1. 2023 PROJECT TARPON TEXAS TOURNAMENT SERIES is comprised of five individual tournaments. These consist of three Amateur Tournaments, one Guide Tournament and one Bait Shoot-Out (specific dates are provided in invitation):
2. A boat is ineligible to compete as a team in the amateur tournaments while any team member on the boat fishing is a professional fishing guide or a person who has accepted wages, compensation or pay for hire for the purposes of guiding other individual(s) on fishing charters at any time during the past five years. This does not include individuals who have only worked as deckhands on private yachts or guided charters; however, such individuals may not be team leaders/captains.
3. TEAM ENTRY FORM: Each team leader/captain must register. They need not use the same boat during the tournament; however, they must be the captain/team leader at all times. The registration fee is per boat/team. Individual team members do not pay a separate entry fee.
4. TEAM MEMBER ENTRY FORM: TEACH TEAM MEMBER MUST ELECTRONICALLY SIGN AN ON-LINE ENTRY FORM PRIOR TO FISHING – NO EXCEPTIONS. GO TO www.entertarpon.com
5. TEAM MEMBERS MAY CHANGE: The individual participants on any given day of the tournament on a particular team may change; however, the team leader must be on the boat at all times during the tournament and must remain the same.
6. Fishing Times: Amateur Summer Weekend Tournament - fishing begins (lines-in) on at 6:00 a.m. on each Saturday of each tournament weekend and is non-stop until 7:00 p.m. (lines-out) on the Sunday of each tournament weekend. Amateur Harvest Moon Tournament, Amateur Fall Tournament and Guide Tournament - fishing begins (lines-in) on the first day of the tournament at 6:00 a.m. and is non-stop until 8:00 p.m. (lines-out) on the last day of the tournament. Bait Shootout - fishing begins (lines-in) at 12:01 a.m. on the first day of the Bait Shootout tournament and is non-stop until 11:59 p.m. on the last day of the Bait Shootout tournament.
7. Proof of Catch Deadline:
Proof of Catch for the Amateur Summer Weekend Tournament must be emailed to firstname.lastname@example.org or text to 713-819-1840 no later than 9:00 p.m. on each Sunday of each tournament weekend.
Proof of Catch for the Amateur Harvest Moon Tournament, Amateur Fall Tournament and Guide Tournament must be submitted by email to email@example.com or text to 713-819-1840 no later than 9:00 p.m. on Sunday for any fish caught during the prior calendar week, Monday through the Sunday night. The last week of the tournament, all final proof of catch materials for the last week must be submitted no later than 9:00 p.m. on the last day of the Tournament.
Proof of Catch during the Bait Shootout must be submitted within 24 hours of being caught - however, no proof of catch for the Bait Shootout will be accepted after 1:00 a.m. following the last day of the tournament.
8. PROOF OF CATCH REQUIREMENTS- These Rules MUST be STRICTLY FOLLOWED:
Team leaders will be provided identifying markers 24 hours before the start of each Tournament weekend during the Amateur Summer Weekend Tournament and 24 hours before the Bait Shootout, ID markers will be provided by 6:00 p.m. on the day before the start of the Amateur Harvest Moon Tournament, Amateur Fall Tournament and Guide Tournament. This identifying marker MUST appear in the photo with the fish, during that Tournament. It can be printed and appear on a piece of paper in the photo. Alternatively, it can be displayed on a phone or iPad, so long as it is clearly visible in the photo with the fish you landed. If the image is not clear, the photo and proof of catch WILL NOT COUNT. Your proof of catch must show the fish with the leader in hand, hand in the jaw or lip-gaffed and the proof of catch ID marker. VIDEO ALTERNATIVE - You may video your proof of catch if it is more convenient. When videotaping, the ID marker can be shown before the landing of the fish so long as the video is one continuous stream, without breaks. The leader must be touched and the touch must be visible on the video. If you video tape your catch, send the photo or screen grab and indicate you have a video. An upload link will be made available to upload the video for proof. The tournament reserves the right to disqualify any video submission if the tournament has any question as to its authenticity. For this reason, a photo is preferred. You should still endeavor to obtain a photo.
9. Geographical Restrictions: All fish must be wild and hooked and landed in Texas State Coastal Waters, Bays, Rivers and Estuaries which are linked to the Gulf of Mexico, without being cut-off from the Gulf by man-made barriers (i.e. dams, spillways, etc.) Fish may NOT BE CAUGHT OUT OF THE STATE OF TEXAS WATERS!!! NO EXCEPTIONS.
10. Prizes: First Place Trophy to the team captain that catches and releases the most tarpon in each Tournament (Amateur Summer Weekend Tournament, Amateur Harvest Moon Tournament, Amateur Fall Tournament, Guide Tournament and Bait Shootout). Four individual Team Member trophies for the first-place team will also be given for first place in Amateur Summer Weekend Tournament, Amateur Harvest Moon Tournament and Amateur Fall Tournament. Second Place Trophies will be four individual team member trophies for the team who catches and releases the second most tarpon in Amateur Summer Weekend Tournament, Amateur Harvest Moon Tournament and Amateur Fall Tournament. Last Tarpon Caught in Amateur Summer Weekend Tournament and Amateur Fall Tournament. The Last Tarpon Caught trophy will be based on the time that the last fish is hooked that is landed. When submitting your proof of catch, be sure and reference when your last fish of the day was hooked. There will also be one overall trophy for the Most Outstanding Tournament Team throughout the entire tournament series (all division combined) that exhibits the best of the following criteria: (1) sportsmanship; (2) dedication/initiative/effort; (3) number and size of tarpon caught; (4) stewardship of the resource; and (5) overall participation in the tournament experience. This trophy will be a perpetual trophy to be loaned to the captain of the winning team for one year. It must be returned after that year and that captain's team entry fee for next year is waived. The goal of the new Most Outstanding Tournament Team perpetual trophy is to foster the objectives of the tournament which are conservation, awareness, education and sport. It will be awarded at the dinner which will be held annually.
11. CIRCLE HOOK REQUIREMENT: Anyone participating in the Bait Shootout is required to use a circle hook . Any fishing technique intended or implemented in such a way as to snag or floss a tarpon is strictly forbidden. It is left to the discretion of the Tournament Committee whether a particular technique is a snagging or flossing technique.
12. ENTRY FEES: $225.00 per team boat for all tournaments. There is an ENTRY DEADLINE - JULY 1, 2023. Entry must be filled out and paid in full to have your entry completed. Any open slots in the tournament will be filled on a first come-first serve basis, immediately after the entry deadline. Additional restrictions apply, read your Invitation carefully. Your entry fee includes two tickets to the annual banquet dinner. Additional banquet tickets may be purchased prior to the banquet.
13. TACKLE REQUIREMENTS: (a) Minimum line breaking strength – 30 lbs. (b) All fish must be caught by rod and reel. (c) All fish caught using live or dead bait during the Bait Shootout must be caught using circle hooks. J-hooks and treble hooks may be used with lures (which are not tipped with live or dead bait). (d) No leader may exceed 300 lbs. and no leader may exceed 10 feet in length.
14. Artificial Tournament Rule: Fish caught during any artificial lure tournament must be caught with an artificial lure. An "Artificial Lure" is defined as a spoon, spinner, jig, plug or other fish bait made of hair, feathers, cork, wood, rubber, metal, plastic or other synthetic materials, or combinations of these materials. An artificial lure must NOT be tipped with any part of any fish or animal - not including feather skirts, feathers or animal yarns or scenting sprays. (i.e. you may use a scent spray on any lure or the lure may have a skirt made of some form of yarn or feather etc. and it will still be an Artificial Lure - the intent is to eliminate the use of shrimp, mullet, or other animal part as bait on the artificial lure - tournament officials reserve the right to freely interpret this rule based on the circumstances, so it would benefit you to ask in advance if you have any questions. Sent infused plastic baits like Gulps are still considered artificial lures.)
12. These rules may be subject to change at the sole discretion of the Tournament Officials at any time prior to fishing beginning on the first day of the tournament.
1. All anglers must have a valid Texas fishing license and saltwater stamp and must observe Texas Parks and Wildlife rules and regulations. All participating boats are expected to comply with all state and federal registration, applicable fishing permit requirements and all safety rules or regulations.
2. All teams are expected to follow high standards of sportsmanship, safety, courtesy and conservation.
3. The tournament reserves the right to refuse any entry with or without cause in its sole discretion. Any applicant refused entry prior to the tournament will be entitled to a full refund of paid entry fees.
4. All entries must be completed and paid for before an entry is officially completed.
5. In the event of an injury or accident, contact VHF Channel 16; Local EMS: 911. All participants are responsible for the operation, maintenance and safety of their vessels, themselves and their fellow team members.
6. All participants must complete the electronic entry form, which includes a waiver, release and indemnity agreement concerning liability BEFORE GOING FISHING. If any team fails to have each member of its team sign this form, it may lead to disqualification and a refusal to award prizes to that team and/or the angler.
7. All participants are expected to operate their boats in a sportsmanlike manner and in conformity with general tarpon fishing techniques, so as to minimize the disruption to fish. Outboard motorboats are requested to have a form of propulsion (i.e. electric motor etc.) that will allow for quiet operation and use of such alternative propulsion system is STRONGLY requested. An infraction of this rule and the spooking of fish will be handled on a case by case basis. If it is determined that such conduct was intentional or reckless, it may result in disqualification during the tournament.
8. All boats participating in the tournament MUST have a working VHF radio.
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