Team Burseth Tough Out a Win at PMTT Shelbyville.
Category: press release
May 5th, 2008 by OutdoorsFIRST
Modified May 5th, 2008 at 12:00 AM
The second leg of the 2008 ten year anniversary season of the PMTT was held May 3rd & 4th on Lake Shelbyville, IL. and hosted by the Lake Shelbyville Tourism. The anglers that had registered to compete from 12 different states were in for a tough bite. The weather had been very inconsistent leading up to the tournament with front after front coming through every couple of days. Not to mention that the muskies were in their post spawn period recouping. All of this coupled with the fact that the lake had been drawn down close to eight feet a week before the tournament meant the anglers were going to have to work that much harder to score.
The team of Chris and Eric Burseth, brothers from Barlett and Crystal Lake, Illinois are familiar with this water. They have been fishing the PMTT since the beginning ten years ago and have done well on Shelbyville over the years. "This lake has been very good to us, we always seem to catch a few", stated Chris. With a major cold front rolling through on day one and the water temps in the mid fifties, they decided to look for schools of baitfish-shad, balled up and troll through them with Depthraider crankbaits in search of feeding muskies.
"The first day we trolled the wind blown shorelines at about 3mph because the baitfish were stacked up on them because of the wind. On day two we moved off the shore out into 25 – 30 feet of water because the baitfish moved out over deep water as the winds let up", stated Eric. Their efforts paid off as they were the only team to catch fish on both days of the tournament at 37.50" and 41" and beat out the nearly 200 other anglers that had registered to compete in this event. For their efforts they took home almost $14,000 and the first place trophies. The Burseth's were also the winners of the prestigious Ranger Cup award, that pays $1,000 to the highest placing, registered Ranger Boat owner in each tournament.
Coming in second was the team of Scott Donovan of Makanda, IL and Chris Riebe from Montgomery, IL as they were the only other team to catch two of the fourteen muskies registered during the event. They doubled up on Saturday to take the lead after day one of the event, but were unable to score on Sunday, day two. They trolled up a 37.50" & a 38" on Depthraiders working the standing timber in the coves and took home the second place hardware and over $3,000 in cash for their efforts.
Third place went to Dan Germann and Christine Upton, both from White Bear Lake, MN. They caught a 43.25" musky, the biggest fish of the tournament on their first cast of the day on Sunday with a crankbait and took home over $2,700. In fourth place was Kevin Hopfenperger and Pam Leopold both from Neenah, WI. with a 42.50" caught trolling. Rounding out the top five was the team of Dave Schultz and Tony Grant who boated the day one big fish at 42" while also trolling a small crankbait.
On hand to speak to the crowd was Jason Parson, from Ranger Boats. "New model innovations, Ranger Cup Program and long time relationship in support of and helping to grow the PMTT are proof positive that Ranger Boats is way more than just the best built fiberglass boat available today… they are our partners in ensuring a brighter angling future for all of us", stated Parsons.
Tournament Director Tim Widlacki thanked all of the PMTT's incredibly fantastic sponsors, especially the Lake Shelbyville Tourism for hosting the event. In addition Ranger Boats, Mercury Marine, Musky Hunter Magazine, Eagle River Area Chamber of Commerce, Heckel's Marine, Keyes Outdoors Television, Rollie & Helens Musky Shop, Morehead Tourism Commission, Wildlife Energy Drink, Extreme Muskie Expo's, Bemidji, Crash's Landing and all the associate and contributing sponsors. Please let these fine folks know that you appreciate their promotional efforts in support of freshwaters most challenging fish … and those extreme anglers who chase her on the first, best and only truly National Professional Musky Circuit … the PMTT!
To obtain more information on becoming a member of the 2008 PMTT, or to view event photo album, please visit them on the Web @ www.promusky.com or call PMTT Director, Tim Widlacki @: 815-478-4351.