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2014 Trail Articles

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Clearly Hooked & Blew By U One-Two Punch at Fall Brawl Kingfish Classic

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Ocean Isle Beach, NC — The Yellowfin/Yamaha Fall Brawl Kingfish Classic had a strong turnout again this year with 196 teams competing for $87,000 in cash plus trophies and prizes! Put on by the McMullan family’s Ocean Isle Fishing Center it was, once again, a family event with 42 Junior Anglers and 43 Lady Anglers weighing in during the two fishing days.

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Delosas/K-Factor Wins Division 6 Season Finale

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The Suncoast Kingfish Classic events have been bringing world-class king mackerel tournament fishing to central Florida for over two decades and so it’s really no surprise to see that history of excellence continue in 2014. Under new leadership but with much of the same terrific community support that it’s always enjoyed, the series is making some great headway as the area’s cornerstone tournaments of the year.

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It’s a Second Chanze for Rumble in the Jungle

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North Myrtle Beach, SC — The border between North and South Carolina is one of the most hotly contested areas of head to head king mackerel competition found anywhere in the Southeast. During the summer months, big fish can be found anywhere from right on the beach to as far offshore as you care to venture, and the tournament fishing really heats up with anglers from both Carolinas duking it out for bragging rights along with some serious cash.

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Spiced Rum III Wins the X Generation 440 KDW Challenge

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It was a slow fishing day. Anxiously waiting around on the dock, we were all checking our “sources” to see which team thought they had the biggest fish. We heard rumors of a 36 pound king, a 33 pound king… only time would tell. Slowly, the boats started to trickle in one at a time as the rain began to fall. As the clock crept closer and closer to the cut-off time, a few more boats made their way back—only about half of the boats coming back to weigh-in.

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Vengeance Captures Elusive Third SKA Title

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“It seemed like the one tournament I would never win in my life,” declared two-time Angler of the Year, Clayton Kirby. He won the first ever Angler of the Year title in 1991 and one of his teammates at this year's National Championship, Everett Cameron, came in second. They've been fishing together since the 70s. Clayton repeated the title in 1997 and has been chasing the National Championship ever since. “It's the one I always wanted to win, but for some reason it seemed like it wouldn't happen,” explained Clayton.

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Hail Yeah/OIFC Wins 2014 Small Boat Class National Champion Title!

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The chatter on the radio was incessant and, this time, correct. The first boat to the scales at the 2014 Mercury SKA National Championship was a Small Boat Class team with a 60-pounder. The news was devastating to Captain Brian Aycock and his 15-year-old son, Austin, on their rebuilt 23-foot Seacraft powered by Yamaha named Hail Yeah/OIFC. It’s really a Cinderella story because everything that could go wrong at the 2013 Nationals did, but the team enlisted help from friends and family to get the disabled vessel back on the water for the 2014 season.

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Small Boat, Big Fish: Hook Um Up wins King of the Cape

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It’s one of the oldest sayings in a sport full of sayings: that the fish can’t tell what size boat you’re fishing from. If the weather’s halfway decent, the smaller boats can and do fish just as well as the big boys. That was definitely the case at the recent Bojangles King of the Cape tournament, hosted by Town Creek Marina in Beaufort, NC. While the anticipated forecast proved to be rougher than the actual tournament weather, a fleet of 66 boats still showed up in this first-year tournament, an great turnout for director David Lucas and his

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Team Intense Battles Heat and Sharks to Take the Kajun Sportsman Title

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Once again Mother Nature only got it half right in the Upper Gulf. The ocean was slick calm, but the heat was oppressive. Still, the bite was on for most of the teams who fished the 4th Annual Orange Beach Kajun King Tour in Alabama. Neal Foster and his crew on Intense—Mark and Josh Collier, Doug Mallonee, and Jason Hebert—fished the same spot both days about 60 miles from the pass and had no trouble finding kings. They just had to maneuver around umpteen sharks, the smallest of which was about 250 pounds.

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Coastal Empire Kingfish Classic

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Things didn’t turn out as planned for Mark Strickland’s Team Reel Broke, but sometimes, the B in Plan-B stands for “better,” as in the better-than-expected outcome for a day that certainly didn’t provide an easy course to a second-place finish at the third annual Coastal Empire Kingfish Classic at Fort McAllister Marina in Richmond Hill, Ga. So, here’s the scene: Strickland and crew buy a load of plump blue runners from Lee’s Live Bait – the Florida-based delivery service – and head into the heavy rains blanketing the Georgia coast. Their first spot was the R2 naval tower off Sapelo Island – a popular spot for a variety of species, including big kings.

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Spiced Rum III Repeats Ft. Pierce Summer Slam Title

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Last year everyone thought it would take better than 50 pounds to win the Ft. Pierce Summer Slam and Spiced Rum III answered the call with a 52.29. Fast forward to 2014 and Bill Wummer’s team of Sherri and Wayne Beswick, Howard Tuman, and Freddie Joseph repeat the title on their Yamaha powered Contender with a 40.87. After checkout, the team left Palm Beach Inlet and started fishing off the Juno Ledge. Two hours after they got to the spot, they got a hit on a blue runner on the surface

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Crisis Wins in Biloxi with First Tournament 50-pounder

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The Upper Gulf gave up two more 50-pounders this season at the 4th Annual Palace Casino Resort/Gorenflo’s King Mackerel Tournament in Biloxi, Mississippi. The ocean cooperated with clear and calm waters but the air was hot and motionless. Still, it was way better than last year when seas ran four to six feet and torrential rains followed teams on the water and back to the scales.

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Capt. HAP’s Win Goes to Hot Spot/NOS Energy

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Georgia sportsmen all tend to be a very passionate bunch, whether it’s deer season, collegiate football or king mackerel tournaments. So, when the previous owners of the SKA called Howard Poe and asked if he would be willing to put together a tournament to fill an open spot in the Division 4 lineup, a few years ago, he naturally took the challenge to heart and Capt. HAPs Kingfish Bash on the Bluff was born.

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Second Chanze is First SKA Boat at Sneads Ferry

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The number two was a charm at this year’s 23rd Annual Rotary Club of Sneads Ferry King Mackerel Tournament. The two-man team of John Lewis and Chad Barnes took second place on Second Chanze, a 23’ Contender powered by Yamaha. The duo caught the fish at a spot known as Middletown. They had fished several spots that day, only boating small fish, when they got a call from a friend who had found some bigger kings. Second Chanze left Fat Belly Reef about 1:00 and headed to Middletown.

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Small Boat Class Reigns in Rainy Brunswick

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To the chagrin of many Open Class anglers, the Small Boat Class showed up at the Two Way Sportfishing Club’s Kingfish Tournament at Division 4’s second leg of the trail, finishing 2-3-4 overall in the one-day tournament. The 28th annual event saw torrential downpours toward the weigh-in time, but that didn’t stop David Futch and A Salt Weapon in this Yamaha-powered Contender 32T braved the weather and show up to the scales with the second-place winning 30.29-pound king.

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Triple Trouble’s Triton Takes Onslow Bay Tournament

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Sometimes good guys really do place first. “We’re just a family fishing team,” Capt Philip Mitchell said when asked how many sponsors he’d like to thank for winning the 14th annual Onslow Bay Open with a 43.94lb king. “”My two sons grew up through the SKA and really enjoy being a part of the Association.” The second installment of North Carloinal’s Divisoin 1 tournament trail, the one-day Onslow Bay Open event fell on a sloppy and rough summer day, but that didn’t stop SKA anglers from getting on some good fish. Capt. Mitchell’s Triple Trouble, along with sons Phillip Jr and Brandon, as well as Heath and Seth King, headed out to the East side of the Capt Lookout to about 80ft of water.

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Solid Surface Claims Top SKA Spot at Fishing for Miracles

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The Southern Kingfish Association sanctions a wide variety of king mackerel tournaments throughout the East Coast and in the Gulf of Mexico, but among the finest are those which have a strong dedication to supporting worthy charitable organizations. Now in its 21st year, the Fishing for Miracles tournament in South Carolina fits that description perfectly, not only attracting participants from across the Palmetto State but funding some vitally important projects along the way (see sidebar).

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West Delta Invitational Falls to Intense

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Without a doubt the Mississippi Delta region is home to some of the world’s best fishing for king mackerel, both in terms of size and numbers. What would be considered a trophy king on the East Coast barely raises an eyebrow in the upper Gulf, so it was no surprise that outstanding fishing was a highlight of the West Delta Kingfish Invitational. The event was hosted by Bill and Mike Butler at Venice Marina in Venice, Louisiana. For those who have never visited this part of the Delta, it’s pretty easy: first, hit

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Reel Quick Takes First Place in Fernandina!

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Reel Quick did it again! Jerry and Jeremy Carter, Jill Elder, and Jim Thomas teamed up on the Yamaha powered Contender and won another Division 5 tournament. Rough seas prevented the team from going to their usual spot, so they followed the trough instead of heading right into it and ended up in a different place. They fished there for a while but headed farther offshore when the seas laid down around 10:00am.

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James Island Kicks Off Division 3

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The tunes we’re flowin’ and the barbecue was smokin’ at the James Island Yacht Club’s King Mackerel Tournament and Division 3 opener. A one-day event, the tournament attracted almost 100 boats from the area - many of whom were SKA members. When the scales finally closed at the end of the day, if was all SKA finishing 1-2-3 in the standings. Although the fishing was a little tough and the seas weren’t very forgiving, we managed to place 1-2-3 when the scales closed for the day.

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Windy Conditions Hooks Top Prize at Raleigh

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On a calm and sunny Saturday in Raleigh, North Carolina, , NC a dad, mom, and son combination aboard the Windy Conditions fought hard and brought the winning fish to the scales, on the one day Raleigh Saltwater tournament. Henry Tillet captained the Yamaha powered Contender and around 2pm his wife, Wendy, hooked the 35.54lb winning fish, while Henry gaffed and their son, Henry II, took the helm. “It was pretty awesome,” said Henry afterof winning the tournament with his family. “It was pretty nice to win with my wife and young son.”

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Second Chance/Team Mercury Wins Greater Jax Shootout!

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The format for the 34th Annual Greater Jacksonville Kingfish Tournament was tweaked just a bit from last year. All teams were eligible to fish Friday’s General Tournament and 195 boats hit the water looking for a fish big enough to put them in one of the top 20 spots that would qualify them to compete in Saturday’s Shootout. Only 59 teams brought fish to the scales on Friday and there were no 40-pounders. First place in Saturday’s Shootout was based on the heaviest king over the two days of fishing and the prize was a Key Largo 2100 with a Mercury motor and trailer valued at more than $35,000.

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SHARE Victory Falls to Intracoastal Angler Team

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It’s always refreshing to see a tournament that does well, both for the participating anglers and for the charity that it represents. That was the case in mid-July with the SHARE King Mackerel Tournament held out of Dockside Marina in Wrightsville Beach, NC. Now in its fourth season and first year as an SKA-sanctioned tournament, the SHARE event produced a fleet of 103 boats thanks in part to a good weather forecast (with a captain’s choice “fish one day of two” format) and a super-fun time for the anglers in attendance.

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KAVITATOR CAPTURES SECOND SAPELO OPEN TITLE

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You’d think Dean Hinely would be used to the feeling, but apparently, the waiting game was every bit as tough as it was in 2013. That’s when he and his Kavitator teammates won the Sapelo Open after enduring several hours of suspense with a big fish they had caught early in the event. Now, flash forward a year, and Hinely’s heading out toward a 70-foot spot in the Middlegrounds for the 2014 Sapelo Open. Joining him are Misty Woodcock and his sons Mitchel and Matt. Strappin’ with a well full of blue runners, they

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Reelentless Sets Records at 81st Alabama Deep Sea Fishing Rodeo

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The Alabama state record is still pending, but a new ADSFR tournament record was set by Capt. Bennie Goldman and his team of Jeremy and Pam Goldman and John Wallington on their Yamaha powered Contender aptly named Reelentless. The official weight was called out as 69.99 pounds! That’s a smoker even in the upper Gulf. This is the third kingfish Rodeo title for Reelentless in five years with a 64.50 in 2009 and a 48.84 in 2012.

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Part Time Wins the East Coast Got Em On Classic!

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More than half of the 162 boats fishing the either/or format of the 2014 East Coast Got Em On Classic were SKA boats. And the leaderboards showed it—28 of the top 34 Open Class boats and 15 of the top 20 Small Boats were SKA members. The event raises funds to benefit the Got Em On Live Bait Club, Carolina Beach Fire Department, and Kure Beach Fire Department. Part Time started off the day catching bait off Yaupon Pier and decided to head to the Christmas Rock in their Yamaha powered Contender.

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Knot Scared Takes Top SKA Spot at the Big Dog & Fat Cat KDW Shootout!

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Bill Wummer and tournament volunteers succeeded in making the event bigger again this year increasing participation by 20 boats over last year for a total of 170. The tournament benefits Big Dog Ranch, Animal Rescue League & Vinceremos Therapeutic Riding Center, and Riviera Beach Maritime Academy. The top two spots fell to non-members. The top SKA team in third place was Knot Scared, a Mercury powered Contender captained by Michael Faurot. He and his team of Mike Carter, Chris Carter,

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Reel Quick Wins the ACGFA Kingfish Challenge!

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The Ancient City Game Fish Association’s format was two days of fishing; teams could weigh two fish each day and bump their weight. Jerry Carter’s Reel Quick team of Jeremy Carter, Jill Elder, Tracy Carter, and Jim Thomas weighed two fish on day one and let their aggregate ride. They went to the 21 Bottom in 130 feet of water where they had caught a tournament-winning fish two weeks earlier. Blue runners they bought from Lee’s Live Baits attracted kings to their spread. Jill and Jeremy had two fish hit the long lines

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Hot King’s 55.99 Takes First Win in Division 7’s Fourchon Event!

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''I'm new to kingfish tournaments," said Shawn Ryan as he approached the SKA registration desk. "What do I need to do to join the SKA?” I, of course, fixed him up with the paperwork. The Yamaha powered Contender team then went out on day one amid stormy weather and very rough conditions. The weather forecast was once again not even close. "We were fishing a little over 40 miles from the ports pass," said a very excited Shawn Ryan. "The fight only lasted five minutes but when she felt the

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Reel Determined Is Top SKA Boat at the Jolly Mon

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More than half of the 230 boat field checked out on day one of the either/or Jolly Mon Kingfish Classic held at the McMullans’ Ocean Isle Fishing Center. The tournament had been postponed a week to June 26-29 hoping for safer, more agreeable weather conditions. It seems like the weather could always be better, but the weekend was definitely fishable. The Shark Hole was a popular spot but there were crowds at the 90s and Yaupon Reef, too.

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Team Under Armour Grabs 3rd Spot at Suncoast Kingfish Classic

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The band was rocking and the drinks were flowing at Gator’s Café and Saloon during the 23rd Annual Suncoast Kingfish Classic. Always one of the best tournaments on the West coast of Florida, this year did not disappoint, even though the weather didn’t exactly cooperate. On a hot and humid weekend in late May, the Division 6 tournament tested all 61 boats that entered. “The water was really calm and flat,” said Erin Henshaw, SKA Tournament Director.

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Makin Time/Living Waters Makes a Splash at the Pompano Slam

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A field of 97 teams competed for a potential $275,000 in cash and prizes at the 19th Annual Mercury/SeaVee Pompano Beach Saltwater Slam. Two categories had no winner. Still, the total payout for the event topped $160,000 with several SKA teams taking home some cash and earning a spot in the invitational Showdown event in August. The two categories that had no winner in the first two events will roll over to the Showdown.

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SKA Cleans Up at TCBA Memorial Tournament

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Stuart, Florida — For the first time, the SKA sanctioned Maddie Williams’ Treasure Coast Builders Association. And, not surprisingly, the Division 10 boys clean house, placing first, third, and fourth in the 100-boat turnout. Held at the beautiful Pirates Cove Resort and Marina on an equally beautiful sunny day, the tournament was comprised of both inshore and offshore categories. It was the 28th annual event for the TCBA. Coming in first was Bill Wummer and the Spiced Rum III Team with a 34.3-pound king...

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Native Scores at NBOA Gulf Coast Open

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The 4th annual NBOA Gulf Coast Open/Big Pig Shootout proved to be another success as Mark Henderson and family won the high-stakes Big Pig Shootout with a 82.24 pound two-fish aggregate, while team Native captured first prize at the GCO with great fish, 46.56lb. Native is powered by Mercury while Yamaha powers Liquid Fire. Teams had a great day on the water for the Big Pig Shootout. “The Big Pig Shootout is more of a high-stakes event for the serious angler,” says Jim Butler, tournament director.

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2014 Saltwater Shootout Has Epic Bite, Just Not for SKA Anglers!

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When the sun rose off the shore of Pompano Beach and over 120 boats lined up out of Hillsboro Inlet for the Bimini start of the 2014 Mercury/SeaVee Saltwater Shootout, no one knew just how intense the bite was to be. When it was all said and done, nearly 14,000 pounds of fish were weighed at the 18th annual event. Fourteen thousand pounds! Part of a three-event circuit, this was the first leg of the Pompano Beach Saltwater Shootout.

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Unreel Scales a 70.68 to Earn the Top Spot in the Stock Island Marina Village KMT!

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If you showed up in Key West for Lee Murray’s 18th annual event, you know what I’m talking about when I say that this event ranks certainly in the top five in the 24-year history of the SKA. You needed a heavy bag if you were going to earn accolades in this event. The two-day event, sponsored and hosted by the new Stock Island Marina Village, was certainly the perfect backdrop for such a special event.

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MERCURY JUNIOR ANGLER COLLEGE SCHOLARSHIP PROGRAM

Mercury Trail Tournaments

Jan 24-26, 2014
Division 10 - Key West, Florida
18th ANNUAL STOCK ISLAND MARINA VILLAGE KMT

May 08-11, 2014
Division 10 - Pompano Beach, Florida
POMPANO BEACH SALTWATER SHOOTOUT

May 16-17, 2014
Division 6 - Sarasota, Florida
NBOA GULF COAST OPEN

May 29-31, 2014
Division 6 - Treasure Island, Florida
23rd ANNUAL SUNCOAST KINGFISH CLASSIC

Jun 05-08, 2014
Division 10 - Pompano Beach, Florida
POMPANO BEACH SALTWATER SLAM

Jun 12-14, 2014
Division 7 - Port Fourchon, Louisiana
18th ANNUAL KAJUN SPORTSMAN KING CLASSIC

Jun 20-22, 2014
Division 9 - Ocean Isle Beach, North Carolina
YELLOWFIN/YAMAHA JOLLY MON KING CLASSIC

Jul 11-13, 2014
Division 5 - St. Augustine, Florida
ANCIENT CITY GAMEFISH CHALLENGE

Jul 11-13, 2014
Division 9 - Carolina Beach, North Carolina
EAST COAST GOT-EM-ON CLASSIC

Jul 11-12, 2014
Division 10 - Palm Beach Shores, Florida
SAILFISH MARINA BIG DOG & FAT CAT KDW SHOOTOUT

Jul 17-20, 2014
Division 7 - Dauphin Island, Alabama
81st ANNUAL ALABAMA DEEP SEA RODEO

Jul 18-19, 2014
Division 4 - Shellman Bluff, Georgia
34th ANNUAL SAPELO OPEN KING MACKEREL TOURNAMENT

Jul 18-20, 2014
Division 9 - Wilmington, North Carolina
S.H.A.R.E. KING MACKEREL TOURNAMENT

Jul 21-26, 2014
Division 5 - Jacksonville, Florida
34th ANNUAL GREATER JACKSONVILLE KINGFISH TOURNAMENT

Jul 25-26, 2014
Division 1 - Morehead City, North Carolina
RALEIGH SALTWATER SPORTFISHING CLUB'S 30th ANNUAL KMT

Jul 25-26, 2014
Division 3 - James Island, South Carolina
JAMES ISLAND YACHT CLUB KING MACKEREL TOURNAMENT

Aug 01-02, 2014
Division 5 - Fernandina Beach, Florida
33rd ANNUAL NSFA FISHING RODEO & KINGFISH TOURNAMENT

Aug 01-03, 2014
Division 7 - Venice, Louisiana
WEST DELTA KINGFISH INVITATIONAL

Aug 07-09, 2014
Division 3 - Charleston, South Carolina
21st ANNUAL FISHING FOR MIRACLES KMT

Aug 08-09, 2014
Division 1 - Swansboro, North Carolina
14th ANNUAL ONSLOW BAY OPEN KMT

Aug 08-09, 2014
Division 4 - Brunswick, Georgia
28th ANNUAL TWO WAY SPORTFISHING CLUB'S KINGFISH TOURNAMENT

Aug 15-16, 2014
Division 1 - Sneads Ferry, North Carolina
23rd ANNUAL ROTARY CLUB OF SNEADS FERRY KMT

Aug 15-16, 2014
Division 4 - Darien, Georgia
CAPTAIN HAP'S KINGFISH BASH ON THE BLUFF

Aug 22-23, 2014
Division 7 - Biloxi, Mississippi
4th ANNUAL PALACE HOTEL & CASINO/GORENFLO'S KMT

Aug 22-23, 2014
Division 8 - Fort Pierce, Florida
FORT PIERCE SUMMER SLAM

Sep 05-06, 2014
Division 4 - Richmond Hill, Georgia
3rd ANNUAL COASTAL EMPIRE KINGFISH CLASSIC

Sep 05-07, 2014
Division 7 - Orange Beach, Alabama
4th ANNUAL ORANGE BEACH KAJUN SPORTSMAN KING CLASSIC

Sep 12-13, 2014
Division 1 - Beaufort, North Carolina
KING OF THE CAPE OPEN KMT

Sep 12-13, 2014
Division 10 - Hypoluxo, Florida
X GENERATION 440 KDW CHALLENGE

Sep 26-27, 2014
Division 3 - Little River, South Carolina
12th ANNUAL RUMBLE IN THE JUNGLE KMT

Sep 26-27, 2014
Division 9 - Little River, South Carolina
12th ANNUAL RUMBLE IN THE JUNGLE KMT

Oct 09-11, 2014
Division 6 - Treasure Island, Florida
YAMAHA/CENTRAL MARINE 23rd ANNUAL FALL SUNCOAST KINGFISH CLASSIC

Oct 10-11, 2014
Division 3 - Mt. Pleasant, South Carolina
4th ANNUAL KINGS FOR VETS

Oct 10-12, 2014
Division 9 - Ocean Isle Beach, North Carolina
FALL BRAWL KING CLASSIC

Oct 24-26, 2014
Division 1 - Morehead City, North Carolina
4th NC TROOPERS INSHORE/OFFSHORE SALTWATER CHALLENGE

Dec 29-29, 2014
Division 8 - ,


Dec 30-30, 2014
Division 5 - ,


Dec 30-30, 2014
Division 6 - ,


Dec 30-30, 2014
Division 8 - ,


Dec 31-31, 2014
Division 3 - ,


Dec 31-31, 2014
Division 5 - ,


Dec 31-31, 2014
Division 6 - ,


Dec 31-31, 2014
Division 8 - ,


Dec 31-31, 2014
Division 4 - ,






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