Ever since Paul and Jack Townsend discovered the white marlin bonanza known as the “jackspot” in 1934, Ocean City, Maryland, has been called the White Marlin Capital of the World. In 1939, President Franklin Roosevelt, after a great day of marlin fishing out of the newly formed Ocean City Inlet, bestowed that title to Ocean City, Maryland.  To this day, no better white marlin fishing can be found, and Ocean City vacationers provide a fan-following unique to sportfishing tournaments anywhere. 

Thousands of spectators’ flock to the inlet in the pre-dawn hours to cheer for the boats large and small as they head out to sea in search of gamefish worth their weight in gold.  Thousands more gather at Harbour Island to view the weigh-ins each afternoon during “Tournament Week” to cheer as fortunes change hands with the tip of a scale. Founded and directed by the Motsko family, this symbiotic relationship of great billfishing, excited and knowledgeable fans and the chance to win millions of dollars has lured boats and anglers from around the world to fish “The Big One.”

The first tournament was held in 1974 and drew 57 boats, 150 anglers, and paid $20,000 in prize money. The 2022 event drew 408 boats, over 3,500 contestants, and awarded over $8.6 million dollars in prize money, including the top individual prize of $4.53 million dollars which established a new world record award for the catch of a fish!

According to marlinmag.com; whitemarlinopen.com; Source of photos: internet