This year's Key West Marlin Tournament, featuring $50,000 in guaranteed cash prizes is set for July 22th. through July 25th. 2015, coinciding with the annual Hemingway Days Celebration in Key West, Florida.
The tournament is limited to the first 75 boats that register, so get your entries in early to be able to fish this always fun-filled sport fishing event.
See our Key West Marlin 2015 Tournament Magazine for more information and images. The file is rather large and may take a moent to load.
Photos of the 2015 Key West Marlin Tournament!
KEY WEST, Fla. -- Cowgirl, skippered by Phil McGinn of Key West, garnered top honors and a $25,000 first-place prize at the Bacardi Oakheart Key West Marlin tournament that ended Saturday, July 25, off the Florida Keys.
Angler Marty Crews of Mound City, Kansas, released a white marlin Friday, July 24, the tournament's second fishing day, and Ben Giefer of Leawood, Kansas, released a sailfish Saturday that proved to be the winning fish. For Giefer, the tournament was his first experience ever fishing in saltwater habitats. "I credit the crew because they put together a game plan specifically targeting sailfish to give us the lead," Giefer said. "We weren't on the water for more than 40 minutes and had the fish."
Blue Heron, skippered by Shannon Fountain of Big Pine Key, Fla., finished in second with a blue marlin released Friday by Mark Knowles of Key Largo, Fla. The team added to its score with a weight dolphin caught Saturday.
In third place was Cracker with a blue marlin released Saturday by Mark Schultz of Fort Myers Beach, Fla. Jason Johnston of Johnson City, Tenn., skippered Cracker.
The tournament attracted nearly 200 participants fishing on 32 boats, according to organizers. It coincided with Key West's Hemingway Days festival, an annual salute to author and angler Ernest Hemingway, who lived in Key West during the 1930s. The 2016 tournament is set for July 20-23.
Beginning January 1, 2008, anglers fishing from HMS permitted vessels and participating in billfish tournaments must use only non-offset circle hooks when deploying natural bait or natural bait artificial lure combinations. Tournament anglers may deploy “J” hooks with artificial lures. NMFS encourages the use of circle hooks by non-tournament anglers to reduce post-release mortality of Atlantic Billfish. For more information visit the NMFS website at http://www.nmfs.noaa.gov/