Salt E News

Interview with a Winner: Team Wise Guy Tops Spring King of the Beach

Written By Sam White

small-webAt just over 600 teams, the King of the Beach tournament on the west coast of Florida has grown to become the largest king mackerel tournament of its kind anywhere in the world. So what does it take to win an event like this, and pocket just a hair under $80,000 along the way? We went straight to the source to find out. And the story may surprise you: no marathon 100-plus-mile runs, no super-secret hotspot stacked with big fish, just solid local knowledge and a bit of luck to get the right bite.

Richard Fabrizi has been tournament king mackerel fishing for over 25 years, from the Outer Banks of North Carolina to the upper Gulf of Mexico and well beyond. He knows what it takes to be competitive against the best on the water, and so he used that experience when it was time to lay it all on the line in this year’s Spring King of the Beach, held April 28-30, 2016.

“We decided not to pre-fish this year,” he says. “With that many teams on the water, it wasn’t going to matter where you went—there would probably be boats there. That was what surprised us though, we got to our spot first thing in the morning and there wasn’t another boat around.” The Spring King of the Beach is a boundary tournament, so teams were limited to Cedar Key to the north, Boca Grande Pass to the south and roughly 30 miles offshore to the west. A lot of teams fishing a small area, but that’s what keeps it competitive for everyone in the game.

Fabrizi, fishing with Stevie Dellane, Sarah Dykens and Emiley Mangano, had run the Wise Guy, a 36-foot Yellowfin, out to a fairly well-known live bottom area in 120 feet of water southwest of Egmont Key. And, at least for the time being, they were all alone. Continue Reading

Parmesan Panko Grouper w/Lime Butter Sauce

We are blessed with a fishery that provides us such a wonderful “kitchen friendly” catch – Grouper. We’re famous for it and yet, when you live in the midst of such plenty, sometimes you forget. This is not one of those times:)

Grouper is my second favorite fish (wahoo is first) though not second by much. I am more a cook than an angler so a fish’s kitchen characteristics are foremost to me. Grouper holds itself up well in this regard. So versatile, Grouper can take almost anything you throw at it. For todays recipe we will throw a little Panko, a little Parmesan, and a little pan frying.

Panko Parmesan Florida Grouper

Recipe Ingredients

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Red Snapper Sector Separation Sunset Provision Extension

The Gulf Council (Gulf of Mexico Fishery Management Council) is living slap up to the “Snidely Whiplash” caricature so many Gulf anglers already recognize it as. Here we are, one year into Red Snapper Sector Separation (Amendment 40), the ink barely dry, arguments pro & con still ringing in our ears and the Council appears intent on pounding a cob up our backsides because….. well, because they can.

Amendment 40 was hard fought, bitterly opposed and with (only with) the acceptance of a three year sunset provision,  barely passed into “law”. That provision was offered to gain the deciding vote. Now, with Amendment safely in the bag, the Council is requesting an additional 5 year sunset provision (Amendment 45) to be added to the, not yet one year old, existing sunset provision. That’s an additional 166% more time the Council now needs to get their work done.

A reasonable person might wonder, what could have precipitated the need for such a long extension so soon after the initial provision was put in place. Apparently it’s “just cuz”. The whole thing stinks of bad faith. A concession was made to get the deal, the deal the Council wanted, done. The rational for the initial provision at least sounded like it was founded in reason. From the Extension of the Gulf of Mexico Sector Separation Sunset Provision (Reef Fish Amendment 45) Frequently Asked Questions:

Why was the three-year sunset provision put in place in Amendment 40?

 The sunset provision requires the Gulf of Mexico Fishery Management Council (Council) to re-evaluate how sector separation is working.

 The three-year sunset provision was considered long enough to allow the Council time to explore other possible management measures, like regional management, that could replace sector separation.

 The three-year time period was considered short enough to create some urgency by the Council to consider other possible management measures to improve red snapper management.

With the deal in the bag the stated rational for the new extension (Amendment 45) is not so well crafted…. guess it didn’t really need to be. Again, from the Extension of the Gulf of Mexico Sector Separation Sunset Provision (Reef Fish Amendment 45) Frequently Asked Questions:

Why did the Council vote to extend the sunset provision?

 The Council is currently working to develop and approve actions to address the management of the charter vessel and headboat fishing within the federal for-hire component (Amendments 41 and 42 to the FMP, respectively).

 These amendments are not expected to be effective until after the 2017 Amendment 40 sunset provision expires.

They couldn’t have put any less effort into justifying this new sunset provision extension if they tried. Gulf anglers have been played, are being played and will continue to be played. What do you think?


Amendment 45 Draft Amendment

Tell NOAA What You Think About Amendment 45 (Comment Period Ends October 24, 2016)

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