58th International Masters Angling Tournament Scores Again in Costa Rica
Playa Herradura, Costa Rica – The International Masters Angling Tournament wrapped up on March 5, 2021, and made history once again. Top Angler, Chase Offield of Laguna Beach, California, accepted the Old Man and The Sea trophy for the fourth time since 2013 making him the most proficient angler and establishing a record that will be tough to beat.
“This tournament was the most special for me,” says Offield. “My family has been here with me this week and we have proven that my wife Jena is good luck”. The Offield Family was not the only one in tow at the event; the tournament caters to all of the spouses with organized excursions and plenty of time to get to know one another. “Los Suenos is the perfect location for family to join in,” says Tournament Director Heather Maxwell. “The Masters is a put on a lovely dress (men in jackets of course!) and enjoy kind of event. We also invite the families for breakfast with the anglers and dockside fun after fishing. The tournament speaks to the traditions of the past and I love that.”
A covid cancellation in 2020 and travel restrictions in 2021 created an atmosphere of gratitude for the field of 17 anglers fishing three days from Los Suenos Marina. The Tournament Committee also chalked up the event, although smaller than normal, as a true success. “Our anglers released 197 sailfish,” states Masters Chairman Carmine Galati. “We had a wonderful group of anglers and their fishing skill was impressive.”
The Masters Tournament was envisioned by John Rybovich and his dock partners in the early sixties. The first event was held out of Palm Beach in 1963 and over the years moved from there to Isla Mujeras, Mexico and again to Los Suenos, Costa Rica. The rules, however, have remained the same over the decades. Dead boat, stop watch, man vs. fish.
Release scores are based upon fight time. Overtime fish (10 plus minutes) earn a flat score and broken line or strike receive hefty penalties. Trophies for fastest fight time and most sailfish released are presented as well as the top three boats and crews. The format includes two anglers per boat with two lines each, anglers switch sides of the cockpit on the hour and the Masters boasts a 2 to 1 ratio of private local boats vs. the local charter fleet.
2021 Winners Follow:
Fastest Fish – Lach Cheatham 29 seconds aboard Ragin Cajun on Day Two
High Freshman Angler – Brian Kirkpatrick with 11 fish and 700 points
Top Boat Overall – Mjolmer Capt Dave Harris 27 fish on time
Second High Boat – Vaquero Capt Lance Hightower 27 fish
Third High Boat – Goose Capt Bob Watson 25 fish on time
Master Angler 2021 – Chase Offield with 1175 points
Second High Angler – Frank Bongiorno 910 Points
Third High Angler – Chris Lazzara 835 points