2019 Wahoo Windup Tournament Set for November 9

2012 Virgin Islands Game Fishing Club’s Wahoo Windup Winner. (L to R): Clive Mahabir, Rob Richards, James MacNeil, Clay Gaffney and Sarah Faist, with Robbie Richards in front, stand with Mahabir’s winning 91.8-pound wahoo officially weighed in by DPNR Fish & Wildlife personnel. (Credit: Dean Barnes)

Catch the largest wahoo over 75-pounds and win $10,000! This whopper of a prize is up for grabs at the Virgin Islands Game Fishing Club’s Wahoo Windup Tournament, set for Nov. 9.

Cash prizes and carved wood plaques made by My Brother’s Workshop will be awarded to the anglers that reel in the top three heaviest wahoo. The boat team that catches the most wahoo by weight earns Top Boat.

“We are gearing up for an even more exciting tournament this year,” said Kelvin Bailey Jr., the Club’s board president. “Hurricanes Irma and Maria left a decline in our fishing community; however, this year our tournament participation has steadily increased. We can’t wait to see our fishing friends from near and far during this annually anticipated tournament. The Wahoo are already coming in bigger and better this year, so break out your fishing gear, prep your boat, call your friends and let’s go fishing!”

Last year, the Top Boat prize was awarded to the team aboard Backlash, a 37’ Calypso center console.

“We like to fish all the Virgin Islands Game Fishing Club’s tournaments. It’s a good time and good competition with all the local boats. My favorite part is the awards ceremony and fresh fish dinner,” said Chris Rapchick, who fished aboard Backlash in last year’s event.

New for the tournament, the fishing days change from the traditional Sunday to Saturday to enable anglers a day of rest before returning to work. New for the Virgin Islands Game Fishing Club are a greater number of social events, including a family Halloween party and a Gatsby themed New Years’ Eve Bash.

Two anglers in tournament history have reeled in a whopper wahoo. In 2012, Clive Mahabir, aboard St. John-based charter boat Mixed Bag with Capt. Rob Richards at the helm, caught a 91.3-pounder; in 2003, Mike Kuszewski, fishing aboard Capt. Jim Estraca’s St. Thomas-based charter boat Black Pearl landed a 94.1-pound wahoo.

Captain’s Meeting and registration will take place at 6:30 p.m., Friday, Nov. 8, at the Virgin Islands Game Fishing Club’s clubhouse in Red Hook, St. Thomas. Entry fees are $300 for members and $350 for non-members. They include four rods and T-shirts for anglers. Extra rods are $50 each; there is no limit on extra rods.

The fishing kicks-off Saturday, Nov. 9, with lines in the water at 6:30 a.m. The Weigh-In begins at 2 p.m. at IGY American Yacht Harbor Marina. All boats must pass ‘P Dock’ by 4 p.m. to qualify.

An Awards Dinner will be hosted at the Virgin Islands Game Fishing Club’s Clubhouse at 6:30 p.m., Monday, Nov. 11. Non-angler dinner tickets are $20 per person.

The Virgin Islands Game Fishing Club appreciates the contributions of Presidente Beer, Bud Lite and Bacardi Rum, distributed by West Indies Company; IGY’s American Yacht Harbor; and Neptune Fishing Supplies. Sponsorship opportunities are available now for the 2020 Wahoo Windup Tournament.

For more information, call (340) 775-9144, email: usvigfc@gmail.com or visit: www.vigfc.com