Martin Estis and Capt. Andrew Dias on Triple Play are a very formidable team in Bermuda, having won several high-profile tournaments. This year, Martin’s 15-year-old son, Jacob, joined the team as their designated angler. In the 2016 Bermuda Big Game Classic, Jacob landed the largest fish of the tournament, a 934-pound blue marlin that also represents a possible junior angler world record. This is his story of that experience.
My father has been the angler for the last 20 years on Triple Play. This year, when I turned 15, the team decided it was my turn to be in the chair so my dad could help run the cockpit. I’ve been fishing offshore since I was 5 years old, and it seems like I learn more on each trip.
On the third day of the tournament, I was dozing in the cabin when everyone started yelling and screaming, “Big fish on the left long!” It is a Big-T lure we always have out, with a brown head and a black and yellow skirt. The marlin missed it at first, then came back a second time with a head-and-shoulders bite, and it was hooked! By the time I grabbed the rod and got set up in the chair, close to half the spool on the 130 was already gone.
Eventually I pushed the drag up to about 60 pounds, just like my father had taught me. After about an hour and 15 minutes, dad was able to get the leader. Once they announced the weight back at the docks, Dan [Jacobs, the tournament director] told us it might also be a junior angler world record. It was the fish of a lifetime, and I’m happy I got to share it with my family and friends. — As told to Sam White by Jacob Estis