JULY 26-28, 2024
Friday, July 26 - Registration & Captain's Meeting 5:30pm
Saturday, July 27 - Fishing begins 5:00am • Scales open 4:00-6:00pm
Sunday, July 28 - Check-in to weigh fish by 4:30pm • Scales open at 2:00pm • Awards following the close of scales
Entry - $40 per angler (7% required Florida State Tax is included in entry)
+ Optional Jackpots
Catch & Release Billfish
1st, 2nd, & 3rd Place • ages 9-16
1st Place • age 8 & younger
Entry fee is $40 per angler. Youth anglers must be 16 years old and younger. The 7% required Florida State tax is included in the entry fee.
Payment of the entry fee constitutes a representation by each entrant, the guardian of, that he/she has read and fully understands the tournament rules and he/she will abide by such rules and the decisions of the Tournament Director.
The Emerald Coast Big Game Fishing Club (ECBGFC) Youth Tournament is a sportfishing tournament where all participants agree to fish in a fair and ethical manner. While the tournament does not strictly enforce the use of IGFA rules, it expects that only minor technical differences be employed by anglers.
The Captain’s Meeting will be held on Friday, July 28th at 5:30pm at Harbor Docks in Destin, FL. The captain, owner, or designated team representative must be present if you are departing from Destin. If you are departing from another port, you must have registration and optional bets placed and acknowledge all rules by Friday at 7:00pm.
Rules are subject to change. Any changes to the rules and final instructions will be given at the meeting.
PERMITS & LICENSES
The captain of the vessel is responsible for maintaining all permits and licenses required to fish within the State of Florida.
Boats may depart their port at any time after the Captain’s Meeting, but may not begin fishing until the official fishing hours. Anglers may begin fishing with lines in the water on Saturday, July 29 at 5:00am and continue fishing until Sunday, July 30. There is no lines out time, however, you must be in line to weigh your fish by 4:30pm on Sunday, July 30.
WEIGH STATION HOURS
Scales will be open on Saturday, July 29 from 4:00-6:00pm and Sunday, July 30 beginning at 2:00pm at Harbor Docks. You must be checked in and in line to weigh your fish at Harbor Docks by 4:30pm on July 30. Scales will close immediately after the last fish is weighed. All billfish catch verification forms for released fish must be turned in to officials before the close of scales.
The following species are eligible for competition when caught by registered anglers in accordance with tournament rules. Fish brought to the scales must meet the minimum requirements of Florida Wildlife & Fisheries or otherwise stated.
Eligible for Catch & Release:
Eligible for Weigh-in at the Scales:
Each youth angler may weigh-in a maximum of two (2) fish per species per day listed above OR one (1) fish per species for anglers 8 years old and younger.
No electric reels.
The Tournament Director reserves the right to reject any fish entry due to its condition or one that does not meet eligible requirements. The condition of the fish will be left to the scrutiny of the Tournament Director. Their decision is final.
NO PASSING THE ROD AFTER THE FIRST MINUTE OF THE FISH BEING HOOKED.
Each boat is required to record all billfish that are released in the order in which the fish are caught on the Billfish Scorecard. The order of recorded releases should match the order that appears on the boat’s Catch & Release video. It’s encouraged to call or text the releases in real time.
Be prepared to give the following information per release:
Species of Fish
Do not report any other tournament fish on the Billfish Scorecard.
Reporting is monitored by calling or texting Crystal LaFosse at (337) 802-5525.
Tournament scales will be located at Harbor Docks in Destin, FL. All fish weighed at the scales must be returned to the boat. Anglers must remain with their fish until the completion of the weigh-in procedure. Anglers, or guardian of, must verify and initial the final weight of the fish on the stat sheet, at which time will make the weight official
1st, 2nd, and 3rd Place will be awarded for each qualifying fish, along with an additional award for anglers eight (8) years old and younger.
TOURNAMENT DESIGNATOR / IDENTIFICATION MARKERS
Designators will be assigned at the Captain’s Meeting. These markers must appear in all video submissions.
CATCH & RELEASE DEFINITIONS
A billfish is considered caught when the leader connection is shown wound to the tip of the rod, or a team member is shown touching the leader. The billfish is considered released when, after being caught by the above definition, the rod and angler are shown with the fish no longer connected to the line or the billfish is shown in the water, no longer connected to the line.
VIDEO VERIFICATION AND POINTS AWARDED FOR CATCH & RELEASE
Please use a fresh, new SD card. Limit recordings on the card to this tournament with segments staged and ready for scoring. Cell phones are acceptable, but not recommended.
Points for Catch & Release are awarded when, in the process of the catch & release as defined above, all technical elements are shown on video. Any billfish removed from the water or boated will be disqualified.
Videos submitted for consideration for points must include the following:
Angler fighting the fish, including video of the rod and reel
Cockpit panoramic view
The Catch (swivel at rod tip or team member touching the leader)
Video of Billfish species
Secondary cockpit panoramic view after the release
Clear video of the GPS date and time to be used for official release time
Verification videos become property of the tournament. All videos and scorecards must be turned in before the closing of the scales on Sunday.
This is a separate entry. The optional entry is $100, $250, and $500 per species, per team.
All optional payouts will be the total amount of monies received, minus 10% deducted for tournament service fees with the remaining 90% to be awarded. Jackpots will pay 1st, 2nd, and 3rd place with a 50%, 30%, 20% split. In the event of limited participation, payouts will be modified as follows: One team entered will be refunded in full, two teams will be a 66%, 34% split and three or more teams will be the standard split. In the event no qualifying fish are weighed, 90% will be returned to participants who paid the Optional entry fee for that division.
WEATHER: TOURNAMENT DELAY OR CANCELLATION
In the event the Tournament Director feels in their best judgment that fishing is unsafe due to severe weather, high seas, or any cause beyond the control of the ECBGFC, the tournament may be canceled or delayed. If delayed, a new start time or date will be announced should weather conditions improve. If canceled, entry fees will be refunded less 10% for tournament expenses.
Entrants shall have no claim against the Emerald Coast Big Game Fishing Club for return of said entry fees less the prorated share of tournament expenses.
All teams and participants should make their decision to fish based solely on their own judgment. Fish at your own risk.
We strive to be a fun organization and safety is our top priority! Should the seas be deemed unsafe for some vessels, we will give the option of a refund with no hard feelings.
For Catch and Release, team placement is determined by the first team to reach the highest total points as verified by the boat GPS time.
For fish weighed in, any category of fish brought to the scales, placement is determined by the order of weigh-in at the scales. The recorded time of weigh-in determines placement.
Any protest relating to the tournament must be submitted in writing along with a $500 non-refundable deposit by the team captain to the Tournament Director no later than 15 minutes after the last fish is weighed. All entrants agree to abide by tournament rules and regulations.
All disputes are decided by the Tournament Director. Their decision is final.
Poor sportsmanship will be grounds for disqualification from the Emerald Coast Big Game Fishing Club. Any violation of these rules resulting in disqualification will result in forfeiture of entry fee, membership fees, and prize money.
WAIVER / DISCLAIMER
It is understood that all participants in the ECBGFC Youth Tournament enter at their own risk, and that the officers, committee members, sponsors, directors, host venue, and all persons connected directly or indirectly with the operation of said tournament, shall be exempt from any liability for libel, slander, loss, damage, negligence, harm, injury or death suffered by any participant, entrant, angler, his/her companions, boat captains, mates, crew members, vessels and equipment which may occur during or in conjunction with the tournament.
The Tournament Director reserves the right to refuse entry of any anglers. In the event an angler is refused after signing up, a full refund will be issued.
All decisions of the Tournament Director will be final.
GOOD LUCK TO EVERYONE! SEE Y’ALL AT THE SCALES!
Crystal LaFosse • 337-802-5525