Tournament Rules 

Entry Fee - Entry Fee is $60 per team. 
Refunds - No refunds will be provided on tournament entry fees for any reason.
Limit/Scoring - Teams may bring a 5-fish limit to weigh-in.  Length limit will be 12 inches, unless a more stringent regulation applies on the relevant lake (in which case the prevailing state regulations will apply).   Scoring is based on the weight of the fish brought for weigh-in by each team.  The tournament director may modify these limits if in the best interest of the club.  For example, during the summer the bag limit may be reduced to manage fish mortality.
Ties - In the case of tie for a tournament position or big fish, the teams will split the winnings for the two affected places in the standings (e.g., if two teams tie for 3rd they will evenly split the money for 3rd and 4th places; if two teams tie for big fish, the pot is split). 
Eligible Bass Species - Anglers may present only Largemouth, Smallmouth, Spotted, Redeye, or Coosa bass to weigh-in.  All other species are not eligible.
No Live Bait - Live bait is not permitted under any circumstances.  Use of artificial lures is the only permitted fishing method.
Permitted Fishing Methods - All fish must be caught in a live and sporting manner.  Trolling as a fishing method is not permitted.  If leaving the boat during tournament hours, members may not possess a fishing rod in hand and may not fish from any location other than from inside their boat.  
Dead Fish - Teams presenting dead fish at weigh-in will be penalized 0.25lbs per dead fish.
Short Fish - Teams presenting fish that fall short of the relevant length limit will incur the following penalties: (a) any short fish will not be weighed; and (b) the team will be assessed a 1.0 lb penalty per short fish presented at weigh-in.  Teams may request a courtesy measurement by the Tournament Director of one fish. This request must be made immediately upon presenting the team's catch to the Tournament Director at weigh-in.  If the fish identified for courtesy measurement is determined to fall short of the legal length limit, that fish will be removed from the team's catch with no other penalty.
Late Arrival to Weigh-in - Teams returning after the specified weigh-in time will be penalized 1.0 lb per minute.  Teams will be considered to have "arrived" at the launch ramp at the point where they are within 100 yards of the ramp (or are inside any "no wake" buoys surrounding the ramp - whichever is further) and have brought their boat fully off plane to idle speed.   There is no exception provided in the event of boat failure or any other circumstances.  However, teams experiencing boat failure may be towed in, obtain a ride to the ramp with their catch from a competitor or non-competitor, or use any other means available to return to weigh-in on time.  
Alternates - Teams may use 3 alternates per season.  All family members of both team members count as 1 alternate for the entire season to encourage family participation.  For example, either of the registered team members may fish with any family member of either registered team member, plus two other alternates of their choice during the tournament season.
Blast-off Order - Boat numbers will be assigned at the ramp in order of arrival tournament morning.  "Arrival" is defined as having paid the entry fee.  
Boats - Teams must fish out of a boat with adequate safety equipment mandated by relevant state laws, and with a working livewell capable of sustaining a limit of fish alive for a tournament day.
Trailering / Locking - Trailering during the tournament day is not permitted except in the event of mechanical failure.  In this case, the only permitted trailering is from the site at which the boat is removed from the lake back to the designated tournament launch.  Locking, where available, is permitted.
Cell Phone Usage / Communication - Cell phones or other mobile device (email, text, etc.) communication is permitted during tournament hours with the exception of use to direct another team to a specific location on the lake for fishing-related purposes (i.e., sharing of specific fishing locations during the tournament day between competing teams is prohibited).  This rule also applies to teams receiving location-related information from non-competitors during the tournament day.
Life Vests Required - USCG approved life vests must be worn whenever the gasoline engine is running and the boat is operating on plane.
Fishing Licenses - All participants must have a valid fishing license for the state in which the tournament is being held.
Payout Structure (Total Weight) - Tournament payout is 1 in 5 places, with a minimum of 2 places.  An additional payout is added only when a full additional 5 teams join the tournament (e.g., 3rd payout place added with 15th team, 4th payout place added with 20th team, etc.).  
Payout Structure (Big Bass) - $5 per team funds the Big Fish pot.  The team catching the biggest fish of the tournament receives 100% of the amount in the Big Fish pot.
Blast-off Duty - The team with the last boat number is responsible for conducting blast-off by calling out the boat numbers using a bullhorn provided by the club. 

Classic

Eligibility to Fish Classic - Any team fishing at least 5 regular season tournaments is eligible to fish the Classic.  THERE IS NO ROUTE TO FISH THE CLASSIC FOR ANY TEAM THAT DOES NOT FISH AT LEAST 5 REGULAR SEASON TOURNAMENTS.
Earning Free Classic Entry - The winner of each regular season tournament will be awarded a free entry to the Classic.  In the event that a regular season tournament is won by a team that has previously been awarded a free classic entry in a prior event, the next highest finishing team will be awarded the free entry.  Thus, 7 free classic entries will be awarded based on this criteria during the season.  Teams earning these free entries must still fish the minimum required 5 tournaments to be eligible, or the entry is forfeited.    
Classic Buy-in Option - Team not earning a free classic entry during the season are required to pay a $50 entry fee to fish the Classic.  Teams taking advantage of this option are eligible for all tournament prizes.     
Option to "Pay but not Fish" Regular Season Events - For purposes of the classic eligibility criteria, "fished" is defined as paying the tournament entry fee prior to the start of the tournament (i.e., physical presence at 5 tournaments is not required).  To take advantage of this option, your entry fee MUST be paid in advance of blast-off as arranged by you with another club member or representative.  There are no exceptions - after blast-off for a given tournament this option is no longer available.   
Payout - The Classic fund will be derived from the annual membership fees paid during the season, plus the $50 entry fees paid by team not earning free entry, less annual club expenses/reserves.  The payout structure will be the same as a regular season tournament, just with the Classic fund serving as the prize pool.
Location - The Classic will be held on Lake Lanier.
Alternates/ Partner Changes - There will be no alternates allowed during the Classic.  However, teams will be permitted a one-time change in their permanent partner during the season.  The "new" partner must be physically present at a minimum of 3 tournaments following the partner change to be eligible to fish the Classic. 
No Use of Guides - Teams are prohibited from hiring or obtaining information from a guide on Lake Lanier during the period between the final regular season event and the start of the Classic.  

Membership

Annual Membership Fee - GABC charges an annual membership fee of $100 per team.  This amount is used to cover club expenses and fund the prize pool for the Classic.
Guides / Professionals Not Eligible for Membership - Guides or fisherman of professional status are not eligible for club membership or to fish as alternates with existing club members.  "Guide" is defined as having guided for compensation during the past 10 years on any lake on GABC's season schedule.  "Professional status" is defined as having fished a professional tournament at the FLW Everstart, BASS Open, or PAA levels (or equivalent, or higher) as a boater or non-boater during the past 10 years (infrequent participation as a non-boater could be grounds for a waiver under this rule, although "touring" co-anglers are not likely to receive an exemption).  
Right to Refuse/Terminate Membership - GABC welcomes and encourages new members to join the club.  However, GABC reserves the right to refuse membership to any team for any reason.  GABC may also terminate the membership of any member for any reason at any time.
Other - No person who has ever been barred from participation by any other tournament organization is eligible for participation in GABC.  Any current member that is barred by another tournament organization will immediately forfeit their team's membership status in GABC with no refund or other recourse.   

Meetings

Meeting Format - GABC will hold informal meetings following each monthly tournament.  Attendance is encouraged, but optional.     

Greater Atlanta Bass Club Rules

2018 Season

Greater Atlanta Bass Club