Anglers, get ready! Grand Caribe’s 2022 DeepSea Classic Fishing Tournament Is This July

by Carolee Chanona

Anglers, get ready. Belize resort Grand Caribe is prepping for one of its biggest weekends to date with the return of the 6th Annual DeepSea Classic Fishing Tournament this July on Ambergris Caye! Taking place Friday, July 29, Saturday the 30, and Sunday the 31, Grand Caribe Resort transforms into a fishing tournament base in San Pedro Town, with events kicking off on Thursday, July 28. Not to mention, there’ll be over $200,000 in cash and prizes up for grabs! Sports betting goes hand-in-hand with fishing tournaments, where rules specifically permit a little friendly wager between participants too with a healthy, mandatory Calcutta. Save the date!

The DeepSea Classic’s Schedule of Events

The weekend officially starts at 6:00 pm on Thursday night with the Captain’s Briefing, including the launch of the International Game Fish Association’s (IGFA) regional record of species and Grand Caribe’s partnership with the San Pedro Tour Guide Association. Here, 10% of the mandatory Calcutta goes towards scholarships for young tour/fishing guides. Each registered boat will receive its flags and free gift bags during the briefing. This year, special guests include fishing model Nicole Spencer and world-renowned marine artist Carey Chen; a silent auction for original Carey Chen artwork begins at the Captain’s Briefing.

Fishing kicks off at 6:00 am on Saturday and Sunday with Bimini for an adrenaline-packed, shotgun start. Grand Caribe Resort’s dock in San Pedro Town will be the starting base where all participating tournament boats in the DeepSea Classic take off from (usually at full speed) to wherever they’ll be fishing for that day. Even if you’re not in the fishing tournament itself, the Bimini start is an epic visual for an exciting weekend! On both days, it lines out at 6:00 pm sharp. And on Sunday, prize giving begins right on Grand Caribe resort grounds at 11:00 am in the West Room, with a slew of prizes. After the prize-giving, the silent auction will end and international entertainment at the pool will begin.

Prizes up for grabs in the 6th Annual DeepSea Classic Belize:

1st Place $25,000

2nd Place $15,000

3rd Place $7,500

4th Place $5,000

5th Place $2,500

Heaviest Dorado $1,000

Heaviest Wahoo $1,000

Heaviest Tuna $1,000

Top Angler $2,500

Top Female Angler $2,500 

Top Junior Angler $500 

How to enter Grand Caribe’s 2022 DeepSea Classic Tournament

2022 DeepSea Classic Tournament Photos. Images courtesy Grand Caribe Resort

To enter, teams must pay a total of $3,500: a mandatory Calcutta of $2,000 and a $1,500 entry fee, which includes your boat, captain, and all anglers. Grand Caribe Resort starts the Calcutta with a $25,000 contribution. Applications to enter are now open via [email protected] or +501-280-4726.

Grand Caribe contributes $25k to the Calcutta. But what’s a Calcutta?

2020 Winners. Image courtesy Grand Caribe Belize

A “Calcutta”  is an auction-style event that utilizes a pot and pays out either one or more winners. In simplest terms, a tournament’s Calcutta works like this:

  • Teams bid, auction-style, on the boat they think will win the tournament. You’re allowed to ‘buy’ your own boat, but you can also bid on another team, too.
  • If your bid is the highest, you’ve got their Calcutta.
  • All the money raised through the Calcutta ‘action’ goes into the pot.
  • At the end of the tournament, those who won the winning team get a predetermined payout from the Calcutta pool!

    2018 Winners. Image courtesy Grand Caribe

    Each team participating in Grand Caribe’s 2022 DeepSea Classic Tournament must enter the Calcutta with a mandatory $2,000. The bigger the tournament participation, the bigger the winning pot!

    Meet Carey Chen: Grand Caribe’s Special Guest

    Carey Chen’s original paintings were auctioned off, with donations going towards Hope Haven (HH). Image courtesy HH

    World-renowned, marine artist returns to Belize as Grand Caribe’s special guest in their 6th Annual DeepSea Classic fishing tournament! Chen has participated before with the exception of July 2020 during the 4th Annual, considering Belize’s international airport was closed. Chen’s trademarks are an incredible blend of colors and exquisite detail of marine scenes, including sportfishing.

    Carey Chen, marine artist. Image via Chen’s Facebook

    Not only do guests have the option to silently bet on original artwork by Carey Chen, but the top three tournament boats receive signed and framed artwork too!

    While anglers chase tail on the waters, Grand Caribe will continue the excitement onsite with an Expo in partnership with the fishing tournament’s platinum sponsor, the BTB (Belize Tourism Board). The Expo will take place on Saturday, July 30th from 11 am – 5 pm in the West Room. The booths will be hosted by other hotels on the island, tour guides and operators, promote Belize’s QRP program with realtors, and local vendors and artists selling their items.

    Header image via Grand Caribe Belize.

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