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Press Release - ABMT Certified Observer Program Announced

September 2, 2008


By Carol Bareuther, RD

The USVI Open/Atlantic Blue Marlin Tournament (ABMT), nicknamed the ‘Boy Scout Tournament’ due to its chief beneficiary, announces the launch of the ABMT Certified Observer Program in August.

“The demand for qualified observers is on the rise concurrent with the growing number of catch and release tournaments globally. We too are growing and so is our need for qualified observers, hence the reason behind this program,” says tournament director, Jimmy Loveland.

Started as a single event in 1972, the ABMT expanded to become a leg of the Bermuda Triangle Series in 2004 and Spanish Main Series in 2007. These three events span seven nations – Venezuela, Bermuda, the Bahamas, Dominican Republic, Puerto Rico, U.S. Virgin Islands and the British Virgin Islands. By 2011, the ABMT will reach round the world with the inception of two more series – the Pacific Rim and Southern Cross – ultimately leading to a television series where viewers will watch winners from each of these series compete in the World’s Greatest Fish-Off on Australia’s Great Barrier Reef.

Observers certified through the ABMT Certified Observer Program this summer received color-coded badges that marked their years of observing for the St. Thomas, U.S. Virgin Islands’-based event. Green signified up to 5 years, Silver 6 to 10 years, and Gold 11 years or more.

The next class will be held at the Big Game Room, part of the Miami International Boat Show, February 12-16, 2009.

“We teach ABMT rules, which are IGFA (International Game Fish Association) rules plus additional rules,” says Loveland.

Industry companies are being sought to sponsor the ABMT Certified Observer Program.

“I envision this program as offering three benefits to ABMT-certified observers,” says Loveland. “First, discounts on gear and clothing from sponsors. Second, the opportunity to travel to observe in any of our series tournaments, and third, the likelihood that other tournament operators will tap them, knowing their training and experience, and use them in their events worldwide.”

For more information about the ABMT Certified Observer Program go to our "Observer" button on this website View or call: (340) 775-9500 or toll free 1-888-234-7484, or Email: loveto@islands.vi