Hatteras Fever II hangs on to claim Big Rock title
Posted June 15, 2013
Morehead City, N.C. — Thirty blue marlins were released on the final day of the 55th Annual Big Rock Blue Marlin Tournament, but there were not any landed that measured up to Wednesday’s catch by Hatteras Fever II, assuring Raleigh angler Taylor Miller the $474,050 prize.
Hatteras Fever II, captained by Buddy Hooper of Buxton, NC, pulled into dock Wednesday with the lead-changing 465.3-pounder that stood as the event’s winner. The only other qualifying marlin landed and weighed during the six-day event was a 423.8-pounder by Sensation on the first day. That catch will net captain Dale Britt and crew $206,950.
A third marlin was boated, but did not meet the tournament minimum measurements.
According to the tournament’s website, www.thebigrock.com, 19 of the past 20 winners have been bigger than the 465.3-pound top catch this year.
The tournament’s final day was not without drama. Of the 100 registered boats, 99 went out on the calm waters off of Morehead City. In addition to the 30 blue marlin releases, there were 19 white marlin releases and four sailfish.
In the billfish release division, Sea Toy earned $37,312 by releasing two blue marlin, three white marlin and two sailfish (worth a division-best 1,425 points).
This year’s total purse was set at $1,154,625. No boat earned the $255,250 bonus for docking a 500-pound marlin.