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Big Payouts For Big Fish In 2024 Mongo Offshore Challenge

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Big Payouts For Big Fish In 2024 Mongo Offshore Challenge 1

The 5th Annual Mongo Offshore Challenge is set to kick off May 1, 2024, with two divisions stretching from Cape Cod, Massachusetts to South Padre Island, Texas. This unique offshore fishing contest was developed by two brothers and a buddy in 2020. Last season, the Challenge paid out more than $450,000 to winners in the Gulf of Mexico and East Coast Divisions. With no qualifying blue marlin weighed on the East Coast, $62,000 in prize money rolls to 2024. 

“The Mongo is not just a blue marlin tournament,” says co-founder Capt. Jeremy Cox. J.D. Cox and Brian Johnson are the other two Challenge founders. “It’s totally ala carte. Teams can enter in a specific species category or go across the board. It’s their choice. This is a winner-take-all contest for huge fish and teams can fish whenever they want, not just in sanctioned tournaments. Charter boats are using it to broaden the possibilities for clients and clubs are promoting it, too.” AME Atlantic Marine Electronics and Garmin are the Platinum Sponsors of the Mongo Offshore Challenge. 

Eligible species in the Gulf of Mexico Division include blue marlin, swordfish, tuna, wahoo and dolphin. East Coast participants target blue marlin, swordfish, big-eye and yellowfin tuna, wahoo and dolphin. In keeping with the big fish or “mongo” emphasis, minimum lengths are set in order for the fish to count. Blue marlin must measure 118 inches from the fork of the tail to the lower jaw in both divisions. Swordfish must weigh at least 200 pounds to be eligible, while wahoo and dolphin must be 60 and 40 pounds, respectively. Tuna minimums (both species) are 150 pounds in the Gulf. Big-eyes must also top 150 pounds in the East Coast Division, while eligible yellowfins must be 100 pounds or heavier. 

Base entry fees are set according to the species and division. The Gulf blue marlin category is $2,500, with swordfish and tuna set at $1,500 apiece. Wahoo and dolphin are $500 each to enter. Teams competing in the East Coast Division pay $2,500 to target blue marlin and $1,000 each for swordfish, big-eye and yellowfin tuna. Wahoo and dolphin are $500 each. Optional entries are also available for every species at the mid-season and final standings marks.

“The theme of the Mongo is big fish only,” Cox explains. “Winners are truly mongo. So it’s an extra carrot for boats that will be fishing anyway. We’re just encouraging teams to fish more often. You can be out fun-fishing and have a chance to win. We have 25 weigh stations at the major marinas on each coast and if you’re fishing a tournament, those weights count in the Mongo as well. We defer to the tournament rules, so if a fish is eligible in the Bay Point Open or the Big Rock, it’s eligible for Mongo teams also.”

The Challenge follows the spirit of International Game Fish Association rules, with certain exceptions for swordfish. Entries are made via a smart phone app, which allows viewers to get real-time updates and follow the daily action. 

The 2024 Mongo Offshore Challenge begins May 1 and concludes September 30, 2024. To enter or to learn more, please visit:  mongooffshore.com  or check out the Mongo Offshore Challenge social media pages on Facebook, Instagram and YouTube.

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