Capt. Shane O’Brien, Wild Hooker, 2150 Points
- Lazy Marlin Hunt, 2nd Place, 300 Pts.
- Firecracker Open, 1st Place, 500 Pts.
- Kona Throw Down, 1st Place, 500 Pts.
- Skins Marlin Derby, 3rd Place, 100 Pts.
- Big Island Marlin Tournament, 1st Place Release, 500 Pts.
- Hawaiian Marlin Tournament Series Champion, 250 Pts.
Capt. Tracy Epstien, Last Chance, 1400 Points
- Kona Throw Down, Heaviest Marlin 765.5 lbs, 500 Pts.
- Big Island Marlin Tournament, Heaviest Marlin 589 lbs., 500 Pts.
- Big Island Marlin Tournament, 2nd Place Release, 300 Pts.
- Lazy Marlin Hunt, 3rd Place, 100 Pts.
Capt. Matt Bowman, Sweet Sadie, 800 Points
- Kona Kickoff, 1st Place, 500 Pts.
- Kona Throw Down, 2nd Place, 300 Pts.
Capt. James Bach, Miss Mojo, 800 Points
- Skins Marlin Derby, Heaviest Marlin 833.5 lbs, 500 Pts.
- Hawaiian Lure Maker, 2nd Place, 300 Pts.
Capt. Bryan Toney, Melee, 700 Points
- Hawaiian Lure Maker Challenge, 3rd Place, 100 Pts.
- Lazy Marlin Hunt, 1st Place, 500 Pts.
- Firecracker Open, 3rd Place, 100 Pts.
Capt. Shawn Rotella, Night Runner, 500 Points
- Hawaiin Lure Maker Challenge, 1st Place, 500 Pts.
Capt. Rob Ellyn, Lightspeed, 500 Points
- Skins Marlin Derby, 1st Place, 500 Pts.
Capt. Ryan Lutes, Tropical Sun, 500 Points
- It’s A Wrap, 1st Place Release, 500 Pts.
Capt. James Dean, Blue Hawaii, 500 Points
- It’s A Wrap, Heaviest Marlin 544 lbs, 500 Pts.
Capt. Marlin Parker, Marlin Magic, 400 Points
- Skins Marlin Derby, 2nd Place, 300 Pts.
- Big Island Marlin Tournament, 3rd Place Release, 100 Pts.
Capt. Cyrus Widhalm, Kraken, 400 Points
- Kona Kickoff, 2nd Place, 300 Pts.
- It’s A Wrap, 3rd Place Release, 100 Pts.
Capt. Teddy Hoogs, Bwana, 300 Points
- Firecracker Open, 2nd Place, 300 Pts.
Capt. Kevin Hibbard, 2nd Offense, 300 Points
- It’s A Wrap, 2nd Place Release, 300 Pts.
Capt. Chuck Wigzell, EZ Pickens, 100 Points
- Kona Kickoff, 3rd Place, 100 Pts.
Capt. Carlton Taniyama, Five Star, 100 Points
- Kona Throw Down, 3rd Place, 100 Pts.
2019 Hawaii Division Captain of the Year
By Dave Ferrell
Sea Genie Hawaii Division
Capt. Teddy Hoogs, Bwana, 1,900 Points
1st Place Release Points, Skins, 500 Pts.
1st Place Release Points, Lure Maker, 500 Pts.
3rd Place Release Points, Marlin Magic, 100 Pts.
2nd Place Release Points, BIMT, 300 Pts.
1st Place Points, It’s a Wrap, 500 Pts.
There are few places in the world as steeped in the history of sportfishing as Kailua Kona, Hawaii. The use of the very first outriggers and very first artificial trolling lures for marlin to name just two. It also hosts the world-famous Hoogs family of sportfishing pioneers. Capt. Teddy Hoogs, this year’s winner of the Sea Genie Captain of the Year award grew up fishing the prolific waters of Kona sitting on the lap of his famous father Peter Hoogs, at the helm of the Pamela. “There wasn’t any daycare back then, so there’s a lot of pictures of me sitting on my Dad’s lap while fishing a charter,” says Hoogs.
Now all grown up and a legendary force to be reckoned with in his own right, Hoogs, 38, pilots the 46-foot Gamerfisherman, Bwana, in some of the best blue marlin water in the world. “It was awesome when I found out we were going to get her. She was formerly named Adios, and I was drooling over her the whole time she was on Yacht World. It’s really great to run her here,” says Hoogs.
Hoogs works for owner Craig Lindner Jr., and over the last 11 years, the two have put together a good team of anglers and mates that all work on the same page. Carl Shepard’s been with me for four or five years now, and we had Keith “KJ” Robinson come along when we run two crew. It’s all good vibes with those guys. We are all behind each other 100 percent. We stand behind our choices on the water. We also had Bobby Cherry fill in for a few tournaments this year as well. He’s a captain here in Kona as well, and runs a boat called the Cherry Pit. He’s a good friend and was a good asset for us this year. We made a lot of the right turns this year for sure,” says Hoogs.
Hoogs says that they caught the majority of their fish on lures, but that “we caught one on a live bait during the last tournament. Craig is an excellent angler, and he’s worked hard on our program. He knows when to tease a fish, when to back off the drag and when to put it to them. It’s like having another crewman on the deck,” says Hoogs.
Another thing that Hoogs appreciates about his present owner situation is that he doesn’t have to be out fishing every day to make his living. “I grew up fishing a ton of days on the Pamela. My Dad had to do a lot of fishing to raise a family. With this job, I don’t have to be out there every day now. I’ve got a couple of kids so fishing just 65 days or so a year, the majority of that with Craig, makes it much easier on the family life. I’m still busy keeping the boat up, and I enjoy the fishing all the tournaments in the summer. This arrangement allows me to be here for the kids while they are growing up,” says Hoogs.
Although he’s done the majority of his fishing in Kona, Hoogs quickly learned about the benefits of traveling to different spots and learning the ins and outs of big-game fishing from a variety of different perspectives. “I did six seasons on the Great Barrier Reef in Australia, went to Madeira with Clay Hensley and fished in Ghana, Africa with Alan Stewart. I’ve also done a lot of commercial tuna fishing here in Kona for many years. We get to see plenty of big ones right here at home.”
“I’m very proud to the get the Captain of the Year award,” says Hoogs. “I like catching big marlin and big tuna and I really like tournament fishing…those big fish really get me going. Although, I really don’t mind catching a few little blues during the tournaments; we can catch them fast, get some points, and hopefully win some money!”
- 2014 Capt. Rob Ellyn, Light Speed, 1000 Pts.
- 2015 Capt. Kerwin Masunaga, Rod Bender, 1100 Pts.
- 2016 Capt. Kerwin Masunaga, Rod Bender, 1,850 Pts.
- 2017 Capt. “Stymie” Epstein, Huntress, 1,000 Pts.
- 2018 Capt. Rob Ellyn, Lightspeed, 1250 Pts.
- 2019 Capt. Teddy Hoogs, Bwana, 1900 Pts.
- Hawaiin Open Billfish Series
- Rock ‘n Reel Hawaiian Open
- Kona Kick Off
- Firecracker Open
- Skins Marlin Derby
- The Kona Throw Down
- Hawaii Luremaker Tournament
- Kona Shoot Out
- Pelagic Marlin Magic Lure Tournament
- Big Island Marlin Tournament
- Hawaiian International Billfish Tournament
- It’s a Wrap Tourney