The tag and release strategy captures valuable points for teams and boat captains. Through two days of HIBT fishing, all billfish have been tagged and released. With conservation in mind and no points awarded for fish boated under 300 pounds, quick action, estimations and measurements are made by captains, crew and angler to garner the most points.

First Ahi Caught
Fishing aboard the 38-foot Bomboy's Toy, Pajaro Valley Gamefish Club reported a hook-up a little after noon and boated the first ahi of this year's tournament. Angler Tony Campos successfully boated a 111.8-pound ahi in just 37 minutes.

Mission Bay Marlin Club angler Heidi McBride put her team on the scoreboard with a tagged Pacific blue marlin estimated at 175 pounds. Heidi fought the fish for 17 minutes before deploying the second electronic satellite tag in the tournament. She holds the distinction of being the first woman angler to score team points at this year's HIBT. Mission Bay Marlin Club's husband and wife team fished aboard the 53-foot Kila Kila.

HIBT Day Two

TEAM STANDINGSPOINTS
(inc bonus)
Suraside Marina-Team Miss Behavin , USA 700
Core Marlin Club, Japan 600
South African Deep Sea Angling Assoc. 550
Pajaro Valley Gamefishing Club, USA 300
Olympian Dream Fishing Club, Japan 300
Old South Marlin Club-Masters, USA 300
Old South Marlin Club-International 300
Newport Game Fish Club, Australia 300
New Britain Game Fishing Club, Papua New Guinea 300
Moreton Bay Game Fish Club, Australia 300
Mission Bay Marlin Club , USA 300
Kona Game Fishing Club-Osaka, Japan 300
Bay of Islands Swordfishing Club, New Zealand 300
Malibu Marlin Club, USA 100
Hilton Grand Vacations Fishing Club-Ohana, Japan 100
TOP BOATSCAPTAINPOINTS (inc bonus)
Humdinger Jeff Fay 850
Northern Lights II Kevin Nakamaru 600
Lightspeed Rob Ellyn 600
Ihu Nui I McGrew Rice 600
Anxious Neal Isaacs 600
Kila Kila Brian Wargo 400
Topshape Al Gustavson 300
Silky John Bagwell 300
High Flyer Guy Terwilliger 300
EZ Pickens Chuck Wigzell 300
Rod Bender Kerwin Masunaga 100
Kona Concept Steve Spina 100



58th HAWAIIAN INTERNATIONAL BILLFISH TOURNAMENT STARTS FISHING
JAPAN AND SOUTH AFRICA BATTLE FOR FIRST

2017 Miss Billfish, Kelina Wolfe and Core Marlin Club of Japan enjoy the team's tag and release on Kailua Pier.

Kona, Hawaii (Monday, September 11, 2017) - After an unusual early morning light rain in Kona, Kahu Danny Akaka began with a moment of silence to honor those lost on 9/11 and a Hawaiian blessing.

Teams from around the world gathered on the starting line as the 58th Hawaiian International Billfish Tournament (HIBT) got underway with their legendary call to "Start fishing, start fishing, start fishing!" And with that, competitive teams representing Australia, Japan, New Zealand, Papua New Guinea, South Africa, and the USA began a five-day fishing marathon in Kona's famous waters.

Early Morning Action
By the mid-morning radio round-up, six teams reported Pacific blue marlin and spearfish tagged and released. The first tag on the scoreboard arrived in just over 60 minutes after the start when Pajaro Valley Gamefish Club, fishing aboard the 47-foot Light Speed, reported its first tagged Pacific blue marlin. Angler Tony Campos successfully tagged the estimated 225 pounder in just under 18 minutes. Four minutes later, defending champion Malibu Marlin Club put valuable points on the scoreboard when angler Stephen Chow tagged a spearfish estimated at 30 pounds.

Japan's Core Marlin Club Leads After Day One
As the fishing continued throughout Day One, it was Japan's Core Marlin Club who landed on top of the leader board with 600 points. Fishing aboard the 47-foot Northern Lights II, angler Toshihiro Honda tagged and released an estimated 160-pound Pacific blue marlin in an impressive 20 minutes. Just after the noon round-up angler Kenkichi Miyauchi scored this team’s second tag and release with a Pacific blue marlin estimated at 120 pounds.

Day One yielded a tight race with only 50 points separating first and second places.
Claiming second place with 550 points, South Africa's Deep Sea Angling Association Team spent the day fishing aboard the classic 37-foot Humdinger. Team Captain Phillip Marx tagged and released an estimated 175-pound Pacific blue marlin on 80-pound test line, putting priceless points on the board. Nearly two hours later, angler Mike Ross tagged another Pacific blue marlin estimated at 175 pounds using 50-pound test line in just 12 minutes.

As Day One of the Hawaiian International Billfish Tournament wrapped, nine teams were on the scoreboard with 11 Pacific blue marlin and short-nosed spearfish.

The prestigious five-day Hawaiian International Billfish Tournament continues through Friday, September 15, 2017.

Note: To preserve the thrill of big game fishing for future generations, HIBT teams do not receive points for any Pacific blue marlin under 300 pounds that are boated. Teams are awarded points for these billfish that are tagged and released.

For more tournament information, including IGFA world-records, rules and entry information, log on to www.hibtfishing.com.

HIBT Day One

TEAM STANDINGSPOINTS
(inc bonus)
Core Marlin Club, Japan 600
South African Deep Sea Angling Assoc. 550
Pajaro Valley Gamefishing Club, USA 300
Old South Marlin Club-Masters, USA 300
Moreton Bay Game Fish Club, Auguststralia 300
Bay of Islands Swordfishing Club, New Zealand 300
Surfside Marina-Team Miss Behavin, USA 100
Malibu Marlin Club, USA 100
Hilton Grand Vacations Fishing Club-Ohana, Japan 100
TOP BOATSCAPTAINPOINTS
(inc bonus)
Northern Lights Kevin Nakamaru 600
Humdinger Jeff Fay 550
Topshape Al Gustavson 300
Silky John Bagwell 300
Lightspeed Rob Ellyn 300
Anxious Neal Isaacs 300
Rod Bender Kerwin Masunaga 100
Kona Concept Steve Spina 100
Kila Kila Brian Wargo 100

For inquiries, questions and information, please contact the HIBT office at or phone 808-836-1723