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Congratulations to all who participated in the

49th Annual, Marina Del Rey Halibut Derby

June 1 & 2 of 2024

Derby winners

<< All album photos 3/10 photos
Top big team: Split Decision

Event was a big success

We did it! The 49th Annual Marina Del Rey Halibut Derby was nothing short of an awesome event! All participants received membership to MDRA through the end of this year. All participants also received a one year digital membership, courtesy of the IGFA. 

83 participants with 27 total fish weighed. All category species were caught except White Seabass. 

10 Halibut caught. 5 Halibut were caught and released alive.

Oh yeah, and an unofficial (soon to be official) STATE & WORLD RECORD California Scorpionfish (Sculpin) weighing in at 5.0 lbs caught on vessel “Never Enough”.

We were able to raise money to help fund CCA California, our White Seabass grow-out program, our Veterans fishing program, and our Youth fishing program. Remember that by supporting Marina Del Rey Anglers, you are directly supporting all of these causes. 

Thank you so much to all of our Halibut Derby committee, our amazing volunteers, our generous sponsors, and most importantly, our participants! We couldn’t have done it without you!! 

Big shout out to all of the volunteers from CCA, Chris A., Tonie, Wayne K., and Robby, for driving up for this event and helping to make sure it was fun and exciting for everyone involved. 

Thank you to the volunteers from MDRA, our weighmasters Torin and Wayne R., and all of the incredible members that we had come down to lend a helping hand. I look forward to carrying the torch for the Marina Del Rey Anglers legacy next year for the 50th Annual Marina Del Rey Halibut Derby! Let’s make it the biggest and best yet!

Thank you to CDFW and NOAA for being present and making sure everyone was informed, educated, and compliant with all of the fish submitted, released, and sampled for research purposes. 

Also a huge thank you to Chris W. to help make sure that we had the best Halibut Derby shirts that we’ve had to date! There will be a few available for purchase at the next club meeting, so be sure to get there early.

Thank you for vessels Betty-O and Free Spirit out of Marina Del Rey Sportfishing for making sure that we had sport boats running for the derby this year!!

Thank you to the donors for our Youth Division, the late Dave Hamilton, the International Game Fish Association, and our sponsors. We were able to award our top youth angler a $1000 grant for education, a lifetime IGFA package, and some awesome prizes!

For all of the winners, we will be providing your trophies at our annual awards banquet in January 2025. 

To everyone involved, I sincerely appreciate all that you did and look forward to seeing all of you to show support for our 50th Annual event!! We will send out an update for which weekend it will happen next year, but it will tentatively be scheduled for the first or second weekend of June 2025. 

Speaking of all of your amazing support, we are running 18 youth trips this year on the Betty-O with Captain Michael Reinsch, and we’re always looking for more volunteers. Capt. Mike is one of our biggest supporters by assisting us with our Youth trips, and we are eternally grateful for you, Patty, and your amazing crew.

If you’d like to get involved with our Youth Fishing program, please email and we will be happy to provide you with more information for dates and available times when you can mentor. 

All in all, we got to give away a TON of prizes, had a fantastic raffle, silent auction, and most importantly, we got to go out and do what we all love, go fishing with our friends! 

We had a grand total of 27 fish weighed and submitted for this years derby.

10 Halibut were caught, 5 were released alive. The other 5 were able to have the science bits submitted to CDFW for research, a huge benefit towards providing reasons to the state to support conservation efforts for our California fishery. 

Our first, second, and third place fish were all Halibut. All of them were weighed and successfully released alive! Each of these fish were given the 25% live weigh bonus.

  1. Our first place winner this year, with a 29.9 lbs Halibut, weighed in and released alive, giving him a total weight of 37.375 lbs with the 25% weigh bonus, was none other than Mr. Jim Hendricks on vessel “Split Decision”.
  2. Our second place winner was Jonathan Day on vessel “Another Day” with a 26.3 lbs fish, weighed in and released alive, giving him a total weigh of 32.875 with the 25% weigh bonus. 
  3. Our third place winner was Rafael Avendano with a 26.7 lbs Halibut caught on the Betty-O! Capt. Mike, you never disappoint, what a great fish!


Here’s a quick highlight of the Derby with top weights for each division:


Heaviest Halibut: 37.375 lbs

Angler: Jim Hendricks

Vessel: Split Decision


Heaviest Fish Overall: 37.375lbs

Angler: Jim Hendricks

Vessel: Split Decision


Heaviest White Seabass: NO QUALIFYING FISH


Heaviest collection of Live Bass: 14.5 lbs

Angler: Puria Keshmiri

Vessel: St. Jimmy


Heaviest Sport Boat Fish: 26.7 lbs Halibut

Angler: Rafael Avendano

Vessel: Betty-O


Top Youth: 14.1 lbs Collection of Live Bass

Angler: Finneas Day

Vessel: Another Day




Top Club Fish: 37.375 lbs Halibut 

Angler: Jim Hendricks

Vessel: Split Decision

Club: Marina Del Rey Anglers




Top Small Team (1-2 Anglers): 

Anglers: John Szymura & John Wyatt Szymura

Vessel: Fight On


Large Team (3-6 Anglers):

Anglers: Jim Hendricks, Chris Wheaton, & Dennis Yamamoto

Vessel: Split Decision


Heaviest Rockfish: 6.2 lbs

Angler: Tony Yumori

Vessel: Cabo Time


Heaviest Lingcod: 24.3 lbs

Angler: Mark Farner

Vessel: Cabo Time


Heaviest Sculpin: 5.0 lbs

Angler: Ed Rhee

Vessel: Never Enough



Heaviest Sand Dab: 10.5 oz

Angler: Jeff Milam

Vessel: Pier Pressure

What great catches everyone!!!  We hope all the participants, not just the ones that caught wining fish had a good time fishing the Santa Monica Bay this weekend.

Yes the conditions were a little hard with the red tide.  But the water was calm enough and even though overcast most of the AM's out there it was very fish-able.  All sorts of catches did come in.  The die hard anglers were out in force.  And they were rewarded in the side jackpots and in the big Super Raffle that passed out the Love that we got from our sponsors.  Also we had a silent auction to make available donated tackle and gear that raised even more funds for out charities of Vets Fishing and Youth Fishing and White Seabass growout pens.

The Marina Del Rey Anglers is a 501c-3 charity orginisation and really appreciates the supports of the vendors and the fishermen who together makes this charity fishing event work.

Thank you.

Again, thank you all for making this such a great, memorable event. I appreciate all of the support and participation from everyone involved. Looking forward to next year!  The 2025 event will be the 50th Annual.  With your help we will make it bigger still!

 Tight Lines,

      Myles Blatt

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