Permit tournament honors late fly-fishing legend

KEY WEST, Fla. — Greg Smith of Canyon, Texas, caught a 26.125-inch permit on fly to win the 2008 Del Brown Invitational Permit Tournament honoring late angling legend Del Brown. Smith earned the title of grand champion angler fishing with Captain Scott Collins of Marathon, Fla.

Smith caught his permit about 10 miles west of Key West.

"It was a difficult series of days because the weather was really calm," said Smith, who was competing in the tournament for his second year. "We got lucky and got near some fish willing to eat."

Collins was named the tournament's grand champion guide.

"If he can win with me, that says a lot about him," said Smith of his guide's prowess. "I'm just the knucklehead on the bow facing forward."

Jack Noll of Montauk, N.Y., caught a 25.5-inch permit to earn the title of runner-up grand champion. He was guided by Captain Jeffrey Cardenas of Key West.

Chase Wise of Boca Grande, Fla., was named the first runner-up angler with a 19.25-inch permit. He fished with Captain Bryan Holeman of Key West.

Permit enthusiasts on 17 boats fished the tournament named for Brown, an internationally acclaimed angler who caught more than 500 permit during his lifetime and died in 2003.