Rules & Regulations
.There have been a few rule changes for 2024. In the effort to do our part to help preserve our fishery there have been a few rule changes:
- Treble hooks are prohibited on lures and flies during the tournament. Only “J” hooks may be used. Lures and flies with more than one hook must have “J” hooks.
- The number of barracuda that can be boated and measured is now 5 fish. Minimum to score 76 centimeters. Any fish you do not wish to measure must be released in the water if at all possible and handled as little as possible.
If you have a fish boat side you will need to make the decision whether to remove it from the water to measure and photograph to score. Five fish may be measured per angler, per day. Your top three of five fish will count as your score.
- There will no longer be a “most releases” category.
- )This is an artificial, fly and spin fishing tournament. Only flats skiff type boats with a poling tower may be used. Flats skiff type boats exceeding 20-ft. in length are not permitted.
- Licensed guides may fish as anglers.
- Prior to the start of the tournament the designation of the angler(s) must be made.
There cannot be any substitutes once the tournament begins.
- There will be no other persons on the boat besides registered anglers and guides unless pre-authorized by the tournament committee.
- Only the angler may touch the rod, reel or line while the line is outside the boat. The only exception is when landing a fish the guide may touch the line but no more than the length of the rod to the hook.
- Anglers and Guides may begin fishing any time during daylight tournament hours of each of the two days of fishing but may not exceed 8- hours each day on the water dock to dock. This rule is to be followed by all teams. If a team finds that they have exceeded the 8-hour dock to dock time limit, then they must report to the tournament director and the rules committee will determine if their score from that day should count.
- Anglers may measure 5 fish per day, per division (Fly and Spin) (1/24). Minimum length for scoring is 30″ (76 Centimeters). Scoring in each division will be based on largest three (3) fish per day, caught on fly or spin tackle.
All other fish must be released while still in the water if at all possible and please handle the fish a little as possible.
Individual anglers are allowed to score up to three fish in a division per day. Fish from day one may not be counted on day two. Fish are scored individually by division and may not be combined. Six fish can be scored per angler, per division.
- Single “J” hooks are required (1/24). No trebel hooks shall be used while targeting barracuda during the tournament. Tube lures and flies with more than one hook must have “J” hooks.
- Qualifiers for the Ben Gravett Team Division must have a boat with two anglers and a guide/captain (Three persons total). Scoring for the Team Division is based on measuring up to 3 fish per day, per angler (12 fish total combined for 2 anglers over the course of the tournament). Scoring for the team division is based on the largest 3 fish per day caught by each angler, on a two person team, on spin OR fly. Fly and spin scores cannot be used together to create a total of 12 fish scored towards the team total per day.
- Fishing range is unlimited and boats do not have to report in the morning to South of the Seven restaurant on Sugarloaf Key (MM 17) prior to fishing.
- Participants who have fish to score must return to South of the Seven Restaurant in Sugarloaf Key (MM17) by no later than 5:00 PM by any means possible with their score sheet and photos.
- Participants unable to return to the tournament headquarters by 5:00 PM will not be eligible for scoring on that day. Unforeseen circumstances (mechanical) must be reported by 4:30 PM to the tournament committee (Loren Rea 305-360-6969) in order to be considered for scoring.
- A digital camera or smart phone with camera must be provided by the angler and/or guide. A photograph of the entire fish on the provided IGFA ruler must be shown to the scorekeeper. There is a 76 centimeter minimum(1/22) measurement for scoring.
- Daily catch forms must be submitted to the scorekeeper by the angler and/or guide at the end of each fishing day along with a photo of fish caught.
- 20# max tippet for all light tackle and fly leaders.
- If a rod is broken while fighting a fish the fish may still be landed and submitted for scoring.
- Barracuda may be cast to in water less than 8- feet deep. The barracuda must be on the edge of a flat or on the flat, but not in a channel.
- Barracuda fishing on natural structure is allowed as long as that structure is in no more than 8- feet of water. No wreck fishing is allowed.
- All protests should be submitted in written form to the tournament rules committee by 5:00 PM the day the proposed infraction occurred.
- Ties shall be broken by the time of the last fish caught first. In other words if two anglers result in the same score at the end of the fishing day, whomever caught their fish earlier in that day would prevail (Please record time your fish is landed).
- Trolling motors are permitted.
- The tournament director reserves the right to refuse tournament entry to any prospective entrant with or without cause at his, her or their sole discretion.
- For purpose of these rules the tournament is held at South of the Seven Restaurant on Sugarloaf Key, MM 17.
Tournament Committee: Director: Loren Rea Scorekeeping: Celia Tolle, Lenore Baker
Rules Committee: Capt. Bo Sellers, Scott Christian, Capt. Scott Collins