Outdoors

Mississippi Gulf Coast Billfish Classic underway

A Work of Art, bottom, leaves the Point Cadet Harbor in Biloxi for the boat parade to kick of the 2016 Mississippi Gulf Coast Billfish Classic. The tournament ends Saturday.
A Work of Art, bottom, leaves the Point Cadet Harbor in Biloxi for the boat parade to kick of the 2016 Mississippi Gulf Coast Billfish Classic. The tournament ends Saturday. jcfitzhugh@sunherald.com

The Mississippi Gulf Coast Billfish Classic has the most boats competing in its 21-year history.

A record 120 boats have lined up in this weekend’s tournament at the Point Cadet. The Billfish Classic is considered one of the nation’s best bluewater tournaments.

Anglers from Corpus Christi, Texas, to Key West, Florida, leads a strong field batting for prizes. The total payout for anglers is $2 million, another tournament record.

Scales open Friday at 3 p.m. and stay open until 8 p.m. Scales open Saturday at 3 p.m. and close by 6 p.m. All boats must check in by Saturday at 7 p.m. Fishing concludes Saturday at 9 p.m.

Fish categories include blue marlin, tuna, dolphin and wahoo. Prizes are awarded by the largest fish per category and are given out for first, second and third place.

Clint Herring, fishing from the Cotton Patch, won last year with a 633-pound marlin, winning over $235,000.

An event ceremony will be held at 10:30 a.m. Sunday in the Golden Nugget Ballroom.

James Jones: 228-896-2320, @_jkjones

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