|Tuna Division winner Dave Elm (left) with Yellowtail Division winner Greg Taite|
By Len Bose
August 15, 2014 | 4:50 p.m.
I made my way around the harbor this week and checked in with some old friends.
From the Balboa Angling Club, Amy Elliott gave me the following: "This year's Helen Smith Offshore Tournament was held Aug. 1 and 2, and the fishing was awesome. We had 51 anglers on 17 boats, and 37 fish were weighed in at the BAC and Avalon — seven dorados, 19 yellowfin tuna, seven bluefin tuna and four yellowtail. Conditions were muggy, breezy and choppy on Friday, but it smoothed out on Saturday."
She said Dave Fink brought in the top dorado, weighing 16.55 pounds; Dave Elm brought in a whopping 32.74-pound bluefin tuna; and in the yellowtail category, Greg Taite's catch of a 8.84-pounder put him in first place.
Taite vowed to fish in every tournament this year, and so far he's gotten first place in the Lily Call, YSH and now the Helen Smith tournament. Next up is the Newport Harbor Bay Bass Open, followed by the Master Angler Billfish Tournament.
The awards barbecue was held Sunday, with Elm and Jeff Clary running the show.
Elliott also reported: The first marlin of the season came in at 7:33 a.m. Aug. 2. Angler Steve Behrens hooked a marlin on 20# Dacron aboard Joker with George Garrett as captain, Todd Garrett (no relation) as crew and Jack Rainwater as gaffer. Behrens' fight went on for 26 minutes, and Rainwater was able to tag the fish, earning the first Tag & Release Marlin of 2014 for the Balboa Angling Club, just in time for the Master Angler Billfish Tournament. Last year, the crew of Joker not only got the High Boat Award but also was a big part of the High Club Award. This year is looking really good for marlin.
My next stop was with this year's chairman of the Ahmanson Cup, Phillip Thompson of the Newport Harbor Yacht Club. In an effort to increase participation, Thompson has been working hard to come up with some fresh ideas. One of his first thoughts was to create the California Family Cup on Sept. 20 and 21.
"Utilizing the Governor 21 class yachts, the same as used in the Governors Cup, sailing families can show their depth and abilities as a group and claim bragging rights for the next 12 months," Thompson said.
"To participate requires chartering one of the boats via NHYC for the weekend. The charter includes practice time on Friday to iron out the wrinkles. This is perfect for families currently without a yacht. You can crew with three or four, and one crew [member] must be 18 or less. For those families without an 18-year-old or less, you can take any child you like, 18 or less. We already have one entrant from outside NHYC, so the 11 remaining boats may get snapped up quickly once the word starts to spread outside NHYC."
You can contact Thompson at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Coming up Aug. 22 and 24 is Long Point Race Week. This regatta attracts the best of Southern California's PHRF fleet, and with more than 40 boats entered, it looks like another round down. This event starts next Friday in Newport Beach and sails over to Long Point in Catalina. Saturday's race is up and down the island, and Sunday we race home. The key to winning this event, all depends how much you have been served the night before.
We have our new ride entered this year, the Santa Cruz 50 Horizon, and Liz and Mark Mueller will bring their new boat as our support boat.
LEN BOSE is an experienced boater, yacht broker and boating columnist.