Woodland Hills angler James Muro took home the top prize at the 35th Annual Marina del Rey Halibut Derby April 4th and 5th by catching a 41.1-pound halibut.
The derby drew 439 anglers who competed for $60,000 in cash and prizes, including a shot at a brand new Toyota Tundra truck and exotic fishing trips to Alaska, British Columbia and Mexico.
As the top prize winner, Muro chose a fishing vacation for two to the Rivers Inlet Sportsmanís Club in British Columbia, a world famous location for salmon fishing where the world record was set for largest Chinook salmon ever caught at 126 pounds. He won a $2,190 jackpot prize and received an $800 check for airfare to British Columbia.
On the first day of the derby, angler Gary Maskiewicz brought in the first large catch with a 23.8-pound halibut, and was quickly followed by Barry Claybornís 21.9-pound fish. Just before the scales closed April 4th, Muro hauled in the giant 41.1-pound halibut, which proved to be the overall winner.
Several good size halibut were weighed in late Sunday, April 5th, but none of them ousted the top three fish caught the day before. No angler managed to claim a 50-plus pound halibut to take home the prize of a new Toyota Tundra.
Maskiewicz of Long Beach earned second place with his 23.8-pound fish and a $1,314 jackpot. He selected the deluxe fishing vacation for two at the Sitka Point Lodge in Alaska and received a check for $1,400 for airfare between Los Angeles and Sitka, Alaska.
Clayborn of Garden Grove finished in third place with his 21.9-pound halibut and won the fishing vacation for two with a $600 check for airfare to Baja Californiaís East Cape, considered the Rooster Fish capital of the world.
The anglers who finished in fourth to tenth place in the derby and the size of their catch are:
Fourth Place : Matt Winkelman,
Fifth: Victor Ortiz, 10.9 pounds;
Sixth: Ed Zamora, 9.4 pounds;
Seventh: Robert Kofrehi, 8.5 pounds;
Eighth: Ken Meyer, 7.5 pounds;
Ninth: Nick Ekdal, 7.4 pounds; and
Tenth: Ron Winkelman, 6.7 pounds.
In the team jackpot, Maskiewicz and Zamora earned $1,462 for first place. Matt and Ron Winkelman picked up $877 for second place and Ortiz, Williy Taylor, Cameron Green and Mike Varella took home a $585 jackpot for third place in the team competition.
The Marina del Rey Anglers Youth Fishing Program hosted 1,000 at-risk youths aboard the Betty-O out of Marina del Rey. Proceeds from the event will support the Marina del Rey Anglersí Youth Fishing Program and its Ocean Resources Enhancement Program, which has raised and released over 1.5 million juvenile white seabass into the ocean since its founding in 1994.
Information on the Halibut Derby, www.mdranglers.com/.