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Jim Grouch

BFL Newbie

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I plan on fishing a BFL tournament this upcomming year and have never fished a tourney before. I am a little confused on the partner process. I understand that turning in my member number and my partners member number in at the same time prior to the priority deadline will give us "priority". However...I am a little confused by the wording on the rules. Does that mean he and I will be able to fish that tournament together??? Or just that it we have priority in getting into the tournament and will be drawn partners that we don't know?? I know this may sound like a silly question. but any help would be greatly appreciated. Thanks -Jim

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With you submitting your name with your partners will only guarantee your entry into the tournament and usually will guarantee that you won't be linked with another boater, should there be a issue with the ratio of boaters and non-boaters (co-angler).  It doesn't mean that you will fish with the partner you submitted.  Although, you could fish together should they draw you as partners in the random pairing before the tourney.

Hope that clears it up.

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    Thanks for the quick responses. Now for my second dilema. I want to go to my first tournament as a non-boater to get a feel for the game. I'm worried that if I show up as a non-boater then I might not be able to fish in the tournament due to the numbers. Is my 1995 Nitro good enough to be out on the water with the rest of the pack...or am I gonna get laughed at? That's the only for sure way I can see getting into the tournament is by being the boater. What are your thoughts???

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If you submit your entry with a boater, then you are guarateed a spot, even if you are a non-boater.  If it comes down to it, your boat should be OK, not sure where you're fishing or the size of your boat, but if you can SAFELY go "fun" fishing in the same body of water as the BFL in your rig, then it should be OK.  Remember though, your boat needs to be able to handle the rough water, they don't cancel tournies unless there is a hurricane!!  If you have any issues with your livewells, then I would suggest not using it.  This puts both you and your non-boater at risk of dead fish penalties.  Also, make sure all of your lights work, they will require you to put them in and have them working when you launch in the morning.  

As far as people laughing---a guy in our club won angler of the year in a beat-up old Spectrum Bass boat.  Beat out all the guys in their shiny, sparkling 20' bass rigs!!!! ;D

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That's the problem...I don't know any boaters for the tournament. It's a 19 footer and a good rough water boat and everything works. I'm half tempted to enter it just to be sure to get in. I just don't want my partner all pist because he's not in a new Triton....but then again I guess its better then his boat. The lake is Lake St. Clair and Detroit River.

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It's not the boat that catches the fish. As far as the size of your boat, I've had my 18.5' stratos/150 johnson in a few tournaments up there and did fine on both Erie and St Clair. You will be fine and it will be a great experience when you cash a check and the guy with the 21' goes home in the hole! ;D. Your partner for the day won't care if it was a jon boat if he/she brings in fish.

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ZBASS took the words right off my keyboard!!!!  As long as everything functions and it's safe, you'll be fine.  Not everyone will have a brand new Triton, these are weekend anglers, they're all in the same situation as you and who cares what the non-boater thinks!!  You can catch a twenty pound bag just as easy in a jon boat as you can a bass boat, it doesn't matter.

Think of it as an advantage for you.  I've fit my 18.5' in some tight spots that those big rids can't get into.  :P

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Awsome...Thanks guys. I've read the rules over and they seem pretty straight forward. I have a friend that is also a non-boater that wants to enter and also wants me to put in for being the boater...But I'm sure you guys can see where I'm coming from and just being a little hesitant and intimidated for it being my first tournament. I appreciate all of your feedback. It looks like the red rocket will prevail!!!!

post-14084-130162975612_thumb.jpg

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If it were me, I would call FLW outdoors and ask for the regulations on boats, I do believe there is atleast insurance requirements, also your fuel tank has to be non removeable, I would check with them (to get the info from the horses mouth).

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There is nothing wrong with the Nitro posted. If it is safe, legal, and can sustain a limit of bass by each participant you are good to go. Make sure your insurance has the limits required and go for it.

You will find out a lot more about how you stack up by going out and putting a couple of patterns together. Then you will have something to compare. Good luck

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I did call FLW and here's what they had to say. It is a draw for partner...So pretty much the registering together is just to guarantee yourself into the tournament. Not that you guys were wrong at all...but just wanted to check from "the horse's mouth". Next part is about the insurance for the boat. They said that the boat must have accident and liability insurance. They do not require a specic amount, but do require that you have it for the boat. Now keep in mind that is for the BFL tournaments and does not apply to all bass tournaments in general. Most questions can be answered in the rules section of the FLWoutdoors website. I hope this helps anyone else in the future that may want to give it a shot. -Jim

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