Blue Water Hunting and Freediving - Digital Version 1 - Page 135

yellowfin tuna this time . The fish really started laying on the power , and I found it necessary to put my weight on the back end of the board . For ten minutes it was impossible to pull in any bungee . Then I started a routine and pulled hand over fist – one , two , three , four – and then clipped off the bungee with one of the large stainless steel shark clips attached to the front of the board . The fish circled over towards the headland on Cabo Pierce , trying to scrape the spear away from its back . I was very concerned that some part of my rig might be damaged . The surges the fish made were massive . To conserve energy , I waited for it to stop its run briefly before attempting to pull the fish in .
From conversations I had with Gerald Lim , I was aware not to overload the muscles in my arms . The tuna towed me across the shallow section of the cape on its way around to the other side . It was the first time I got a good look at it . I thought at that time that it might be bigger than 200 lbs . Once around on the southern side of Cabo Pierce , the fish stopped momentarily , and I pulled up more rig and clipped off again .
There were a number of sharks circling on the edge of visibility , but they were staying back . The fish looked larger than any of them . I managed to pull up the fish to about 60 feet below the surface . At that point , I could not raise it any higher . I called the boys over in the panga nearby to pass me the second-shot gun . They had seen me being pulled down with my board earlier through binoculars and had raced over . I loaded all four rubbers on the gun . It had a short bungee and small float attached . I asked the boys in the panga to go and find Terry Maas so he could take under water photographs of the capture . I still didn ’ t really know how big the fish was . By this time , I was fairly spent , but I made a lengthy dive onto the circling fish . It swam away as I approached , so I had to wait until it circled back again . I made a good solid shot alongside the first shaft . Then the bungee broke on the rubber section , exposing the inner cord . The bungee had been cut previously by the wahoo capture . I managed to clip the second-shot gun rig to the board . I also clipped the spearline from the first shaft to the board . Then Terry arrived and began to document the capture . The tuna made one final run and took off again . We caught up to it shortly afterwards , and Terry took a full roll of film . The fish bled profusely , and I dived and grabbed it while Terry got real-life , action shots . He then remarked , “ That might be a world record .” I thought , “ Really ?” Then I saw the size of the fish , around 7 feet long . I always tend to underestimate the size of fish . I attached the fish by rope to the panga , and we headed back to the Ambar III . When we pulled the fish onto the back deck , it looked massive . When the tuna was put on the scales , it showed over 310 lbs , with the tail still touching the deck . I just couldn ’ t believe it . The first yellowfin over 300 lbs ever landed by a freediver and a new world ’ s record !
I was very fortunate to be on the right trip , with the best people , on the best boat . It was my most satisfying achievement in the sport so dear to me . Several months later , the capture was recognized by the IBSRC as a new world record at 307 lbs .
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