We spoke with Team USA captain Ben Blegen ahead of the 2018 World Lure Angling Championships to get some insight into his thoughts on the team’s ambitions.
The United States Predator Team is led by captain Ben Blegen. Ben served as Captain and Angler for Team USA last year at the World Championships in Tver, Russa which was the first year Team USA participated in a World Lure Championship event.
Ben’s involvement in world fishing events for the United States is extremely extensive as he is involved in many different United States disciples. Ben’s involvement in the advancement of the sport fishing industry around the world includes: fishing for the United States Ice Fishing Team for the last 3 years; Board of Director Member for the United States Angling Confederation, Team Manager for USA Bass, United States delegate to the Pan-American Sportfishing Delegation and as Captain and Angler for the United States Predator Fishing Team.
Ben, what is the team’s ambition and expectation for the World Championships?
The United States Predator Team’s ambition is to achieve a gold medal through hard work, perseverance, determination, and by displaying personal excellence on and off the water. The United States Predator Team has an unwavering determination of excellence, constantly striving to achieve the best anglers the United States has.
Who will be included in the team?
The team is as follows:
Angler & Captain Ben Blegen, Minnesota
Angler, Nick Schertz, Wisconsin
Angler, Max Wilson, Wisconsin
Angler, John Gillman, Michigan
Angler, Nathaniel Spors, South Dakota
Angler, Nate Winters, Wisconsin
Other United States Predator Fishing Team members:
Team manager: Brett Root Ericksen, Illinois
International Delegate: Sean M. Warner, Minnesota
What experience do the anglers competing have of World Championships or other major competitions?
All six United States anglers are professional anglers in the United States that are currently or have competed on a professional level for many years. Two of our six anglers just finished 1st and 2nd in the United States’s biggest Predator/Walleye Championship. Three of our six anglers have competed multiple years on the United States Ice Fishing Team in World Championships and two of the six anglers were anglers on last years United States inaugural team.
Have you personally competed at the FIPD-ed World Lure Angling Championships before?
Yes, I competed last year for our inaugural year as the team Captain and as an angler. Since it was our first year attending the F.I.P.S.e.d World Lure Angling Championship, our goal was to learn the format, rules and expectations in order to put us in the best place possible for achieving immediate success moving forward.
What are you most looking forward to with your visit to the UK?
The United States Predator Fishing Team is looking forward to experiencing the amazing hospitality, rich culture, deep history, and amazing beautiful landscapes that the United Kingdom is historically known for.
We wish Ben and all of Team USA the best of luck at Rutland Water!