The W’s get the W! 

Champions Tour Pro Hunter Wendt and Am Travis Wittwer Win Pro-Am Event on Mille Lacs

Lake Mille Lacs, the “Big Pond,” home of some of the best smallmouth bass fishing in the country was the host for the second annual Champions Tour Pro-Am event presented by Dakota Lithium and hosted by Minn Kota.  Fifty-seven Champions Tour Pro Anglers were paired up with Student Angler Organization (SAO) Am anglers where they were to fish together as a team to catch their best eight bass limit.

The teams blasted off from Izatys Resort and had a full day (7 am to 3 pm) of fishing in front of them, with a West, Northwest breeze blowing, the anglers could fish the entire Lake the whole day.  With no lake split, or mid-day break, the Pros and Ams had to strategically decide where they wanted to begin. 

The W’s Get The W! 

Like all the Champions Tour events presented by Skeeter Boats, the pre-tournament buzz is always high, with anglers giving various reports of the post spawn funk in full effect, to the fish are snapping, and even some late bedding bass in play.  Regardless, the Pro winner would walk away with a check for $15,000 and the Am winner taking home $3,500.

As anglers began snatching Mille Lacs smallmouth bass, they would record the weight of the bass, take a photo of the bass, and a photo of the weight of the bass on the scale, and then enter it into the Reel LiveWell App.  Throughout the fishing day, as the teams would upgrade their limits and enter the fish’s weights into the Reel LiveWell App, it will automatically cull out the lowest weight fish.

The W’s Get The W! 

Champions Tour Pro, Noah Schultz and Am, Oliver Neumann jumped out to an early lead after the first hour of fishing, with 19 lb 9 oz for six bass, and Lake Okoboji event winner, Hunter Wendt, landed a beautiful 5 lb 9 oz smallmouth to take the early big bass lead.  After the first hour of fishing, the field had recorded 135 bass caught, with 52 of the 57 teams on the Reel LiveWell leaderboard.  Schultz and Hunter were fishing within eyesight of each other on the southeast side of the lake targeting boulders with drop shots.

Elliot Rods Pro, Hunter Wendt and Am angler Travis Wittwer grabbed the lead around mid-day, by putting together an impressive 4 lb 9 oz average, for a total weight of 36 lb 11 oz.  This is a lead that the duo didn’t relinquish, as they continued to upgrade their catch throughout the day, working up to a winning eight-bass limit of 39 lb 4 oz.

The W’s Get The W! 

Wendt and Wittwer targeted boulder dwelling smallmouth, along with smallmouth that were guarding fry.  The team employed a three-prong approach to boat their fish, including a marabou hair jig, a small swimbait and the Arsenal Fishing Deadly Nedly.

Wendt and Wittwer also grabbed the YETI Big Bass Award with a beautiful late day 6 lb 1 oz Mille Lacs smallmouth, this was the lone six-pound bass boated in the in the event.

The W’s Get The W! 

Coming in second place was seasoned Minnesota tournament pro, and Mille Lacs Guide, Josh Douglas, and Am Dawon Parrott with a weight of 36 lb 3 oz, and rounding out the third spot was Champions Tour record holder, and Bassmaster Classic qualifier, Adam Rasmussen, and Am Gavin Krebs with a weight of 34 lb 15 oz.  Full results from the Champions Tour Pro-Am event on Mille Lacs, presented by Dakota Lithium and hosted by Minn Kota can be seen on the Reel LiveWell App or here.

The W’s Get The W! 

The Champions Tour presented by Skeeter Boats picks up their schedule on Tuesday, July 15th, on Gull Lake, a lake that is no stranger to Champions Tour anglers.  Be sure to stay tuned to and on social media for event coverage, and to follow the results reel time, download the Reel LiveWell App.