Popular west coast fisherman Pete Jackson is the cover star this issue. He made the news by landing a spectacular 197kg bluefin tuna while on a broadbill mission over the Manukau Bar to the Kaipara Trench. He was fishing with two friends Mike Langley and Mark Edmondson aboard Mark’s Buccaneer Billfisher trailerboat Pleco when the big tuna nailed a slimy mackerel livebait. The fish took over two hours to boat on 37kg standup tackle.

This issue recorded the launching of John Gregory’s Whangaroa based charter vessel Primetime. This skipper went on to make an international name for himself, fishing the top of the North Island, 
Three Kings and beyond, and setting the bar for charter boat billfish catches (with broadbill to become a speciality).

Other news-making events included kite fisher Colin Sherman hooking a billfish in September when trying his luck in the Far North’s Great Exhibition Bay. The marlin finally broke the trace after a 45-minute battle. Marlin also feature in a Steve Radich report on Raoul Brammall and Paul Hargreaves’ efforts in catching billfish from a 15HP powered 12ft tinnie using spin tackle – before this became a fashionable ‘tease and switch’ challenge for sport fishers in later years.

In the marketplace, an Abu Garcia 7000 C3 purchased at Hamilton tackle retailer Fish City would have set you back $249. You could buy a GME EPIRB at the same place for $299. Fish City were also Ramco dealers and one of this brand’s top-of-the-line 6.0m Fishmasters with a Mercury Offshore 90HP outboard, rocket launcher, clears and sitting on
a Voyager single axle trailer was worth $42,995.