The waters off Quepos, Costa Rica, were alive with hungry fish on day three of the Lucas Oil Offshore World Championship, the world’s premier saltwater fishing tournament. Competition intensified as 51 international teams released 134 billfish, including 122 Pacific sailfish and 12 blue marlin. The onslaught of billfish bites on day Three was a welcome relief — days One and Two, billfish release totals were both in the 70s.
Team Torneio Marlin do Rio de Janeiro (Brazil) had a banner day aboard the boat Epic, topping all other teams, and extending their overall lead in the tournament. Releasing seven sailfish and one blue marlin, plus weighing in a 55.7-pound dorado, the team racked up 1,955.7 points in a single day.
Team Torneio de Pesca de Santo Andre (Brazil) slid into second place overall after releasing five sailfish aboard Reel Escape on Day Three. Team Torneio de Canavieiras (Brazil) released eight sailfish and weighed in a 58.9-pound dolphin aboard Big Eye II to score 1,658.9 points on the day and to take third overall.
Dorado, yellowfin tuna and wahoo were all weighed in at the docks on day three, with one dorado surpassing 60 pounds. The 62.6-pound fish, caught by Sam Worden, of Team 2011 Offshore World Champions (United States), beat out five other dorado in the 50-pound range. In total, 12 dorado were weighed on the day.
Two wahoo were weighed in by Team 56th Montego Bay International Marlin Tournament (Jamaica) during the dockside social at Marina Pez Vela. The largest — a 31.1- pounder caught by Charlie (Omar) Johnson — leads the category overall. The only yellowfin tuna weighed in on day three was a 29.7-pounder, caught by Mikal Nolan, of Team GFA of PNG National Titles (Papua New Guinea), tied for heaviest tuna in the tournament.
Top angler after three days of fishing is Elisangela Pina, of Team XIV Billfish Challenge (Angola). Her 1,700 points from six Pacific sailfish and one blue marlin beat out all other individual performances, although a number of anglers are nipping at her heels. Expect this competition to heat up on the final day of the tournament.
Top boat captain after three days is Michael Alligood aboard Epic with 3355.7 points. In three days of fishing with three different teams, his boat released 14 Pacific sailfish, one blue marlin and weighed in a 55.7-pound dorado.
The last day of the 2018 Offshore World Championship fishing occurs Thursday, April 19, from 7:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. Final awards for top teams, anglers and boat captains—plus prizes for heaviest fish—will be presented during the awards gala on Friday, April 20 at Marina Pez Vela.