Piedmont Bass Classics Trail Tournament Rules All trails and events:
TEAMS: Team Members Names must be declared before launching on the first event of any trail or special event. A team can be declared as a solo angler or two people whose combined fishing effort is scored for the event. A substitution is adding an angler to a declared solo team or swapping only one member of a two-person team. Anglers under the age of 18, not fishing with a parent, must have written permission from a parent or legal guardian. Anglers under the age of 26 operating the vessel must abide by the new boating safety requirements as passed by the NCWRC in 2010. For entry into annual Spring Warrior Clash one or both anglers must be active duty, veteran, or retired military, law enforcement, or first responders.
TOURNAMENT BOATS: Boats must be gas or electric powered and registered with the North Carolina Wildlife Resource Commission (NCWRC) or whatever state the boat owner is from, and have a factory installed or working live well capable of keeping and maintaining 5 bass alive for the tournament hours. Any vessels without the above are not allowed to compete. There is no horsepower requirement or limit. Tournament Director is not responsible for vessel recovery but will assist in coordinating when possible. ALL boat captains are to check out with Tournament Director in person or by electronic means NLT 30 minutes after due in time to validate safe status. Failure to do so in a habitual manner will result in removal from the trail.
The 2023 PBC Spring Trail consists of 10 qualifying events. Teams must fish 4 events to qualify for the championship. A team may substitute up to 2 events and ALL events fished will qualify for championship. Team members are never allowed to split up at any time to fish in the same event. In the event that more 50 teams qualify for the final, a two-day championship event will take place with top 25 teams advancing for grand prize payout. Day 1 event will pay out as if a qualifying event with a higher than normal payout announced at the event. Points calculation for Points Champions stops on day 2. Day 1 boat order is determined by points standing after last qualifier. If the number of boats qualified exceeds 50, 1/2 the field will advance to day 2. At this time normal buy in will be in place for day 2 with 100% payout.
2023 Fall trail consists of 7 qualifying events and teams must fish 3 events to qualify for the championship. A team may substitute once and ALL events fished will qualify for championship. Team members are never allowed to split up at any time to fish in the same event. In the event that more 50 teams qualify for the final, a two-day championship event will take place with top 25 teams advancing for grand prize payout. Day 1 event will pay out as if a qualifying event. Points calculation for Points Champions stops on day 2.
*Subs cannot be members of any other team trying to qualify for trails (Exception: permitted only if both teams have qualified...any points will be split 50/50). To sub, you must notify tournament director at least one day before the event you plan to use a sub for approval and Weighfish notation. When subs are used, events count as a qualifier based on above trail notations and the points given that day still count for the declared team. If for some reason the team decides to part ways, only one angler will be allowed to fish the rest of the events with accumulated points. A new partner that has not fished the event at any time may be added and the old partner will be listed as the remaining partner's sub. A Tournament 'Buy In' is only allowed one time per team per trail, otherwise, for an event to be considered fished a team must arrive at ramp, check in, complete launch call out, and check out with tournament director.
All events are open events except the Championship in which only qualified teams may fish. Special events will have registration requirements noted separately.
CHAMPIONSHIP POINTS: Teams will be given points based on their final standings at each event, including Championship events. At each event, 100 points will be given to the winner and a 2-point drop for each place with last points established each event for those with zero fish. Ties will result in the teams receiving the points as assigned in Weighfish. Ties in each event will be broken with Big Fish weights if noted on weigh in. The team with the most points for the trail after the final Championship event will win the Trail Points Award. Points are awarded in all events except special events. In case of a points tie, the team with the most total weight for the events will win. In the event of a 2-day final, all points will be finalized on day 2. For the remainder of the Spring trail the current points scoring which cuts off at boat 50 will remain in place. Points champion will win a minimum of $1000 and additional places paid and prized will be announced after the final qualifier.
Top 10 points finishers in any PBC Trail will automatically qualify for Annual Trail Points Championship Summit Event which will occur in the spring of the year that follows if interest dictates.
WILDCARD POINTS: Spring 2023 trail may include Wildcard Events. These events have no impact on qualifiers for the trail but points earned in these events can be used to drop lowest points event for teams. Wildcard Events pay out 85% on main entry fee and follow 100% payout on big fish and side pot (TWT).
LAUNCH SEQUENCES: Preregistered teams will be randomly drawn for starting spots in each Trail Qualifier. After that, teams will be assigned a starting spot in order as they enter. Championship launch sequence is by points standing prior to event final. Tournament director will draw random positions for pre-registered teams in qualifiers 1-2 weeks before event start.
ENTRY FEES & PAYOUTS: For 2023 there is no membership fee to fish the PBC Trail. All Championship payouts are based on a 50-boat field average over the trail. Entry fee is $110 per boat with $30 of that going towards director's fee and final prize fund. For events where number of teams exceeds 50 boats the tournament director will increase percent paid out to teams for that event and announce to the field at weigh in. Event payback is 1 place for every 6 boats. Optional Big Fish Pot is $20 per boat paying 100% back 3 Places based on Weighfish App methodology. Optional Tournament Within a Tournament (TWT) is $50 per boat paying 100% back 3 Places based on Weighfish App methodology. Event ties will be broken with big fish weight if determined, by coin toss, or mutual split if teams agree.
Anglers will be paid with a check at the conclusion of each event or receive winnings by mail if elected. At any time, Angler Teams may elect to use all or part of their winnings to pay towards future event entry fees, big fish, or TWT.
Points Champions earn $1000 per trail. Angler teams winning points Championship may elect to receive $1000 payout or be credited to fish 10 events with no fee for main entry. Contingency registration for participating agencies will remain for 2023 season and the Tournament director will provide photographic and written validation to requesting agency for payouts as required.
Additional cash payout and prizes for points champion places 2 and 3 will be determined through the season based on angler team turnout and announced at the championship event.
CREEL LIMIT: Sizes or restrictions will be announced at the ramps prior to launch. Total weight will be 5 fish with lengths measured mouth completely closed tail completely closed on the Golden Rule. There is a .25 lb. penalty on each dead fish your team weighs in. Your 'Big Fish' entry may be weighed in dead, but the penalty will be imposed on that fish for the actual net weight. Any 'ILLEGAL' fish brought to the scales will be deleted from the creel with a .50 pound penalty and cannot be replaced. No team or individual may have more than 5 bass in their live wells at any time unless culling the fifth fish for a larger one. You cannot cull a dead fish. NO MORE THAN 5 FISH may be in the team’s possession once inside the 'No Wake' buoy at tournament’s end. Any team bringing over 5 bass to the scales will immediately be disqualified. Courtesy measurements are available any time after blast-off, up and until you enter the 'No Wake' buoy at check in time unless announced by the tournament director at blast off.
FISHING HOURS: Safe light until 3:00pm as a general rule. Generally speaking safelight occurs 30 minutes before official sunrise. The Tournament Director will make a time call on safe light and launch and return time to ensure a full day of angler action based on seasonal light and weather conditions. You must be back inside the 'No Wake' buoy by the time designated during event blastoff announcement. Flights will be staggered at intervals. Last minute announcements regarding events will be posted on website main page and in email prior to event.
GENERAL RULES: No trolling. Artificial baits only. Only 1 rod in use by each angler at any time. Fish must be caught in a normal manner (no snagging). Team partner may help land the fish. Life vest must be worn while the gas motor is running at other than idle speed. No fishing or passing within 50 yards of another entrants 'ANCHORED BOAT' without permission. Boat permitting one, must permit all. Anglers may not leave the boat to land a fish or get to a fishing spot. 'Do Not Enter' areas may be fished, but not be entered with a boat. Spectators are not allowed in your boat unless approved by the Tournament Director. Any protest must be submitted in writing within 10 minutes of final weigh-in, along with a $50 protest fee, which will be refunded if the Tournament Committee finds the protest to be valid. Events will be held regardless of weather conditions unless they are deemed too unsafe by the Tournament Director. No Refunds. We ask that all entrants use common courtesy and abide by all state and local lake rules and have a current fishing license and ID in their possession. Use common sense as far as your own safety goes. Cell phones may be used for emergencies or immediate family matters only. NO WAKE ZONES MEAN 'NO WAKE'! IDLE SPEED ONLY & NO PASSING THE BOAT IN FRONT OF YOU!
SPORTSMANSHIP: All contestants are required to follow the highest of standards of sportsmanship, courtesy, and conservation. Anglers are to conduct themselves in a manner that will be a credit to themselves, our partners, and the sport of fishing. FLR Outdoors, LLC and Piedmont Bass Classics intends to promote the sport and emulate common positive values and project a focus on conservation and the outdoors. Conduct not complying with these standards includes but is not limited to the following: Violation of, or failure to comply with, any of the rules for the yearly Piedmont Bass Classics events and NCWRC. Consumption of alcoholic beverages and/or possession of any kind of illegal mind-altering substance during tournament hours from registration up to the weigh-in and presentation of awards. Malicious verbal or physical confrontations at any time towards the FLR Outdoors, LLC Staff, other anglers, or spectators present at the tournament site. False information of any kind given to the tournament director and unsafe operation of your boat so as to endanger another contestant. Placing fish in cages of any kind for collection during event will result in permanent ban from all Piedmont Bass Classic events and applicable criminal prosecution by NCWRC personnel. Filling your fish with anything they didn't ingest on their own in a natural manner while living in the body of water before being caught. These standards of conduct will also apply to tournament employees (whether working and/or fishing in an event). The Tournament Director has the right to refuse an application to compete (with refund if need be), warn, disqualify, suspend or permanently ban any contestant or team from any future Piedmont Bass Classics events. Any infractions should be brought to the attention of the Tournament Director for immediate consideration.
POLYGRAPH: The test may be given at any time. Everyone is subject to the test. Any entrant who has failed to pass a polygraph before or whose condition does not permit the administration of the test due to his or her use of alcohol or drugs (prescription or otherwise) may not fish events unless they notify Douglas Phillips (tournament director) no later than 96 hours before any event date, so an observer may be assigned to monitor that contestant(s). These observers cost of $125 will be paid by the entrant(s) prior to the event. Anyone refusing to take the polygraph or causes problems for the operator, will be disqualified and may not fish another of our events. If there is a protest submitted, and the polygrapher is not present, all monies will be withheld until the protest is dropped or a polygraph is given.
LIVEWELL CHECKS: You must have your live well checked before blastoff. Stop in front of Check in booth prior to putting in. If coming from another location on the lake the livewell will be inspected at the ramp by tournament officials.
1. Jordan Lake - Farrington Point
2. Falls Lake - Ledge Rock
3. Kerr Lake - Flemingtown Landing
4. Shearon Harris - Cross Point Landing
5. Gaston Lake - Summit Ramp
6. Baden Lake - TBD
7. High Rock Lake - TBD
HARDSHIP SITUATIONS: Situations that impact team attendance, such as death of a team member, accidents, or medical conditions will be taken into consideration by the Tournament Director for resolution and substitution. Consideration will be made for single events or the remainder of a season. At no time, for any reason, no matter how tragic or impactful, will a team be allowed to substitute for a Championship Event.
RIGHT OF REFUSAL: Officials of FLR Outdoors, LLC and Piedmont Bass Classics have and reserves the 'Right of Refusal' pertaining to anyone or any team wanting to participate.
RULES INTERPRETATIONS: The Tournament Director will have final say on all questionable matters and asks that all participants review and abide by rules.
TOURNAMENT DAY AND EMERGENCY CONTACT NUMBER:
Contact Doug Phillips 912-980-5936 or Gretchen Phillips 337-348-9003