The Masters Angling Tournament
This is a unique tournament that pits anglers against anglers while embracing a historic past dating back to 1963. It was John Rybovich’s dream of a contest that levels the playing field and crowns an angler for his ability to hook, catch and release an Atlantic Sailfish, not how well his boat and crew performs. This event rewards anglers for catching these fish quickly and penalizes them for pulling too hard and breaking lines. In short, the Masters tests an angler’s skill, and only an angler’s skill.…the true test of a champion.
Throughout the years the Masters has also forged lasting friendships among its anglers. Not only is the format of the tournament an ideal platform for a true test of skill, but the social side of the Masters is equally as pleasant. A tournament that has been in play for so many years has fine tuned the entire experience. Good fishing, the best boats, great venue, and good friends make for a very fun and competitive week. Fish a different boat every day, fish with a different partner every day, use tournament supplied 20 lb. line, leader and hooks, and then fish with a dead boat to have the best time you have ever had catching Atlantic Sailfish.
Welcome to the Masters! We are always looking for good anglers who would like to experience this unique format. Anglers who not only appreciate the past, but also appreciate our present. Send us an inquiry through this web site and we will get you an application. Our membership committee will give you a call to discuss what this tournament is all about and determine if you would like to join. We look forward to hearing from you.
What Is The Masters
With rules designed to test an individual anglers skill, The Masters angler earns points for releasing sailfish based on the time to release and for doing so using his own skill, with no help from the boat. Fish released quickly earn more points. A fish released in 30 seconds or less (yes, it does happen) is worth 100 points, while one released in 9 ½ to 10 minutes is only worth 5 points. After 10 minutes, the angler receives no points for the release.
Once a fish is hooked, the boat must not be moved in a manner to help the angler gain line to release the fish. The boat must essentially be kept in neutral, or dead boat conditions, with the captain only allowed to turn the boat to keep the angler the correct position to fight the fish.
Add to these challenging conditions, the fact that an angler can lose points when a line is broken and a competition is created where time is critical but pushing too hard for a quick release can decrease your score.
Initially the tournament was fished in the Palm Beach area and hosted by the Sailfish Club of Florida, where Rybovich was a member. In 1992 the first event was held in Cancun, Mexico and Isla Mujeres where it was fished through 2013. In 2014, the tournament will again be held in Palm Beach for the first time in 22 years.