MLFLW, LLC, (DBA “MLF”) expects strict adherence to the following rules by all contestants. Additionally, MLF suggests that co-anglers share fuel expenses with their pro partner each day of competition to help offset the high cost of boat operation. MLF recommends the use of livewell additives like T-H Marine G-Juice to help promote the healthy release of bass. MLF discourages sharing a partner’s phone number with anyone without the partner’s consent. In the event of an emergency, please call 911 first and then notify the tournament director. MLF recommends the use of EPIRBs and Personal Locator Beacons. The tournament director should be notified as soon as possible prior to weigh-in if you use a mobile communication device for any purpose other than GPS, mapping, weather, power generation, barge traffic updates, tidal charts, personal fishing notes and related data as outlined in rule 10.
2023 Toyota Series Rules:
1. INTERPRETATION & ENFORCEMENT • These rules will remain unchanged during 2023. Interpretation and enforcement of these rules will be left exclusively to MLF. Decisions of the tournament director are final in all matters and are not subject to appeal. Each contestant agrees to report any rule violation to the tournament director immediately upon discovery of the violation. Failure to report violations (pro or co-angler) may be cause for disqualification. The violation of a tournament rule may result in, but is not limited to, weight loss, the loss of weight up to a particular time in the tournament day, the loss of weight for the entire day, the loss of the heaviest one-day catch, the loss of the heaviest bass for the day, disqualification from the entire tournament, a fine of not less than $100 nor more than $1,000 or ineligibility to participate in future MLF tournaments. Protests and/or alleged rule violations are to be made in writing by the witness within 30 minutes of the check-in time of the final flight of each tournament day. MLF reserves the right to consider rule violations reported or discovered after a tournament has ended and assess penalties for future events, including denying entry to compete.
2. PAYBACK & PARTICIPATION • Payback is based on the number of paid entries for each tournament. Participation is open only to members of MLF who are 16 years of age or older. Any person under the age of 18 (19 in Alabama and Nebraska) entering a tournament must also have the signature of a parent or legal guardian in the provided space on the entry form. Any person’s participation in any tournament is at the sole discretion of MLF officials. Any person who, in the judgment of the tournament director, is disabled or handicapped in such a manner as to unfairly hinder his or her pro or co-angler partner or compromise his or her safety or the safety of other competitors or the boating public may not be eligible to participate. All contestants must have a valid fishing license for the waters they fish. Random checks will be conducted at each tournament. Failure to provide proof of a valid fishing license within a reasonable amount of time when requested by the tournament director will result in disqualification for that day and any preceding days in which the license was required for the tournament.
PRO & CO-ANGLER ENTRY: The top 25 pros and co-anglers and tournament winners from each division of the 2022 Toyota Series and the top 45 boaters and co-anglers from each division of the 2022 Phoenix Bass Fishing League plus the winner of each 2022 Bass Fishing League tournament (who paid an entry fee for all five tournaments in a division and fished at least two tournaments in the same division) and the top 10 anglers from the 2022 College Fishing National Championship must pay their deposits by November 28, 2022, and enter with a counterpart (pro with co-angler or co-angler with pro) in order to secure their priority entry position. For Phoenix boat owners (Phoenix owners with current registrations or confirmation of a boat order who will use their Phoenix boat in Toyota Series competition) and sponsor entries (MLF may reserve sponsor spots in each qualifying tournament), deposits will be accepted beginning at 8 a.m. Central time November 29, 2022. For anglers who fished a full division of the 2022 Toyota Series or a full division of the 2022 Bass Fishing League, deposits will be accepted beginning at 8 a.m. Central time November 30, 2022. For TBF members, deposits will be accepted beginning at 8 a.m. Central time December 1, 2022. For other entries, deposits will be accepted beginning at 8 a.m. Central time December 2, 2022. Pros entering by the entry/balance deadline for each tournament and providing co-anglers (with membership numbers who have not yet been confirmed in the tournament) will be given priority. Co-anglers entering by the entry/balance deadline for each tournament and providing pros (with membership numbers who have not yet been confirmed in the tournament) will be given priority. Pro and co-angler priority are granted when matching pro and co-angler entries (listing each other’s name and membership number) are received by the entry/balance deadline and are contingent on both anglers competing in the tournament entered. Entering with a pro or co-angler does not guarantee you will be fishing together in the same boat. All pros and co-anglers, regardless of priority, will be paired by random draw per rule 7. All other entry priority will be assigned by the date and time of entry. Entry priority will be final once full payment is received. Entries may be made by mail (30 Gamble Lane, Benton, KY 42025), phone (270.252.1000) or at MajorLeagueFishing.com. Do not make entry by more than one method. Published payouts for each tournament are based on 160 to 260 pro and 160 to 260 co-angler entries. MLF may, in its sole discretion, accept entries after the entry/balance deadline for any tournament to even the field. DEPOSITS ARE NONTRANSFERABLE AND NONREFUNDABLE ONCE ACCEPTED INTO A TOURNAMENT. Entries received after a tournament has filled will be placed on a waiting list. Those anglers placed on the waiting list and not accepted into the tournament will receive a full refund after the tournament. CONFIRMED ENTRIES ARE CONTINGENT UPON COMPLETE ENTRY FEE BEING PAID BY THE ENTRY/BALANCE DEADLINE DATE. Entry fees (minus the deposit) may be transferred or refunded if MLF is notified prior to the entry/balance deadline. ENTRY FEES WILL NOT BE TRANSFERRED OR REFUNDED AFTER THE ENTRY/BALANCE DEADLINE. Any entry balances not received by the entry balance deadline (except those called up from the waiting list) will be charged a $50 late fee.
PAYMENT SCHEDULE: Pro entry fees are $1,700 per tournament, and co-angler entry fees are $550 per tournament. Pros must pay a $500 deposit per tournament and co-anglers must pay a $200 deposit per tournament upon entry followed by payment for the balance of the entry fee according to the schedule outlined below.
Guntersville: $1,200 pro and $350 co-angler due: Jan 25, 2023
Lewis Smith: $1,200 pro and $350 co-angler due: Feb 27, 2023
Chickamauga: $1,200 pro and $350 co-angler due: Apr 3, 2023
Champlain: $1,200 pro and $350 co-angler due: May 31, 2023
St. Lawrence: $1,200 pro and $350 co-angler due: Jul 19, 2023
Potomac River: $1,200 pro and $350 co-angler due: Aug 30, 2023
Grand: $1,200 pro and $350 co-angler due: Feb 22, 2023
Kentucky/Barkley: $1,200 pro and $350 co-angler due: Mar 29, 2023
Lake of the Ozarks: $1,200 pro and $350 co-angler due: Sep 6, 2023
Harris Chain: $1,200 pro and $350 co-angler due: Jan 10, 2023
Okeechobee: $1,200 pro and $350 co-angler due: Mar 8, 2023
Eufaula: $1,200 pro and $350 co-angler due: Apr 19, 2023
Sam Rayburn: $1,200 pro and $350 co-angler due: Jan 3, 2023
Dardanelle: $1,200 pro and $350 co-angler due: Mar 13, 2023
Sam Rayburn: $1,200 pro and $350 co-angler due: Apr 26, 2023
Havasu: $1,200 pro and $350 co-angler due: Jan 11, 2023
California Delta: $1,200 pro and $350 co-angler due: Feb 22, 2023
California Delta: $1,200 pro and $350 co-angler due: Mar 29, 2023
3. POINT STANDINGS • 260 points are awarded to the winner of each tournament, 259 to 2nd, 258 to 3rd, etc. All anglers who receive weight credit receive points. The top pro and co-angler from the point standings in each U.S. division after three qualifying tournaments (ties resolved by total weight, then total number of fish, then total number of live fish) win the Angler of the Year and Co-angler of the Year titles, respectively, for that division. The top 25 pros and top 25 co-anglers in the final point standings in each U.S. division after three qualifying tournaments (ties resolved by total weight, then total number of fish, then total number of live fish) and the winning pro and co-angler from each U.S. tournament advance to the 2023 Toyota Series Championship. The top 25 pros and top 25 co-anglers in the final point standings in the Wild Card division (ties resolved by the highest finish in a tournament) advance to the 2023 Toyota Series Championship. The Wild Card division is comprised of anglers fishing four or more tournaments in any combination of divisions, and Wild Card standing are calculated based on each angler’s three highest finishes. International contestants also advance to the 2023 Toyota Series Championship based on the rules governing MLF-sanctioned events in each contestant’s home country. Anglers who qualify for advancement to the 2023 Toyota Series Championship from more than one division will advance from the first division in which they qualified but will retain bonus eligibility for all divisions from which they qualified. If a top 25 angler or tournament winner has already qualified for the 2023 Toyota Series Championship from another division, his or her entry in the 2023 Toyota Series Championship will go to the next highest finishing angler from the point standings. The top 25 pros and co-anglers from the final point standings in each U.S. division and tournament winners receive priority entry for the 2024 season. The top five (5) pros in the final point standings in each U.S. division, excluding the Wild Card division, qualify for the 2024 Tackle Warehouse Invitationals. If a top-five pro declines his or her bid into the 2024 Tackle Warehouse Invitationals or is already qualified through the Invitationals or Bass Pro Tour, the next eligible pro will qualify. This process will continue through the top 10 pros in each of the six (6) U.S. divisions. The highest-finishing International division representative at the 2023 Toyota Series Championship qualifies for the 2025 Tackle Warehouse Invitationals.
4. PURCHASING OF INFORMATION • The purchasing of, or bartering for, information about locating or catching fish on tournament waters, including but not limited to GPS waypoints (other than through commercially available sources) and the hiring of fishing guide services is not permitted after the entry/balance deadline for each tournament. Serving as a media boat driver, Marshal or Official at a Tackle Warehouse Pro Circuit and/or Bass Pro Tour event does not constitute purchasing of information. The sharing of tournament winnings with noncontestants in exchange for information about locating or catching fish on tournament waters is strictly prohibited and will be cause for disqualification from the entire tournament. The purchasing of, or bartering for, fishing locations from another contestant is strictly prohibited and will be cause for both contestants to be disqualified from the entire tournament.
5. OFF-LIMITS, PRACTICE & COMPETITION • There is no practice period or off-limits period prior to the pretournament meeting at qualifying events. Contestants may not enter tournament waters to locate bass or potential fishing waters or sightsee after the start of the pretournament meeting except during tournament hours. Testing equipment on tournament waters after the start of the pretournament meeting is permitted only with prior approval from the tournament director. On days 1 and 2, contestants may not solicit and/or receive information about locating or catching fish on tournament waters from anyone except pros and co-anglers confirmed in the tournament and through publicly available sources (quasi-public websites, blogs and/or social media pages, including but not limited to Facebook, Instagram, Snapchat and Periscope, set up for the specific purpose of sharing information with individuals or a small group of individuals are NOT publicly available sources). During competition days (and practice at the Toyota Series Championship), contestants may not place brush or other physical fish attractors, including chum of any kind, in tournament waters. During competition days (and practice at the Toyota Series Championship), pros may not follow a noncontestant’s boat or participate in the placing of markers, brush or other fish attractors by noncontestants or the practice of “hole sitting” by anyone. Anglers eliminated after each round of competition are considered noncontestants. Contestants in the top-25 cut after the close of weigh-in on day 2 may not solicit or receive information about locating or catching fish on tournament waters from anyone except other top-25 contestants and through publicly available sources (quasi-public websites, blogs and/or social media pages set up for the specific purpose of sharing information with individuals or a small group of individuals are NOT publicly available sources). Co-anglers who share a pro partner’s fishing locations with another contestant will be disqualified along with the contestant requesting and/or using the information. TOYOTA SERIES CHAMPIONSHIP – Table Rock Lake is off-limits Oct. 23-27 and Nov. 1, 2023. Beginning Oct. 23, 2023, and extending through competition, contestants may not solicit and/or receive information about locating or catching fish on tournament waters from anyone except pros and co-anglers confirmed in the tournament and through publicly available sources. Competition waters are open to fishing Oct. 28-31, 2023. No practice is permitted at night (beginning at sunset and ending at sunrise) during the Toyota Series Championship practice period. This includes running to and from a fishing location. Contestants may practice alone, with another contestant in the championship, with a member of their immediate family (mother, mother-in-law, father, father-in-law, brother, brother-in-law, sister, sister-in-law, son, son-in-law, daughter, daughter-in-law, grandparent, grandchild or spouse), approved domestic partner, approved sponsor representative, or an approved youth age 18 or younger, provided the practice companion has also observed the off-limits period and procedures. Contestants may also practice with an approved media representative. Flights over tournament waters, including drones, for the express purpose of locating fish or fishing locations are not permitted beginning with the start of the championship off-limits period, extending through practice and competition days.
6. REGISTRATION & PRETOURNAMENT MEETING • Each contestant must register in person at the designated site. In an emergency or due to an MLF sponsor obligation, contestants may request permission from the tournament director to send a person who is 16 years of age or older to represent them. If permission is granted, noncontestants can represent one person; contestants can represent themselves and one other person. This representative must attend the pretournament meeting to record flights, takeoff time, check-in time, off-limits areas, size and creel limits, and any other relevant tournament rule information. This representative must also attend the pro/co-angler draw immediately following the pretournament meeting to receive the contestant’s boat number, meet the contestant’s pro or co-angler, and record the pro or co-angler’s lodging information, phone number and exact location for the contestant and pro or co-angler to meet prior to takeoff. Registration hours are 2-4 p.m. local time the day before each tournament’s start date. Contestants registering between 4-4:15 p.m. will pay a $25 late fee that will be donated to the MLF Foundation. Contestants who fail to notify the tournament director and are more than 15 minutes late for registration may forfeit their entry fee and not be entered in the tournament. It is mandatory that all contestants or their representatives attend the pretournament meeting that will be held at 4:30 p.m. local time the day before each tournament. Being late for the pretournament meeting will result in a $25 late fee that will be donated to the MLF Foundation. Contestants not present or represented for pairings may forfeit their entry fee and not be entered in the tournament. Virtual pretournament meetings may be held in place of in-person registrations and meetings, in which case details will be provided in tournament confirmation emails.
7. PAIRINGS • All pros and co-anglers will be paired by random draw and will receive a text message with their boat number, flight time and pro or co-angler’s name and phone number. All contestants or their representatives must contact their assigned pro or co-angler following the pretournament meeting. Partners should advise each other of their respective lodging and phone numbers and establish a meeting time and place for the following morning’s takeoff. The tournament director, at his sole discretion, may reassign partners prior to takeoff.
8. SAFETY • Safe boating must be observed at all times. Each contestant is required to wear a fastened U.S. Coast Guard-approved personal flotation device anytime the combustion engine is running from boat check until weigh-in each day of the tournament. All boats must be equipped with a factory-installed emergency ignition-shutoff device that must be securely attached to the driver’s body with a standard-length, factory tether whenever the combustion engine is running. Pros and co-anglers may fish and charge batteries using an onboard charger by letting the combustion engine idle in neutral only if the boat is equipped with a certified and functioning wireless ignition-shutoff device and everyone in the boat is wearing a fastened U.S. Coast Guard-approved personal flotation device. All persons must be seated and a driver must be behind the steering wheel in full control of the boat whenever it is on plane or the combustion engine is running and in gear. No pets are permitted in boats during tournament hours. Documented service animals may be permitted with prior approval from the tournament director. At the discretion of the tournament director, tournament days may be shortened, postponed or canceled due to unsafe weather or water conditions. Competitors may leave their boat and seek shelter in bad weather or when danger is imminent. They must, however, stay within sight of each other. Contestants involved in boating accidents and/or safety incidents may be required to complete a BoatUS Foundation boating safety course before participating in another MLF tournament. A free course for each state is available at boatus.org.
9. SPORTSMANSHIP • All contestants are required to follow high standards of sportsmanship, courtesy and conservation and to conduct themselves in a manner that will be a credit to themselves, to MLF, MLF’s sponsors, the sport of fishing and MLF’s efforts to promote the sport. 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 2023 Toyota Series.
• Consumption and/or possession of alcoholic beverages or any kind of mind-altering substance during registration or tournament hours extending through the weigh-in procedure.
• Abuse of, or addiction to, mind-altering substances.
• Conviction of a felony within the past 36 months.
• Suspension/disqualification, probation or ban from any tournament or fishing organization.
• Boat operation in an unsafe or unsportsmanlike manner.
• Violation of a posted no-wake area.
• Publicly criticizing or questioning the integrity of MLF or MLF officials, including but not limited to MLF rules, policies and procedures.
• Dissemination of disparaging content or content that one should reasonably know would harm the reputation of MLF, MLF officials or MLF sponsors.
In case of any conduct not complying with the standards outlined above, MLF shall have the right to refuse an application to compete, to deny a confirmed application to compete by returning the entry fee (minus deposit), to disqualify a contestant or impose any penalty outlined in paragraph 1.
10. BOAT OPERATION • Pros will fish from the front deck of the boat only. Co-anglers will fish from the back deck or seating area of the boat only. Pros will have complete control of boat operation and waters to be fished. For safety concerns in rough water or swift current, in the event of an outboard or trolling motor breakdown or during an emergency, co-anglers may operate the trolling motor or the outboard but may not fish anytime from the front deck. Pros may not request that the co-angler not fish. Any pro that, in the judgment of the tournament director, operates the boat in such a manner that unfairly handicaps his/her co-angler and any co-angler who unfairly handicaps his/her pro may be disqualified for that day. Contestants may not use mobile communication devices, including but not limited to, cell phones, tablets, marine radios, walkie-talkies, CBs, etc., to communicate with anyone about locating or catching fish on tournament waters during tournament hours. Mobile communication devices may be used during tournament hours to communicate with lockmasters about locking, to communicate with the tournament director or to communicate with MLF editors or producers. Pros may use smart phones and/or tablets during tournament hours for GPS, mapping, weather, power generation, barge traffic updates, tidal charts, personal fishing notes and related data. At no time during tournament hours may contestants read or discuss social media posts from other contestants. Co-anglers are not allowed to have more than seven rods, one tackle bag and one foul-weather bag in their pro’s boat on any day of competition. Contestants are expected to compete every day for which they are qualified; failure to do so may result in ineligibility to compete in future MLF tournaments. If a special circumstance arises that inhibits a contestant’s ability to compete, the tournament director may allow the contestant to withdraw from competition and maintain the weight caught to that point. Depending on the need to maintain an equal number of pros and co-anglers, the next highest contestant in the tournament standings may be invited to continue competition.
Special Consideration for International Division Anglers at the Toyota Series Championship: MLF supplies boats for some pros competing in the MLF International Division at the Toyota Series Championship. If a pro is unfamiliar with operating the boat, MLF will also supply a driver to ensure safe operation. The driver will only operate the combustion engine. No additional guidance or assistance will be rendered. The pro must select all fishing locations and operate the trolling motor.
11. BOAT & HORSEPOWER REGULATION • All boats must be propeller-driven, a minimum of 16 feet in length and have a rear deck (with a seat if requested). All boats must be equipped with wheel steering; no other steering device will be permitted. No barges or similarly cumbersome craft will be permitted. Each boat must have all required U.S. Coast Guard safety equipment. Boats must contain a properly aerated livewell space to maintain alive a limit catch of bass by both contestants. Maximum horsepower for all outboards used in tournament competition will be 250 horsepower, not to exceed the horsepower capacity set forth on the “Maximum Capacities” placard described below. Each boat must have a clearly legible “Maximum Capacities” (or comparably titled) placard that includes a maximum horsepower rating affixed to the boat by the manufacturer. The horsepower of the outboard engine must not exceed the maximum horsepower capacity specified on this placard or the 250-horsepower maximum set by MLF. By signing the entry form, contestants agree to submit their boat and/or motor to an inspection by MLF personnel. Falsifying information on entry forms or altering the horsepower numbers on the motor or rating placard will be cause for disqualification from the tournament and may result in ineligibility to compete in future MLF tournaments. Fishing platforms must be factory-installed equipment or commercially available aftermarket equipment that is permanently installed in the boat. No portable platforms may be used in tournament competition. Fuel may be carried only in factory-installed (built-in) fuel tanks. Any additional fuel used during the tournament day must be purchased from a retail facility open to the public and pumped through a hose with a nozzle. The use of generators, other than solar or wind-powered generators, is prohibited in contestant boats during tournament hours on all competition days.
12. PERMITTED FISHING METHODS • Fishing is defined as having a lure attached to a line and a rod and reel with the rod in hand. All bass must be caught alive in a conventional sporting manner. All lures must adhere to state regulations. Only artificial lures may be used, with the exception of pork trailers and biodegradable soft baits. Alabama rigs and similar umbrella-type rigs are limited to a maximum of five wires with a maximum of five spinners, five lures and three hooks (single or treble) unless state regulations are more restrictive, in which case state regulations prevail. Only ONE fishing rod may be used at a time. Trolling as a method of fishing is strictly prohibited. Trolling is defined as operating the combustion engine to extend a cast or lengthen a retrieve. Co-anglers may not assist boaters and boaters may not assist co-anglers with the use of underwater cameras and viewing systems, including but not limited to floggers, bathyscopes and similar systems. All bass caught while sight-fishing must be hooked inside the mouth and immediately shown to your co-angler or pro for verification.
13. PERMITTED FISHING LOCATIONS • Contestants may fish anywhere on tournament waters available to the public and accessible by boat except areas posted or otherwise designated as “off-limits,” “no boats,” “keep out,” “restricted,” “no trespassing” or “no fishing” (or similar language or markings intended to restrict public access for fishing or safety) by MLF, commercial property owners and/or local, state or federal officials, or within 50 yards of a contestant’s boat that was first anchored. An anchored boat is a boat held in a stable position by a line attached to a weight or by a Power-Pole or similar shallow water anchor with the trolling motor in the up position. All fishing must be conducted from the boat. At no time may a contestant leave the boat to land a fish or to make the boat more accessible to fishing waters. The cutting of trees, bushes and/or logs after the start of the pretournament meeting and/or the removal of official commercial, local, state or federal barricades at any time to make an area more accessible by boat or gain access for fishing is strictly prohibited and may result in disqualification from the tournament. The use of cables, ropes, chains or any type of block and tackle system to maneuver a boat into fishing waters is strictly prohibited and will result in disqualification from the tournament. Contestants must leave and return to the check-in by boat. The boat must remain in the tournament waters during the tournament day. No tournament boat may be loaded on a trailer before the weigh-in except with the permission of the tournament director. In the event of equipment failure or emergency, the tournament director must be notified as soon as it is safe to do so. There are then two permitted methods of returning to the check-in: (1) by both paired anglers remaining in their boat and being towed by water, or (2) with permission from the tournament director, by one or both paired anglers entering the boat of another tournament contestant. Under these two conditions both contestants’ catches may be counted without a penalty (except for late penalties, dead-fish penalties or other penalties pertaining to other tournament rules) provided that the co-angler’s fish are adequately marked so as to provide clear distinction of the pro’s catch and the co-angler’s catch to the tournament director. Contestants who elect to return to the check-in by any other means than cited above will forfeit their day’s catch to that point in time of the tournament day. Abandoning a boat and leaving it adrift without proper tie-off or anchoring after a mechanical failure may result in disqualification of that day’s weight. Any contestant returning to the check-in point will be eligible to restart and resume competition under the supervision of the tournament director or his designated tournament official. It is the sole responsibility of contestants to locate the tournament director to request a restart. Partners must remain together at all times and within sight of each other until the weigh-in. The momentary condition of being out of sight of each other for restroom breaks is permitted.
14. CHECKPOINTS • There will be only one checkpoint for boat check in the morning and one check-in point in the afternoon. Failure to go through boat check and checkout in the morning or failure to check in at the check-in point will result in disqualification. All fishing must cease upon check-in.
15. LATE PENALTY • Contestants who are not at the check-in area at the appointed time will be penalized 1 pound per minute, deducted from the total weight, including any weight to be counted toward the Big Bass Award. Any contestant more than 15 minutes late will lose credit for that day’s weight.
16. LIVE FISH • Every effort must be made to keep bass alive through the use of a properly aerated livewell. Four ounces will be deducted from the total weight for each dead bass presented for weigh-in.
17. SCORING • Scoring is determined by the pounds and ounces of each contestant’s catch during each tournament. It is mandatory that co-anglers mark each of their fish for identification before placing them in their designated livewell. Only largemouth, spotted, redeye, smallmouth or shoal bass, where permitted, are accepted species. No regurgitated forage or other foreign matter may be placed in a bass. The daily limit will be five bass unless conditions dictate a reduced limit for conservation purposes or the state or lake limit is less than five, in which the reduced limits will prevail. After possessing the daily limit, contestants must cull immediately upon their next catch. Pros and/or co-anglers possessing more than the daily limit must notify the tournament director immediately upon discovery of the infraction and reduce his/her catch to the daily limit by releasing live bass. Anglers possessing more than the daily limit will be penalized 2 pounds for each bass over the limit. Bass are considered in possession once placed in the boat and fishing or travel has resumed. The minimum length limit for bass will be 12 inches unless the state or lake limit is more than 12 inches or MLF sets a longer limit for a specific tournament, in which case, the state or lake limit or longer limit set by MLF for the tournament will prevail. Bass presented for weigh-in that fail to measure the prescribed length limit will be penalized at the rate of 1 pound for each short bass presented. Bass presented for weigh-in with weight clips attached will be penalized at the rate of 4 ounces for each clip. Once bass are presented for weigh-in, no one may return to a boat to retrieve a bass mistakenly left behind. Each contestant’s catch must be presented in an official weigh-in bag and verified by the signature of their pro or co-angler. Failure to have a verified pro or co-angler signature may result in disqualification of that day’s catch. After a contestant’s catch is weighed, it must be turned over to MLF or officials designated by MLF for release unless otherwise instructed by the tournament director. On day 3, the top 25 pros based on combined weight from days 1 and 2 compete, and the winners are determined by the heaviest combined weight from days 1, 2 and 3.
18. TIES • QUALIFIERS: The heaviest one-day catch for the tournament will break ties on day 2. If a tie remains, it will be broken first by total number of fish for the tournament, then by total number of live fish for the tournament, then by point standings and then by lottery. Ties on day 3 will be resolved by day-2 standings. TOYOTA SERIES CHAMPIONSHIP: The heaviest one-day catch for the tournament will break ties on day 2. If a tie remains, it will be broken first by total number of fish for the tournament, then by total number of live fish for the tournament and then by point standings. If an International Division, Bass Fishing League, College Fishing or High School Fishing angler is tied with a U.S. Division or Wild Card angler, point standings cannot break the tie and will be bypassed. If a tie remains below the cut position, contestants will remain tied with awards combined and split equally among the tied contestants. If a tie remains for the cut position, both anglers will advance to day 3 along with an extra pro or co-angler to even the field. Ties on day 3 will be resolved by day-2 standings. If a tie remains, it will be broken first by the heaviest one-day catch for the tournament, then by the second heaviest one-day catch for the tournament, then by total number of fish for the tournament, then by total number of live fish for the tournament and then by point standings. If an International Division, Bass Fishing League, College Fishing or High School Fishing angler is tied with a U.S. Division or Wild Card angler, point standings cannot break the tie and will be bypassed. If a tie remains below first place, contestants will remain tied with awards combined and split equally among the tied contestants. If a tie remains for first place, it will be broken by a one-hour fish-off.
19. LOGO DISPLAY & MEDIA COVERAGE • During all days of competition any and all tobacco logos are prohibited and may not be worn or displayed. Vaping, CBD and hemp product logos are not considered tobacco logos. Anglers may wear their own apparel every day. MLF reserves the right, in its sole discretion, to prohibit any angler’s apparel that it finds to be offensive. Smoking and vaping are not allowed in the weigh-in line during all days of competition. All decisions are in MLF’s sole discretion.
20. TRUTH VERIFICATION TEST • Each contestant agrees to submit, by signature on the tournament entry form, to a polygraph or voice stress analysis examination and to abide by its conclusion. Failure to pass an examination will result in disqualification from the tournament. Truth verification tests will be used at MLF’s sole discretion, and the determination of the meaning of the results will be made solely by MLF.
21. INSURANCE • Liability insurance with coverage of not less than $300,000 per occurrence is required of all pro contestants in Toyota Series tournaments. Proof of insurance must be with the boat being used and must cover all passengers in the boat. Random checks will be conducted. Failure to provide proof of insurance when requested by the tournament director may result in disqualification.
22. CAPTIONS • The captions at the beginning of each paragraph are intended to facilitate convenience in referring to the various rules. The captions are not part of the substance of the paragraph and should not be used in construction of any paragraph or of this overall set of rules.