The Mother Of All Marlin Breaks Records

After a record haul at the 2002 Mississippi Gulf Coast Billfish Classic, Barry Carr has a whopper of a fish tale to tell. Carr, fishing aboard the Sea Wolff of Destin, Fla., stole the opening-day show Friday with a pending state record blue marlin of 1,054 pounds. The marlin comes one year after the Mississippi yellowfin tuna mark of 205 pounds was set during the final hour last year. The marlin marks the fourth state record in six years for the Classic. ``This is unbelievable,'' said tournament organizer Bobby Carter. ``Four records says a lot about this tournament and it shows the kind of fishing we have off Biloxi.'' The 138-inch blue marlin was caught off a Spanish mackerel. ``You can't imagine seeing something like that coming out of the water,'' said Carr. As amazing as the fish was, if Carr's friend, Mark Goodyear, had not given up his spot in the fighting chair, it would be Goodyear with the state record. ``I was sitting in the chair looking out the back of the boat,'' said Goodyear. ``When it came up, I said there was no way. I looked at Barry and he jumped straight into the chair. ``I then went from the chair to hoping he could land it.'' Four hours later, that's what Carr did. ``When the fight was over, I was tired and whipped,'' said Carr. ``My arms and hands were cramping.'' If the fish holds up, the Sea Wolff team will win $100,000 for the largest marlin, a $100,000 for breaking the state record plus an additional $100,000 from the optional tournament and a 2002 Ford Excursion from Astro Ford.