International Game Fish Association has approved Tres Pescado Slam Tournament as an Inshore World Championship qualifier event.

August 20, 21, and 22, 2009 is the date for the first Belize fly fishing tournament, Tres Pescado Slam Tournament, involving all 3 of the grand slam species Belize is known for. Another first is the type of tournament, a “Catch and Release” only event. And yet another is the data collection that will take place during the tournament to establish a baseline for the 3 grand slam species – the data collection for this event is modeled after the successful Florida Keys bonefish census. As if that weren’t enough, the Tres Pescado Slam Tournament, held on Ambergris Caye, has received approval as one of the qualifying events for the International Game Fish Association (IGFA) Inshore World Championships.

What’s this mean? In the fly fishing world of tournaments there is no single tournament that garners more respect and prestige than the IGFA Inshore World Championships. In June each year the top qualifier event champions from around the globe gather in Islamorada, Florida to compete for the top honors and title of World Champion.

To qualify for a chance at being invited to this World Championship event, an angler must first qualify by winning one of the world qualifying tournaments held in the USA, Bahamas, Australia, and now in Belize.

The Tres Pescado Slam Tournament has received approval of their application to be one of the world class qualifying events whereby anglers from around the world can come and if lucky enough to win the event title, qualify for an invitation to the 2010 IGFA Inshore World Championships. All anglers must qualify in the prior year to receive an invitation to the World Championships.

In addition, ESPN Outdoors selects various qualifying event locations to film for their ESPN Outdoors Saltwater Series shown on ESPN2 and on their ESPNoutdoor.com multimedia platforms. Being new as a qualifying event Belize can only hope to have coverage like this but then again, Belize is the rare jewel among the string of saltwater fly fishing events.

Sandy Moret, 3-time Gold Cup Tarpon Champ and IGFA Inshore World Championship Director, stated it best in the IGFA approval letter: “Fantastic… you are approved with flying colors. It is wonderful to see that lodge owners, guides and anglers of Belize have made such a giant step setting a leadership example for all of the Caribbean to envy. I am in hopes that Florida will follow suit with permit soon.”

To become part of this tournament and join in on the global stage of this world class event please go to www.tres-pescado-tournament.org and learn more about the available sponsorships and teams. This is a non-profit event with all proceeds going to support the health of the 3 grand slam fish.

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