COUNTDOWNSome great changes are in store for parties, check-in and a
few rule changes, but the Cabo Tuna Jackpot remains focused on the teams
that want to Fish Hard and Party Harder for big money come Nov. 2-5
Coming up is the 18th annual WON/Yamaha Los Cabos Tuna Jackpot, the largest and richest tuna tournament in the world and Cabo is ready to party. One thing you will see at Lands End is that tourism is way up at the No. 2 Mexican vacation destination, second only to Cancun.
This year, 150 teams and a record payout over $700,000 are projected after 143 teams competed for $649,800 over two days of fishing. Last year, faced with the loss of two venues for parties, adjusted and the feedback was, well, not as good as we expected. Thus, we made some changes.
– One, we reserved way ahead the outdoor theatre and its 200-foot movie screen for the Wednesday Yo-Zuri welcome party. There is a two-week film festival and the city squeezed us in between events. Thank you!
– Two, we are streamlining our check-in at the Tesoro to eliminate long lines and paperwork. Of course, people will always arrive late after pre-fishing that day or flying in, so that cannot be completely solved.
THE CRUISE SHIP concrete pier in the marina. It’s 100 yards long, and can be accessed on foot or by water taxi on Saturday after 5:30 p.m.
— Three, the Saturday awards ceremony has been moved and thanks to the cooperation of the government agency API, we get to use the massive cruise ship pier, which is a football field long. We have two docks at the end, so you can take a water taxi right to the event. The event will be catered by Solomon's Landing, and will be streamlined to be shorter and will concentrate on winning teams, big drawing prizes, charity and honoring staff and sponsors. The many contests will all be moved to a new Fiesta format and venue on Friday.
— Four, the Friday Fiesta from 7:30 to 9:30 will be held at Maria Coronas, a beautiful downtown restaurant with a massive patio under huge jacarandas. Sponsored by Costa and Baja Cantina, there will be a fantastic band, a stage, many of the tackle drawings will be held that night, and all of the contests (Yamaha Guess the Fish, Seaguar/National Sticker, the WON Hard Luck Award, Show Me Your Costas, and Baja Cantina/Fishworks Best Dressed). A 200 to 300-shot slide show will be ongoing all fiesta long with scenes from check in and every sportfisher on the water, and weigh-ins over two days, results of the event, and plates and plates of hors d’oeuvres (don't worry about dinner). Winners of contests must be present, so we expect a large, boisterous crowd of 500. It won't be boring. There's a lot to give away. We needed to change it up since the sit-down buffet Fiesta was getting stale, and move all the contests to that night to make it more of a must-go and see event, and take the pressure off the Awards Dinner, as well.
The tournament as a major event continues to evolve on many fronts.
It all began 18 years ago, in 1999, when the Estrella Del Mar pulled into Cabo with two big tuna, the biggest in the panga from La Playita at 218.9 pounds. Last year we drew 146 teams competing for a record payout of $649,800. Five teams shared the money, topped by two teams that won over $200,000, and the champions, Team AMZ on the charterboat C-Rod that weighed in a 210 pounder.
This year we expect 150 teams and we have been working these past several months to make the Nov. 2-5, 2016 event bigger and better than ever. In 2014 we had $511,200 in the purse, last year it was $649,800. We hope to break the $700,000 mark in November.
So what is in store this year besides the event itself with two days of fishing and six tuna optionals and the $1,000 Wahoo/Dorado optional?
Of course, the fun all starts at Check-In at its usual spot in front of the Hotel Tesoro, and all but one of the great sponsors are back to provide fantastic gifts. Mold Craft was a new sponsor last year and is back, and will be giving out special soft head trolling lures to each team, so be sure to go by their booth and pick up yours. The official Gear Bags, this year embroidered with the tourney logo on the side, are again sponsored by Baja Cantina, and of course, each angler gets an official long-sleeve shirt by Costa listing all the champions of the 17 years of the tourney. Team AMZ from 2016 on C-Rod was added this year and their names were added to the Famous Tuna Wall at Capt. Tony's Restaurant on the marina.
There will also be hook packs for each team by Mustad, Seaguar fluoro coils for each team, Hi-Seas wire, Terrafin satellite maps by Jeff Gammon who will be back as an attending sponsor, Okuma giveaways, and Costa sunglasses gear will be on "sale" for charity, plus each team gets drawing tickets and wristbands for the Friday Fiesta and awards.
Women on teams will be given their own special tourney V-neck baby-t-shirts, and if you want an extra shirt, they are on sale for $20. As will be extra tournament flags, as 150 flags required for all boats/teams will be handed out to team captains, the 50 extras will be sold at $20 each. They are high quality. White with a color logo. Great for the boat or wall.
As always, charity will be a part of the event, and this year's charity to benefit the children of Cabo is again SmilesInternationalFoundation.org which conducts surgical clinics in Cabo by volunteer U.S. doctors and nurses the same two weeks a year, performing numerous operations to correct children’s cleft palettes.
More can be found on this effort in the Cabo website or at www.smilesinternationalfoundation.org. We hope you look into this program. It needs support so it can get matching funds. We raised $37,000 last year, and was matched by pharmaceutical companies. All money is used only for surgical equipment and supplies. Minerva Smith will be selling special event shirts this year, with the revenue going to the charity. There be a silent auction for a Jon Pettey Goldsmith Tuna Pendant, tackle packages, a trip to Alaska for two to Kingfisher, and more.
Then there are the various contests. Show Us your Costas! Is back for the start boat check-in. So is our Kingfisher/Yamaha Guess The Winning Fish's Weight Contest, Baja Cantina is again offering a Best Dressed Award (free meals for four anglers for the 2017 tourney) and Fishworks has joined in to give out four $125 clothing certificates for up to four new fishing outfits.
Of course, this year we will bring back the WON Hard Luck Award (we'll listen, anyway) for a free entry for 2017, and there is again the $10,000 Grand Prize Charity Raffle, the winner getting FOUR of every sponsor's products (Cousins rods, Okuma reels, Mold Craft lures, Costa sunglasses, Mustad hooks, Seaguar fluoro, Yo-Zuri lures, Seaguar flouro, Tesoro hotel stays and much more). The Seaguar/National Sticker contest is back, with a new sticker. Win a Seaguar tackle package and a free car rental from National.
There is also the Costa Cabo Escape Start Boat Charity Charter on Friday. If you aren't fishing and want to taste some great catered food by the Cabo Escape folks, watch the check-in and the wild 7 a.m. flare gun start, followed by a little salsa and line dancing spurred by free mimosas then you really should buy a $20 ticket and get up at 6 a.m. for the two-hour charter. Mimosas, juice and coffee will be served. The folks at Cabo Escape are donating the boat and the food, so every penny of that $20 goes to the Smiles International Foundation.
More than 60 teams have signed up and claimed a team number, and jackpot money is coming in. The big fish over 200 pounds are already showing. Where will you be in November?
Pat McDonell, Director
Cabo Tuna Jackpot 2016
If you have any questions, go to www.loscabostunajackpot.com and if you still require some assistance, contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org. If you are need of wiring instructions to pay the entry and optional fees (wiring is the easiest and best), request the instructions and I will send them that same day.
Our 2016 CTJ PREVIEW is up, all 32 full-color pages in easy flip-read format. Here is the link. A special four pages are added from print version of 28 pages to this one, at 32 pages. The extra four pages are a how-to story by Capt. Mike Tumbiero and a feature on Smiles and the clinic I attended. If you want all the details on the event, schedule, added rules and what the sponsors are doing to make it more fun, new party sites, this is the spot to see it. http://forum.wonews.com/3dissue/201607293lctj/index.html
The official website www.loscabostunajackpot.com has new and additional items on the event you should read. The links are below.
Signup questions, call Lori at (949) 366-0827. Note: for tourney questions, call me at (949) 366-0256 or email@example.com
Link to 32-page PREVIEW
Click on next two links below to reserve a number by credit card at $100 or $1000. (Mail in an entry form or fax it (949) 366-0804, or email a copy of it to Lori@wonews.com)
Link to $100 credit card deposit to reserve team number:
Link to $1000 team credit card payment for entry.
Optionals (6 tuna and 1 wahoo/dorado) must be paid by check or wire.
Link to Schedule for 2016 (Three different sites for parties)