OCEAN CITY- Another one of the newest additions to the summer-long offshore fishing tournament season, the 1st Annual Ocean City Marlin Club Ladies’ Tournament kicks off next week with a captain’s meeting and registration on Thursday and the fishing action set to get going on Friday and Saturday.
The tournament is the Marlin Club’s first-ever ladies only event and is a complement to the club’s other tournaments throughout the summer. Essentially, it is considered a boat tournament, meaning awards will be distributed to the top boat teams and not individual lady anglers. According to tournament rules, anyone may hook the fish as long as it is immediately handed off to a lady angler.
The tournament is wedged between another first, the Branch Kreppel Memorial Blue Marlin Tournament going on this weekend, and the prestigious 33rd Annual White Marlin Open, which gets underway on Monday, August 3. The OCMC Ladies Tournament begins next Thursday with registration and a captain’s meeting, but the lady angler’s lines won’t hit the water until next Friday, July 31, the first of two official fishing days.
Captains and the teams must choose to fish one of the two fishing days, either next Friday or Saturday. Prizes will be awarded in several categories including a billfish release division and several heaviest fish divisions including tuna, dolphin and wahoo. Participating anglers may also compete in several inshore fishing divisions.
In the billfish division, 150 points will be awarded for a released blue marlin or swordfish, while 100 points will be awarded for each released white marlin, sailfish or spearfish. In the heaviest fish divisions, the minimum qualifying weight for a tuna is 30 pounds, while the minimum for a wahoo is 20 pounds and the minimum for a dolphin is 10 pounds.
Weigh-ins will be held on each of the two fishing days, Friday and Saturday, as Sunset Marina from 3:30 p.m. to 7 p.m. On Friday night, the Marlin Club will host the Heels and Reels Night in conjunction with the tournament. The event concludes with an awards banquet next Saturday at the club.