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Division:6 Treasure Island, FL 23rd ANNUAL FALL SUNCOAST KINGFISH CLASSIC October 9-11, 2014

Delosas/K-Factor Wins Division 6 Season Finale

By Sam White

Treasure Island, Florida — The Suncoast Kingfish Classic events have been bringing world-class king mackerel tournament fishing to central Florida for over two decades and so it’s really no surprise to see that history of excellence continue in 2014. Under new leadership but with much of the same terrific community support that it’s always enjoyed, the series is making some great headway as the area’s cornerstone tournaments of the year. 

This year’s 23rd anniversary fall tournament got underway at John’s Pass with a tribute to the years of kingfishing history that the historic location has enjoyed. Anglers had a chance to check out some great old photos while enjoying plenty of Papa’s Pilar rum and Corona beer; after a brief rules meeting, it was almost time for the big show. At stake was not only the tournament’s top prize but also the final standings in the highly-contested Division 6 standings. A good weather forecast, a fleet of nearly 70 boats and terrific fall fishing were all in store for the one-day shootout. 

The Team Delosa’s/K-Factor team of Jim Breazeale, Morgan Domingue, Hale Wilson, Aaron Salvant and Frank Quinto didn’t have a chance to prefish for the tournament but the John’s Pass-based team felt confident in their choice of location, having located a body of nice king mackerel during the previous week’s tournament. They headed northwest about 60 miles in the Mercury-powered Yellowfin, enjoying a great ride in the one- to three-foot seas and sunny skies. Upon arriving in their chosen spot in 130 feet, they found clear blue water and 20-foot plus visibility. Their biggest bite of the day came on a blue runner fished on the short line; angler Morgan Domingue grabbed the rod and headed forward to the bow for the fight, which lasted about 15 minutes. Aaron Salvant stepped in with the gaff to secure the big fish in the team’s well-insulated fish bag for the ride back to the scales. 
“We knew it was a good fish when we put it in the boat,” reported team captain Jim Breazeale. “We all thought it was over 40 [pounds] but there were other big fish out there so it would be close.” Close indeed. Their fish weighed 41.22 pounds but would it be enough to hold on for the win? The answer would be yes, but not by much. The team is sponsored by Delosa’s Pizza, Corona Beer and First Choice Marine. 

Team Wiseguy/ headed south, away from the other boats fishing to the northwest. The team of Richard Fabrizi, Bingo Brandano and tournament director Ryan Farner also chose blue runners and soon found plenty of big, hungry kings. “We were in the fish all day,” Farner said. “We had lots of doubles, big fish, over 30 pounds. It was a fun day on the water with some good friends.” Their largest of the day came as part of a doubleheader. When Fabrizi pulled up to the docks in their Yamaha-powered Yellowfin and presented their largest fish to the tournament weighmaster, they found that they had placed second with a 39.28-pound kingfish, just missing the 40-pound mark. They donated the rest of their catch, including several more kings that looked to be in the high 30-pound class as well. 

Finishing third was the Mercury-powered Fountain belonging to the Native team. Jerry Solovskoy, Jeff and Chelsey Silverthorne, Cawley Snibbe and Evan Kerstein boated a 37.41-pound kingfish after making a long run of nearly 100mm to the northwest. “We chose this spot because we had pre fished all week and it’s well-known for producing some big fish in the past,” Solovskoy said. They put out the spread in 130 feet of green/blue water and after wading through a few ‘cudas and jacks they finally put their biggest king of the day in the boat. The nice fish fell for a blue runner laced with a Bluewater Candy duster fished in the propwash of the 38-foot Fountain. Angler Jeff Silverthorne said the fish burned it down pretty good and then turned back to the boat, where the team was able to get on top of her pretty quickly. Kevin Farner sealed the deal with the gaff and the team was soon headed back to the scales at John’s Pass. They wished to thank Fountain, Mercury, Suncoast Marine Electronics, Arribe Fishing, Rick’s Reef, RealFish Gyotaku, J+J Transport and JDS Construction Services for their support throughout the season. 

Kevin Hannon is a veteran in the Division 6 kingfish scene, having fished for many years on the Hannon’s Cannon both locally and in the Pro Tour. He teamed up with Rick and Zachary Cook for the Suncoast event and came home with fourth place prize money. The team boated a 34.72-pounder during the one-day event. Another tournament vet, Harry Thomas, also did well. Thomas put his fully restored Mercury-powered SeaCraft in first place in the tournament’s small boat class with a 31.17-pound kingfish. Chelsey Silverthorne was the tournament’s Top Lady Angler on the Native while young Marlin Rice was the Top Junior Angler aboard Team Gators. The Suncoast Kingfish Classic was sponsored by Yamaha, Central Marine, Intrepid, Gator’s on the Pass along with many others. 

In the Division 6 standings their 37-pounder was enough to push Team Native into the winner’s slip with 83.97 pounds (they also had a 46-pounder from the spring event in Sarasota). Steve Papen’s Lagerhead placed second based in large part on their 31.83-pounder from the Suncoast Classic, which won them seventh place overall. Arik Bergerman’s Under Armour placed third in the division with 74.38 pounds. Team Delosa’s jumped all the way to fifth place in the division standings with their 41-pound winner so that helped them tremendously. And Harry Thomas’ 31-pounder was the largest among the SKA’s Small Boat Class. 

Once again, the tradition of excellence in kingfish tournaments has carried on. And in just a few short months we’ll see what the “spring swing” of events at John’s Pass will hold. 


Open Class

Yellowfin / Mercury
Jim Breazeale
Morgan Domingue
Hale Wilson
Frank Quinto
Yellowfin / Yamaha
Richard Fabrizi
Ryan Farner
Brian Brandano
37.413. NATIVE
Fountain / Mercury
Jerry Solovskoy
Jeff Silverthorne
Cawley Snibbe
Chelsey Silverthorne
Evan Kerstein
34.724. PRO MARINE
Yellowfin / Mercury / Yamaha
Kevin Hannon
Ricky Cook
Zachary Cook
32.675. James Gang
32.156. Ocean Grace
Contender / Yamaha
Steve Papen
Doug Speeler Jr.
Corey Alley
David Bayes
Erik Danowski
Brian Simmons
31.718. Team Reeves
Sea Craft / Mercury
Harry Thomas
28.7510. WALLEYE II
Contender / Yamaha
John Thomas Jr.
Stephen McCracken
Brian Calzon
Alex Castillo

Small Boat Class

Sea Craft / Mercury
Harry Thomas
26.712. Team KO
24.583. Loaded Down

Top Junior Angler
Team Gators

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