Fishing

Hatteras Fever II hangs on to claim Big Rock title

Posted June 15, 2013

— 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.

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  • Tunaboy Jun 17, 2013

    I've fished the Gulf Stream with a lot of charter captains and none match the intensity and desire to catch fish of Buddy Hooper. He wants to bring in the best catch every time he goes out and he often does. When he doesn't it's not for lack of effort.

  • el conquistador Jun 15, 2013

    I've been fortunate enough to fish with Capt Hooper on multiple occasions.This guys a North Caolina native and one of the most respected charter captains on the east coast. A world class fisherman , Buddy Hooper grew up in Buxton and fishes out of Hatteras. He's captained charters that fished this tournament multiple times.and it was only a matter of time until he put one on the dock that could contend. Don't be surprised if you don't see an interview or picture of this legendary charter boat captain. And also, don't be surprised to see that bright Red 54'Ricky Scarborough Sportfisher back into the docks at Morhead and offload another monster one day in a future Big Rock Tourney.Way to go Hatteras Fever II!!!

  • BattlingBishop 5 Jun 15, 2013

    Thought the winner would have been a 500 pounder.

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