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Sunday, May 26, 2024
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HomeFishThrilling Catches and Last-Minute Entries: Highlights from the Annual Wahoo Windup Tournament

Thrilling Catches and Last-Minute Entries: Highlights from the Annual Wahoo Windup Tournament

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Wahoo Wins and Competitive Spirit at the Virgin Islands Game Fishing Club’s Annual Event

Record Weigh-ins and a Surprise Victory

It was Wahoo time on Sunday when sport fishers aboard 14 boats weighed 21 wahoo weighing 290.2 pounds in the Virgin Islands Game Fishing Club’s Annual Wahoo Windup Tournament. In the end, St. Thomas’ Jared Buckstein caught the Largest Wahoo, a 26.5-pounder, from aboard the 32-foot Regulator, The Dude Abides, with Captain Walt Basnight at the helm.

“We caught our biggest one within 15 minutes of lines in and it gave us momentum,” says Basnight. “We won this tournament in 2019 on another boat and our gameplan this year was the same. That is, we high-speed trolled up to about 11 a.m. and caught four wahoo, including the big one. Then we switched to bait fishing and caught the other three. We had all seven of our wahoo in the boat by Noon.”

Interestingly, The Dude Abides was the last boat to enter the tournament at 4:45 p.m. on Saturday.

“We hadn’t fished for a while, so I picked the brains of a couple of charter captains I know and got an idea of where the fish were biting,” Basnight adds.

Buckstein’s catch was 48.5 pounds shy of the $25,000 prize offered for the tournament angler who caught the largest wahoo over 75 pounds.

Meanwhile, St. Thomas’ Keith Terry, Jr, angling off Double Header, caught the Second and the Third Largest Wahoo, at 25.1-pounds and 21.5-pounds, respectively.

The Best Boat prize, determined by most wahoo by count, went to The Dude Abides, who collectively caught 7 wahoo weighing a total of 88.1 pounds.

Teams from St. Thomas, St. John, and St. Croix participated in the Virgin Islands Game Fishing Club’s Annual Wahoo Windup Tournament.

Trophies, cash prizes totaling over $7,000, and gift certificates were awarded to the winners.

“It was fantastic to see this level of participation, and the camaraderie back on shore. This wraps up our tournaments for 2023, and we look forward to hosting our Dolphin Derby, Kid’s Fishing Tournament, and Wahoo Windup again next year,” says Kelvin Bailey, Jr., president of the Virgin Islands Game Fishing Club’s Board of Directors.

The Virgin Islands Game Fishing Club appreciates the support of Cape Fear Distilleries, IGY’s American Yacht Harbor, Neptune Fishing Supplies, Ocean Surfari, Seas the Day Charters, and its much-appreciated volunteers.

For more information about the Club and its events, call (340) 775-9144, Email: usvigfc@gmail.com, or Visit: www.vigfc.com

About the Virgin Islands Game Fishing Club

Founded in 1963 by a small group of dedicated sportfishing enthusiasts, the Virgin Islands Game Fishing Club promotes the healthy enjoyment and pursuit of saltwater game fishing and has long been proactive in marine conservation. In its almost six-decade history, members have set nearly 30 International Game Fishing Association (IGFA) world records. The Club, based in St. Thomas, U.S. Virgin Islands with its beautiful Clubhouse in Red Hook, hosts several sportfishing tournaments and social events annually. www.vigfc.com


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Carol_Bareuther
Carol_Bareuther
Carol M. Bareuther, RD, is a St. Thomas, U.S. Virgin Islands based marine writer and registered dietitian.
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