67th Annual Stuart Light Tackle Sailfish Tournament

December 09 - December 12, 2020


Tournament Rules

  • 1. Boats: Minimum size is 30 ft. Final determination of a boat’s eligibility will be made by the Tournament Rules Committee.
  • 2. Pro Division Anglers: One angler, per boat, may be a person who has been paid for their professional services as a captain, mate or crew member, while engaging in fishing within the last twelve (12) months. Final determination of an angler’s eligibility will be made by the Tournament Rules Committee. All anglers must be registered. There is no limit on the number of registered anglers.
  • 3. Observers: All boats must carry a qualified observer. Observers will be assigned to boats fishing the tournament at the direction of the Tournament Committee. Boats must pick up and drop off observers at Pirates Cove Resort Marina.
  • 4. Fishing Days: Fishing days are 3 straight days December 12, 13, and 14th. There is no penalty for fishing less than 3 days. Documented mechanical failures which would compromise the safety of the anglers and/or crew will allow the boat the option to transfer crew to another boat to continue the day of fishing. Should these circumstances arise, the Captain must report the situation and intentions to the Committee Boat. The Tournament Rules Committee will have final approval of any such transfers.
  • 5. Daily Fishing Schedule a. Observers must sign in personally with the Observer Committee no later than 6:00AM at the Pirate’s Cove Resort/Marina. b. Boats planning to fish must check out with the Committee Boat via VHF Channel 80a prior to leaving the crossroads between 6:30am and 7:30am to declare they are fishing and check in with the Committee Boat upon return.
  • c. Boats shall pick up an assigned Observer from Pirate’s Cove Resort & Marina between 6:30am & 7:30am. Boats may proceed directly offshore after its observer is on board. d. Angler substitutions must be made by 7:30am, via the Committee Boat. All anglers must be registered with the Tournament. e. Lines-in will be announced by the Committee Boat at 8:30am, lines-out at 3:30pm. f. Boats must depart and return through either Jupiter, St. Lucie or Ft. Pierce Inlets, but they must return by boat to Pirates Resort Marina to turn in their Line and Leader Sample and Release Sheets for the day’s fishing by no later than 6:00pm on Day’s One and Two, and 5:30pm on Day Three. Any late return will be penalized by disqualifying the day’s catch. Mechanical or electrical problems will not excuse a late return.
  • 6. Fishing Area: North boundary is N27.55, South boundary is N26.46, and East Boundary is W79.40. (Subject to change at the Captain’s Meeting).
  • 7. Scoring: This is a Sailfish release tournament. All Sailfish must be released.
    a. Release is official when the Observer sees the leader knot or swivel touch the rod tip, or the mate takes control of the leader. Leader must be cut as close to the fish as possible. Deliberately jerking or snatching of leaders is not permitted.
    b. Releases must be reported to the Committee Boat as released, providing boat name and angler name.
    c. Any fish hooked before 3:30pm and reported to the Committee Boat may be fought until caught; any fish hooked after 3:30pm is ineligible.
    d. Winners will be determined by the total number of fish released regardless of number of days fished, up to three.
    e. Scoring ties will be broken by angler or team first achieving winning status, as determined by time recorded in daily Committee Boat catch logs. The Committee Boat log is the official log for the tournament.
  • 8. General: IGFA Rules apply except as otherwise noted in these Rules.
    a. Captains must attend the Captains Meeting to review the tournament rules.
    b. No more than six lines per boat. No spinning reels are allowed.
    c. Four teaser lines without hooks are permitted, 2 of which may be dredges. Downriggers and electric reels are permitted for teasers only (DEAD bait ONLY). Kites and live teasers are NOT permitted. No teasers in the water until lines in is announced. This is a dead bait ONLY Tournament.
    d. 20lb. test Hi-Vis is the only line permitted in this tournament.
    e. The use of double line is not required. If one is used it must consist of the actual line used to catch the fish.
    Double lines are measured from the start of the knot, braid, or splice, making the double to the furthermost end of the knot, splice, snap, swivel, or other device used for securing the trace, leader, lure, or hook to the double line. The double line shall be limited to 15 feet. The combined length of the double line and leader shall not exceed 20 ft., this includes the hook.
    f. There are no regulations regarding the material or strength of the leader. The leader shall be limited to 15 ft.
    g. This tournament is a single circle hook tournament. Only zero-degree offset circle hooks may be used. Hooks may not be altered in any manner whatsoever.
    h. Any natural dead bait or artificial lure may be used. Pitching bait to sailfish balling bait or into bait schools is prohibited. Chumming in any fashion is not permitted.
    i. Angler must remove rod from holder, hook the fish, and fight the fish to the boat unaided by any other person. The intent of this rule is that the angler and no one else hooks and fights the fish. Acts of any person other than the angler in adjusting the drag or touching any part of the rod, reel or main line disqualifies the catch. Any fish that strikes a bait while the rod is in the hand of a mate or anyone not registered as an angler that day is disqualified.
    j. In the event of a multiple hookup the angler may make use of the rod holder to hold the rod while fighting the other fish. Anglers may not fight the fish from the rod holder.
  • 9. A line and leader sample shall be provided each day from one of the rods used that day for fishing. Crews are responsible for turning in proper lengths for testing purposes: A minimum of 10 feet of line plus the double line (if used) and leader all intact, including the hook without bait, is required for length and strength testing. A violation of the line, leader or hook rules will result in disqualification of entire catch for that day.
  • 10. Polygraphs: Any crewmember or angler of winning boats is subject to polygraph testing at the discretion of the Tournament Committee. Refusal to take the test will result in disqualification. Polygraph tests will include but will not be limited to questions on angling and release procedures and species of fish. Polygraph tests are final, and winners are not official until test results are obtained. Any registered boat or angler so disqualified shall not be entitled to any prize, award, or entry fee refund.
  • 11. Weather: It is agreed by all parties that each captain has the ultimate responsibility to determine if conditions are unsafe for his vessel.
  • 12. It is the responsibility of all participants to be familiar with these rules. Participants are required to comply with all Florida and Federal laws and regulations, including but not limited to licenses, bag and size limits, speed limits etc. Failure to comply may result in disqualification without refund. Any protest must be filed in writing by captain by 6:00 PM the same day as the infraction. This must be accompanied by a $500 deposit fee, returnable only if the Rules Committee finds the protest to be valid.