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Captain's Focus

The first few entries from the mere seven boats in a 157-boat field that fished in today's opening day northwester were of fish that have little chance of staying on the leaderboard -- but the last was a 75-pound wahoo on More Bills that has a good shot at holding up. At present it would be worth $110,309. That's small change in comparison to the mere 67-pound tuna on Going In Deep that's currently in the lead for $1,864,913. Even the 11-pound dolphin on Triple By-Pass would be worth $91,838 if the contest came to an end tonight. In contrast to the recent White Marlin Open that produced record numbers of white marlin, there were few signs of billfish today. Indeed, the only releases were by Robert Manetta's Tra Sea Ann out of Brick, who set free both a white and a blue marlin. The greatest disappointment involved the one blue marlin that was brought in as that catch on Solivia Rose weighed "only" 371 pounds in a tournament whee the minimum weight is a very high 400 pounds.  Jeff Merrill reported that offshore conditions were "sporty", but much better weather is in the forecast for the rest of the tournament -- and a large fleet is expected to fish on Tuesday.

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