2016 Massachusetts B.A.S.S. Nation TEAM TOURNAMENT RULES
“The MassB.A.S.S. Nation Classic Team Trail
Participation Requirements: The MassB.A.S.S. Nation Classic Team Trail, hereby known in these rules as “Classic Team Trail,” has no restrictions as to the participants with the exception of:
- All Boaters must be a minimum of 21 years of age as of date of tournament.
- All Non Boaters must be 18 years of age as of the date of the tournament OR
- They have a signed note from their parent/guardian giving them permission to fish as a non-boater.
- The person is fishing with a parent or guardian.
- Any person that has been banned from the Bass Anglers Sportsman Society.
- All local and state regulations must be followed – including both anglers having a valid fishing license for the state in which the tournament is held. If the tournament is on water that is in two states and a license is not reciprocal for both states, both anglers must have valid licenses for both states.
- A minimum boat length of 15 feet is required to compete. No pontoon boats allowed. A functioning livewell that will hold and keep alive eight (8) bass is required. If there are no operating livewells in the boat, the team will not be allowed to fish that tournament.
- Only artificial lures will be allowed, with the exception of retail pork used as a trailer. Nets are allowed. There is no limit to the amount of rods being allowed in the boat. Only one rod will be allowed to be used at a time, which means no form of trolling. Keeping a pork trailer wet by allowing it to be just under the surface is allowed. Alabama Rigs are not allowed on Massachusetts waters. There is a lead ban in Massachusetts. Be aware of the Citation clause within these rules.
Membership Requirements: There are no membership requirements, but if the team that wins the points title and has qualified for the Classic Team Fishoff, where the winner of that tournament goes on to The Classic, then both members of that team must be a member of B.A.S.S. before the first tournament. Joining B.A.S.S. is easy, just go to www.bassmaster.com – it cost just $25. If you have no desire to fish in the World Series of Bass Fishing: The BassMasters Classic, then you don’t need to join. Remember, once the day of the first tournament arrives and you are not a member of B.A.S.S., you can still fish for the purses, but not be able to go on to the Classic Team Fishoff – even if you win the points total.
To Enter: Teams will enter the morning of each tournament. You will fill out an application that morning and LEAVE US A COPY of your insurance for $300,000 Liability. The entry Fee is $150 per tournament – cash only.
(The application can be seen by going to the MassB.A.S.S. Nation website www.massbassnation.org . )
Payouts: 75% of the total entry fees will be paid out by check and/or cash.
- 10% (+/-) of the field will be rewarded. Example: 0 to 10 boats = 1st Place Only – 11 to 20 boats = 1st & 2nd – 21 to 30 boats = 1st , 2nd & 3rd, etc.
- Ties will be broken by Biggest Fish. If still tied, then there will be a “first to the scale with a legal bass fishoff” immediately following the awards for 3rd place, 4th place, etc. They will be given exactly 1 hour to catch said fish. If neither team catches a fish within the hour, then both will be awarded 199 points and the purse for 1st and 2nd will be divided evenly between the two teams.
- Lunker Pool: No “split lunker.” The team that has put entry into big bass pool will win entire pool no matter if it is a smallmouth or a largemouth.
TOC Payout and Wounded Warrior Project:
- 15% of all entry fees will go into a TOC pool. The total of all collected will go to the 1st Place Team at the TOC.
- 10% of all entry fees will go to the Wounded Warrior Project.
Substitute: At one tournament only a team may substitute a co-angler. That substitute will not be the co-angler that qualifies for the Classic Fishoff.
- Points will be determined by finish: 1st Place = 200 points – 2nd place = 199 – 3rd = 198, etc.
- Cumulative Standings will be posted on the MassB.A.S.S. Nation website.
Road to The BassMasters Classic:
- Using the Points method above, the top 10 teams from the trail will qualify to fish a 5th This tournament will be called: “The MassB.A.S.S. Classic Team Championship.” That team will have won that title and will be the “MassB.A.S.S. Classic Team Champions.” The 2016 Team Champions will qualify to represent MassB.A.S.S. Nation at the Classic Team Fishoff. They will compete for 2 days and the top 3 teams (6 individuals) after those two days will fish that third day alone. The non-boaters will be given bassboats to use on this third day. The person, on that third day, that wins will have an automatic entry in the most prestigious tournament in the world: The BassMasters Classic
Lunker – EPO –Launch FEES:
Lunker Fee: There will be an additional Lunker Fee of $10. This not a required fee.
EPO Fee: If an EPO officer is required, then we will be asking for additional monies. The fee will be divided between all teams. Note: No preregistering means we may not know if we need an EPO or not. The first couple of tournaments should let the tournament officials know about future tournaments.
Launch Fees: These fees are known when lakes are chosen. For 2016: Webster – Long Pond – Shirley.
Check-in between 5:30 and 6:30. Because the people running this trail also fish the trail, they must also have time to put away check-in materials/tables, etc. and prepare for the tournament. Therefore, any team that tries to check in after 6:30 will be turned away.
Tournament Hours: Unless weather or other situations cause a delay, all tournaments will start at 7:00 A.M. and end at 3 P.M.
Boat Examination and Launching at a site other than Check-in Ramp:
a.Every boat will be checked by a MassB.A.S.S. Nation official. If you intend to enter the tournament you are giving permission for a MassB.A.S.S. Nation official to inspect your boat. Inspection may include the entire boat and not just livewells.
- If a team launches their boat at a ramp that is not at the check-in site, they must beach their boat and alert a MassB.A.S.S. Nation official so the boat can be inspected.
- All inspected boats will have their trolling motors “ribboned.” The ribbon will be initialed by the inspector.
Leaving the Boat: Once the tournament starts no contestant will be allowed to leave the boat with the following exceptions:
- If there is a bathroom or port-o-john and a member must relieve themselves, the other member must stay in the boat.
- Medical Emergency.
- Leaving a hook on a dock/boat must be avoided. ONE member will be allowed to retrieve a hook that is stuck on a dock or a boat tied to a dock. No one will be allowed to retrieve a hook/lure that is stuck on land and cannot be reached by staying in the boat.
Take-Off and Weigh-in Procedure:
- One member from each team, when they sign-up the morning of the tournament, will draw their take-off number.
- To not stress out the bass, the weigh-in will be by called number ONLY. Do not bring fish to scales until called. Starting at #1 and depending on the number of boats in the tournament, teams will be called to the scales 5 Teams at a time. To save time: If numbers 6 thru 10 are called (for example) teams 11 thru 15 should bag their bass and when 11 thru 15 are called up teams 16 thru 20 should bag bass, etc.
- At the Pre-tournament meeting it will announced who the Tournament Officials are AND if the weigh-in will be a “beached boats” or a “pull boats” weigh-in. To have a speedy weigh-in, the officials need to weigh-in first and their takeoff numbers will not be a factor for the weigh-in.
Late for Weigh-in: There will be a deduction of one pound for every minute a team is late. This means that a team must either check-in with a check-in boat, or with a check-in official standing on shore, or the boat beached by the official end of the tournament. (Usually 3 P.M. Heavy morning fog may change the official end of the tournament and that time will be announced before takeoff.) The [type] of check-in will be announced at the pre-tournament meeting.
Dead Fish: There will be NO culling of dead fish. There is a fine line here. If you think a fish is dying and you want to cull it before it dies, this is allowed, but if the fish is dead – you must bring it to the scales. Any fish that is brought to the scales dead will be assessed a ¼ pound penalty (.25 lb.) per dead fish.
Under 12”: All bass caught must be 12” minimum length. A 1 pound penalty will be assessed for bringing a short fish to the scale and that fish will not be allowed. BEFORE a team brings fish to the scale, they will be allowed to compare their measuring device to the measuring ruler being used at the scale. (Golden Rule)
Unsportsmanlike Conduct: These tournaments are a COMPETITION and sanctioned by B.A.S.S. Fair play is demanded, but aggressiveness is part of any sport. There will be occasions that two teams will come to the same spot on the water. Talk to each other as to what path you take. “Cutting Off” another angler is not something that is punishable, but doing so will not be looked upon favorably by the competitors or the organizers. If a team is, for example, fishing a row of docks, a substantial amount of those docks would be on a first come- first to fish basis. The bottom line: If it doesn’t feel right to do it – don’t do it.
There are rivers where a good portion is very shallow. To try and get on plane in some of those areas is impossible. Therefore, going across those areas on plane saves a great deal of time. (If you so choose.) If you come upon people fishing in a bassboat, use common sense as to passing that boat. If the area is wide and the people are fishing the edge, use common sense as to how you pass that boat. In most cases, slowing down to where the boat is just barely on plane (soft plane) is acceptable. Staying competitive as you use common sense is what should be practiced. Coming upon a canoe, kayak or any small boat, no matter where you are on a river, you must slow down to no wake.
Safe boating is required at all times. Most New England waters have a 45 mph speed limit. Some have “no wake” until a certain time and others have different speed limits for different parts of the lake. It is each boat driver’s responsibility to know the speed limit on the water they fish.
- Each team member must wear a Coast Guard approved chest-type Personal Flotation Device (PFD) whenever the gasoline engine is on. The boat does not need to be moving. If the engine is on and a vest is not worn by both team members – the team WILL BE disqualified.
- Kill switch cords must be attached to the PFD if the engine is on.
- 150’ must be the distance between all boats on plane, no matter if the other boat is in the tournament.
- No external fuel tanks will be allowed. Only the fuel in the boat’s installed gas tank will be used. The only refueling allowed will be at a regulated fuel depot, such as in a marina.
- Protest: If you want to file a protest against another team, you must do so in writing, before the end of the weigh-in and before the scales are closed. The person filing a protest must be available when the protest is reviewed and when, if needed, a penalty is given. The MassB.A.S.S. Nation Officials at the tournament will determine the severity of the offense and the penalty.
- Citation: If any team is given a Citation for any on the water offense, they must inform a MassB.A.S.S. Nation Official. Not informing an official that a Citation was given will disqualify that team for the balance of that year’s Classic Team Trail. If a team is given a Citation, then that team’s weight will not be allowed.
- Off-Limits and Cutoff: If a Cutoff Period is announced/posted and if a team or a member of a team is found fishing during the period, then that team will be disqualified from the tournament held on that lake. (If there is a cutoff it will be posted on the MassB.A.S.S. Nations website. It will be important, before you prefish, to check the website and the info for that tournament. )
- There are some bodies of water where there will be “Off-Limits.” So anglers don’t waste time prefishing off limit areas, MassB.A.S.S. Nation, when possible, will post those off-limits on the MassB.A.S.S. Nation website. If there are off limits they will be announced at the pre-tournament meeting. Off-limits only pertain to the actual tournament hours. Any team caught in a designated off limit area during the tournament will be disqualified from that tournament.
- Drugs and/or Alcohol: None are allowed 6 hours before an event, during the event or at the weigh-in site. Never will illegal drugs or alcohol be allowed in a boat that is being used in the tournament. If illegal drugs or alcohol are found in the boat, the team will be disqualified from that tournament.
Disqualifications or assessed penalties and any interpretations of these rules will only be by the designated tournament officials at each tournament. These officials will be announced at each tournament at the pre-tournament meeting.
Pre-tournament Meeting: Required for all participants (both team members) to attend the Pre-tournament Meeting. These meeting will take place on or about 6:45 A.M., so plan accordingly.
MassB.A.S.S. Nation Tournament Officials: They will be announced at the Pre-Tournament Meeting. Ray Lentine will be at every tournament and will be one of the tournament officials. He can be reached by cell phone: 508-826-7471.
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- November 10th, 2015