Striker Team Wins 2016 St. Martin Billfish Tournament

Superb marlin fishing marks the 19th annual event

2016 St. Martin Billfish Tournament Striker winning team awards
Striker won the tournament with two blue marlin released and a 403-pound blue landed.Courtesy St. Martin Billfish Tournament

This year's St. Martin Billfish Tournament marked the closest finish in the event's 19-year history, with just three points separating first and second place. The St. Maarten-based Striker had a blue marlin release the first day, boated a 403-pound blue marlin the second day and added a third blue release on the final day of the tournament to score 1,003 points.

The second-place team, Take 7, scored 1,000 points for three blue marlin and one white marlin, all released. In third was Rum & Coke with one blue marlin release and a 613-pound blue weighed, which would be the largest of the tournament. Pescador and Yellow Whip were fourth and fifth respectively with three blue marlin releases each. For the tournament, the participating fleet of 31 boats released 21 blue marlin, five white marlin and one spearfish, with five blue marlin landed.

2016 St. Martin Billfish Tournament blue marlin underwater shot
A blue marlin on the leader just prior to being released.Courtesy St. Martin Billfish Tournament
2016 St. Martin Billfish Tournament Striker winning team
Striker won the Blue Marlin Challenge and the overall points for the tournament.Courtesy St. Martin Billfish Tournament
2016 St. Martin Billfish Tournament blue marlin release
Another blue marlin is readied for release at boatside.Courtesy St. Martin Billfish Tournament
2016 St. Martin Billfish Tournament Striker winning team with blue marlin
A 403-pound blue marlin, caught on the second day of the tournament, led the way to Striker's victory.Courtesy St. Martin Billfish Tournament
2016 St. Martin Billfish Tournament Carnivale dancers
Traditional Carnivale dancers at the awards presentation.Courtesy St. Martin Billfish Tournament
2016 St. Martin Billfish Tournament blue marlin release
Reviving a blue marlin helps ensure a healthy release.Courtesy St. Martin Billfish Tournament
2016 St. Martin Billfish Tournament Striker team
All smiles once their victory is announced, the boys on Striker begin the celebration.Courtesy St. Martin Billfish Tournament