ORANGE BEACH, Fla. (WKRG) — The 2022 Blue Marlin Grand Championship winners and final weigh-in numbers were released with a 568.4-pound blue marlin taking the title. The 500+ pound fish was caught by the team ‘It Just Takes Time’ and becomes the 10th different winner in 10 years of the Grand Championship event, according to the release.

The event was delayed a week due to severe weather, but 31 boats and angler teams braved the elements and competed in the three-day event, which kicked off Thursday, July 21.

Just two teams reeled in a blue marlin during the event including ‘It Just Takes Time’ and ‘A Work of Art.’ The two were separated by just 11 pounds with ‘A Work of Art’ catch weighing in at 557.4 pounds. The winning marlin was measured at 120.5 inches, while the runner-up reached 115 inches.

Both teams used a ‘Viking’ boat and were from Orange Beach, Fla.. The winning team was led by captain Chris Wood and owner Nick Pratt, who used a 72-foot Viking boat. Angler Nick Crovato was announced as the angler for the 500+ pound blue marlin.

“We’ve had success in other tournaments along the Gulf Coast, but this was the one our entire crew wanted to win the most,” said Pratt. “To win this one, right here in our hometown, against the best of the best, is something we will cherish forever.”

Owner Art Favre and captain Jason Buck with ‘A Work of Art’ were pleased with the event, but knew it would be tough to win the championship.

“It’s a great fish, and it’s always extra special when we get to weigh one here at The Wharf,” said Favre. “But with the level of competition in this event, we knew another big fish was coming in a little later.”

Catch & Release

The other part of the grand championship included a ‘catch and release’ competition, which included over “70 total billfish,” being caught, according to the release.

Captain Devin Potts, who reeled in seven blue marlins and was awarded the winner of the event, said “it was the best weekend of fishing [Potts] has ever had in the Gulf of Mexico.”

A 154.2 and 105-pound Yellowfin were caught in the ‘tuna division’ of the optional gamefish category competition.

Here is an overall look at the results and winners:

Tournament Grand Champions

  1. It Just Takes Time — 568.4 lb. blue marlin (Captain Chris Hood, Angler Nick Crovato)
  2. A Work of Art — 557.4 lb. blue marlin (Captain Jason Buck, Angler Lance Glaser)

Tournament Catch & Release

  1. C-YA — 7 blue marlins released, Captain Devin Potts
  2. Southern Charm — 5 blue marlins, 2 white marlins released, Captain Landon Bell
  3. Pearl — 5 blue marlins, 1 white marlin released, Captain Tyler Maxwell

The Blue Marlin Grand Championship is set for July 12-16, 2023.

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