La Guaira, Venezuela, March 12th, 2009 – Anglers Jaime Riveiro, Luis Millan Jr and David Benzaken, fishing aboard the 51’ Riviera, Release, with Captain Luis ‘Loro’ Millan jumped out to an early lead on day one with four blue marlin and never looked back during the prestigious all release Solera Open International La Guaira Billfish Shootout held in La Guaira March 7th thru 12th.   By the end of the third and final day, Team Release had amassed a total of 4,700 points with nine blue marlin plus one sailfish releases in the three days of competition marking the first time in its twelve year history that the Shootout is won by a local Venezuelan team. 

Despite strong challenges on day 3 from the local anglers aboard Adelina who released 3 blues and 2 sails on the final day placing them second in the overall team standings with a final tally of 3,400 points and the Puerto Rican team aboard Mojito who scored a thousand points on day three to finish third with a total of 3,000 points for the 6 blues they released during the event, Team Release managed to hold on comfortably even though they only caught one blue on that last day.  

The blue marlin action in this year’s Solera Open Shootout was fast and furious where every tournament boat, without exception, competing with the official tournament line Sufix Supreme, released at least two blues during the tournament, for a final per boat average of almost five blues.  This is the second best per boat blue marlin average in the history of the 12 year old event and is only exceeded by the 6.4 blues per boat average recorded in the record breaking 1999 Shootout when a total of 256 blues were released in 3 days in a field of 40 boats.    

In the individual angler category there was another first for Venezuela with one of their favorite sons taking top honors for the first time in Shootout history.  Luis Millan Jr of Team Release posted an impressive point total of 3,500 points releasing five blues.  He was followed by anglers Massimo Ortisi also from Venezuela fishing aboard Adelina with 2,200 points resulting from 4 blues and a sail, and American Larry I’anson fishing aboard Guarimba with 2,000 points for the 4 blues he released.  

There was yet another first for Venezuela in this year’s Shootout.  In the annual softball game played on the lay-day pitting Venezuela vs All Visitors, Venezuela prevailed for the first time in the 3 year tradition crushing the Visitors by a score 14 to 4.  The game had to be called on account of lack of equipment after the Venezuelans knocked all game balls out of the park with several consecutive home runs!!!  We’ll see what happens next year . . .  Special thanks go out to our Title Sponsors for making sure nobody went thirsty during the game and the entire tournament for that matter by providing plenty of Solera Premium Beer, Pepsi, 7UP, Gatorade and Minalva Bottled Water.  Also, special thanks are in order to angler Luis Angel Rincon, owner of Mango Marina and his staff for hosting and making the Pirates of the Caribbean Rum Bash held on the night before the game another tremendous success.  Maybe the visitors partied a little too much at the Rum Bash and that’s why they were so badly defeated the next day? 

Mark your calendars for the upcoming Venezuelan International Super Slam scheduled for September 27th thru October 2nd.  The tournament promises to be another great one.  Observers interested in participating please contact Michelle Zelones at bluefin@usa.com or 561 310 3474.  For charter boats and accommodation in Venezuela contact Nancy at: nancy@venezuela-fishing.info


About Us | Check out some of our testimonials!

luhrs fishing venezuela


The El Placer Bank is also home to a year-round population of sailfish and blue marlin, as well as dolphin, Wahoo, and yellow fin tuna.

World-class anglers are fast discovering that "seasons" means very little in these fertile waters-

both bait and game fish abound all year long.

Experienced crews.

Well equipped boats.

Top-of-the-line tackle.

Venezuelan captains have been recipients of the Billfish Foundation and/or AFTCO "tag & release" awards for most white marlin anywhere in the world in 1989,1990,and 1991.

The most Atlantic sailfish in 1989 and 1990.

The most Atlantic blue marlin in 1992.

The most billfish (all species combined) in 1990 and 1992.


Come catch your own trophy with us...
Add to the fast-action fishing the gracious populace, excellent accommodations, good dining, and excellent night life and you've got a complete vacation experience for with your friends or the entire family, not just the hard-core angler.

And most important the Venezuelan people...............

Come and enjoy the real and virgin fishing adventure in Venezuela


Our Testimonials

Venezuela Fishing experience

I have had many great fishing trips (12-15) with Capitan Gustavo's Black fin over the last three years. The crew has "eyes" for locating fish that is hard to believe if you haven't had a chance to experience it.  We have caught fish on days that most came back empty handed and have never, in my experience, not caught something.  I personally caught a beautiful Sail on a very slow day.  I particularly enjoy catching Tuna and always bring my soy sauce and wasabe in my kit. The mahi mahi are fun and
almost always part of the catch which is great as they make great eating on the return trip - just add limon / lime juice and let ferment in onions and peppers.

Can't say enough good things about the experiences I have had aboard and would be happy to answer any questions you may have.

Michael Farrell
CEO and President of Petroleum Exploration Mediterranean Inc

I'm a resident of Tivoli, NY. Through out the course of the last 3 years I have been fortunate enough to charter the Black fin and fish off the coast of La Guaira, Venezuela (roughly 40 times). The crew possesses a real talent for seeing the various game fish chase and stab the bait. I caught several blue marlins, countless white marlins, dozens of dorado, tuna and occasionally, Wahoo. A great boat always equipped with cold beverages, food, plenty of tackle and a good music selection. Always my first crew / boat choice when fishing in the area.

John Drew


Venezuela Dream 

The trip began with me dreaming away again about fishing for blue marlin, but where should I go.  A quick search on the web led us to Explore Yachts Venezuela, a tour and travel company specialist in fishing, diving and accommodation; you name it they will help you out.

Frank Diaz the General Manager put things together for us via e-mail assuring us that Venezuela was where the action was.

Frank, my fishing companion, and I sorted the flights out from the UK and Frank met us at Caracas Airport on Saturday evening.  A thirty minute drive to the Hotel Macuto and we were in a safe friendly hotel with great food and wine. 

It was early May and the Marina was very quiet, the busy time is from October – December for a mixed bag.  We were here for blue’s and the quieter the better, less hassle on the La Guaira bank. 

Frank introduced us to his colleague Daniel who organised our fishing with two locals, Ely and Cesar, they both knew their stuff.  La Guaira Bank took about 1 hour from the marina as soon as we put the lines out it just couldn’t get any better. 

Day One 150lb blue, lost two.  As well as the blues two big dolphins and I mean big in the 90lb class. 

Day Two trolling dead Ballyhoo rose a 350lb blue and on 30lb line was a handful.  It beat us up pretty good taking 2 hrs to the boat, Two more hungry big male dolphins meant several Cuba/Libras at the bar in the Marina to recover as soon as we got in. Fishing Venezuela

Day Three was the business with four blues coming to the teasers together and crashing the four lines.  Chaos was the understatement as I, Cesar and Ely struggled to come to terms with what was happening. 

Trying in vain to keep the four lines hooked up, we were left with two nice juvenile blues one lost at the boat the other about 150lb which we got to the leader. It still wasn’t over as two big dolphins could not resist a bite later in the day.  A session in the bar that evening with the crew brought the day to a close. 

It just doesn’t get any better than this, stick to the hassle of October don’t think about April or May will you. 

Thanks to Frank, Daniel, Ely, Cesar and the friendly staff at the Hotel Macuto – was it a dream? 

David Laidler


Great Fishing

On day one we only managed to get 1/2 day of fishing in because our land loving guests got sea sick, and we were forced to return to the dock early. But what a half day of fishing it was!. We raised 3 blue marlin, 2 sailfish, and 5 white marlin. We managed to release two of the blue marlin and one White Marlin. What made it special was that the blue marlin release was double header of blues on 30 lb. tackle!! Both blues were in the 250 lb. class! It always amazes me how calm Captain Luis remains, even when we're about to get spooled. It seems he always has a trick up his sleeve, and manages to save the day.

On day two, our sea sick compadres, stayed on the dock, and thankfully they did because the weather was even sloppier than the day before. This brought in the green water, and we all know that when the water turns green, so do your chances of a great fishing day. But as usual Captain Luis was able to spin his magic, and raise some fish. We raised a total of 5 sailfish, 4 white marlin and 1 blue marlin. We managed to hook all the fish in pairs. First the two sailfish, then again two more sailfish, and last we managed to hook a pair of white marlin but pulled the hook on one of them. So we released a total of 4 sailfish and one white marlin. Late in the day we did manage to raise a small aggressive blue Marlin that jumped all over the bait, but never got a hold of it and just kept on swimming.

Just another great fishing weekend in Venezuela!


I just wanted to write to say thank you for your help with our trip. It was wonderful. The SeaFighter is a great boat and the captain and crew were just outstanding. This was the trip of a lifetime. We raised 6 marlin and boated a nice white marlin. We brought back to shore 8 Dorado, between 25 and 45 pounds. The Hotel Santiago, although not five stars, was very accommodating and the food was some of the best. Tyler, the driver, was always there to meet us in the morning and when we retuned from the boat. He is a very nice man.

If you ever need a reference, please feel free to use us. My phone number is below. We would do it all over again next week, if we could.
Again, thanks so much for your help.
I have attached some pictures that you may use if you want. 
Thank you,

David Stanley
National Account Manager
Enovation Graphic Systems

back to top