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32nd Annual Bisbee’s Black & Blue: Winner Takes Home $2.396 Million

by Chris Sands

Results for the 32nd Annual Bisbee’s Black & Blue and Los Cabos Offshore Tournaments

Billed as “The World’s Richest Fishing Tournament,” the 32nd Annual Bisbee’s Black and Blue Marlin Tournament was held last week, with top honors going to angler Dave Sanchez, who bagged a 465-pound blue marlin off Cabo San Lucas aboard Frantic Pace. Bisbee’s awarded nearly $2.473 million in prizes this year, with almost the entirety going to Sanchez and his team, who earned $2.396 million as the only group to meet the 300 pound qualifying limit. Although this year’s payout fell short of the record $4.165 million awarded in 2006, which included $3.9 million to a single team, Sanchez didn’t seem terribly broken-hearted.

“I’m really starting to like this offshore fishing,” said a jovial Sanchez, whose largest catch prior to the tournament was a largemouth bass he reeled in near his home in Kansas City, Missouri. “We had a lot of fun, it was a great team effort and I’m just glad we ran across that fish. We found one, caught it, and as luck would have it that was all it took.”


32nd Annual Bisbee’s Black & Blue

The huge prize money, as always, was a major lure, attracting top big-game fishermen from more than a dozen countries to the southernmost tip of the Baja Peninsula, an area known for its superb marlin fishing. More than 740 anglers aboard 106 boats competed in the 2012 event. Entrants had to put up $63,100 to enter in all jackpot levels, including $10,000 daily. The Frantic Pace team swept the major categories this year, taking home Top Tournament, Top Jackpot, and Top Captain. This year’s Black and Blue was presented by Cabo Riviera Marina and Golf Resort, and major sponsors included the Hotel Buena Vista Beach Resort, Baja Cantina, Montauk Tackle Company and David Wirth

A few days earlier, Bisbee’s held their other major October tournament, the Los Cabos Offshore, affectionately known as “Little Bisbee’s.” Although Little Bisbee’s doesn’t feature feature the enormous prize money of the Black and Blue, it got plenty of attention this year, donating the entirety of the tournament proceeds to charity for the first time. A check for over $102,000 was presented to Casa Hogar, a local orphanage, and all future LCO events are expected to adopt the same charitable format.


Frantic Pace at the 32nd Annual Bisbee’s Black & Blue

“Thank all of you for making this possible,” said Wayne Bisbee, the tournament’s director, speaking to anglers at the awards banquet. “You caught some really nice fish, released a bunch more and helped make things brighter for some boys who really need a boost. This week, the Los Cabos Offshore Charity Tournament grew up in a big and special way.”

Sea Angel is blessed with a winner.

A total of 466 anglers on 80 teams competed for the LCO’s nearly half a million in cash prizes, with nearly three-quarters of the boats entering across the board. The biggest prize went to Chupacabra, a 64′ Hatteras helmed by Capt Jesse Scarborough, with Roy Oliver and his team of anglers awarded $206,973 for sweeping the Day One Marlin Jackpots and the 1st Place Marlin with a 583-pound blue. Sneak Attack, a 65 American Custom Yacht skippered by Capt. Sammy Talbert, earned $189,837 for weighing the second largest fish and garnering all of the Day Two Marlin Jackpots, with angler Darin Antin bringing in the team’s 565-pound blue.

In other Bisbee’s news, the schedule for next year’s events has already been announced. The East Cape Offshore Tournament will kick things off, and is slated for July 23-27. The Los Cabos Offshore Tournament, also known as Little Bisbee’s, will be held October 18-20, with the Black and Blue Marlin Tournament to follow on October 22-26. For more information, visit, or email

Fishing and fun are synonymous with Cabo San Lucas!  Find out where to stay, when to go and more at is a comprehensive online source of first-hand travel information for the Baja California Peninsula, supported by a full-service tour operator staffed by Baja locals (our “Baja Travel Savants”). We offer Baja travelers expert advice about local restaurants, hotels and vacation rentals, as well as guides, maps and articles about events, sports and activities. We provide bilingual customer support, information and sales seven days a week, 365 days a year.

All photos courtesy of Capt. Dave Lear.

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About Chris Sands

Chris Sands is the author of Bohemia by the Bay, and writes about wine, golf, and travel for publications such as, Los Cabos Guide, Los Cabos Magazine, 10 Best, and USA Today. He is a full-time resident of Cabo San Lucas.

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