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Dan Plautz wins Saginaw Bay RCL event
Mark Martin leads the way into final round of RCL at Saginaw Bay
John Campbell leads anglers into semi final round of Saginaw Bay Event
Rick Olson takes lead day 1 Saginaw Bay Event
Wal-Mart RCL tournament anglers eagerly await Saginaw Bay
RCL 2001 Bay City Schedule and information
RCL Saginaw Bay Lodging
RCL Pro angler entry fee and purse
RCL Co-angler entry fee and purse
RCL 2001 Schedule of events Saginaw Bay
BAY CITY, Mich. — Wal-Mart RCL Walleye Circuit pro John Campbell of Walker, Minn., and his day-two partner Tim Williams of Oregon, Ohio, landed a five-walleye limit weighing 33 pounds, 9 ounces Thursday on Saginaw Bay to give Campbell the lead in his quest to win $50,000 plus a Mercury- or Yamaha-powered Ranger, Crestliner or Lund boat.
Campbell, a 12-year veteran of the sport and second place finisher at the inaugural Wal-Mart RCL Walleye Championship, will lead the top 60 pros competing in the $390,750 Wal-Mart RCL Walleye Circuit tournament into the semifinal round with a two-day, opening round total of 10 walleyes weighing 70 pounds, 10 ounces. Campbell and his partner, Paul Fallaw of McHenry, Ill., weighed in five walleyes that registered 37 pounds, 1 ounce on opening day.
“It looks like I’ve got a pretty good pattern and a number of spots,” said Campbell, who caught his walleyes at four different locations about 40 miles from the launch site using Lindy X-Change crawler harnesses. “Unless the wind really blows, I should be okay (Friday).”
Tim Vanwieren of Holland, Mich., will lead the top 60 co-anglers into the semifinal round with a two-day total of 10 walleyes weighing 61 pounds, 5 ounces. He and his day-one partner, Paul Dunn of Lapeer, Mich., brought in five walleyes weighing 30 pound, 14 ounces. Vanwieren and his day-two partner, Scott Rhodes of Traverse City, Mich., then caught five walleyes weighing 30 pounds, 7 ounces to give Vanwieren the lead in his quest to win $15,000.
“They say that you get one moment in time. I hope this is it,” said Vanwieren, who has never won a major tournament.
Rounding out the top five pros are Dean Miller of Stevens Point, Wis., with 10 walleyes weighing 61 pounds, 14 ounces; Rick Olson of Mina Lake, S.D., with 10 walleyes weighing 61 pounds, 8 ounces; John Pratt of Roberts, Mont., with nine walleyes weighing 59 pounds, 12 ounces; and Joe Whitten of Toledo, Ohio, with 10 walleyes weighing 59 pounds, 10 ounces.
Rounding out the top five co-anglers are Rodney Hill II of Hillsdale, Mich., with 10 walleyes weighing 57 pounds, 12 ounces; Tim Schomer of Oswego, Ill., with nine walleyes weighing 57 pounds, 5 ounces; Fallaw with eight walleyes weighing 53 pounds, 12 ounces; and John May of Forestville, Wis., with eight walleyes weighing 52 pounds, 14 ounces.
The Saginaw Bay tournament is the second event of the new $2.9 million Wal-Mart RCL Walleye Circuit—the world’s most lucrative walleye fishing series. It started Wednesday with 96 pros and 96 co-anglers from 15 states and was cut to the top 60 pros and co-anglers Thursday for the semifinal round. The field will be cut again to the top 12 pros and co-anglers Friday for Saturday’s finale. Anglers in both divisions will start the semifinal and final rounds from zero and fish for the heaviest one-day catch.
Competition resumes at 7 a.m. Friday at Hoyles Marina located at 135 South Linwood Beach in Linwood, Mich., followed by a 3 p.m. weigh-in at the marina. The final takeoff starts at 7 a.m. Saturday followed by a 3 p.m. weigh-in at the Wal-Mart Supercenter located at 1392 Wilder Road in Bay City.
Run by Operation Walleye and named after retail giant Wal-Mart and boat manufacturers Ranger, Crestliner and Lund, the Wal-Mart RCL Walleye Circuit features four regular season tournaments each with a $390,750 purse and a championship with a $1.4 million purse. The third tournament will be July 25-28 on the Mississippi River near La Crosse, Wis., followed by a tournament on Devils Lake in Devils Lake, N.D., Sept. 5-8.
After the four regular season tournaments, 200 pros and 200 co-anglers will compete in the Wal-Mart RCL Walleye Championship for top awards of up to $400,000 in the Pro Division and $150,000 in the Co-Angler Division. The championship will be held on the Fox River and Green Bay in Green Bay, Wis., Oct. 2-6. Green Bay hosted the inaugural Wal-Mart RCL Championship last year when Scott Glorvigen of Grand Rapids, Minn., won $300,000 and instantly joined the sport’s top all-time money winners.
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