ISLAMORADA, Fla. Captain Quinton Dieterle of Miami led his Get Lit team to an overall win at the 20th annual Cheeca Lodge Presidential Sailfish Tournament that ended Saturday, Jan. 23.
Team anglers Kitt Toomey of Coral Gables, Fla., Peter Miller of Pinecrest, Fla., and Miami's Jon Cooper and Cap Hinckley together released 20 sails for the top honors.
Dieterle's strategy for the two-day challenge was simple: catch everything without missing.
"It was all hands on deck, stay alert and stay in a productive area," Dieterle said. "We had double-, triple- and quadruple-headers which, with light-test line, takes a more finesse to capitalize on and catch."
Team My-Sea-Cin, with Tavernier, Fla., Captain Randy Towe at the helm, captured second place with 10 releases. Anglers included Raymond Baiz of Tavernier, Stephen Orton of Coral Gables and Ken Stevens of Atlanta.
Third place, also with 10 sailfish went to team Close Call, who finished behind the second-place winners on time. Anglers Randy Hamilton of Islamorada and Spencer Cannon and George Clark, Jr., both of Key Largo, were led by Key Largo Captain Scott Stoky.
Tournament director Liz Hill reported that 108 anglers aboard 29 boats released 161 sailfish during the two-day fishing contest.
The tournament is a facet of the World Billfish Series. In addition, it is the second leg of the three-tournament Florida Keys Gold Cup Sailfish Championship that also includes last December's Islamorada Sailfish Tournament and the Islamorada Fishing Club Sailfish Tournament set for January 27-28.
The tournament was suspended in 2009 after Cheeca closed for almost a year due to a fire on Dec. 31, 2008. The resort reopened in mid-December.