New for 2019

Following is a summary of changes for the 2019 Tournament Series:

  1. For 2019 the CLSO Series will open a new South Division in addition to the existing North Division. Both divisions will be capped at 60 boats, same as 2018. All teams from the 2018 season will have a guaranteed spot in one or both of the divisions if properly registered. For any spots not filled by the 2018 teams, there will be open registration for new entrants. See Registration section for further information
  2. The Championship will be fished on Friday, November 15th with Thursday, Saturday and Sunday as optional fish days. The Championship dinner will be held Wednesday, November 14th and the awards ceremony will be held the morning following the official fish day or Sunday evening if the fish day is on Sunday.

Team Of The Year

At the end of each year we will recognize the Team of the Year for each Division based on the highest total of points from the best two Legs plus the Championship points. The Team of the Year will check out 1st at all Leg events in the following season.

Power Rankings

The Power Rankings will be based on a cumulative 3 year rolling accumulation of points. So points earned in 2018 were added to 2017 and 2016 points for your total points. In 2019 and future years, points from the earliest year will be dropped as new points are accumulated. For example points from the first Leg in 2019 will be added and the first qualifying points Leg (regardless of which Leg) in 2016 will be dropped. The Power Rankings are based on your points from the highest 2 Legs each year plus points for the Championship. Championship points are awarded in the same manner as Leg points, adjusted for the number of teams competing. For example in 2018, 30 teams qualified for the Championship so points were awarded based on 30 points for 1st Place, 29 points for 2nd place, etc. As an added bonus the Team leading the Power Rankings coming into each Leg event will check out 2nd behind the prior year Team of the Year who will check out 1st at all Leg events.

For the South Division the Power Rankings will begin to accumulate in 2019 as outlined above.


  1. Each boat in tournament competition will receive a check out number at Captains Meeting. Boat numbers will be awarded through boat name lottery. Boats will check out in numerical order 1-60.
  2. Tournament officials will monitor VHF 72 during competition hours. VHF 16 is to be kept open for emergency calls and Coast Guard assistance.
  3. The eligible species for competition purposes is king mackerel (Scomberomorus cavalla).
  4. Tournament competition limited to motorized boats only.
  5. There shall be no more than six lines fished from any boat.
  6. This is a sporting event. All fish must be taken on a rod and reel. No boat lines or electric reels will be allowed. Downriggers will be permitted as fishing line carriers only. If a downrigger is used in the manner of a fishing rod/reel combination, it must be counted as one of the six allowable lines.
  7. There is no restriction as to the number of people allowed aboard each boat during competition hours.
  8. The tournament committee reserves the right to inspect any boat entered in competition, including an on board inspection.
  9. The tournament committee reserves the right to refuse an entry into the tournament.
  10. The tournament committee reserves the right to place a tournament representative on any entrant’s boat during competition for the purpose of observation.
  11. A captain and co-captain will be required for the boat being registered by the April 26 (South) and August 9 (North) deadlines. No changes will be allowed after this deadline. If the team is fishing both divisions the captain and co-captain must be the same in both divisions. One clarification to prevent the potential misuse of the guaranteed spot of a North Division team in the South Division - the captain and co-captain in one division cannot be listed as a captain or co-captain on a different team in the other division. The declared captain OR co-captain must be on the boat registered during the tournament day and cannot fish on another registered boat during the tournament day. The one exception to this rule is the captain and co-captain can fish with another team during the championship if their team does not qualify. All winnings will be made payable to registered captain.
  12. A captain or fishing team may register only one boat in the Cape Lookout Shootout Series. A substitute boat may be allowed to register no later than 7:00 pm on Friday prior to fish day. The registered boat (either the original registered boat or substitute boat) may be replaced up to 6:30 am of the fishing day with verified mechanical failure. Any changes must be approved by the tournament committee.
  13. Information entered on the registration form is official and any changes must be initialed by participant.
  14. Captain or Co-Captain must be present to win any prizes from drawings at the captains meetings and awards.
  15. No boat can make landfall without the prior approval of the Tournament Committee. If such landfall is approved by the tournament committee, a tournament representative will be present during landfall.
  16. The tournament committee reserves the full authority to make a rule change when it is in the best interest of the Series.

Check-in and Verification

  1. North Division - The weigh-in station will be located under a tent at The Boathouse at Front Street Village. Entrants wishing to weigh fish for competition must proceed to the weigh-in station immediately after off-loading at the designated off-loading docks. Scales will be open at 3:00 pm. Those wishing to weigh-in fish between 3-4pm should proceed directly to The Boathouse at Front Street Village. To be eligible to weigh fish after 4:00 pm you must first check-in at designated check-in. Entrants with fish to weigh must be checked in by 5pm. All times based on GPS time.
  2. South Division - TBD
  3. It is the sole responsibility of the crew aboard each boat to off-load and present its catch for weighing. Crews should have their fish ready for off-loading. A crew member must accompany fish to the weigh station.
  4. All fish must be brought to the tournament headquarters by boats catching same under its own power. Fish must be unloaded at designated docks only. Fish cannot be transported over land.
  5. A signed, sworn affidavit will be required of each individual who places a fish in competition for tournament prizes.
  6. All king mackerel submitted for weigh-in must be in fresh, edible condition and caught that tournament day. No mutilated fish will be accepted for weigh-in. Mutilation is defined as any damage which may impair the fish’s fighting ability. The Weight Master shall immediately notify an angler of any questionable fish submitted for weigh-in. Eligibility of fish shall be immediately determined. No frozen fish will be accepted for weigh-in under any circumstances. No fish with stomach contents other than its natural food will be accepted for weigh-in.
  7. All protests concerning the determination of tournament prize winners shall be made to the tournament committee and shall be accompanied by $500 cash. All protests shall be made no later than one hour after the last fish has been weighed. In the event that a protest is upheld by the tournament committee, the $500 cash deposit will be returned. In the event that the protest is not upheld, the $500 cash deposit will become the property of the Cape Lookout Shootout. All decisions made by the tournament committee shall be final.

    Specific Rule for Protesting Weight of Fish:
    At the time of weigh in, a team may protest the weight of their fish and such protest shall be accompanied by a $500 protest fee which shall be paid within 1 hour of the protest. In connection with the protest the team SHOULD NOT sign the weigh ticket. Once the weigh ticket is signed the weight is FINAL and no protest will be accepted. If a protest is filed on the weight of the fish, the fish will be segregated and placed in a fish bag under the control of the weigh master until a member of the tournament committee can be present to witness the reweighing of the fish. A member of the team protesting the weight shall stay with the fish until the fish is reweighed. If the weight of the fish changes by 1 pound or greater the protest will be upheld by the tournament committee, the $500 protest fee will be returned, and the official weight of the fish will be changed. If the change is less than 1 pound, the official weight will not be changed and the $500 cash deposit will be forfeited and become the property of the Cape Lookout Shootout. All decisions made by the tournament committee shall be final.
  8. A boat entry can only win one prize per tournament.
  9. In the event that two or more king mackerel are the same weight, the winner shall be determined by the earliest weigh-in time.
  10. The winning fish and all fish entered and or donated become the exclusive property of the tournament committee.
  11. Any disqualifications will result in forfeit of winnings for that particular tournament and may result in disqualification in remaining tournaments in series therefore the forfeit of all entry fees paid for remaining tournaments.


Competition days will be Saturday with an alternate weather day on Sunday. The Tournament committee will decide on the execution of scheduled tournament dates on Thursday at 10:00 am prior to the scheduled tournament date. Notifications will be made immediately after 10:00 am to all entrants of cancellations. The tournament committee will make decisions based off of NOAA active weather alerts and other relevant weather information. The tournament committee reserves the right to postpone the decision until Friday at 10 am if weather conditions warrant a delay in the decision. The Alternate Leg Date will be used as Leg 3 if a scheduled tournament Leg is cancelled due to weather. If more than one Leg is cancelled due to weather the purse will be rolled into the next Leg.

If the Alternate Leg date is attempted with no success, monies will be refunded less $250.00. In the event no tournament can be carried out through the entire Cape Lookout Shootout Series, monies will be refunded less $150.00 per entrant.

Tournament Conservation Policy

It is the policy of the Cape Lookout Shootout King Mackerel Tournament Series to promote conservation of the species in every way possible. To that end, contestants in Cape Lookout Shootout Tournament are required to abide by State Regulations. At the request of the N.C. Division of Marine Fisheries, the Cape Lookout Shootout King Mackerel Tournament will accept no king mackerel less than 30 inches in length.

Tournament Safety and Regulatory Policy

The responsibility of adhering to all US Coast Guard, NC Wildlife and NC Marine Fisheries regulations and requirements are the responsibility of the Captain and crew. | |