Not only was the 2011 Bite Me Derby a sell out, but it was also extra special.
This year’s event was dedicated to co-founder Laurie Spears who died from cancer last spring, said derby chairman Richard Jones.
A memorial prize, a cottage trip for two in Port Renfrew, was created in his name for the largest hatchery fish caught, won by Doug Carter with a 23.2 lb. chinook salmon.
Started 17 years ago by Spears and a couple of other fire fighters, tickets were $65 for the two-day open fishing competition in Pedder Bay that ended with a big barbecue at the Metchosin Fire Hall.
“(The derby) was awesome. Our net proceeds go to the Pacific Salmon Foundation.”
Jones said in the past they’ve donated up $10,000 to the foundation, and numbers for this year are still being tallied but he guessed between five and $10,000.
The event also honours Hermann Volk, the former mayor and fire chief of Metchosin who passed away a few years ago. A $200 memorial prize was awarded for the largest salmon catch by a Metchosin firefighter, which went to Mark Woodger.
The biggest overall fish was caught by Kevin Packford on Saturday with a 42.7 pounder. He sailed away with a 14 ft. boat, trailer, and motor worth $8,000.