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  • Updated: 09/03/03

  • Events Set for the 2003 GNWC Minnesota State Walleye Championship

    By Steve Weisman
    GNWC Publicity Director
        Hey, walleye tournament enthusiasts, it's time for the big show! The
    itinerary for the 2003 Grand National Walleye Cup (GNWC) Minnesota State
    Walleye Championship has been set.
        The championship will feature up to 30 teams who have qualified for the
    two-day tournament at Gull Lake September 6-7. Leading the way will be Chad
    Benson and Joe Edlund from Bemidji, who captured the Mercury Team of the
    Year as the top team on the Minnesota Circuit.
        "Gull Lake is a great place to showcase these top Minnesota teams," said
    Barringer. "We've had great tournaments throughout this inaugural season. I
    know these guys will put on quite a show. Plus, we have had a great response
    from businesses and sponsors in the area."
        Barringer continued, "Another part of the excitement will be the filming
    of the championship by the Walleye Wisdom television crews. The action will
    be part of our new walleye fishing show that will be aired on the Sportsman
    Channel this fall."
        First place for the Minnesota State Walleye Championship is a guaranteed
    $2,500 in cash plus trophies.
        In addition, each day the team that catches the big walleye of the day
    will be awarded two Abu Garcia 6500 Linecounter reels. An optional Big Fish
    pot is $20 per team with a 100 percent payback to for the largest fish of
    the tournament. Another award is the Berkley Family Award of over $200 in
    Berkley product that goes to the top overall family team.
        Another prize will be the GNWC Loyalty Bonus. "For those teams who
    fished all of the regular season tournaments, the highest placing team will
    received an extra $600, while the second highest placing team will receive
    an extra $300," noted Barringer.
        Although the tournament begins on Saturday, the activities actually
    begin on Friday with an awards banquet and supper at Zorbaz Restaurant.
    "The meal is complimentary for all qualifying teams, and at the awards
    banquet we will present Chad Benson and Joe Edlund their Mercury Team of the
    Year certificates. There will also be lots of door prizes to give out."
        Following the Friday evening banquet will be the Official Rules Meeting.
        Saturday, September 6 is the first day of the State competition. Boat
    inspection begins at 6:30 a.m., followed by the opening ceremonies and
    take-off at 7 a.m. The weigh-in will begin at 3 p.m. sharp and will be held
    each day at  Zorbaz. The weigh-in will be followed by interviews with media
    for the top three teams.
        "Even though Saturday is the first day of the tournament, we hope to get
    a lot of people out to the weigh-in. To catch all of the action, people
    should be at the weigh-in by 2:45. There is a lot of excitement at the
    weigh-ins, and I think the crowd will be able to catch the excitement of the
    Championship atmosphere," said Barringer.
        Sunday's competition begins at 6:30 a.m. with inspection, following by
    take-off at 7 a.m. However, the teams will take-off in reverse order. "We do
    that to be fair to the top and bottom of the order," noted Barringer.
        Teams must be back in for the 3 p.m. weigh-in. "We really encourage
    people to come to the second day weigh-ins. It is exciting to see the
    baskets of fish come to the scales, and it is also educational for the crowd
    because they get to find out what the teams did to catch their fish."
        Following the weigh-in, trophies and checks will be awarded.
    For those interested in learning more about the GNWC, call 1-800-890-3474,
    email the GNWC at info@walleyecup.com or check out the official GNWC website
    at walleyecup.com. The website has all of the latest in GNWC information in
    not only Minnesota, but also in Iowa, Illinois, South Dakota and Wisconsin.
        Major sponsoring partners for the GNWC include Ranger Boats, Mercury
    Outboards, Berkley, Abu-Garcia, The Sportsman Channel and
        Television viewers who do not have The Sportsman Channel and want to
    watch the GNWC's television series Walleye Wisdom, are encouraged to call
    their cable company or satellite television provider and ask them to include
    it in their package.

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