Kurt & Mathew Stobbe Win Mercury Marine National Walleye Tournament
Jun 9th, 2019 by Keith Worrall
Modified Jun 10th, 2019 at 11:12 PM
Kurt Stobbe and Mathew Stobbe moved up the Mercury National Walleye Tournament live leader board all the way to first place on day two for the win at the 2019 Mercury Marine National Walleye Tournament. Two consistent big weights were the key to the win, scoring a day 1 weight of 18.06 pounds and day 2 weight of 18.02 pounds for a total of 36.08 pounds. The team was trolling but was not on the same pattern as much of the field out on the deep water mud. Two rock reefs in shallower water held the winning fish and were the only spots the team fished the entire two day tournament. The team said the changing weather didn’t seem to have much of an effect on the walleyes on those reefs, and the bite remained consistent through the tournament. Pulling live bait harnesses was the key presentation.
The father and son team took home a check for $4000 and a new fully rigged and water ready Tracker Targa V-18 boat powered by a 150 Mercury 4 stroke. The total value of the prize package is valued at over $40,000. Second place paid out $10,000, and third $7500. The Mercury Marine National Walleye Tournament boasts a 100% plus payback, allowing more than a quarter of the 302-team field to take home cash or valuable prizes. The prize for the largest walleye each day is a Mercury 9.9 kicker engine valued at $3000.
John Janiak and Jim Demboski dropped to second place with a two-day total weight of 35.09 pounds, as the mud trolling bite toughened up on day two for the day one leaders. Korey Sprengel and his father Karl Sprengel moved up the ladder for a strong third place finish with 33.09 pounds, pitching Berkley crank baits and jigs at shallow structure; a radically different pattern than what most of the Merc National teams were fishing. Fritz Peterson and Ron Heim Jr. took fourth place with 33.05 pounds and rounding out the top five was Mike Borkowski and Andy Barthels with 32.07 pounds. The final scoring for the entire field can be found at https://mercurynational.com/results/.
The Mercury Marine National Walleye Tournament is one of the largest walleye competitions in the country and is held in conjunction with the Walleye Weekend festival at Lakeside Park in Fond du Lac. The festival draws as many as 70000 to the shores of Lake Winnebago featuring hundreds of product booths, live music and entertainment, baseball, running, family fishing, volleyball, and many family friendly competitions.