After all the sailfish reported of late it was only fitting that a sailfish kicked off fishing for the 2019 Townsville Billfish Challenge on Thursday with 18 boats lining up for the sailpast and shotgun start off Townsville’s Magnetic Island.
Day 1 resulted in 4 tags with 2 sails and 2 blacks and a lead on countback to Pulse for the first fish of the day (sail). ShinDig and Kiama accounting for a black and Job Site for another sail in the last 30 minutes of fishing!
Day 2 teams got right into the fishing without the delay of the sailpast and added 11 tags (all black marlin) with ShinDig racing to the lead adding 2 more tags to their day one tally. But taking the day out was the ever consistent The Chapel who tagged 2. Kiama added one more to stay in touch on the leaderboard and Reel Busy, Beehaven, Reel Screamer and Silverback also adding a tag each.
Day 3, the final day was a nailbiter! Kiama was quick out of the blocks with 2 tags to put them in front. And late in the day they added another to put them on 5 to secure the lead.
Congratulations to team Kiama for the win and angler Royce Johnstone who took out Champion Angler. Congratulations to Paul and Karen Phillips and the crew from Shindig who took out Runner-Up Team and to Nathan Milani and the crew on board Pulse taking out Champion team under 7.5m.
Overall the stats were 18 boats, 76 participants – 3 days fishing accounting for 7 sailfish and 14 black marlin tagged.
Total sked numbers were: 54 fish seen, 43 hooked and 21 tagged.