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Michigan Angler Andy Kuffer Grabs PWT Tournament
Lead at Bay de Noc
Escanaba, Michigan.....Walleye tournament pro Andy
Kuffer, Fair Haven,
Michigan, overcame adversity to take the day one lead at the Lowrance/Lund
North Central Pro-Am today (Friday, Aug. 22). The In-Fisherman
Walleye Trail pro slammed his Mercury 4-stroke 225-horsepower into
Wednesday, and spent the day before the tournament trading boats.
his brother at the Mackinac Bridge, and made it back the night before
He showed determination by heading onto the water
³After all,² Kuffer said, ³what else could go wrong?²
He trolled, as did
many anglers, and put together a limit of two over 23 inches and three
under the Bay slot limit, for a total weight of 27.36 pounds.
partner was John Matchinski, Manistique, Mich. They weighed the
Fish of the day, 9 pounds, worth at least $1,000.
Kuffer is fishing his sixth PWT season, and in 20
tournaments has placed
in the money nine times. His top finishes are 6th, 7th and 9th.
qualified for the 1999 Championship, and is working towards qualifying
the upcoming Mercury Championship in Houghton, another community in
Michigan¹s Upper Peninsula. That event is Sept. 12-14.
Kuffer has 32
points to make-up for a Championship invitation and said, ³I will
Second place pro Bill Ortiz, Dodgeville, Wis., was
third in the Angler
of the Year standings, and moved up considerably because current Angler
the Year leader Keith Kavajecz (also last year¹s Champion), ended
day one in
98th place. Ortiz and his amateur partner Herb Franks, Marengo,
weighed 23.57 pounds. Pro Scott Fairbairn, Hager City, Wis.,
Larry Eaton, Blue Mounds, Wis., weighed 23 pounds for third place.
Conditions were very mild compared to the final three
days of practice,
when strong southwest winds blew the Bay waves to three to five feet.
winds allowed anglers to travel and fish as far away as the Cedar River
into both Big and Little Bays de Noc.
This was the first walleye tournament held from the
Marina, and with the assistance of the Chamber of Commerce, the Great
Sportsfishermen Club, and many local volunteers, the first day weigh-in
took two hours. A huge first-day crowd of walleye fans cheered
Days two and three, Saturday and Sunday, begin at 7 a.m., with weigh-in
3 p.m. to 5 p.m. More than $300,000 in tournament and year-end
be awarded Sunday.
The PWT is an integral element
of the In-Fisherman Communications
Network headquartered in Brainerd, Minnesota, and PRIMEDIA, America's
leading producer of targeted media. PWT sponsors include: Mercury Marine,
Lund, Berkley Gulp!, Trilene, PowerBait, Realtree, Miller High-Life,
Frenzy, Lowrance, MinnKota, Optima Batteries, Gander Mountain, Blue
Northland Fishing Tackle, Lindy Legendary Fishing Tackle, Coleman,
Eagle Trailers, Raymarine, Rapala, Matzuo, Pflueger, Ram rod holders,
Control, DeeZee, Cotton Cordell, Seal Skinz, Aqua-Vu, IMCO, Plano,
KeepAlive, Stowmaster.net, Quantum Performance Tuned rods & reels
Delta Chamber of Commerce 1-888-335-8264.
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