A dozen Cabela’s Masters Walleye Circuit teams have qualified for a chance to make history next August, when the Cabela’s National Team Championship and MWC’s Bays de Noc Central Division Qualifier combine in a dual tournament of epic proportions.
In June 2010, the NTC/MWC event on Lake Winnebago broke the Guinness World Record for largest fishing tournament when 714 anglers squared off for more than $350,000 in cash and prizes. Tournament officials hope to raise the bar even higher in 2011, as top walleye teams from across the continent collide on the legendary fisheries of Big and Little Bays de Noc August 5-7 out of Escanaba and Gladstone, Michigan.
The NTC is one of the most prestigious competitions in the country. Teams qualify by accumulating points in tournaments organized by more than 50 sanctioned grassroots walleye clubs. Now entering its 27th season, the Cabela’s MWC is the longest-running professional walleye tournament circuit in the United States. Each season, the top four teams in each of the MWC’s three divisions earn a trip to the NTC.
In 2010, the Cabela’s NTC awarded $30,000 for first place plus a new Evinrude-powered 619 Ranger boat valued at more than $50,000. The total NTC payout was more than $241,000 in cash and prizes. On the MWC side, first place paid $27,060 and the top 35 teams shared a $100,360 dollar cash purse plus $1,000 in Ranger Cup cash, $500 Lowrance HDS bonus, $500 Cabela’s Angler Cash, and $200 U2 Oxygenator bonus.
MWC teams qualifying for the 2011 NTC include:
Donald Olson, Andover MN; Randy Carroll, Oswego IL
Dan Zwick, Wrightstown, WI; Tony Kobriger, Chilton, WI
Greg Gustin, Neshkoro, WI; Thomas Binkowski, Redgranite, WI
Dennis Lantzy, Warren, MI; Steven Vandemark, Linwood, MI
Dan Johnson, Fayetteville, OH; Larry Rhoads II, Oregonia, OH
Mike Knippenberg, Hiram, OH; Ryan Buddie, Lakewood, OH
Steve Bodinger, Chilton, WI; Dan Bodinger, Chilton, WI
Nathan Seiferlein, Chesterfield, MI; Jason Kaniszewski, Augres, MI
Travor Diegel, Pierre, SD; Paul Steffen, Pierre, SD
Brandon Carpenter, Rockwell, IA; Josh DeKnikker, Sioux Falls, SD
Jason Coester, Webster, SD; Bryan Gaikowski, Watertown, SD
Brian Woodward, Casper, WY; Rick Walter, Casper, WY
While the NTC is invitation-only, the Bays de Noc MWC tournament is open to all two-person teams looking for great fishing and exciting competition. Registration begins in early January. Watch masterswalleyecircuit.com for details!