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Abaco Islands Bahamas 2016

Sailfish caught during 2015 Custom Shootout

Hit N Run's estimated 500 lb blue marlin was the fourth fish tagged in the race; photo by James Turner

2015 Custom Shootout Convoy

Que Mas was the second boat to release a tag in the race

2015 Custom Shootout Convoy

Plane Simple was the third boat to release a tag in the race

Sailfish caught during 2015 Custom Shootout

Hit N' Run was the fourth boat to release a tag in the race; photo by Leah Baumwell







Abaco Islands, Bahamas 2016 Race Start

JULY 2016 -- The 2016-2017 IGMR season officially kicked off two months ago in the North Atlantic with the first IGMR event of the year: The 2016 Custom Shootout where, for the third year in a row, tags were generously sponsored for deployment.

The first tag was deployed on an estimated 79 kg (175 lb) blue marlin on May 12, 2016 by Casey Shea after a 15-minute fight with angler and tag sponsor Mike Bozzuto while fishing aboard his boat My Love with Captain Billie Elliot. After recording data for two months on the blue, the tag popped up a linear distance of 361 nautical miles (nm) northwest from where it was deployed. Mike graciously sponsored a tag during the inaugural 2014 Bahamas IGMR where he took second place in the race, and we are so pleased he joined again for the 2016 race.

Three days later, the second tag was deployed on an estimated 57 kg (125) blue after an eight-minute bout with angler Jimmy Whitley while fishing with Que Mas' Captain Billie Elliot. On July 18, the tag popped up about 150 nm NE of Barbuda, recording a point to point distance of 990 nm in just 65 days! This is the second year in a row that Que Mas owner and tag sponsor Wally Whitley has sponsored a tag for the IGMR

Six days later, in the morning of May 20, 2016, sponsor Jim Jensen fought an estimated 113 kg (250 lb) blue marlin that Noah Beaman released with the third satellite tag of the race. Plane Simple Captain Jimmy Werling stated on the data sheet that "it was a perfect tag" and the "fish swam away with no issues". The tag is due up January 15, 2017, and we hope he swims far!

One month later, on June 26, 2016, while fishing off of Cat Island in the Bahamas, James Turner caught an estimated 227 kg (500 lb) blue while fishing aboard Hit N' Run with owner and tag sponsor Byron Russell and Captain Dave Fields. The blue marlin was released with the fourth satellite tag in the race, but unfortunately, it popped up just five days later, 98 nm due north of where it was deployed. Once the data is processed by our partners at Stanford University for Fish 1, 2, and 4, we’ll have a better idea of why the tags reported prematurely.