The seven-man crew of Sailsmen won Saturday’s Final Sail in Miami, releasing 21 sailfish in two days and taking home more than $130,000, but 12th-place Team Hard Way won the overall title in the four-event Quest for the Crest Sailfish Series, entitling its seven members to don the coveted championship jackets.
“We came to this tournament to win the series,” said Team Hard Way’s Daryl Deka of Wellington. “We don’t fish to make money. We fish for the pride. We wanted to be the best live bait sailfishermen in the world. We are at the pinnacle of it right now. I don’t even know that it’s sunk in yet. They’re ugly maroon jackets, but I wanted them. Not everybody has them.”
Deka and teammates Dave Deka, Rick Burton, Mark Lamb, Alex Burrgess, Billy Vanderhorn, and Jimmy Dalrymple finished fifth in the series’ first two events — Operation Sailfish and the Sailfish Challenge — and took 10th place in the Jimmy Johnson National Billfish Championship.
Get Lit, skippered by captain Quinton Dieterle, finished second in the Final Sail, releasing 19 fish in two days and earning $114,640. The third–through-eighth place teams were: Top Vee, 18 releases, $87,480; Sandman, 17, $55,480; Weez in the Keys, 14, $13,200; BAR South, 13, $19,880; Just Do It, 13, $3,950; DeBaitAble, 13, $3,000.
The four-tournament series paid out nearly $2 million in prize money.
• Register for the 21st annual Capt. Bob Lewis Kids Fishing Classic April 25-26 out of Shake-A-Leg Miami in Coconut Grove. Entry fee is $35 per angler; $40 for the offshore drift boat division covering one adult and one child. For more information, visit www.kidsfishingclassic.com or call 305-725-5614.
• Women anglers are invited to compete in the 29th annual Ladies Fishoff held May 29-June 1 in Pompano Beach. Prize categories include billfish and funfish (blackfin tuna, cobia, dolphin. kingfish, and wahoo. A kick-off party will be held at Galuppi’s Restaurant in Pompano Beach on May 29. Anglers may fish out of Port Everglades or Hillsboro Inlets. Weigh-ins are at Alsdorf Park in Pompano Beach. For more information, visit www.ladiesfishoff.com.
To our readers
This page is a weekly feature focusing on Florida outdoors adventures. For consideration, please email your event notice to scocking@MiamiHerald.com.