Reef Cup at Key Largo's Ocean Reef Club: On the Docks

Action from out on the sailfish grounds and back at the docks.

Right after we shipped the March issue of Marlin I hopped in my truck and shot down to the beautiful Ocean Reef Club near Key Largo, Florida, to attend the final day of the prestigious Reef Cup. I arrived just in time on Friday night for the highly anticipated "Surf and Turf" meal before crews headed out the next morning for the final day of fishing. The next morning, I met up with the crew aboard the Spencer BAR South, which included Rob Gothier Jr., owner of BAR South, Jamie Bunn, tournament director of the Quest for the Crest tournament series, and Marc Granet, the driver of the Miss GEICO. The crew only released a single sailfish on each of their first two fishing days in the tournament so they had a high hopes for their final day so they could make a move on the leader board. They did just that by finishing strong with five sailfish on the final day, good enough for the daily.

The crew aboard Seraphim took first place with a total of nine sailfish. The team on Lights Out took second place with eight releases and edged out Team Sharky's Revenge/Kahuna's eight sailfish on time.

Enjoy the gallery below to see some of the action aboard BAR South as well as some of the festivities back at the docks on the final day of the fantastic tournament.

Reef Cup Sailfish 2017
The fleet awaits the call for lines in during the final day of the 2017 Reef Cup, hosted by the Ocean Reef Club.Andrew Cox
Reef Cup Sailfish 2017
Jamie Bunn, tournament director of the Quest for the Crest series, is ready to make a move on the leaderboard with a solid fishing day.Andrew Cox
Reef Cup Sailfish 2017
A boat runs the boundary looking for sailfish spraying bait and areas with clean water to start fishing.Andrew Cox
Reef Cup Sailfish 2017
When a bait gets nervous, grab the rod and be ready for the bite.Andrew Cox
Reef Cup Sailfish 2017
The crew aboard BAR South watches their spread.Andrew Cox
Reef Cup Sailfish 2017
Rob Gothier Jr, owner of BAR South, hooks the first sailfish of the day.Andrew Cox
Reef Cup Sailfish 2017
A second sailfish came up with Gothier's fish; Bunn tossed out another live bait and we were quickly hooked into a doubleheader.Andrew Cox
Reef Cup Sailfish 2017
Boats race toward BAR South after the crew released the doubleheader.Andrew Cox
Reef Cup Sailfish 2017
Kite-fishing is not allowed during the Reef Cup, so teams must fish their live baits through the riggers. It's a change of pace for a lot of tournament teams but a good way to keep a crew on their toes.Andrew Cox
Reef Cup Sailfish 2017
Gothier hooks his second fish of the day.Andrew Cox
Reef Cup Sailfish 2017
Gothier is happy to jump out to an early lead with three sailfish releases by 10 in the morning.Andrew Cox
Reef Cup Sailfish 2017
Moments later, the crew hooks another sailfish that came up quickly and began dancing on the surface.Andrew Cox
Reef Cup Sailfish 2017
Marc Granet, the driver of the Miss GEICO, hooks into his first sailfish of the day.Andrew Cox
Reef Cup Sailfish 2017
A sailfish takes flight.Andrew Cox
Reef Cup Sailfish 2017
Brett Wilson grabs the leader for the fourth release of the day for the team aboard BAR South.Andrew Cox
Reef Cup Sailfish 2017
Jamie Bunn hooks into another sailfishAndrew Cox
Reef Cup Sailfish 2017
One of the five sailfish flags flying on the rigger of BAR South.Andrew Cox
Reef Cup Sailfish 2017
BAR South won the daily on the final day and proudly displays their five release flags.Andrew Cox
Reef Cup Sailfish 2017
Hatterascal heads back to the marina after a day off Key Largo, Florida.Andrew Cox
Reef Cup Sailfish 2017
A tournament boats heads back to the marina after a successful day offshore.Andrew Cox
Reef Cup Sailfish 2017
A beautiful sunset lights up another tournament boat heading back to the marina.Andrew Cox
Reef Cup Sailfish 2017
The fleet enters the picturesque marina at the Ocean Reef Club.Andrew Cox
Reef Cup Sailfish 2017
The sight of boats lining up as they enter into the marina is something you need to see in person.Andrew Cox
Reef Cup Sailfish 2017
Lights Out and Capt. Chester Sims finished in second place with eight sailfish releases.Andrew Cox
Reef Cup Sailfish 2017
The crew aboard Sea Monkey released a sail on the final day of the tournament.Andrew Cox
Reef Cup Sailfish 2017
The crew aboard Seraphim took first place in the tournament a total of nine releases during their three days of fishing.Andrew Cox
Reef Cup Sailfish 2017
Game On returns to the marina.Andrew Cox
Reef Cup Sailfish 2017
Tar Baby, based out of Dothan, Alabama, finished the tournament with four sailfish releases.Andrew Cox
Reef Cup Sailfish 2017
The crew aboard Bottom Line came back to the marina sporting Cat in the Hat hats.Andrew Cox
Reef Cup Sailfish 2017
The crew from Team Sharky's Revenge on Kahuna finished in third place with eight sailfish releases.Andrew Cox
Reef Cup Sailfish 2017
Spectators gather at the point to welcome the boats back from a day offshore and to see the different costumes each team is wearing.Andrew Cox
Reef Cup Sailfish 2017
The crew aboard BAR South returned to port on the final day of the day with the theme of "Political BARSouth"Andrew Cox
Reef Cup Sailfish 2017
"Political BarSouth" ...Andrew Cox
Reef Cup Sailfish 2017
"Political BarSouth" ...Andrew Cox
Reef Cup Sailfish 2017
The crew aboard Coemotion knows how to have a little fun.Andrew Cox
Reef Cup Sailfish 2017
"Political BarSouth" ...Andrew Cox
Reef Cup Sailfish 2017
We'll see you next year Ocean Reef Club at the 2018 Reef Cup!Andrew Cox