PDA

View Full Version : First Competition


Smokin' Hicks
03-14-2011, 08:51 AM
Our first comp. was NKC this past weekend and got 70th place overall out of 104 i think
kinda discouraging thought my stuff was better than that
i knew my chicken wasn't the best...been having problems with that damn yard bird
but my brisket, pork, and ribs were nice...but apparently not
i don't even know where to start evaluating my pork, ribs, and brisket
chicken is just a nightmare for me
but i guess time to revamp things and go back to the drawing board
A little help on how to evaluate scores would be appreciated
change everything or make minor tweaks?

Fatback Joe
03-14-2011, 09:24 AM
Well, we need more details to be able to really help, but I would still say that probably only minor changes are needed and not a full overhaul. The difference in scoring the upper 1/3 vs the lower 1/3 are not that drastic.

It was just your first comp, don't chuck everything just yet.

What were the actual scores?

pat
03-14-2011, 10:09 AM
I would try it out at least another contest or two. My first time in NKC, but from what I've heard not very many trained judges. I ended up 79th overall and plan on keeping things the same next time out! I just come to drink beer though :rolleyes:

monty3777
03-14-2011, 10:12 AM
I'm not the best cook in the world, but I have never had the scores I had at NKC. Take the beating and move on. That's what I plan to do :)

BTW, in a field like NKC I can't imagine a first time team coming out and whooping @$$. Don't over think things and see what happens the next time out.

roksmith
03-14-2011, 10:16 AM
I always heard to give a recipe 3 contests to make sure it's not the judges, but if all the scores were lower than you expected, I'd suggest finding a team to help mentor you.. spend the weekend with someone who has had some success and learn a little more about what you should be shooting for.

pat
03-14-2011, 10:18 AM
I'm not the best cook in the world

But you are the current 2011 Casten Cup Holder...that counts for something right? :heh:

Alexa RnQ
03-14-2011, 10:28 AM
One contest is just input. Three or more contests is a trend that should have you considering changes.

In a big field like that, you can have ten or more teams within a couple points of each other, so your placement number isn't as relevant as how many points you were out of first in each category.

Break down your raw scores. You've got to be reliably in 8's and 9's to contend, so when you view each of your categories just by appearance, or just by taste, or just by tenderness, is there one area where lower scores predominated? That's your first signpost of where to go.

That was a big and deep pond to just jump in and swim your first time -- good for you getting out there and doing it!

bbally
03-14-2011, 11:05 AM
Our first comp. was NKC this past weekend and got 70th place overall out of 104 i think
kinda discouraging thought my stuff was better than that

I can really relate to your discouragement. You can click on the thread where a lot of people chimed on trying to help my team out. Might help.

My thread on KCBS competitions (http://www.bbq-brethren.com/forum/showthread.php?t=101906)

I am of the opinion that this is a flavor/sauce competition. So if you did not sauce you will not get into the top half of the placings.

Go through the thread above... it is eye opening. Also pay attention to the mathmatics. The weighting really enforces the fact that without Flavor/Sauce in great depth there is no way to contend. You have to hit that flavor/sauce depth thing first or all the other stuff is Moot.

End of April we are about to test this conclusion. If we don't improve we will have to come up with another set of tweaks, if we do improve we will continue to tweak what seems to be working.

Any way read that thread, good people here and they posted good information in that thread.

NRA4Life
03-14-2011, 11:22 AM
Don't feel bad. It was your first competition, you didn't come in DAL, and you got all your food cooked and turned in on time (those were my goals for my 1st comp). Was it fun? Did you meet some interesting folks? Did you learn anything? Was the beer cold?

DawgPhan
03-14-2011, 02:05 PM
Just look at your scoresheet. See anything other than 8's and 9's? Those have to be improved. How to improve is up for discussion. I am from the school of thought that I could win a contest with kc masterpiece and salt and pepper if I cooked everything perfectly. Of course cooking everything perfectly is problematic.

worthsmokin
03-14-2011, 02:37 PM
Last year NKC was our first contest. The weather was crap it was cold, windy and rainy. We practiced our arses off all winter and thought what we had was WINNING! We ended up finishing in the 70's I think (or worse). We then went to St. Joe and finished again in the middle of the pack. It can be discouraging but talk to some teams try to find a mentor and they can give you some valuable information. It is hard to keep going with the expense of it but hard to just stop at the same time :crazy:

Stoke&Smoke
03-14-2011, 04:13 PM
If you haven't already, try to find and attend a judges class, and/or volunteer early to be a judge at a contest near you. Better yet, judge for a season. You need to know what's being turned in, and I know of know way to do that except to judge.And other than the cost for the class and the KCBS membership fee (assuming that's the type of comp you're doing) it's a whole lot cheaper education than a comp!

As others have said, you weren't DAL in anything, so for a first time, you didn't do too bad.

Ron_L
03-14-2011, 05:28 PM
If you have pictures of your boxes we'd be glad to give you feedback on presentation. I haven't figured out the whole virtual taste and tenderness thing, however :-D

HarleyEarl
03-14-2011, 09:22 PM
NKC only had 40% CBJ's! As such, I'm chucking this contest and the scores and moving on. If this contest had 90%+ CBJ's I would take the scores more serious. There was too much inconsistency in the judging to determine any trend. You think that with all the money we put out for these contests, the least the organizers can do is to maximize the number of "professional" (CBJ's) judges.

Consider this contest a pre-season warm-up to get the kinks out of your process and don't worry too much about your scores. I'm not changing one recipe for Pleasant Hill in a couple weeks, so we'll see what happens.

Also, .

monty3777
03-14-2011, 09:37 PM
delete. I jacked the thread

Smokin' Hicks
03-14-2011, 10:28 PM
How in the world can the KCBS sanction an event that only has 40% CBJ judges? and if i knew this ahead of time i would of steered clear of this comp. kinda explains how i get 8's and 9's in taste on my ribs from 3 judges and anywhere from 4-7 from the others, kinda a joke if you ask me....sure can't learn much from that

Just Pulin' Pork
03-14-2011, 11:08 PM
How in the world can the KCBS sanction an event that only has 40% CBJ judges? and if i knew this ahead of time i would of steered clear of this comp. kinda explains how i get 8's and 9's in taste on my ribs from 3 judges and anywhere from 4-7 from the others, kinda a joke if you ask me....sure can't learn much from that


The % of judges is up to the organizer not the KCBS. You will learn quickly the the serious teams will look at the % of judges and go to contests that have a high % of KCBS judges. Pleasant Hill MO in 3 weeks is by far the model that all contests need to follow!

Hub
03-15-2011, 06:43 AM
40% CBJ's!!!!!! the organizer needs to be tarred and feathered. I'd give the results zero credibility. Don't change a thing. Next, enter a contest where there is a far more normal 90-100% CBJ ratio. Then, pay attention to the results. Blow this one off. With unqualified judging, a contest is just an excuse to cook. Grrrrrrrrrrrrr. I'd be mad as a wet cat if I found out I'd cooked for a contest with only 40% qualified judges :mad2:

Lake Dogs
03-15-2011, 07:27 AM
First, middle of the pack in a large field like that, and your first comp, actually that's
doing pretty darned well. As others have said, surely dont do any major recipe changes
just yet. Keep them through the 3rd of 4th comp, then decide.

Wow, only 40% CBJ... Sorry, I've been pretty vocal to the point of being offensive
on this topic. Homey don't do comps less than 90% CBJ comps, and prefer 100%,
and I also seek those with old long-term CBJ's. If nothing else you get consistent
scores. If my Q sucks I should get scores that reflect it. If my Q is great, likewise
I should get scores that reflect it. Anything less, IMHO, is an absolute insult to
the hard working teams putting forth their best efforts to achieve that perfect Q.

Smokin' Hicks
03-15-2011, 08:06 AM
they said they had 90% CBJ judges, false advertising, i am very very pissed at this comp organizer who did not mention this...it is bull**** i spent all that money for my first comp. and learned absolutely nothing from the judges scores...Why does the KCBS allow this to happen? It just seems very simple to me if you dont have 100% CBJ judges then the KCBS will not sanction your event.....is that hard to understand? I feel like i got my money taken from me and feel like calling Jay and saying brother you owe me half my money back for not being honest about the lack of CBJ judges

Smokin' Hicks
03-15-2011, 08:10 AM
my 4 year old son has a better pallet than some of those "judges".....just cause you raise your hand and take an oath doesn't make you a judge...now i am just pissed....it just seems so disrespectful of the comp organizer to do this to the teams that are busting their ass and paying A LOT of money to do these comps....that is the least that the organizer owes the teams.....ok i'm off my soap box, for now till i sit here and brew about it a little more :mad2:

worthsmokin
03-15-2011, 08:20 AM
Not to get anything started but probably will. The teams that did good at this competition, does the judging take that away? There were some teams at the top that usually do well and some worthy teams that did not have a good overall, and some that nobody probably has heard of such as our team that finish well. I think the teams that finished in the top need some recognition! The teams that did not finish so well take it with pride and go to the next one!!!

Smokin' Hicks
03-15-2011, 08:24 AM
Its not about that....I give all the teams that placed well all the credit in the world...good job and way to go....i just want to blast the organizer and judges cause i dropped a lot of money for this first one and expected to learn something from my scores and that has definitely not happened....i am more confused about things now than before i entered a comp.

worthsmokin
03-15-2011, 09:00 AM
Like what was posted earlier, post some pics of your turn-ins (if you don't have any make sure to take them at the next one). You will get some valuable critiquing from the trained eyes on here :-P. We leave it in the judges hands, yes it would have been nice to have 90-100% cbj's but there wasn't. Don't change anything and do what you did at NKC for the next comp. Ribs and Brisket have been my worst at every contest. I just changed my brisket at NKC after 6 contest with middle of the pack. Ribs still haven't changed anything after 7, looks like I should have long ago.

Lake Dogs
03-15-2011, 10:35 AM
What smokin' is saying (well, asking rhetorically) is what's the worth in competing in
a sanctioned cookoff (KCBS one in this case) if darned near all the judges aren't
certified to be sanctioned judges? He has a perfectly valid point. We dont. We
dont compete in competitions like this for this reason. This doesn't discount the
winners whatsoever. What it means is that the variance among judges will be VERY
large, and likewise the variance from table to table will be huge. There might be
other potential contenders that were discounted because their Q landed on a
particularly crappy table. Whether they did, or did not, it's really moot. The original
question is still 100% on mark. If you compete in a sanctioned cookoff you should
expect sanctioned (certified) judges at the tables with strict enforcement of rules.
Anything less is an absolute insult to every cook/team in the competition, regardless
of their standing/performance.

DawgPhan
03-15-2011, 11:25 AM
Its not about that....I give all the teams that placed well all the credit in the world...good job and way to go....i just want to blast the organizer and judges cause i dropped a lot of money for this first one and expected to learn something from my scores and that has definitely not happened....i am more confused about things now than before i entered a comp.


If you finished 70th....it wasnt the judges...it was your food. Blast away at who ever you need to, but your food wasnt even close to award winning on that weekend. You can learn what you want to learn from the scores, post your score sheet I would be happy to help your break it down or I am sure someone else will. Post pictures, process, what you thought of your food and I am sure these good people will offer up tips and advice to help you out down the road.

Smokin' Hicks
03-15-2011, 11:49 AM
In order to learn you need consistency from judges....i dont care if i came in 70th or 7th if i came in 7th i would suffer at the next comp if it was all cbj judges maybe i wouldn't suffer maybe i would get 7th again the problem is i don't know because my scores were all over the place....i am not trying to start any argument just trying to understand what the importance of 100% CBJ judging

DawgPhan
03-15-2011, 12:00 PM
In order to learn you need consistency from judges....i dont care if i came in 70th or 7th if i came in 7th i would suffer at the next comp if it was all cbj judges maybe i wouldn't suffer maybe i would get 7th again the problem is i don't know because my scores were all over the place....i am not trying to start any argument just trying to understand what the importance of 100% CBJ judging


The importance of 100% CBJ is debatable. Contests use it as a marketing point, teams think it matters. It probably doesnt mean as much as you think it does. Plenty of contests have 100% CBJs but had the judges class on thursday and they all passed, and they all judge. Is that really any different than having 40% or 50% CBJ's? The real thing you want is 100% master judges who have all judged 50+ contests in their career and probably at least 10+ contests in the last 12 months and have also re-taken the judging class in the last 12 months. Oh and they have cooked with several teams in the last 2 years, say 5 teams.

You havent been doing this long enough to be so fired up about the judging. It doesnt get better, there is always a judge 5 who gives out 5's when everyone else is giving 8's and 9's.

Smokin' Hicks
03-15-2011, 12:14 PM
I can be fired up about the fact i dropped a ton of coin busted my ass and did not get a CBJ's opinion....and as far as taking the class the day of then judging at least they took the class and have some clue what the flavor, appearance, and tenderness profiles should be

Lake Dogs
03-15-2011, 12:24 PM
> The real thing you want is 100% master judges who have all judged 50+ contests in > their career and probably at least 10+ contests in the last 12 months and have also > re-taken the judging class in the last 12 months. Oh and they have cooked with
> several teams in the last 2 years, say 5 teams.

Seek and yee shall find. There are plenty of these in this area. Most are MBN
though... You're right about what KCBS calls a "CBJ". It differs from other
sanctioning bodies. Sadly, plenty of areas around the nation are to a great extent
KCBS only...

AZScott
03-15-2011, 12:26 PM
Smokin' the judging wasn't optimal but good bbq is good bbq by most all people. This was your first contest and I would take it as an experience to build upon. Last year was our first year and we thought we turned in awesome bbq at our first contest. After 5 competitions we laugh at our box pictures and realize we had a lot more to learn than we thought. We have also been bewildered at getting three 9's for taste along with a 7, a 6, and a 4. That's just the name of the game.

You received scores which is something you can build on. If you're seeing 2-3 9's, an eight, and some 5's assume you should have had a higher score. If you're seeing 5's, 6's, and 7's all the way across then I would take it that your appearance, taste, and texture needs help. I understand you are upset but this was your first competition out of many more in your future.

Smokin' Hicks
03-15-2011, 12:29 PM
I couldn't of said it better myself....thanks for the input and words of encouragement

Lake Dogs
03-15-2011, 12:35 PM
Smokin' the judging wasn't optimal but good bbq is good bbq by most all people. This was your first contest and I would take it as an experience to build upon. Last year was our first year and we thought we turned in awesome bbq at our first contest. After 5 competitions we laugh at our box pictures and realize we had a lot more to learn than we thought. We have also been bewildered at getting three 9's for taste along with a 7, a 6, and a 4. That's just the name of the game.

You received scores which is something you can build on. If you're seeing 2-3 9's, an eight, and some 5's assume you should have had a higher score. If you're seeing 5's, 6's, and 7's all the way across then I would take it that your appearance, taste, and texture needs help. I understand you are upset but this was your first competition out of many more in your future.

Largely you're right, to a point. "just the name of the game" isn't
necessarily correct. PLENTY of competitions dont have/allow this. Again,
seek and yee shall find. I'll say it like this: you'll never see this kind
of stuff if you compete at Memphis In May. Doesn't and can't happen.
There are plenty of others...