Capt. Art Sapp, Liquid
Homeport: Hillsboro, Florida
Boat/Power: 39-foot Sea Vee/Quad Mercury Verado 350 hp
Wins to Date: Silver Sailfish Derby, 1st Place, 500 Pts.
Tackle: Rods – Custom aide by Leeward, 20 pound class; Spinning Reels—Okuma Azores;
Conventional Reels—Okuma Andros
Like most boats fishing the South Florida sailfish series, Captain Art Sapp and the Liquid planned to kite fish during the Silver Sailfish Derby. When the winds died down and conditions were no longer right for the kite, Sapp utilized his boat and the experience of his team as keys to victory.
In The Spread
The first day brought enough wind to fly the kites and team released two sails on four bites. This was standard practice. After the morning of the second day, however, the winds died and plans changed. “In the morning we saw a couple of free jumpers and ran to them with the kites out, but the kites didn’t work,” Sapp explains. “We spent most of the day running to feeding fish on the surface and casting them live baits.” When not slinging to actively feeding fish, the team bump trolled live baits. All told, the team caught nine sails out of 18 bites.
Sapp credits victory to two factors. “It’s our fourth year fishing together and we have a great deal of team unity,” Sapp says. “It also helps that our anglers are really good when casting to fish. This is not always the case.” The team Sapp describes is made up of Jim DeMarco (first mate), Keith McDonald (owner/angler), and anglers Rob Degnin, Steve Dougherty, Mike Gula, Jacob Lepera, Jim Steel, and Carl Schactor.
The second component to victory is the boat itself. The Liquid is a brand new 39-foot Sea Vee that allows Sapp to get on the fish in a hurry. Upon seeing fish on top 300-400 yards away, the center console made it possible to get to the fish in a hurry. “We were fishing in a pack of big sportfishers and they couldn’t run to the fish as well as we could,” Sapp concludes.