Key West Gator Club Dolphin Derby

Tournament Rules & Policy

Overall – Heaviest Fish

Position Prize
First $5,000
Second $3,000
Third $2,000
Fourth $1,000

Top Woman Angler

Position Prize
First $1,000
Second $500
Third $250

Top Jr. Angler

Position Prize
First $500
Second $250

First Day Prizes

Category Prize
Largest Dolphin $500
Women’s $300
Junior’s $200

Tournament Rules

CAPTAINS MEETING: Captain’s Meeting will be held June 21, 2024. A representative from each team must be present.

FISHING DATES: Tournament Fishing Dates will be June 22 & 23, 2024.

ENTRY FORMS: All entry forms must be completely filled out by all participants in the Key West Gator Club Dolphin Derby. Tournament officials reserve the right to refuse application or entry into the tournament at their discretion. Early discounted tournament entry ($500) is available until June 7,2024. After that tournament entry fee is raised to ($700).

ANGLERS: Each boat may register as many anglers as they choose. Tournament boat entry includes 4 angler entries and additional anglers can be added for $100 each. All anglers should be listed on registration forms. Please notify tournament officials of any angler changes prior to the start of fishing. All anglers must have a valid Florida fishing license. Junior angler prizes are awarded to anglers 16 years of age and younger.

WEIGH STATION: All boats with fish to weigh-in must be visually checked in by the tournament committee at Beachside Resort. Scales open at 4:00 p.m. Boats with fish to weigh that do not check-in by 5:00 p.m. will not be eligible to weigh their fish and their fish will be disqualified. If the weigh in line is backed up, ensure that you have been visually checked-in by tournament staff and have received verbal confirmation of check-in. Please be courteous of other teams and please keep music at a minimum. Once your team has weighed in you must move your boat off the weigh in dock, no exceptions. Fish may be brought to the scales by boat or vehicle. Fish being weighed in the tournament will be inspected for all manners of cheating by a tournament official. Fish must be weighed in by a registered team member that fished on the team that day. No rotten or mutilated fish will be allowed to be weighed in.

CAPTAINS MEETING: Captain’s Meeting will be held June 21, 2024. A representative from each team must be present.

FISHING DATES: Tournament Fishing Dates will be June 22 & 23, 2024.

ENTRY FORMS: All entry forms must be completely filled out by all participants in the Key West Gator Club Dolphin Derby. Tournament officials reserve the right to refuse application or entry into the tournament at their discretion. Early discounted tournament entry ($500) is available until June 7,2024. After that tournament entry fee is raised to ($700).

ANGLERS: Each boat may register as many anglers as they choose. Tournament boat entry includes 4 angler entries and additional anglers can be added for $100 each. All anglers should be listed on registration forms. Please notify tournament officials of any angler changes prior to the start of fishing. All anglers must have a valid Florida fishing license. Junior angler prizes are awarded to anglers 16 years of age and younger.

WEIGH STATION: All boats with fish to weigh-in must be visually checked in by the tournament committee at Beachside Resort. Scales open at 4:00 p.m. Boats with fish to weigh that do not check-in by 5:00 p.m. will not be eligible to weigh their fish and their fish will be disqualified. If the weigh in line is backed up, ensure that you have been visually checked-in by tournament staff and have received verbal confirmation of check-in. Please be courteous of other teams and please keep music at a minimum. Once your team has weighed in you must move your boat off the weigh in dock, no exceptions. Fish may be brought to the scales by boat or vehicle. Fish being weighed in the tournament will be inspected for all manners of cheating by a tournament official. Fish must be weighed in by a registered team member that fished on the team that day. No rotten or mutilated fish will be allowed to be weighed in.

TOURNAMENT CHANNEL: The tournament committee will operate on Channel 80 during weigh-in. Channel 72 will be used as an alternate. All discussions among competitors should be conducted on alternate channels.

LINES IN: Lines in no earlier than 7:30am each day.

LINES OUT: Lines out no later than 3:30 pm each day.

TACKLE: All fish must be caught on rod and reel. No electric reels (except kite rods & downriggers.)

BAIT: Fishing with live bait, dead bait and artificial bait is permitted in the tournament.

IGFA RULES APPLY: The angler credited with a catch in tournament scoring must have hooked and played the fish to boat-side personally, without assistance. Normal sport fishing practices for landing a fish (e.g. gaffing or landing nets) may be assisted.

BOAT CHECK: Tournament officials reserve the right to inspect any boat participating in the tournament. Any boat that refuses inspection will be automatically disqualified from the tournament. No fish are allowed to be on-board caught from previous days.

SCORING:  All scoring in the tournament is based on the weight of a single fish entered by registered anglers. All fish weighed must be a minimum of 5lbs.  The largest single fish weighed in during tournament days, in each category, will be declared winner for that category. Fish weighed in the ladies and junior categories are eligible to win the overall category.

TIEBREAKER: In the event of an exact tie in weight, winners will be determined by time they weighed their fish. The winner will have weighed their fish first.

BOUNDARIES: Vessels may depart from any inlet and must fish in US waters (EEZ, Bahamas & Cuba off limits)

ANGLER CHANGES: Any changes to your Registration Form can be made prior to start of the Tournament via email to kwgatorclub@outlook.com

POLYGRAPH: By entering the tournament all captains, anglers, and occupants of their boats voluntarily consent to submit to a polygraph examination as deemed necessary by tournament officials. All decisions of the polygraph examiner will be final. Any captain, angler, or occupant of a registered boat who refuses to take a polygraph or provides untruthful answers as determined by the examiner will be disqualified from the tournament without further notice. Such a disqualification will eliminate payment or provision of any prize money, awards, and/or refund of entrance fees.

PROTESTS: All protests must be in writing and submitted to the Tournament Coordinator on the day of the alleged violation by 6:00 p.m. with a deposit of $1000.00. If the alleged violation is found to have occurred, the deposit of $1000.00 will be refunded. If the Rules Committee finds no violation, the deposit will not be refunded. The decision of the Rules Committee will be final.

PRIZES:  Prizes winners must be present to win prizes at the time of the awards ceremony. In the event of an extreme hardship, the tournament board may permit prizes to be claimed by a representative of the winner. Prizes not claimed in accordance with these rules remain property of the tournament.

LIABILITY: All entrants participate in the tournament at their own risk. Key West Gator Club, Tournament Staff and Volunteers, Beachside Resort, Saltwater Sportfishing Club, Tournament Sponsors, and all other persons directly or indirectly connected with the operation of the tournament are exempt from any liability for loss, damage, injury, negligence, or harm to any entrant, their companions or other participants, boat captains, crew members, vessels, or equipment which may occur during the tournament.

RULINGS AND RULES COMPLIANCE: Rules violations, the eligibility of entrants or entered fish, disqualifications, and any other matters not specifically covered by these rules will be decided by tournament staff in consultation with the tournament director.

RELEASE: By signing the entry form, all captains, anglers, and occupants of their boat hereby 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 material.

WEATHER CONTINGENCY: Weather cancellations are made by the tournament director. It is expressly understood that the permitting of fishing by tournament officials does not ensure the safety of registered anglers or any other occupants of their vessels. Captains, anglers, and all other members of registered boats must determine in their own judgment whether to fish under the given conditions based on factors including but not limited to the seaworthiness of their boat and their own seamanship.

SAFETY AND CONDUCT: Participants are expected to follow all applicable laws and rules for safe boating, including those regarding USCG equipment requirements. Participants are expected to follow all applicable laws pertaining to the taking of marine fish. Participants are expected to follow high standards of sportsmanship and courtesy. Fishing must be performed in accordance with principles of good sportsmanship, and in compliance with these and IGFA rules as published in the IGFA World Record Game Fish book under “International Angling Rules.” Tournament rules will be strictly adhered to, and all decisions of the Tournament Director will be final. Any angler(s), captain(s), or mate(s) found to be in any violation of any tournament rule may be disqualified from this tournament.

TOURNAMENT DISCRETION: The tournament director reserves the right to implement his discretion at any time during the tournament as it may apply to the rules or any other circumstance that should arise during the course of the event.

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