DUNKIRK, N.Y. — Some of the country's top anglers are headed to Chautauqua Co. next week to take part in the 2022 National Walleye Tour Championship.
The no-entry-fee tournament is presented by Bass Pro and Cabela's and will take place on Lake Erie at Dunkirk. The top 40 pros and top 40 co-anglers are set to compete.
“I’m really looking forward to having the championship in Dunkirk,” said Bass Pro Shops and Cabela’s pro Kevin McQuoid, who currently leads the AOY race, and whose son, Eric, won the 2021 NWT Championship on Minnesota’s Otter Tail Lake. “I’ve never fished (Erie) out of Dunkirk, and I know only a small number of guys have. Lake Erie has a record number of walleyes in the system, and with only a 40-boat field, it’s possible to not see another tournament boat all day; it’s that vast. Plus, the sheer number of 5-pounders in the system is going to make it an awesome event.”
The tournament is the sport's most lucrative event, awarding three fully-rigged boat packages. It also determines the Lucas Oil Angler of the Year, the most prestigious title in walleye fishing.
“The City of Dunkirk is excited for the opportunity to host the 2022 National Walleye Tour Championship,” said Mayor Wilfred Rosas. “Lake Erie is one of the country’s top walleye destinations, and this will be a great event for our local fishing community. The area has great attractions that everyone can enjoy. We welcome the anglers and their guests to come experience a beautiful New York summer.”
Participants will take off each day at 7 a.m. from Holiday Harbor at Chadwick Bay Marina. The daily weigh-in, which is open to the public, will take place at the Dunkirk Pier starting at 3 p.m. each day.
Everyone fishes each of the first two days with the top 10 advancing to the third and final day. The winner in each division is determined by the heaviest cumulative weight.
There will be a free kids fishing clinic after the weigh-in on Thursday, August 25. Before the tourney gets underway, a community meet and greet will take place on August 21 at 5 p.m. in the field between the Clarion Hotel and Tim Hortons. There the anglers will show off their vessels and answer questions.