39th ANNUAL CROSTHWAIT MEMORIAL FISHING TOURNAMENT RULES AND REGULATIONS 2023
All entrants and guests of the tournament are participating at their own risk. In no way is The Bradenton Yacht Club, its Board of Directors and Officers, Members, or the Tournament Committee, its Board of Directors and Officers or Committee Members liable for injuries or property damage as a result of participation in the tournament. While the tournament would never attempt to control social media use by participants, the committee would like to remind all captains, anglers, and anyone under their direct control that unsportsmanlike and overly- aggressive behavior, personal attacks, threats of violence or demeaning statements about other participants on any social media platform will be considered as evidence by the committee if considering disqualification of teams due to unsportsmanlike conduct. Unsportsmanlike conduct based on abuse of other participants on social media as described in this paragraph is enough, in and of itself, for disqualification as determined at the sole discretion of the committee. If there is a rules issue or suspicion of a rule violation, participants are encouraged to notify the committee, preferably in writing, to seek a determination or resolution of the issue as early as possible rather than airing the matter publicly or on social media.
All sports fishermen (male and female) are eligible to participate. Determination of eligibility is left to the complete discretion of the committee. Any person convicted of a fishing violation during the past five years is ineligible. All requests for pre-tournament determination of eligibility should be submitted, in writing, to the committee prior to the Captain’s Meeting. All offshore vessels intending to target “highly migratory species'' are required to obtain the federal stamp prior to commencement of fishing.
The number of entries will be limited, and registration may be closed without further notice. For boats registering by May 15 at 5:00 p.m., the entry fee per team, including Florida sales tax, for each division is as follows:
- Juniors (16 and under) - $200.00
- Inshore - $325.00
- Spearfishing - $375.00
- Offshore Limited - $425.00
- Offshore Unlimited - $625.00
Any boat registering after 5:00 pm on May 15 will be required to pay an additional fee of $50.00, which includes tax. Qualified entries will be accepted on a first come/first served basis. All boats must meet Federal and Florida safety regulations for their size. The official tournament radio channel is 72, VHF. All official tournament information will be broadcast on channel 72. All boats will be assigned a tournament number card which must be displayed in a prominent place on the vessel at all times. Any vessel operated in an unsafe and/or unsportsmanlike manner shall be ineligible to receive prizes. Note that Federal Maritime Law holds the captain of the vessel responsible for the actions of his boat, its wake and its crew.
EACH TEAM MUST PROVIDE A PHONE NUMBER AT WHICH THEY CAN BE CONTACTED FOLLOWING THE WEIGH IN, IN THE EVENT THEY MUST BE SUMMONED FOR POLYGRAPH EXAMINATION. CAPTAIN MUST MAKE THEMSELVES AVAILABLE TO THE POLYGRAPH EXAM WITHIN 20 MINUTES FOLLOWING THE COMMITTEE CALLING THE CONTACT NUMBER. FAILURE TO DO SO MAY RESULT IN DISQUALIFICATION FROM THE TOURNAMENT.
RULES FOR JUNIOR ANGLERS (Inshore Division)
JUNIOR ONLY TEAMS:
All anglers on the vessel must be 16 years old or younger and will be limited to fishing inshore. Parents will be required to sign an affidavit for every junior angler confirming their knowledge of the rules and authorizing their participation. Anglers in the Junior Division are competing only within themselves, and are not competing against the general, overall tournament. First place in this division will be awarded $1,000.00, and other awards will be presented at the discretion of the committee.
JUNIOR ANGLERS ON REGULAR DIVISION BOATS:
The tournament encourages the participation of juniors (16 years old or younger and fishing with an adult) and we will give special individual recognition to those Junior Anglers making outstanding catches. The junior must hook and boat the fish to be eligible for this recognition. Captains, please notify the weigh master of any outstanding catches made by Junior Anglers on your boat.
The tournament will be comprised of four separate divisions that will compete within themselves: INSHORE, SPEARFISH, OFFSHORE LIMITED, and OFFSHORE UNLIMITED. The Captain must register for the division in which his or her team will compete before the close of the Captain’s meeting. No change of division will be allowed, under any circumstances, after the Captain’s meeting.
INSHORE (Including Junior Division)
Dates of the tournament will be May 20 and 21. At 7:00 a.m. on May 20, a Bimini Start (shotgun) will signal the beginning of the tournament. Each boat with its Captain and entire crew must be recognized by an official tournament committee boat prior to the start. There will be one location for anglers to start the tournament: The traditional location at the mouth of the Manatee River. Committee boats will display tournament flags and be in the starting area thirty (30) minutes prior to the start. For both Inshore and Junior divisions, Fishing must cease, and all photos must be submitted through IAnglerTournament.com or the IAngler Tournament App by 12:00 p.m. on Sunday, May 21. Any fish submitted to IAngler after 12:00 p.m. will be ineligible.
Dates of the tournament will be May 20 & 21. All Spearfishing vessels are required to attend the registration beginning at 6:30 p.m. followed immediately by the mandatory Captains Meeting at 7:30pm Friday, May 19 at Bradenton Yacht Club. All Spearfish teams will be allowed to leave directly after the close of the Meeting and may begin fishing at sunrise on Saturday, May 20. All divers must be out of the water by 2:00 pm on Sunday, May 21. All spearfishing teams must be officially recognized either by boat at the dock or in line with a cooler by 3:00 pm on Sunday, May 21. Diving will be limited to 50 nautical miles from contiguous (exposed) Florida State land, this includes barrier islands. The captain must ensure the vessel has fixed on board and operational GPS unit, chart plotter, depth sounder, or other similar electronic device capable of recording and displaying a graphic representation of the entire voyage of the vessel during the tournament. The purpose of this rule is to provide a verifiable means of confirming compliance with the 50 nautical mile limit.
Dates of the tournament will be Friday, May 19 and Saturday, May 20. The Offshore Limited division is restricted to boats with a maximum of 700 horsepower.
All offshore limited vessels are required to attend the Captain’s Meeting at 12 noon on Friday, May 19. All Offshore limited vessels will be allowed to leave directly after the close of the Meeting and may begin fishing at any time. Fishing must cease at 2:00 p.m. on Saturday, May 20. Any fish hooked prior to 2:00 p.m. may be fought to the finish. Fish hooked after 2:00 p.m. will be ineligible. All offshore limited boats must be recognized by a tournament official by 4:00 p.m. on Saturday at the Bradenton Yacht Club. Teams competing in the Offshore Limited may fish all waters seaward of the Florida mainland within the area defined by 28 ̊ 10’ North latitude to the north, 27 ̊ N latitude to the south, and 83 ̊ 30’ W longitude to the west. The captain must ensure the vessel has fixed on board an operational GPS unit, chart plotter, depth sounder, or other similar electronic device capable of recording and displaying a graphic representation of the entire voyage of the vessel during the tournament. The purpose of this rule is to provide a verifiable means of confirming compliance with the northern, southern, and western boundaries of this division. In the event a team’s standings in the tournament are challenged by protest and the documentation is not available for inspection by a committee member, said team may be disqualified from the tournament. No team shall be required to divulge coordinates of “fishingbspots;” however, a continuous track from the vessel’s start point to the tournament weigh-in must be shown to a committee member upon request.
Dates of the tournament will be Friday, May 19 through Sunday, May 21. All offshore vessels are required to attend the Captain’s Meeting at 12 noon on Friday. All Offshore vessels will be allowed to leave directly after the close of the Meeting and may begin fishing at any time. Fishing must cease at 12:00 noon on Sunday. Any fish hooked prior to noon may be fought to the finish. Fish hooked after noon will be ineligible. All offshore boats must be recognized by a tournament official by 3:00 p.m. on Sunday at the Bradenton Yacht Club.
With the exception of those fishing the Spearfish and Offshore Limited divisions, fishing teams may venture as desired. However, the team boat may not leave the water and be trailered. If you are wade fishing, the boat must be stationary and must remain stationary until all anglers are aboard. Teams competing in the Spearfish division are limited to diving within 50 nautical miles from contiguous (exposed) Florida land which includes barrier islands. Teams competing in the Offshore Limited may fish all waters seaward of the Florida mainland within the area defined by 28 ̊ 10’ North latitude to the north, 27 ̊ N latitude to the south, and 83 ̊ 30’ W longitude to the west.
This is a “Team Event”. Only the Captain and registered Anglers are eligible to fish. Team substitutes will be allowed provided they have received prior approval from the Crosthwait Committee.
All line classes may be fished during the event. Fish must be caught by hook and line and on conventional rods and reels. Spinning, casting and fly tackle are acceptable. Deep Trolling devices are acceptable only if attached to a rod and reel. Electric reels are prohibited. For those who wish to have their fish qualify for IGFA World or State records, specific IGFA rules must be checked prior to the tournament.
SPECIES AND SCORING
Eligible species are listed on the point schedule. A point system based upon the type and size of fish will be used to determine the winning boat. Each boat will be allowed to enter six (6) fish for judging during the two-day event. The six fish selected and entered by the Captain of both inshore and offshore boats may include no more than two (2) fish of any one species at the weigh-in, unless otherwise specified in point schedule. However, each Inshore team is encouraged to submit all target species to IAngler, regardless of size. The six (6) top scoring fish will be automatically selected as the team’s six (6) fish.
INSHORE – SPECIES AND PHOTO SUBMITTAL
The target species for the Inshore and Junior Divisions shall consist of Snook, Redfish, Trout and one “Wild-Card” species, which shall be selected at random during the Captain’s Meeting at 7:30 p.m. on Friday, May 14 at the Bradenton Yacht Club. The single Wild-Card species shall be selected at random from the following pool of species: Cobia, Flounder, Pompano, Tarpon and Tripletail. The Wild-Card species may, but is not required to, count as one of the team's six
All inshore teams, including Juniors Division, shall submit each catch by submitting a Picture to IAnglertournament.com page or the IAngler Tournament App, exhibiting the overall length of the fish (end of lower jaw to tip of tail) on an official measuring board issued at the check in. Each Inshore team is encouraged to submit all target species to IAngler, regardless of size. The six (6) top scoring fish will be automatically selected as the team’s six (6) fish, one of which may include the Wild-Card species.
Any evidence of image manipulation will result in disqualification. Each Photograph must simultaneously depict the official team number, the lower jaw touching the end of the measuring board and a clear, readable depiction of the total length of the fish. Although state law requires Snook to be measured with “pinched tail” method, for the tournament, SNOOK TAILS SHOULD NOT BE PINCHED WHILE PHOTOGRAPHED ON BOARD. PHOTOS OF SNOOK WITH PINCHED TAILS WILL NOT BE AWARDED POINTS.
Points will be awarded based on the total length of the fish as set forth on the point schedule.
In the event Tarpon is selected as the “Wild-Card” species for Inshore, one Tarpon, 36” or larger, shall be allowed per inshore boat. All Tarpon must be released alive. A photo of the Tarpon must be submitted to IAngler, which shows the Tarpon in the water, lip gaffed or otherwise reduced to the angler’s possession, must simultaneously show the official tournament number, and must provide a perspective which indicates the fish is at least 36” in length. Possession of the leader in the mate’s hand is not sufficient to prove that the fish has been reduced to possession. Tarpon must be caught from navigable waters, not from bodies of water, which are essentially land- locked.
The Game and Fish Law of the State of Florida will be adhered to at all times. It is imperative that the Tournament rules and regulations be clearly understood since they will be strictly enforced to give each fishing team an equal chance. The major rewards of the Tournament will be healthy competition, fun and fellowship. We expect all participants to uphold the highest standards of honesty and sportsmanship in the competition. Each entrant should select a “boat buddy” to assist in the event of mechanical failure or breakdown. Any and all participation by persons who are not crew member and passenger of the entered vessel, including but not limited to: (1) The spotting of fish; (2) Reserving locations, (3) Procurement of bait (except purchasing of bait from a valid salt water product license holder); (4) or otherwise assisting the entered vessel or anglers in any way so as to provide an undue advantage, is prohibited. All crewmembers and captain must be present on the entered vessel at any time a fish is weighed in. Any questions, please email the tournament committee.
There will be two Captain’s Meetings with a mandatory tournament briefing for captains and crew members at the Bradenton Yacht Club. The first Captain’s Meetings will be held at Noon, Friday, May 19 for all offshore anglers. The second Captain’s Meeting will be held at 7:30 p.m., Friday, May 19, for Spearfishing and Inshore Divisions (including Junior). The purpose of the meeting is to review the rules and regulations and to discuss any last-minute rule changes. All opportunities will be given for questions and answers. The captain must register his or her team at this meeting. Each team will receive a bucket with a boat number.
All fish must be weighed in at The Bradenton Yacht Club. All fish must be brought to the weigh- in station by the boat on which they were caught, and all members of the crew must be present at that time. All boats must be in the water to weigh-in fish. Weigh-in will be conducted in the order in which boats check in. Fish being weighed shall be placed on the dock by one member of that boat’s crew. The boat must be removed from the dock area immediately after the weight of the catch is verified. No mutilated fish will be eligible. Junior Division teams and Inshore teams must have all photos submitted through IAnglertournament.com page or the IAngler Tournament App by 12:00 p.m. on Sunday. Spearfish teams must be at the weigh in at 3:30 p.m. on Sunday. Offshore Limited must weigh in by 5:00 p.m. Saturday. Offshore Unlimited boats must weigh in by 5:00 p.m. on Sunday. This rule includes all boats. The entire team must be present and be together at the weigh-in.
All winners and all crewmembers may be subject to a polygraph examination. All participants will be required to submit for testing immediately at the request of the committee. Any person filing a protest may be responsible for polygraph fee. The Tournament Committee reserves the right to inspect any boat entered in the tournament at any time. Protests for any division, other than Offshore Limited, must be submitted to the tournament committee by 4:00 p.m. on Sunday. Protests for Offshore Limited must be submitted to the tournament committee by 4:00 p.m. on Saturday.
Anglers are responsible for any income tax liability accrued by virtue of winning cash or prizes in this event.
Winners may be required to submit to polygraph examinations, which may not be performed until Sunday evening or Monday. Payment to winners may be delayed until polygraph testing is completed.