Tournament Rules and Regulations

1.    RULES: Interpretation and enforcement of the following rules and regulations shall be left exclusively to the officers of Florida Disabled Anglers, Inc. and / or the tournament officials. In the event of a rule violation, the tournament officials may impose such sanctions, as it deems appropriate, including, without limitation, disqualification, forfeiture of prizes and prohibition from subsequent tournaments. The decision of the officials shall be final in all matters. [Return]

2.    PARTICIPANTS: Participation in this tournament trail is open to all persons, including minors with a written parental or guardian consent, providing the person operating the combustion engine is 18 years of age or older. The definition of a “disabled”, or “mobility impaired” angler is the sole discretion of the tournament officials. Disabled anglers as deemed by the tournament officials may also be the boat captain, but will still be considered a disabled angler for scoring purposes. “Able-bodied” captains may fish alone if a disabled partner is unavailable and will receive all benefits and points thereof. The tournament field will be held to 25 boats unless the tournament officials deem it necessary to add more as to accommodate disabled anglers. The boat field cap is the sole discretion of the tournament officials. Tournament officials reserve the right to discontinue acceptance of applications prior to the tournament date or at the tournament site on the morning of the tournament. ALL participants must complete an official entry form including the tournament waiver each year before becoming eligible to participate. [Return]

3.    OFF-LIMITS PERIOD: There shall be no off-limits period for the competitors of these tournaments. [Return]

4.    SAFETY: Safe boating conduct shall be observed at all times by tournament competitors. Each competitor is required to wear a Coast Guard approved chest type life preserver. The preserver MUST BE WORN ANYTIME THE COMBUSTION ENGINE IS RUNNING. The only exception shall be if the anglers are trolling for fish with lines in water and running at idle speed. Violation of this rule shall be reason for disqualification. [Return]

5.    SPORTSMANSHIP: Competitors in these tournaments are expected to follow high standards of sportsmanship, courtesy and safety at all times. Special considerations may be applied for the disabled anglers as deemed necessary by the disabled anglers and the boat captains will comply with the request within reason. Use of alcohol or drugs (other than those purchased over the counter or prescribed by a licensed physician) by any competitor during this tournament will not be tolerated and shall be cause for automatic disqualification from the tournament. No firearms of any kind shall be allowed in the boats or at the registration or weigh-in area at any time. This rule excludes enforcement officials. Any infraction of these fundamental sporting principles may be deemed cause for disqualification. [Return]

6.    TACKLE AND EQUIPMENT: Only artificial lures may be used. There will be no live, cut, or prepared baits with the exception of pork rind. A competitor may use only one casting, spin cast, or spinning rod and reel at any one time. Fly rods are prohibited. Trolling as a method of fishing IS permitted due to the nature of this disabled tournament trail. [Return]

7.    ASSISTANCE: Participants may not ask for or have other individuals, whether competing or not, hold fishing spots/waters for their use. Additionally, no participants may ask for or accept fish from other individuals, whether competing or not; NOR MAY CAPTAINS OR THE DISABLED ANGLERS SHARE FISH BETWEEN THEM. Violations of this rule will result in automatic disqualification and forfeiture of any prizes. [Return]

8.    BOATS AND EQUIPMENT: Every boat must have on board at all times the required safety equipment adequate to meet Coast Guard regulations. ALL boats must be equipped with a functional ignition kill switch, which shall be attached to the driver’s body anytime the combustion engine is operating. Only boats 16 feet or more in length will be permitted. Airboats, canoes, jet skis, or similar craft are prohibited. The use of a combustion engine larger than the BIA certificate rating will not be allowed to compete. EVERY boat must be equipped with a functional aerated live well system capable of maintaining alive a limit of tournament bass. Tournament officials have the right to inspect said live well system and deem the boat acceptable or not for competition. [Return]

9.    PERMITTED FISHING LOCATIONS: Tournament waters shall be on waters open to all public for fishing at the tournament location. Fishing is permitted anywhere except within 50 yards of another competitor’s boat that was first anchored with the trolling motor in the stored position, or to pull in front of another competitor’s boat in a canal or dead end canal without first asking permission from the lead boat. [Return]

10.    BIG BASS PURSE: All competitors upon payment of entry fee are included in the Big Bass Purse. $5 of the entry fee is designated for the Big Bass purse. The largest bass caught during the tournament in each division will receive 100% of the fees collected for said division. [Return]

11.    SCORING: Final winners in each division (captain’s, disabled angler’s) of these tournaments shall be determined by the total weight of each participants catch during the tournament. Only large mouth bass shall be weighed. The tournament weigh-in limit shall be THREE FISH PER ANGLER. At no time shall a competitor have more than THREE live fish in his possession, unless the participant is in the act of culling a LIVE fish. The trail official length shall be 14 INCHES or more unless a special length is established for a particular tournament by the officials and the proper permits are available. Only bass as described above which legally measure according to the tournament officials on a flat board “Golden Rule” shall be weighed in. If a weigh-in official measures a fish and determines it’s short on the official rule, the fish is then measured on the participant’s rule. If the fish measures legal on the participant’s rule, the fish is released and the weigh-in continues. If the fish is found to be short on the participant’s rule also, then the participant will be disqualified. A “Golden Rule” master will be available at the tournament site for the purpose of verifying said rule lengths. In the event of a tie, the tied competitors will each draw a number. The angler with the lowest number will be considered the winner of the tie. [Return]

12.    CULLING FISH: There shall be NO CULLING OF DEAD FISH. No culling shall be permitted at the tournament ramp or any area inside the official check in point. [Return]

13.    POINTS: Participant’s point standings within the tournament trail are determined by the participant’s finish based on a linear point system. 200 points for first place, 195 points for second place, etc. If a participant cannot weigh in fish, then the participant receives a minimum score for participating in the tournament of five points below the last place participant that was able to weigh in a fish. A participant arriving late to a tournament after the other boats have left should find a trail official and report his intentions, and pay the entry fees prior to the weigh-in to receive any point score. Point standings at the end of the tournament year shall determine the “Angler of the Year” in each division (Captain and Disabled Angler). The Angler of the Year points for both Disabled Angler and Captains Divisions are determined by each individual's points total for Angler of The Year title in both Disabled Angler and Captains Divisions.  [Return]

14.  NO ABSENCES: There is a ONE DROP TOURNAMENT. Which means you’re your best 5 tournament scores out of 6 tournament scores will determine the ANGLER of the YEAR. For both the Disabled Division and the Captains Division. [Return]

15.    PENALTY POINTS: PENALTY POINTS: Legal length dead bass presented to weigh-in officials by a competitor shall accrue penalty points at the rate of .25 pounds for each dead fish. There shall be only one official check-in point and the tournament officials shall designate this point prior to the morning launch. Competitor’s who are not in the official check-in area at the appointed time shall be penalized at the rate of one pound per minute to be deducted from the total weight of each of the competitor’s catch of that day, starting with the largest bass. All competitors who are more than 15 minutes late shall be disqualified. [Return]

16.    LAUNCH POSITIONS: Boat launch positions shall be by a number draw during the morning check-in. Each boat will draw a poker chip with their starting position on them. PLEASE in case of an EMERGENCY Which will cause you too leave before the weigh-in. Please leave your poker chip on a Tournament Officials Vehicle. In case of a tie or ties, the boat having the lower launch number shall be determined the tie or ties breaker. [Return]

17.    TOURNAMENT HOURS: TThe official hours of competition shall be from safe light, as determined by the tournament officials, until 2:00 P.M. unless otherwise noted prior to the morning launch. All competitors should arrive at the ramp location at least one hour prior to safe light in order to ensure a timely loading of the disabled anglers, check-in and launch of the boats. [Return]

18.    WEIGH-INS: Official tournament bags will be available, and no fish in other than the official tournament bags will be accepted. Once a competitor is called and his fish are transferred to the tournament officials, said participant can no longer handle those fish. The fish will be measured, weighed and the results recorded. The tournament officials will be responsible for the chemical treating and the health release of all live fish. Fish shall be weighed one time and the tournament official’s say is final. [Return]

19.    PROTEST: There shall be only one time during the tournament at which to register a protest. That time shall be immediately following the weigh-in of the last participants catch from that days fishing only, and before the start of the awards presentation. The tournament officials will discuss the said protest and they will rule on and announce the final decision. If there are no protests at the start of the awards presentation, then the results of the tournament shall be considered fair and final. [Return]

20.    FEES AND EXPENSES: There shall be a $40.00 entry fee to fish in F.D.A. tournaments of which $5.00 will go to the Big Bass purse and $10 to the Classic. The non-boater must realize the cost of boat ownership and a fee of $20.00 is the normal rate of half of the expenses. However, if the competitor chooses to travel longer distances while fishing, the non-boater should agree to share the extra expenses. F.D.A. tournament officials will not be responsible for any collections of boat or fuel expenses occurred. The exception is that a guest may fish their first tournament free of the $30 entry fee only if they choose to but are not eligible to receive any money, trophies, or points. A non-boater still needs to share boat running expenses [Return]

21.    PAY BACKS: Trophies will be awarded to the angler of the year in each division based on point total for the year.  [Return]

22.    EMERGENCIES: Competitors must remain in the tournament waters and both competitors must remain in the boat at all times except in the case of a dire emergency. In such emergency, both competitors may be removed from their boat to another boat operated by another competitor or a rescue boat so designated by tournament officials, or one competitor may exit the disabled boat into a rescue boat with the competitors catch of the day and proceed directly to the weigh-in. Trailering of boats during tournament hours and prior to the weigh-in of the competitors catch is prohibited except by direction of tournament officials.  [Return]

23.    CLASSIC TOURNAMENT: Competitors Must fish 4 of our 6 tournaments to qualify for fishing this money-only tournament. Lake TBD.  [Return]

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