VALDEZ, Alaska – David Jamison of Fairbanks is still leading the Valdez Halibut Derby with the 253 pound fish he caught May 29th aboard the Nanatuk. Kim Steiger of Westchester, Pennsylvania is currently holding onto 2nd place in the overall standings with a 211.0 pound halibut she caught July 5th aboard the Halibut Grove and Jeff Leaverton is hanging on to 3rd place overall with a 174.4 pound halibut he caught June 16th aboard the Dan Orion June 16th.
In addition to the Valdez Halibut Derby Grand prize of $15,000 cash, a 2nd place prize of $5,000 and 3rd place prize of $2,000 cash, there are weekly 1st and 2nd place prizes. Some of the prize packages include charters, overnight stays, glacier tours and Valdez Fish Derbies apparel in addition to gift certificates.
The weekly 1st place winner in the Halibut Derby was Jacob Longoria of North Pole. Longoria reeled in a 135.8 pound halibut July 14th aboard the Nunatak. The 2nd place weekly winner was Keith Tridle of Kansasville, WI. Tridle brought in a 132.2 pound halibut July 10th while fishing on the Bold Eagle.
Casey Tollman didn’t end up with a weekly prize, but she did have her name on the leader board for a while. For Tollman, competing for the weekly prize was well worth the $10 ticket investment. Tollman is from Glennallen and currently living in New York, New York. She caught a 120.2 pound halibut on July 11th aboard the Bold Eagle. In addition to being on the weekly leaderboard, Tollman scored a victory for women during her trip. “We absolutely out fished the boys and they know it”, Tollman said.
Tollman said she enjoys coming back to Alaska to fish in Valdez every few years, but she won’t be staying long enough to compete in the Women’s Silver Salmon Derby so the field is wide open. The Valdez Women’s Silver Salmon Derby is Saturday August 13th with an opening ceremony Friday, August 12th.
The Valdez Kids Pink Salmon Derby is this Saturday, July 23rd. The Kids Derby is open to children age 5 to 16 and there is no fee to enter. Kids just need to weigh-in a pink salmon at the Valdez Fish Derbies weigh-in station Saturday, July 23rd to get a t-shirt and have a chance of winning one of the top three spots in their age division. A free family barbeque and awards will follow the day of fishing. The first 300 kids to stop by the weigh-in will get a free t-shirt courtesy of Alyeska Pipeline Service Company and the Valdez Fish Derbies. Valdez Fish Derbies dates, prizes, rules, winners, pictures and more can be found at www.valdezfishderbies.com.
Halibut Derby – Overall Leaders
1st David Jamison Fairbanks, AK 253.0 lbs. May 29 Nanatuk
2nd Kim Steiger Westchester, PA 211.0 lbs. July 5 Halibut Grove
3rd Jeff Leaverton Madisonville, LA 174.4 lbs. June 16 Dan Orion
Halibut Derby – Weekly Winners – Week #9
1st Jacob Longoria North Pole, AK 135.8 lbs. July 14 Nunatak
2nd Keith Tridle Kansasville, WI 132..2 lbs. July 10 Bold Eagle