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That’s Fishin’- December 2015

Team Tranquilo's triumphant return.

Team Tranquilo’s triumphant return.

By Sarah Munro

Imagine yourself receiving an email from a friend, and when you read it, it’s an invitation to fish the Bisbee’s tournaments in Cabo San Lucas Mexico with Team Tranquilo. You are immediately floored because this is the biggest paying tournament in the world and an invitation to fish with one of the best teams in the world. You throw caution to the wind, and say sure to the $80,000 entry fee. Months later, you head out from your home marina, Marina Pez Vela, for Cabo San Lucas, Mexico, to the SUPERBOWL of fishing—The Bisbees Black and Blue Tourament™. You take shelter from a hurricane on the way there, and just as luck would have it an earthquake triggers a tsunami warning in the marina you took shelter in. Fortunately, things work out and you arrive in Cabo San Lucas. Your team decides that if you’ve come all this way, you may as well enter another tournament before the two Bisbees tournaments you came for.

Life is good, the bite is good and your team places third in the first tournament, Bisbee’s Los Cabos Billfish Tournament, and the winnings are close to $13,000. WOO-HOO!!! Party on Garth. The best part of this?! Your crew, Captain Victor Julio Lopez and mates Daniel Arrieta and DJ Dejoronet get a good chunk of the winnings. This is a nice bonus for a crew who works hard, and has the respect of everyone. Right on. Good way to start out.

Your next tournament is the Los Cabos Little Bisbees Billfish Tournament. On the first day of fishing in the afternoon, angler Michael Moretti hooks up a black marlin and fights for 27 minutes to boat the fish. Your captain, Victor, eyeballs the fish and knows for sure it’s over the 300 lb. minimum. The fish weighs in at 399 lbs., and you know you’ve won the daily jackpot—you hope it holds out for the rest of the tournament. Fingers crossed. Wait and wait and wait until the final day of fishing and find out that the Team Reel Gold has boated a blue marlin. Late in the day team Coast Wide Blue boats another. You cross your fingers and wait for the official weigh in. Both fish are disqualified. What does this mean? It means your team wins the tournament and a cheque for $460,200.00.

This is humbling and overwhelming—quite possibly this could be one of the greatest things that’s happened because of your love of fishing and friends. Here’s what Captain Victor had to say: “God is big and God is good. Now I can help my daughter go off to fulfill her dreams of studying pharmacy.” Just try and not have that tug at your heart. You think to yourself—It doesn’t get more incredible than this. Or maybe it does, because you still have one more tournament to fish, the one you came here for. You can’t make this stuff up.

Finally, the Bisbees Black and Blue tournament opens and you ‘gear up’ the EXACT same way you have for the past two tournaments and wonder, can it really be possible? Freaky—every winning fish that you’ve caught has been in the same place, at the same time of day, using the same lure and hooked by the same angler. So we will be gearing up the exact same way. No changing nothing. The Fish Gods can’t plan any better than that, so, the fish boated by Team Tranquilo this time was 327 lbs. when it got to the scale. The jackpot for this fish was estimated at the end of day one for $912,000.00. (And yes, it was caught at the same time, same place, same lure, same angler!!!)

This is what a $2.5 million  Marlin looks like

This is what a $2.5 million Marlin looks like.

The funny thing about jackpots in tournaments is that you have to buy into all of them to qualify for the big money, and that means that if one of your competitors catches a bigger fish but hasn’t bought into the big money; that money defaults to you because they didn’t buy in and you did. Sure, they might place higher above you in the tournament, but winnings are decided by risk in this Superbowl of Fishing. Good thing your Team Tranquilo bought into all the jackpots because at the end of the tournament—that money all defaulted back to that fish caught on Day 1. Total jackpot win $2.5 million. Not bad for finishing third.

There’s no need to add it up, it all comes out the same. WINNING. Everybody winning. Because, in truth, when I got that email inviting me to the tournament, I didn’t throw caution to the wind to fish in the Super Bowl of fishing. Nope, I really wanted to, but seriously? There was no way I could go. Instead, I just pretended I was there while it was going on, and I just rolled with it to write my article—because honestly, it feels like I was there, living it through them. And it felt that way for a lot of us here in Quepos, cheering for Team Tranquilo.

Team Tranquilo returned home to Marina Pez Vela with a pit stop in El Salvador to pick up another trophy and winnings. Owners Ken and Amanda Cofer recalled how the insane pressure and the intense emotions were while waiting for the tournament to finish. Captain Victor and mates were still in a euphoric bubble upon their return, as they should be. They should all be. We are all proud of Team Tranquilo and wish them nothing but continued success.

So who knows, I may get that email invitation or I may not but one thing is for sure, one day I will go, for real, because you never know, fish lightning may hit twice.

WINNING.  That’s what Team Tranquilo does, and That’s Fishin.

Want a referral to one of Sarah’s preferred Captains? Call 8708-6152 or email sarahjmunro@gmail.com. OR, come on down to THE HAWG ‘N’ BILL at Playa Espadilla! Our awesome chef cooks your catch and our waiters serve up the coldest beer on the beach! All that and LIVE MUSIC, THURSDAY THRU SUNDAY 6-9pm!

Sarah Munro is an ex-pat Canadian living in the Manuel Antonio area; who has been fishing since infancy. Rumor has it, Sarah gutted her first fish before she could ride a bike. It’s quite likely, that yes, one day, the fish will come for her. Looking for more of That’s Fishin’? Check out all the articles at: quepolandia.com/category/sarah-munro.

Until then peeps, keep your sea legs swayin’, and your rod hand ready! So, what are you waiting for????? Get out there and GET FISHIN!!!!!

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