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2023 Tournament of Champions FAQ's

March 27, 2023

Source: Trevor Wade
Job Title: Coonhound Program Manager
Email: twade@ukcdogs.com


Only those dogs that qualified with five cast wins during the 2022 calendar year in the correct categories and were entered by the advanced deadline of March 10, 2023, are eligible to hunt in the Tournament of Champions.

The deadline to confirm an entry at all region locations is 5:00 pm local time on both Friday and Saturday nights. The deadline to return scorecards will be determined and announced at the event.

Confirming Your Entry

Your entry must be confirmed, at the event location, on both Friday AND Saturday night prior to the posted deadline. Note: The UKC Field Rep (MOH) will not take personal phone calls to confirm an entry as Conditional for a handler who may be running late. The entry would need to be confirmed by someone else and the handler must be present when their cast is called out or the dog will be scratched.

Females in Season

Another dog that is qualified and registered to the same owner may be substituted for a female that comes in season. Otherwise, the owner must notify UKC prior to the event date in order to be eligible for a refund. A female that comes in season on the Friday of the event must be inspected, confirmed, and noted as such by the Master of Hounds. This must be done prior to casts going to the woods on Friday night in order for a refund to be issued.

Veterans Casts

There will not be any Veterans Casts at any Region events.


Spectators are not allowed on any cast at the Regions. (See Backup Handlers Below)

Backup Handlers

Each handler is allowed to have one backup handler. The handler shall advise the entry taker who their backup handler is and should be noted on the scorecard. If the back-up handler has not been noted; the judge should simply write their name on the scorecard at the start of the hunt. A backup handler may not become involved in any part of scoring procedures. They will not have a voice in voting procedures. A backup handler is not required to go to the woods, he or she may stay at the vehicle. Allowing back-up handlers to shine trees is a decision made by the cast at the beginning of the hunt per Rule 10 (b).


Hunting Judges will be used at the Regions. Only qualified Hunting Judges are to be used. All judges will be pre-selected and approved by the event official. The Hunting Judge must be at least 18 years of age and possess the experience, knowledge, and integrity to perform the duties required. The event official will, at their discretion, have the authority to assign a non-hunting judge to any cast deemed necessary.

Non-Hunting Judges will be used throughout the remainder of the Tournament of Champions Finals.

Hunt Time Periods

All casts at the Regions will hunt for two hours. At the Finals, Rounds 1, 2, and the Final Cast will be two-hour casts. The Round 3 Heads-Up Cast will be 90-minutes.

Posting Region Scores

Friday night scores will be posted at the event and on the UKC website. Saturday night scores will not be posted at the event or on the UKC website until all casts have returned or the deadline to return scorecards has expired.


The Appeal procedure is not in effect for any part of a zone event. The Master of Hounds (UKC Field Rep) decision will be final in all situations. The Master of Hounds may, at their discretion, contact UKCs Director of Hunting Operations or UKCs Coonhound Program Manager to discuss the situation prior to rendering a decision. The Master of Hounds is not required to contact UKC per a handlers request in the event the Field Rep deems it unnecessary.


The number of dogs advancing from each region will be based on a percentage of the total number of entries overall. The number advancing from each region will be announced prior to the calling of casts at each region by the Master of Hounds. Any two-night cast winners will place in accordance to combined highest scores followed by single cast win high scores.

Unless scratched for fighting or handler misconduct, a dog may compete on one or both nights at the region and be eligible to advance to the Finals. A dog scratched for fighting on any night at the regions is also disqualified from any further competition and is not eligible to advance to the Finals.

Championship Cast Wins Awarded

Any dog winning its cast, with a total score of plus points, on Friday and or Saturday night at the Regions will receive a cast win towards their degree. At the finals, all plus point cast winners in Rounds 1-4 will receive a win toward their degree.


Prize payouts will be made with a check and mailed within three weeks of the completion of the UKC Tournament of Champions Finals Event. Payouts are subject to any applicable IRS reporting and withholding requirements. An IRS Form 1099 will be issued to all prize winners.

To be eligible to receive a prize payout, the first registered owner must complete and submit a completed IRS Form W-9 before UKC (the Company) may issue the check. Prize payouts will be made entirely to the first registered owner of the dog. If the qualified dog is owned by a minor, a parent or guardian of any participant who is a minor must sign a release on behalf of the minor to be eligible to receive a prize, but the Company reserves the right to refuse to award a prize to or on behalf of any minor.

Guided by the belief that dogs make a difference by being the best partner a human can have in the field, on the job, or in a competition event, UKC is a community for people and dogs to pursue excellence together. Founded in 1898, UKC has been dedicated to enhancing the lives of Dogs That Do More, and their owners, by providing essential resources to help owners and breeders make informed decisions. The dog-human bond is celebrated through family-friendly programs highlighting the instincts and heritage of purebred and mixed-breed dogs alike at over 18,000 licensed events annually.

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