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February 22, 2012

The Billfish Foundation Awards 46 International Tag & Release winners

Global billfish conservation competition critical to scientific research; now in 23rd year

FT. LAUDERDALE, Fla. USA - Every time they fish on three oceans, anglers, captains and mates worldwide --- the heart-and-soul of The Billfish Foundation's (TBF) eminent conservation program committed to billfish tag and release -- are supplying valuable data, critical to science.

Globally since 1990 these anglers have helped marine researchers in learning the migratory habits and more of the world's billfish species.

On Feb. 16, 46 winners of TBF's 22nd year-long competition will be presented their 2011 International Tag & Release Awards at Miami's Jungle Island Treetop Ballroom.     Sponsored by Bisbee's Black & Blue the awards are presented by King Sailfish Mounts, and include TBF partners http://billfish.org/1598American Custom Yachts, Costa and Dockwise Yacht Transport.

TBF's Overall Tagging Winners for all species (blue marlin, black marlin, striped marlin, white marlin, sailfish and spearfish) included Gray Ingram, Jupiter, Fla., USA, repeating his title as TBF's Overall Male Angler; as did Betsy Crudele, Fort Lauderdale, Fla., USA, as the Overall Lady Angler. Stephen Gegenheimer, Corsicana, Texas, USA, won the Overall Youth Angler and Fin Gaddy, Manteo, N.C., USA, won the Overall Captain.   

Ingram also received double honors repeating in the release category of the competition as the Overall Male Angler for all species. Lisa Everett, Nags Head, N.C., USA was the Overall Lady Angler; Tyler Sudbrink, Greensboro, N.C., USA, Overall Youth Angler and Brad Philipps, Puerto Quetzal, Guatemala, repeated his title as the Overall Captain.

TBF's Dir. of Science and Policy Peter Chaibongsai, said each year TBF members from more than 70 countries are invited to participate. The latest annual competition ran from Nov. 1, 2010 to Oct. 31, 2011 with "tagging data reports" and "release notification cards" generated from the temperate waters of the Atlantic, Pacific and Indian Oceans, where a majority of the world's billfish inhabit.

To be eligible to receive an award active TBF members must have tagged and/or released five or more of a species to qualify.  In addition, TBF's Youth Program created in 2001, recognizes the conservation ethics and achievements of young anglers.  It includes a three fish minimum in three age groupings for both tag and release categories.

For more on TBF's annual Tag & Release program please visit http://www.bilfish.org or call 954-938-0150 for Peter Chaibongsai (ext. 107), Elliott Stark (ext. 101), Deborah Cummings (ext. 106) or Andrew Cox (ext. 100). 


The Billfish Foundation Tag & Release Award Winners - 2011 year

Tag Category Winners

Top Tagging Anglers Atlantic             
Sam Jennings - Juno Beach, Fla, USA / Blue Marlin       
Betsy Crudele - Ft. Lauderdale, Fla., USA / Sailfish       
Richard Gudoian - Key Largo, Fla., USA / Swordfish           
Victoria Roberts - Stevensville, Md., USA / White Marlin       

Top Tagging Captains Atlantic
             
Mike Lemon - Juno Beach, Fla., USA /  Blue Marlin       
Fin Gaddy - Manteo, N.C., USA / Sailfish       
Sean O'Connor - Key Largo, Fla., USA / Swordfish       
Fin Gaddy - Manteo, N.C., USA / White Marlin       

Top Tag Anglers Pacific               
John Richardson - Bellville, Texas, USA / Black Marlin               
Saegusa Kumie - Yohohama, Japan / Blue Marlin       
Gray Ingram - Greensboro, N.C., USA / Sailfish       
Suzanne Gustavson - Kona, Hawaii, USA / Spearfish       
Martha MacNab - Balboa Island, Calif., USA / Striped Marlin       

Top Tag Captains Pacific            
Adolfo Grajales - Bellville, Texas, USA / Black Marlin       
Gene Vander Hoek - Kailua-Kona, Hawaii, USA / Blue Marlin       
Jimmy Kitchell - Galveston, Texas, USA / Sailfish       
Gene Vander Hoek - Kailua-Kona, Hawaii, USA / Spearfish       
Antonio Romero Castro - Cabo San Lucas, MEX / Striped Marlin   
   
Top Tag Anglers Indian 
                 
Terence Farrell - Alyangula, Australia (tied) / Sailfish
 Calvin Du Plessis --Dubai, United Arab Emirates               

Top Tag Captains Indian                  
Bernard Vale - Coral Bay, AUS / Black Marlin       
Ross Newton - Broome, AUS / Blue Marlin       
Ross Newton - Broome, AUS (tied) / Sailfish       
Rolly Pierre - Seychelles

Top Youth Tagging winners

Bo Ingram - Greensboro, N.C., USA / 9 -10 winner       
Riley Rogers - Bakerfield, Calif., USA / 11-12 winner
Bruce Marinis - Broome, AUS     / 13 -15 winner
Wesley Davis - Malibu, Calif., USA /  runner-up
Stephen Gegenheimer - Corsicana, Texas, USA / 16-17    winner
Tyler Sudbrink - Greensboro, NC  runner-up

Overall Tagging Winners for all species               
Gray Ingram - Jupiter, Fla., USA / Overall Angler   
Fin Gaddy - Manteo, N.C., USA / Overall Captain     
Betsy Crudele - Ft. Lauderdale, Fla., USA / Overall Lady Angler     
Stephen Gegenheimer - Corsicana, Texas, USA / Overall Youth Angler       

Release Category Winners

Top Release Anglers Atlantic             
Andy Fanter - Great Bend, Kansas, USA (tied) / Blue Marlin   
Tim Twiddy - Glasgow, U.K.   
Paul Legnard     - Arnold, Md., USA / Sailfish           
Scott Cooper - Mobile, Ala., USA / Swordfish       
Gray Ingram - Jupiter, Fla., USA / White Marlin       

Top Release Captains Atlantic  
            
Zak Conde - Cape Verde / Blue Marlin        
Fin Gaddy - Manteo, N.C., USA / Sailfish           
Russell Craft - Mobile, Ala., USA / Swordfish       
Ronnie Fields - Lake Park, Fla., USA / White Marlin       
   
Top Release Anglers Pacific           
Barry Alty - Gold Coast, Australia / Black Marlin               
Gary Carter - Duluth, Ga., USA / Blue Marlin       
Gray Ingram - Jupiter, Fla., USA / Sailfish           
Wayne Short    - Cornith, Texas, USA / Striped Marlin   
Jim Gigger - Keri Keri, New Zealand / Swordfish           

Top Release Captains Pacifi
Wade Richardson - Bellville, Texas, USA / Black Marlin           
Brad Philipps - Puerto Quetzal, Guatemala / Blue Marlin           
Brad Philipps - Puerto Quetzal, Guatemala / Sailfish           
Julio Castro - Cabo San Lucas, MEX / Striped Marlin   
John Gregory - Keri Keri, New Zealand / Swordfish   
   
Top Release Anglers Indian  
              
Henry Riggs-Miller - Seychelles  / Sailfish       
   
Top Release Captains Indian                   
Rolly Pierre - Seychelles / Sailfish           

Top Youth Release Anglers

Olivia Ingram - Greensboro, N.C., USA / 13-15 winner
Wes Davis - Malibu, Calif., USA     /  Runner-up
Tyler Sudbrink - Greensboro, N.C., USA / 16-17 winner

Overall Release Winners for all species           
Gray Ingram - Greensboro, N.C., USA / Overall Angler   
Brad Philipps - Puerto Quetzal, Guatemala / Overall Captain       
Lisa Everett - Nags Head, N.C., USA / Overall Lady Angler       
Tyler Sudbrink - Greensboro, N.C., USA / Overall Youth Angler