In my 3 short years of competing, which is just one comp a year, (Smoke in the Spring, Osage City Kansas) and looking over results from other midwest competitions, it's amazing how many of the same teams seem to take walks. Perhaps it's because it's the same general pool of judges that seem to be around here and they all like sort of the same taste. Understanding what that taste is is hard to duplicate if your never on the receiving (judge) end. Like David said, if you've never been there, how do you know unless your just lucky to do it right the first time. If I had that kind of luck I would drive directly to the casino after the awards.
I guess you either need to cook it the way you like it or the way the judges like it...
HawgsnHeifers Smoke Shack BBQ
18.5 WSM with BBQ Guru Competition MOD
Bandera with Spicewine Firebox MOD (Lives at Chiefs now)
Silver Smoker with "leak like a Sive" MOD
Brinkman Gourmet with "Critter Infestation" MOD
Jenn-Air 4 Burner Gas Passer with "Lazy" MOD
"Life is hard. It's harder when your stupid."