Marlin Madness

Competitive marlin fishers do lots of drinking, tell lots of tales, and, oh yes, sometimes they catch fish.

The first day, they headed to a patch of deep indigo just east of Antigua that seemed to offer the surest fishing. "We hooked a 450-pound marlin and worked it for three hours and 45 minutes," he recaps. "It was foul-hooked in the shoulder, which means we'd lose some points. But when we got it up to the boat, it got away, and we didn't get a tag in it. So we didn't get any points. Then after that, there was nothing."

Still, everyone onboard remained hopeful. After all, Team Freedom hooked two fish the first day and managed to tag both, though they lost points for a bad tag in one. And Sharkey's Revenge, out of Miami, tagged a 700-pound marlin for 300 points, but it broke free before they could measure it and possibly garner another 200 points for a fish longer than 115 inches.

By the third day, however, the other four teams remained scoreless. Team Freedom buzzed 70 miles to the north coast of Barbuda and tagged a fish. By midday, all the teams were in the vicinity. Only Team Freedom had any more luck, however, scoring one last fish and winning the tournament. With the exception of second-place Sharkey's Revenge, the other teams were skunked. The World Team has now dropped to third place.

Mamora Bay, Antigua: staging area for the six fishing boats that compete for a $50,000 prize
Mamora Bay, Antigua: staging area for the six fishing boats that compete for a $50,000 prize

But none of that bothers Flynn. "These tournaments can turn around with just one fish," he explains, gaining some vocal zest back with thoughts of the July tournament in waters around the Dominican Republic. "It's like I was just telling Rob, next time we have to fish as a team for six straight days," he says, "we need to get fishing early so that by the end of the tournament, we know exactly what we need to do and where we need to do it."

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