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HomeNewsArchivesTARAPANI, RAMPAGE ARE WAHOO WIND-UP WINNERS

TARAPANI, RAMPAGE ARE WAHOO WIND-UP WINNERS

Dec. 11, 2001 – At Monday night's awards presentation for the Caribbean Auto Mart Wahoo Wind-Up, Abe Tarapani of St. Thomas, fishing aboard the Bella Donna, was the top angler with a 56.6-pound fish. Rampage, owned and captained by Albert Sibilly of St. Thomas, won best boat honors by count, with 22 wahoo caught.
Bella Donna was the place to be for poundage, though. The winners for first, second, fourth, fifth and sixth place out of the top 10 were all aboard the boat.
Forty-six boats — 24 from American Yacht Harbor Marina on St. Thomas and 22 from St. Croix Marine on St. Croix — carried a total of 182 anglers cast off for the event, sponsored by the V.I. Game Fishing Club on Sunday. "This is the largest tournament in terms of participation that the Virgin Islands Game Fishing Club has hosted," organizer Kelvin Bailey said.
Among the participating boats were such seasoned regulars as Abigail III, Double Header and Rampage from St. Thomas; and Paige Marie, Leisure Lady and Miss Becky from St. Croix.
For Sam Topp, the occasion was one of enjoyment at getting back into the sport. "I used to work as a deck hand long ago right here at this marina," Topp, a talk show host on WVWI Radio, said. He proved he wasn't too rusty by being the only angler aboard Abigail III to catch a fish in the money — a 33-pounder that proved to be the 8th largest wahoo caught.
Two newcomer anglers were women who made up two-thirds of the event's only female team. "I've never been fishing before, but it was great," said Sue Cilliers, who with partner Zona Tapp and seasoned angler April Newland made up the Offshore Marine-sponsored team. Cilliers caught the group's only wahoo. "I had a large one up, maybe 40 or 50 pounds, but it pulled the hook right before I could boat it," Newland said. In her view, "Fishing is a great sport for women. It doesn't take great strength or a lot of skill to go out and have a good time. We'd like to get more women participating."
St. Croix's Adrienne Seward, aboard the Rock n' Robin, was the only St. Croix angler to win a prize, coming in third with her 44.2-pound wahoo. All of the other top catches were by St. Thomas fishermen.
Tarapani collected a cash prize for his wahoo, but it weighed in 3.4-pounds short of the 60-pound minimum needed to win an S10 pickup truck from the tournament sponsor, Caribbean Auto Mart. "We wanted to set a weight that was do-able," said Bill Lambert, the auto dealership owner. The Virgin Islands record for wahoo is a 138-pounder caught in 1982.
"The excitement is great," Lambert said of the tournament. "We'd like to encourage more of this type of inter-island competition."
Largest wahoo caught
1. Abe Tarapani, Bella Donna, 56.6 lbs.
2. Martin Wade, Bella Donna, 52.4 lbs.
3. Adrienne Seward, Rock n' Robin, 44.2 lbs.
4. Jonathan Gatcliffe, Bella Donna, 43.6 lbs.
5. Nelson Rosario, Bella Donna, 39 lbs.
6. Paul Meyer, Bella Donna, 38.6 lbs.
7. Craig Friedenberg, Starr Fish, 38.2 lbs.
8. Sam Topp, Abigail III, 33 lbs.
9. Steve Bergstorn, Ervin & Son, 32.8 lbs.
10. Adrian Baird, Mary B, 31.8 lbs.

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Dec. 11, 2001 - At Monday night's awards presentation for the Caribbean Auto Mart Wahoo Wind-Up, Abe Tarapani of St. Thomas, fishing aboard the Bella Donna, was the top angler with a 56.6-pound fish. Rampage, owned and captained by Albert Sibilly of St. Thomas, won best boat honors by count, with 22 wahoo caught.
Bella Donna was the place to be for poundage, though. The winners for first, second, fourth, fifth and sixth place out of the top 10 were all aboard the boat.
Forty-six boats -- 24 from American Yacht Harbor Marina on St. Thomas and 22 from St. Croix Marine on St. Croix -- carried a total of 182 anglers cast off for the event, sponsored by the V.I. Game Fishing Club on Sunday. "This is the largest tournament in terms of participation that the Virgin Islands Game Fishing Club has hosted," organizer Kelvin Bailey said.
Among the participating boats were such seasoned regulars as Abigail III, Double Header and Rampage from St. Thomas; and Paige Marie, Leisure Lady and Miss Becky from St. Croix.
For Sam Topp, the occasion was one of enjoyment at getting back into the sport. "I used to work as a deck hand long ago right here at this marina," Topp, a talk show host on WVWI Radio, said. He proved he wasn't too rusty by being the only angler aboard Abigail III to catch a fish in the money -- a 33-pounder that proved to be the 8th largest wahoo caught.
Two newcomer anglers were women who made up two-thirds of the event's only female team. "I've never been fishing before, but it was great," said Sue Cilliers, who with partner Zona Tapp and seasoned angler April Newland made up the Offshore Marine-sponsored team. Cilliers caught the group's only wahoo. "I had a large one up, maybe 40 or 50 pounds, but it pulled the hook right before I could boat it," Newland said. In her view, "Fishing is a great sport for women. It doesn't take great strength or a lot of skill to go out and have a good time. We'd like to get more women participating."
St. Croix's Adrienne Seward, aboard the Rock n' Robin, was the only St. Croix angler to win a prize, coming in third with her 44.2-pound wahoo. All of the other top catches were by St. Thomas fishermen.
Tarapani collected a cash prize for his wahoo, but it weighed in 3.4-pounds short of the 60-pound minimum needed to win an S10 pickup truck from the tournament sponsor, Caribbean Auto Mart. "We wanted to set a weight that was do-able," said Bill Lambert, the auto dealership owner. The Virgin Islands record for wahoo is a 138-pounder caught in 1982.
"The excitement is great," Lambert said of the tournament. "We'd like to encourage more of this type of inter-island competition."
Largest wahoo caught
1. Abe Tarapani, Bella Donna, 56.6 lbs.
2. Martin Wade, Bella Donna, 52.4 lbs.
3. Adrienne Seward, Rock n' Robin, 44.2 lbs.
4. Jonathan Gatcliffe, Bella Donna, 43.6 lbs.
5. Nelson Rosario, Bella Donna, 39 lbs.
6. Paul Meyer, Bella Donna, 38.6 lbs.
7. Craig Friedenberg, Starr Fish, 38.2 lbs.
8. Sam Topp, Abigail III, 33 lbs.
9. Steve Bergstorn, Ervin & Son, 32.8 lbs.
10. Adrian Baird, Mary B, 31.8 lbs.