Angling team wins a whopping $3.9 million
Written by Orange County Register   
Friday, 03 November 2006 13:24

The big-money marlin tournament in Baja got bigger and the winning team got mucho más rico.

How much richer? How's $3,902,997.50 sound?

Bad Company 55, the team sponsored by Anthony Hseih of Newport Beach, received the biggest payoff in fishing tournament history in winning the Bisbee's Black and Blue Marlin Tournament last week in Cabo San Lucas.

Last year's winner got $1.3million from a record purse of $3.3million, and that was thought to be pretty incredible. This year's record purse was $4.2 million and Bad Company 55 received most of it.

Since the remnants of a hurricane wiped out the first day, the three-day tournament became a two-day event, so the daily jackpots grew.

Pete Groesbeck of Escondido reeled in a 422-pound blue marlin on the first day and Randy Parker of Kona, Hawaii, landed a 361-pound blue marlin the second day. The two fish enabled Bad Company 55, led by skipper Steve Lassley of Spring Valley, to sweep the 17 daily and tournament jackpots, and the tournament award.

The team didn't enter the release division, which is where the remainder of the purse was distributed.

Jim Kingsmill of San Clemente was among the six team members of Bad Company 55.

"It was just unbelievable that we were able to do that," he said. "The moon, the stars and everything else were lined up for Bad Company.

"When you're a Bisbee participant, you're like, 'Give me one of the three daily jackpots,' that's what you're really hoping for."

This time, Bad Company 55 got much more.

The event drew 937 anglers on 183 teams. They caught 152 billfish and released all but five for a 96.7 percent release rate.
 
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