After nearly a month of fair weather and intense fishing, the Vineyard’s fall classic, otherwise known as the Martha’s Vineyard Striped Bass and Bluefish Derby, enters the home stretch this week.
And some big fish dominate the leader board. Daniel Hiemer still holds the top spot for boat bluefish with his monster 19.69-pounder that was caught the first week of the derby and is the largest blue caught off the Vineyard in 15 years.
Stephen Pietruska, a familiar name in Vineyard fishing circles, holds the top spot for boat bass with his 38.71-pound lunker.
Shore bluefish leader is Ralph J. Peckham with a 15.18-pound fish, and Jena-Lynn Beauregard leads the shore bass category with her 34.63-pound fish. Caught last Wednesday, it was the first fish she weighed in this year.
“I was in the derby last year, but all I caught was a dogfish and some crabs,” she told the Gazette.
The 68th annual derby ends Saturday, Oct. 19, at midnight, with the last weigh in on Sunday morning.
As of Monday 815 bluefish, 298 bonito, 205 false albacore and 441 striped bass had been weighed in.
For more results see, the Gazette’s derby headquarters page.