A giant yellowfin tuna, a potential world record possibly worth $1 million, was caught Tuesday off Cabo San Lucas.
Guy Yocom of Dana Point, Calif., landed the behemoth aboard his 61-foot yacht, El Suertudo (The Lucky One), about 180 miles south of the resort city at Baja California's tip.
Yocom, 55, said in a phone interview that the fish was weighed twice on certified scales. One weight was 421 pounds and the other was 427.5 pounds. The angler is having the scales delivered to San Diego for calibration to determine an official weight.
That angler was Mike Livingston, who was aboard the San Diego-based long-range vessel Vagabond. Livingston's record broke a record that had stood for 33 years.
Tracy Ehrenberg, who runs Pisces Sportfishing in Cabo San Lucas, was first to break the story about Yocom's catch with quotes and precise details. She was in touch with Yocom shortly after El Suertudo, skippered by Greg DiStefano, pulled into port Wednesday morning.
Yocom said his group of seven anglers and crew had been targeting huge tuna in the hope of winning a prize in the "Hook a Million" contest offered by Mustad hook company. The contest, which runs through the end of September, pays $1 million to the angler who sets the first new International Game Fish Assn. record during the contest window.
Of course, the record still has to be approved but Yocom said his group followed IGFA regulations to the letter. Also, since the $1 million is paid over a 50-year period, the prestigious all-tackle world record, if approved, is the most rewarding aspect of his catch.
"I didn't realize what a big deal it was till now," he said. "Because I've been getting phone calls from people I haven't heard from in a while, telling me what a big deal it is."
The fight, on 100-pound-test line, was a surprisingly short 55 minutes. The giant tuna was among several smaller tuna that had been swimming with dolphins.
-- Pete Thomas
Photo: Guy Yocom (with rod and reel) and group pose with yellowfin tuna that could become a new IGFA all-tackle world record. Credit Mario Banaga / Pisces Sportfishing
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