LAUREL COUNTY, Ky. —
The number of participants seemed to confirm Hicks’ sentiments: 42 out of the registered 43 professional division teams and seven out of eight registered Backyard BBQ division teams arrived and competed at the event in spite of cold rain and constant cloud coverage.
Veteran barbecue smokers, the Warren County Pork Choppers from Bowling Green, Ky., who went on to claim the chicken, brisket and Grand Champion titles at Grills Gone Wild, also showed teams how a little innovation can go a long way. The team constructed an all-in-one trailer, kitchen and smoker complete with overhead cover.
“Days like today are the reason I made a rig like this,” said team member Donny Bray. “You don’t have to deal with the rain or the cold.”
More than a dozen lucky individuals had the honor of judging contestants’ entries in pork, brisket, ribs, and chicken. They were instructed to judge entries on appearance, taste and tenderness.
When all was said, done, and enjoyed, it was the technologically proficient veterans of the Warren County Pork Choppers who took home the title of Grand Champion in the overall competition — as well as a check for $1,250. Dugout BBQ claimed the title in the Backyard Grill Master competition as well as $500.
Category winners included: Warren County Pork Choppers for chicken and brisket; Historic BBQ for ribs; and Bourbon Barrel BBQ for pork.
For more information on this year’s and next year’s potential competition, contact The Inferno Group Corporation at firstname.lastname@example.org or (423) 504-8746 or the London-Laurel Tourism Commission at (606) 878-6900.