The 52nd Hawaiian International Billfish Tournament
July 25-29, 2011

2010 Final Fishing Day Update!

Video by Brandon Sakamoto

big marlin
Out of the Blue angler Ted Morikawa and Miss Billfish Sonja Ascino

KONA GAME FISHING CLUB-KUSATSU WINS 51ST HAWAIIAN INTERNATIONAL BILLFISH TOURNAMENT

BOYD DECOITO TOP SKIPPER

KONA, HAWAII—“Stop fishing, stop fishing, stop fishing,” rang out at exactly 4:30pm for the final time this week and with those words the 51st running of the Hawaiian International Billfish Tournament came to a close.

The final day of this five-day tournament kept ra control on the edge of its radio as captains, crews and highly competitive teams trolled for valuable tournament points.

“Mahalo to the entire Big Island community for extending such warmth and aloha to the international fishing community this week,” said HIBT founder Peter Fithian. “Twenty eight teams out of thirty one scored points and we are happy about that. It was certainly another great tournament.”

This year’s HIBT Governor’s Trophy and first place goes to Kona Game Fishing Club-Kusatsu. Fishing aboard Kila Kila today, captained by long-time Kona skipper Teddy Hoogs, KGFC earned another 300 points. This team has fished consistently all week putting points on the scoreboard every day. By 8:30 am this morning angler Hiroyuki Murakami had tagged an estimated 200-pound Pacific blue marlin. Kona Game Fishing Club-Kusatsu finished this year’s tournament with 2,129 points!

But the story of the tournament goes to HIBT team #8 Out Of The Blue from Waianae, Oahu. Fishing today aboard the Miss Mojo, captained by Tio Kearney, angler Ted Morikawa boated a whopping 779-pound Pacific blue marlin, earning his team second place in this year’s HIBT. “I’ve been fishing in the HIBT for three years and I guess you could say three’s a charm,” said Morikawa. “Captain Kearney encouraged us to fish on live bait. We set up the bait, trolled for a bit and bingo!” As the largest fish of the day and the tournament, Out Of The Blue finished with 1479 points on the scoreboard. 

Top Captain

Boyd DeCoito, captain of the 46’ Foxy Lady, won the Hawaiian International Billfish Tournament’s coveted Henry Chee Award. The perpetual 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. The award’s namesake, a pioneer marlin fisherman who set an unprecedented number of gamefish catch records, helped establish the Kona coast as a world-famous fishing destination. DeCoito has won two Henry Chee awards as captain and one as crew. 

“I have been fishing HIBT since I was about twelve years old,” said DeCoito. “So you could say I grew up with this tournament. This week I knew I wanted to fish south in an area called Uniform. It performed for us all week long. We had great teams fishing with us who relied on our experience and knowledge.” Fishing as crew for DeCoito were Sam Choy, Jr. and Russ Nita.

Next year’s 52nd Annual Hawaiian International Billfish Tournament is scheduled for July 24–July 30, with fishing days from July 25-29, 2011. Anglers and teams are invited to apply early as a full tournament is anticipated. Log onto www.hibtfishing.com for details.

hugging a big marlin
Out of the Blue angler Ted Morikawa  hugs
largest fish of the 2010 HIBT

DAILY CATCH (Friday)
8
Pacific blue marlin tagged & released
1
Pacific blue marlin weighed
2
Short nose spearfish tagged & released

HIBT FIVE-DAY WEEK TOTAL
38
Pacific blue marlin tagged & released
8  
Pacific blue marlin weighed
3
Striped marlin tagged & released
13
Short nose spearfish tagged & released
1
Sailfish
2
Ahi boated

FINAL TEAM STANDINGS
Place
Team
Points
1
Kona Game Fishing Club-Kusatsu, Japan
2129
2
Out Of The Blue Fishing Club, Hawaii  
1479
3
Laguna Niguel Billfish Club #2, California
1300
4 Olypian Dream Fishing Club, Japan 1298
5
Hilton Grand Vacations Fishing Club, Japan
1258
6
Game Fishing Club of South Australia
1100
7
Bay of Islands Swordfish Club#1, New Zealand 
989
8
Aussie Invaders, Australia
950
9
Malibu Marlin Club, California
890
10
Team KGFA-Korean Game Fishing Association
820

CAPTAIN STANDINGS
Place Captain Boat Points
1 Boyd DeCoito Foxy Lady 1700
2 Tio Kearney Miss Mojo 1629
3 Guy Terwilliger Malolo 1489
4 Matt LoSasso Last Chance 1429
5 Mike DeRego Maggie Joe 1050
6 Jason Holtz Marlin Magic 1008
7 Lance Gelman Long Ranger 1000
8 Chuck Wilson Fire Hatt 990
9 Kevin Hibbard JR’s Hooker 927
10 Kevin Nakamaru Northern Lights 920

HIBT Day 2 Update!

Video by Brandon Sakamoto

HILTON GRAND VACATIONS FISHING CLUB – JAPAN TAKES THE LEAD
HIBT Day 2


Kailua-Kona, Hawaii – It only took 43 minutes for HIBT angler Hidemi Hayashi to land the only boated fish of the day. Hayashi caught a 531pound Pacific blue marlin on day two of the Hawaiian International Billfish Tournament (HIBT). Hilton Grand Vacations Fishing Club –Japan knows the importance of landing big fish; this team won the 2007 HIBT.

Fishing aboard Marlin Magic, captained by Jason Holtz, Hayashi fought a good fight. “We were fishing way down south. The fish did not take out a lot of line, which made for some quick time,” said Captain Holtz. “At the back of the boat, she was jumping and splashing. It felt like being in a rodeo!”

And with three minutes left before the end of fishing, Marlin Magic radioed again to headquarters “Team 19 hooked up.” Hilton Grand Vacations Fishing Club –Japan teammate and fellow angler Shuu Yamaguchi then proceeded to tag a Short Nose Spearfish, propelling the team to first place.   

There was also one that got away today. At 11am, Team Lantana hooked up to a feisty Pacific blue marlin. But after nearly five hours of fighting a good fight, the fish broke the line and swam away. “Your fingers are crossed for anglers who are out there fighting fish,” said Peter Fithian, tournament founder. “Today one got away. Tomorrow is day three and with 9 hours of solid sportfishing along the famous Kona Coast, we will wait and see how that story plays out.” 

The women anglers of HIBT spoke up today. Janice Allen, Whangaroa Game Fishing Club from New Zealand, tagged and released an estimated 160 pound Pacific blue marlin on 50-pound test in an impressive 37 minutes, putting points on the score board for her team.
A key component of the strict tournament rules is the tag and release rule.

Tag points often become an important strategy in gaining valuable team points. Boat a fish under 300 pounds, no HIBT points. Tag a fish under 300 pounds and release it back into the ocean, earn your team valuable HIBT points.  Before that happens, captains, crew and teams must quickly be able to estimate the weight of the fish, often during the heated battle of reeling in the fish. This is where experience and knowledge come into play. Most Kona captains and their crews will tell you that estimating the weight of a fish is done quickly as the fish nears the back of the boat. As an example, if the length of the fish is thought to be more than 99 inches you have a 300 plus pound fish. This is called the short measure. HIBT teams rely on the extensive knowledge of captain and crew to determine the estimated weight of each hook-up.

But perhaps the spirit of the tournament was best expressed today by Old South Marlin Club #2 angler Ken Onion. “This is my second fish this week! I’m having a great time fishing here at the HIBT.”

By the end of day two of the Hawaiian International Billfish Tournament twelve fish were caught and all but one were tagged and released.

The Hawaiian International Billfish Tournament is underwritten by the generosity of the County of Hawaii and sponsored in part by KWXX Radio and numerous corporate and community donors.


DAILY CATCH (Tuesday)
9Pacific blue marlin tagged & released
1Pacific blue marlin weighed
1Striped marlin tagged & released
1Short nose spearfish tagged & released
HIBT WEEK TOTAL
19Pacific blue marlin tagged & released
3Pacific blue marlin weighed
1Striped marlin tagged & released
3Short nose spearfish tagged & released
1Ahi boated
TEAM STANDINGS
PlaceTeamPoints
1Hilton Grand Vacations Fishing Club, Japan10082
2Game Fishing Club of South Australia900
3Olympian Dream Fishing Club, Japan 627
CAPTAIN STANDINGS
PlaceCaptainBoatPoints
1Boyd DeCoitoFoxy Lady 1200
2Jason HoltzMarlin Magic 1008
3Kevin HibbardJR’s Hooker927
4Lance GelmanLong Ranger900
*Note: in the event of point ties, place standings are determined by the time the fish is boated.

HIBT Day 1 Update!

Video by Brandon Sakamoto

START FISHING, START FISHING, START FISHING!
51ST HAWAIIAN INTERNATIONAL BILLFISH TOURNAMENT GETS UNDERWAY

HIBT Day 1
Olympian Dream Fishing Club  Team Captain and Angler  Yasuhiko Kagabu Hawaiian International Billfish Tournament's 2010 Miss Billfish, Sonja Ascino JR's Hooker Crew David Crawford

Kona, Hawaii
(Monday, August 1, 2010) - "Start fishing, start fishing, start fishing!" In keeping with the legendary phrase which began more than fifty years ago, HIBT opened day one of the 51st Hawaiian International Billfish Tournament (HIBT) at exactly 7:30am Monday morning.

Thirty-one teams including five teams from Australia and Japan, four teams from New Zealand, and teams from Canada, Korea, Papua New Guinea, South Africa, and Tahiti along with U.S. teams from California, Hawaii, Florida and North Carolina are all hoping to capture the prestigious HIBT Governor’s Trophy. The Governor’s Trophy is a perpetual trophy awarded to the team scoring the highest number of Billfish points in the tournament. Past winners include:

2009 Kona Game Fishing Club-Bellhope, Japan
2008 Laguna Niguel Billfish Club, California
2007 Hilton Grand Vacations Fishing Club, Japan
2006 Malibu Marlin Club, California
2005 Team Bahamas

As Monday morning went on and before the noon tournament roundup, teams had reported eleven fish hooked. At 10:06am, fishing aboard Northern Lights, the Korea Game Fish Association had a double hook-up. Not quite ready for the double, the team disqualified the first marlin and concentrated on boating the second hook-up. In just 50 minutes, angler Kim Sung Su had boated a 390-pound Pacific blue marlin, winning his team valuable tournament points. “This is my best personal record catch,” said Sung Su. “And it’s only the first day of the HIBT!”

Just before noon, Olympian Dream Fishing Club from Japan, fishing aboard JR’s Hooker captained by Kevin Hibbard, boated a 395-pound Pacific blue marlin. Team captain and angler Yasuhiko Kagabu took just under an hour to boat his marlin. “The team fished on 50-pound test and caught the marlin on a lure they brought from Japan. Team captain and angler Yasuhiko took his time and brought the fish in nice and slow,” said Captain Hibbard. “He was an excellent angler.”

Laguna Niguel Billfish Club rounded out the day by boating a 175-pound ahi, (Yellow Fin Tuna). As lucky as he is, angler Bob Dudley who has caught and boated large marlin in previous HIBT tournaments, had a surprise when the ahi appeared at the back of the boat. “We did not know we had an ahi. We played it like there was a marlin on the other end of the line,” said Dudley. “This ahi was a tough fighting fish! Tomorrow, I want to go catch a marlin.”

By the end of day one, eleven teams had put valuable points on the scoreboard with fifteen catches including three boated fish and twelve fish tagged and released.

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

The Hawaiian International Billfish Tournament is underwritten by the generosity of the County of Hawaii and sponsored in part by KWXX Radio and numerous corporate and community donors.

DAILY CATCH (Monday-Day One)
10Pacific blue marlin tagged & release
2Pacific blue marlin weighed
2Short nose spearfish tagged & release
1Ahi (Yellow Fin Tuna)
TEAM STANDINGS
PlaceTeamPoints
1Game Fishing Club of South Australia900
2Olympian Dream Fishing Club625
3Old South Marlin Club #1600
4Team KGFA-Korean Game Fish Assoc.519
CAPTAIN STANDINGS
PlaceCaptainBoatPoints
1Lance GelmanLong Ranger900
2Kevin HibbardJR's Hooker625
3Boyd DeCoitoFoxy Lady 600
4Kevin NakamaruNorthern Lights519
*Note: In the event of point ties, place standings are determined by the time the fish is boated.

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Future HIBT Dates:

2011 - July 24 - July 30, with fishing days from July 25-29

2012 - August 12 - August 18, with fishing days from August 13-17

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