NPAA Member Mike Gofron Wins AIM International Championship on Lake Winnibigoshish NPAA Member Robert Blosser Takes Home the Angler of the Year Title
Sep 7th, 2010 by OutdoorsFIRST
Modified Sep 7th, 2010 at 12:00 AM
NPAA News for Immediate Release –Sept. 6th, 2010- Forestville, WI
NPAA Member Mike Gofron Wins AIM International Championship on Lake Winnibigoshish
NPAA Member Robert Blosser Takes Home the Angler of the Year Title
Mike Gofron, NPAA #93, who hails from Antioch, IL, won the AIM Pro Walleye Series International Championship on Lake Winnibigoshish this past week fishing a spot that held some special memories for him, it also happened to hold big fish. He bested 50 other Pros to win the top prize of a new LUND 2075 powered by a 300hp Mercury Verado, valued at $65,000.00.
Using the AIM Catch-Record-Release format that allows the anglers to measure and record fish outside of the slot limit, Mike put together a scorecard of 7 fish on day one that converted to 36.09 pounds. Leading the tournament going into day two, Mike had a little tougher day with only 17.86 pounds, but the 53.95 pound total was enough to keep the lead going into the final day of competition.
As he readied himself on the morning of day three, the AIM advisory council was discussing the weather. The winds were blowing hard from the north at 25-35 with gusts to over 40 mph, and it was raining. At 6:45 AM Friday morning the call was made to cancel day three in the name of safety. It was a call that many anglers agreed with. When asked what he thought of the cancellation Mike said, “Actually, I had all my gear in the boat. I had about 4 shirts on, two sweatshirts, two pairs of rain pants, so the water wouldn’t bleed through, and I was a minute from getting in my boat when I heard it was called, so I was ready to go, but it was definitely the right call”.
Mike shared the story about the spot he was fishing by saying, “Basically, I found an area in the weeds, that I call Dave Anderson’s spot. Last year, when we were here, Dave found some fish in this area…I worked with Dave. As you know, Dave passed away last year. All week, when talking with my partners, Mark Brumbaugh and Scott Duncan, I would say, “I’m over in Dave’s spot or Dave’s weeds”. It was kind of like a landmark, and it’s pretty wild, because I would say, “Man, Mark, wouldn’t it be cool to win a tournament off of Dave’s spot? Dave never fished it in the tournament last year, because he fished “Cutfoot”, but it was “Dave’s Spot” for a reference. Well, it happened, I won it on “Dave’s Spot”, so that’s really cool!”
Pulling spinners with number two blades with crawlers and leeches was the ticket for Mike’s success, but it was his search tactics that was the key to finding the right fish. “The way I located these fish was by trolling number 5 Jointed Shad Raps over the tops of these weeds. There were also some fish suspended on the outside 6 feet down over 20 feet of water. It was a good locating presentation to find a couple fish here and there. I would icon those fish, and go back over them with spinners and see if I could catch more fish. Because they were such small areas it was hard to turn with crankbaits, and stay on these fish at 2mph. My presentation was spinners, yet I located them with the Jointed Shad Raps, which was a big key in finding those fish.”
Robert Blosser, NPAA # 255, of Poynette, WI took 2nd place with a total weight of 46.77 pounds, and was crowned the Angler of the Year for 2010! When asked about winning the title Robert said, “I’m stoked! I’m excited! They give 5 wins away a year and only one Angler of the Year title and that means everything to me. To be able to accomplish two of my goals in one season, you know, to win my first major and to win the Angler of the Year in the same year is an incredible feeling. I really don’t know how to put it into words, because I don’t think it has really sunk in yet. I’ve been comparing it to that first carnival ride you never want to get off. I just don’t want it to end. For me to be able to put together 4 top tens in the 4 qualifying events this year…an 8th, a 5th, a 2nd, and a win…it all went right for me this year, and when it’s meant to be it’s meant to be. I guess it was meant to be!”
After spending 6 days prefishing using a trolling presentation it was a Live Bait rigging presentation along a steep breakline in 14-35’of water that would prove successful for Robert. While chubs worked best for him on day one, it was the crawler bite that worked best for him on day two. Robert took home two cash prizes this weekend. The J.J. Keller Fishing Team Angler of the Year award was presented to him during the awards ceremony by James Keller. It was a check for $10,000.00! His tournament winnings were $6,500.00.
Other NPAA members who finished well this past week are:
3rd Place: Joe Okada, NPAA #660; Fitchburg, WI
4th Place: Brett King, NPAA #314; Claremont, MN
5th Place: Bruce Samson, NPAA #80; Minnetrista, MN
7th Place: Tommy Skarlis, NPAA #11; Waukon, IA
9th Place: Chris Kindraka, NPAA #125; Spruce Grove, AB, CAN
10th Place: Scott Glorvigen, NPAA #34; Grand Rapids, MN
11th Place: David A. Anderson, NPAA #509; Amery, WI
12th Place: Chad Schilling, NPAA #283; Akaska, SD
14th Place: Ted Takasaki, NPAA #9; East Gull Lake, MN
The NPAA held their “Kid’s Fishing Clinic” Friday afternoon before the awards ceremony. The event had approximately 50-75 kids attending. Marianne Huskey was master of ceremonies for the event and she introduced special guests for the U.S. Forest Service who gave a presentation on Invasive Species. The event even had a visit from the world renown “‘Smokey the Bear”. Several of the kids were asked to go up on the main stage to receive special gifts such as, a brand new tree stand, a soft tackle bag system, a net, and other items that were donated by the Lake Winnie Area Resort Association. The children who did not go up on stage to get one of those special prizes donated by sponsors, received a new rod and reel combo donated by the U.S. Forest Service, an NPAA t-shirt that they could get signed by the pros, and some other goodies. Pros that helped make this kids event a success were:
Marianne Huskey (#150)
Scott Duncan (#197)
Mark Brumbaugh (#70)
Mike Gofron (#93)
Joe Okada (#660)
Robert Blosser (#255)
Brett King (#314)
Sheldon Hatch (#928)
Gord Schultz (#553)
Dennis Gulau (#504)
Tom Neustrom (#187)
Pat Neu (#77)
The NPAA is a non-profit organization focused on growing the sport of fishing and increasing the professionalism of its members. Its supporting partners include Northland Fishing Tackle, Navionics, Mercury Marine, Evinrude Outboards, Lund Boats, Ranger Boats, Off-Shore Tackle, Fin-Tech Tackle, Berkley, AIM Walleye Series, Masters Walleye Circuit, FLW Outdoors, Frabill, U.S. Forest Service, Liddle Marketing, FPS Financial Planning Services, Do-it Corp., Optima Batteries, John Butts Outdoors, Pasha Lake Cabins, Oahe Wings and Walleyes Guide Service, Outdoor First Media, Advanced Tex Screen Printing, Pro Staff Gear and Worldwide Marine Underwriters. More NPAA member and association news can be viewed at www.npaa.net.