LUDINGTON OFFSHORE CLASSIC GENERAL RULES
IMPORTANT!!! See specific rules page for each tournament. General Rules apply unless otherwise stated for each specific tournament. If you elect to fish this tournament, you agree by your participation that you have read, understand and accept all rules & regulations pertaining to this event, and to abide by the decisions of the Tournament Committee. Failure to be familiar with rules may result in disqualification. All rules are subject to change and will be finalized at each tournaments captain’s meeting.*
*2022 – Planned tournament activities and procedures are subject to change based on up-to-date state or local COVID-19 regulations.
ELIGIBILITY: The Tournament Committee reserves the right to decline entry or participation by any person, team or boat, as deemed necessary, to ensure such things as integrity, image, reputation, financial performance and community relationships with sponsors, participants and supporting groups.
CAPTAINS’ MEETING – Amendments or changes to rules may be done at Captains Meeting prior to each tournament. For these reasons we would suggest entire team attend. Rules will be finalized at the captains’ meeting.
FINAL PAYOUTS – Will be posted after the captains’ meeting, based upon number of teams registered, and posting will supersede ALL previously posted payout projections. Once final payouts are posted there can be no refunds of registration fees.
BAD WEATHER – In case of bad weather, 4 hours of fishing constitutes a completed tournament. If we cannot start fishing on the 1st day of a 2-day tournament by 11:00 a.m. due to weather conditions, tournament will be cancelled for the day, and fishing will be allowed for tournament boats for the rest of the day. On day two, if we start at 11:00 a.m., fishing will end at 3:00 p.m. After fishing minimum of 4 hours the 1st day of any 2-day event, no fishing will be allowed for the remainder of that day.
It is your responsibility to monitor Channel 68 for safety and emergency tournament information. Please download the CODE RED emergency app for the most up-to-date information. If tournament is called off before a minimum of 4 hours is fished, the whole day will be cancelled and no fish will be weighed. If, due to unforeseen circumstances, any tournament is cancelled in its entirety, a refund check will be mailed within 14 days. However, a portion of the registration fee may be retained to cover administrative costs. A weather boat committee will be selected and announced at the Pro/Am Captains’ meeting. This committee, in conjunction with Tournament Control, will make all weather-based decisions once the fishing period has commenced. If the tournament must be called early due to poor weather conditions, ALL events and divisions will be cancelled for the day. The deadline will be 1.5 hours from the time of the announcement. For example, if Tournament Control announces that the tournament will be called due to bad weather at 10:00 am, all boats must return to the harbor by 11:30 am. Fishing will be permitted during that hour and a half, as long as the boat returns to the pier heads by 11:30 am.
If the tournament is cancelled due to weather conditions, all entry fees minus 10% will be refunded. In the case of a last-minute emergency that prevents an entrant from participating in the tournament, said entrant may apply to the tournament committee for a refund. The decision to refund shall be made by the committee.
LATE BOATS – All boats that are late in returning to the pier heads will be disqualified for that day’s competition. No exceptions!
NUMBER OF RODS – Maximum number of lines fishing is 9. Fishing means “in the water.” 10 or more lines in the water at any one time disqualify the team. One slider per rod will be allowed, however, sliders may not exceed 72 inches. Maximum 2 baits per rod.
RADIO – Marine radio required. Monitor Channel 68 for tournament traffic alert and sign up for alerts through the CODE RED app. for the most up-to-date information. Tournament Control will monitor Channel 68 throughout the day in case of an emergency or situation that requires immediate attention. See specific rules page for Pro/Am and Ladies Classic.
MICHIGAN LAWS – All State of Michigan fishing laws must be observed. A written DNR violation on tournament days disqualifies team with no refund.
By entering this tournament, the captain acknowledges that he/she is responsible that crew adheres to safety guidelines set for by the State of Michigan regarding self-screening, the number of people on a vessel and the application of social distancing as mandated by state authorities.
LIMITS & SCORING – See specific tournament info for catch limit, length specifications and scoring methods.
GAFFING FISH – Gaffing fish is not allowed. Foreign substances, including ice packed into the fish’s mouth or body cavities, will disqualify the entire team.
POLYGRAPH EXAMINATIONS – All participants who weigh fish and are eligible for cash and prizes may be required to submit to a polygraph examination. Failure to comply will result in immediate disqualification and forfeiture of any and all cash and prizes.
INSPECTIONS – The Tournament Committee may board any vessel prior to the fishing period to search for any uncleaned fish. The presence of any un-cleaned fish on a tournament boat prior to the fishing period will result in disqualification.
Observers are not required, however, they may be provided by the tournament committee. Captains will enforce all rules. AM Division boats must designate a captain. If observers are provided, boats will be selected at random or by the first day standings by the tournament committee. Failure to allow the observer on your boat will result in disqualification and forfeiture of the registration fee.
The Tournament Committee reserves the right to decline entry or participating by any person, team or boat, as deemed necessary, to ensure such things as integrity, image, reputation, and financial performance and community relationships with sponsors, participants and supporting groups.
WEIGH-IN – Weigh-ins will be done by as boats arrive. Transported coolers must be at weigh station no later than 1 hr. after tournament ends each day. At least one team member must stay with the cooler at all times until their fish are weighed. At Captain’s Meeting final weigh-in procedures will be announced for all divisions. Please drain coolers before weigh-in. Excess water or loose ice may result in 5 lb. deduction from overall weight.
Two team members will accompany tournament cooler to the weigh station. Enter the parking lot of Waterfront Park and stay in your vehicle to await your turn at the scale. Do not bring your boat trailer through the parking lot, due to size constraints. Please follow the directions of parking lot attendants and weigh masters. Crew members will unload their cooler and place own fish in the bucket for weighing.
Important: You must be at weigh-in station by 1 hour after fishing ends.
CAPTAIN & CREW – A Captain for each team must be designated and identified on registration form. Short-handed crews are allowed, however, sufficient legal fishermen are required to comply with maximum 9 lines. Same fishermen do not have to fish both days. DNR REGULATIONS ALLOW 3 RODS PER PERSON ON LAKE MICHIGAN RESULTING IN A 3 MAN CREW TO LEGALLY USE THE MAXIMUM 9 ROD LIMIT FOR TOURNAMENT FISHING.
IDENTIFICATION – Each contestant will be assigned a boat identification number at the captains’ meeting. New for 2020: It is your responsibility to create and display your assigned boat identification number on your vessel. You must make sure your boat number is on your log sheet at the weigh-in. The boat number shall be prominently shown on the port side of the participant’s boat at all times.
DISABLED BOATS – Boats must return through the pier heads under their own power. No boat may come in direct physical contact with another boat unless authorized by Tournament control. Physical contact will result in disqualification for both teams. Obviously boats in distress, dangerous or life threatening situations must be dealt with accordingly. Disabled boats that arrive late will not be able to weigh in for that day only. Once Tournament begins you cannot change boats for any reason.
CHEATING – Cheating will not be tolerated. All cases will be directed to the rules committee who will be enforcing all tournament rules.
PROTESTS – Any and all protests must be made in writing to tournament control within two (2) hours after posted tournament fishing ends on the day of the alleged infraction. Tournament Control will submit the protest to the Chamber CEO who serves as the chair of the Protest Committee. Remaining members of the Protest Committee will be appointed by Tournament Control and include the Ludington Offshore Classic (LOC) Rules Committee members free of conflict from alleged infraction. Each protest must be accompanied by $100.00 in cash. If the protest is upheld, the LOC will return the protester their $100.00 however if the protest is not upheld the LOC will keep the $100.00. The Protest Committee’s decision shall be final and binding. If the dispute cannot be resolved by the appointed Protest Committee, the alleged infraction will be presented to the Lake Michigan Tournament Alliance (LMTA) for resolution. The Ludington Offshore Classic (LOC) is a member of the LMTA, which requires the LOC to report any team that is disqualified from the LOC Tournament for any reason. The team and the infraction will be reported to the LMTA for review and possible disqualification from other tournaments associated with the LMTA. Any additional penalty resulting from a LOC disqualification will be a LMTA decision.
PRO TEAMS DEFINED – For the purposes of this tournament, a “Pro Team” is defined as any of the following:
1) Any crew member that is, or has been within past 2 years, a licensed Great Lakes charter captain, or 2) Any crew member that is the owner/operator of a business that manufactures a Great Lakes related fishing product
For the purposes of this tournament, the following will NOT be considered a “Pro Team”:
1) Any crew member that is a licensed “river-only” guide/captain, 2) Any crew member that is an employee of a tackle manufacturer or retailer, 3) Field testers, and 4) Retailers.
Amateur teams who win the Ludington Offshore Classic two (2) years in a row will be required to fish in the Pro Division the following year.
If you have questions about your Pro-Am status call Shane Ruboyianes at (231) 794-7626 for clarification before you register. Failure to fully disclose all pertinent information may result in disqualification with absolutely NO refund and NO prizes awarded. It is your responsibility to comply with the Pro/Am Rule.
COMMUNICATION – All participants must monitor Channel 68 at all times. Important tournament information will be broadcast on this channel. Please restrict communication to vital tournament communication only. Participants who miss these announcements will still be held liable.
- We will use the CODE RED App. to send official notifications from Tournament Control.
- Open communication is allowed in the Big Boys Tournament, Ruboy Thursday, Ladies and Kids Friday, and weekend Pro-Am tournaments.
QUESTIONS? Contact Ludington & Scottville Area Chamber of Commerce at 231-845-0324.