2021 Tournament Rules

Updated May 16, 2021

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It’s the most important part of every tournament. Each participant should take the time to read and understand the tournament’s rules before the Captain’s meeting on registration day. Have questions? Call Julia at 910.264.3947 or email julia@tournamentcontrol.com.

Tournament Rules

Rules, including published rules in print or on the ECBC website (fishecbc.com), are subject to change without notice. It is the sole responsibility of the participating anglers, captains, crews and guests (“Participants”) to know and abide by the Tournament Rules as published and as amended during the Captain’s Meeting. By entering the Emerald Coast Blue Marlin Classic at Sandestin® and paying entry fees, Participants agree to abide by the Tournament Rules and accept decisions made by the Rules Committee as final.

The Captain’s Meeting takes place between 6:00-7:00pm during Registration at the Baytowne Conference Center. A representative from each team should attend the Captain’s Meeting as each team is responsible for knowing the rules including any changes or clarifications made during the Meeting.

Judging in the ECBC is based solely on tournament rules. Teams are encouraged to comply with all Federal and Florida state laws regarding fishing licenses, size limits, bag limits and any other regulations that may apply. For information regarding Florida Saltwater Fishing Licenses refer to www.myfwc.com/license/recreational/saltwater-fishing/ or call 888.347.4356. For information regarding Federal HMS Permits refer to hmspermits.noaa.gov.

For questions regarding tournament registration, rules, marina slip reservations, payment or angler changes email julia@tournamentcontrol.com or text/call Julia at 910.264.3947.

For marina or dockage specific questions email dockmaster@sandestin.com or call 850.267.7773.

For tournament communications during check-out, check-in and access to the weigh station use VHF-72.

If you require fuel, ice, or have other marina needs upon returning from fishing use VHF-10 or call 850.267.7773.

Updates to procedures and rules are sent by either email or group text. Current cash distribution and leaderboard status is streamed on the live scoring web link at ecbc.catchstat.com.

The tournament organizers may cancel any tournament fishing day if, in their best judgment, unsafe conditions exist. Resumption of fishing is announced by 6:00am the following morning via group text/email. A resumption of fishing announcement by the tournament organizers does not ensure the safety of any Participant; whether to fish must be based solely on the team’s own judgment taking into consideration the prevailing conditions, the seaworthiness of their vessel, and the crew’s seamanship skills. One day of offshore fishing or any part thereof, by at least one-third of registered boats constitutes a complete tournament.

Tournament fishing starts at 12:00pm on Thursday and continues through Saturday at 6:00pm. No lines or teasers targeting tournament species may be in the water before start of fishing, but bait fishing is allowed. There are no boundaries.

The ECBC tournament organizers expect the highest level of integrity and sportsmanship from their Participants and for them to compete in the spirit of the IGFA Saltwater Equipment and Angling rules. Any member of the team may set the hook and fight the fish or may set the hook and pass the rod to another team member within the first minute, but the rod may only be passed one time; the angler must then fight the fish unassisted.

Fish caught not according to tournament rules are disqualified. Fish under minimum weight and/or length and any fish weighed over the limit do not qualify for points. If your intent is to release the billfish, do not remove it from the water—if you do (as recorded on the video) the billfish is disqualified. Throwing a boated blue marlin overboard because it is under length or in favor of a larger fish is strictly prohibited. Mutilated fish, mutilation defined as anything that impairs the fighting ability of the fish, are not weighed. Fish must arrive at the scales in edible condition. Refer to the following table and diagrams for eligible species, requirements and points.