2023 Tournament Rules
Eligible species for competition purposes is
king mackerel (Scomberomorus Cavalla).
This is a big fish tournament with the heaviest
qualifying king mackerel winning.
Any rule changes or additions at the captain’s
meeting will take precedence over these printed rules.
This is a captain’s choice tournament. It is up to the captain of each boat to
determine if he/she and crew will compete on the designated tournament days.
Tournament officials will monitor VHF 72 during
competition hours. VHF 16 is an international distress frequency and should be
used for emergency calls and Coast Guard assistance.
A captain may enter one boat in the Carolina
Kingfish Classic and it must be the sole boat fished for the duration of the
tournament. Replacement boats may not be entered for any reason after 8:00 pm
on Thursday, August 10th.
Sponsors, tournament director, and employees of
Charleston Harbor Resort and Marina are eligible to win primary and bonus
prizes just like any other entrant.
Carolina Kingfish Classic is limited to motor
By signing the entry form, all captains, anglers
and occupants of their boat hereby agree to all rules and regulations and
consent that tournament officials may use without payment or restriction, any
photographs, video or interviews in which he or she may appear for any purpose
whatsoever, including but not limited to resale, advertising and promotional
The tournament committee reserves the right to
refuse an entry into the tournament.
The tournament director and tournament
committee, at their discretion, can enforce the rules or make decisions on any
other circumstances that may arise during the course of the event. The tournament
director and/or the tournament committee’s decisions are final.
Violation of the tournament rules will subject
the boat and angler to disqualification from the entire tournament without
Tournament Days & Times
Tournament fishing days are Friday and Saturday.
If Friday and Saturday are deemed unfishable, then Sunday will be a designated
Competition hours start at 6:30 a.m. on
designated fishing days. King Mackerel fishing lines may not be in the water
before 6:30 a.m. Boats must be checked-in Friday by 5:00 p.m. and Saturday by
4:00 p.m. If Sunday is a designated tournament day, then Saturday’s competition
hours will be followed.
If Small Craft Advisories are in effect for 6:01
a.m., then that day will not be a tournament fishing day. Forecast used is waters
from South Santee River to Edisto Beach SC out 20 NM and can be found here: https://www.ndbc.noaa.gov/data/Forecasts/FZUS52.KCHS.html.
The safety of the participating vessel is ultimately the responsibility of the
One day of fishing constitutes a tournament.
If the tournament committee cancels the tournament,
then 90% of entry fees and 100% of Calcutta / Tournament within Tournament fees
will be returned to the boat captain.
All anglers must have a valid South Carolina
saltwater fishing license and comply with South Carolina and Federal fishing
King Mackerel are not allowed to be on-board at
the start of a tournament fishing day. Tournament officials may inspect any
boat participating in the Carolina Kingfish Classic prior to the start of each
Boats entering the ocean on tournament days must
do so from South Carolina navigable waters.
No more than six king mackerel fishing lines can
be fished from the boat at any one time. All fish must be caught on a rod and
reel. Wire lines are prohibited. Downriggers, outriggers and kites will be
allowed as fishing line carriers only. No electric reels except for kite rods
Junior and/or Lady Anglers must be the primary
angler and accompany their fish to the scales to qualify for Junior and/or Lady
Angler bonuses. Primary angler constitutes fighting the fish 50% or more of the
time. The rod may be passed to another
angler anytime while fighting their fish or as needed for assistance.
A junior angler is 15 years or younger and a
lady angler is 16 years or older on the date of the captains meeting.
Two or more boats congregating during
competition hours will be disqualified from the tournament. Congregation is
defined as two or more boats touching and/or passing objects to another boat. Prior to weighing in, boats are not allowed to make landfall or dock during competition hours. Approval is not required for life threatening emergencies.
Check-In & Weigh-In
Weigh station will open at 2:00 p.m. on Friday
A boat entry can weigh 1 fish per day and only
win one primary prize. The entrant does remain eligible to win bonus prizes
with the same fish. Bonus prizes consist of single engine outboard bonus, lady
angler bonus, youth angler bonus, and special weight bonus prizes.
Entrants weighing a fish after 3:00 p.m. on a
competition day must visually and verbally check-in on VHF Channel 72 with the
tournament committee member located on the corner of A Dock and A Extension,
which is the south west corner of Charleston Harbor Marina. Boats should be off
plane and not wake the marina by the time they pass Red Buoy #34 which is
located 250 yards south of Charleston Harbor Marina. Boats that do not check in
by 5:00 p.m. Friday and 4:00 p.m. Saturday will not be eligible to weigh their
fish. GPS time will be the official time.
The crew is responsible for unloading and
presenting their fish for weighing. Crews should have their fish ready for
unloading as there is a 1 minute unload time limit. The crew members are
responsible for taking their fish to the weigh station. Registered Junior
and/or Lady Anglers must accompany fish to scales to be eligible for bonus
Fish must be fresh, not frozen, fit for human
consumption, not mutilated, nor its weight altered in any manner. Hook and gaff
marks are acceptable. It is the sole responsibility of the crew to remove all
hooks, lures, and leaders prior to presenting the fish for weigh-in.
If a fish is determined ineligible after being
weighed, then any fish weighed by that entrant during the entire tournament
will be disqualified.
In the event of a tie, the winner will be
determined by the earliest weigh-in date and time.
The winning fish weighed becomes the property of
All fish must be brought to Charleston Harbor
Marina, by the registered boat, under its own power. Fish cannot be transported
over land or by another boat.
Polygraph tests will be administered at the sole
discretion of the tournament committee. Refusal by any participant or occupant
of a registered boat will result in disqualification. All decisions of the
polygraph examiner are final.
Only a registered boat’s captain may protest any
fish weighed in the tournament. All protests must be delivered in writing to
the tournament director on the day of the protested catch no later than thirty
minutes (30) after the last fish weighed. All decisions of the tournament
officials regarding protests are final. There is a $750.00 cash charge for
registering a protest. If the protest is validated, the $750.00 will be
returned. The captain who submitted any protest must provide indisputable
evidence to prove the infraction.