When the National weather service issued an extreme caution Wind Advisory for the upper Colorado River Valley with North winds 25-35 mph gusting to 45 mph on Friday and Saturday, I knew Hava Q would be a challenging contest to cook. My EZ Up and WSMs don’t do too well in windy conditions so a quick Google search allowed me to locate a U-Haul rental place a couple of miles from the contest site. The novelty of the first time using a U-Haul truck to duck out of the wind was tried out in the 2011 Sam’s Club Qualifier contest in Gilbert, AZ. Now, it’s a standard practice for SYD whenever the wind exceeds 30 mph. So the $20 for the rental really helped keep the wind under control.
Amazingly, SYD received its highest score in chicken of 179.4286 in 4+ years of trying. And, for the first time ever, I used leftover excess chicken I had previously frozen from prior contests. I’ve never used frozen chicken. . .ever! Now, instead of cooking the excess chicken for my family, I’m going to freeze my chicken before a contest! With a 1st in Chicken, 2nd in Brisket, 6th in Ribs, and 48th in Pork, we clinched the GC for this event amid 74 teams from Texas, Montana, Colorado, Nevada, Alaska, Arizona, and California. This is the largest contest SYD has won and we’re enjoying a roll having won 3 GCs from December to January.
Thanks Skip and Cheryl for organizing a great event. It was good to see everyone again. A BIG congrats to all who walked. Thanks to all the judges and officials. A shout-out goes to Wil and Amy, of Got Smoke, a first-time team from Salt Lake, for 7th place. They told me the impromptu SYD Lazyman class I did for them on Sat morning helped. And, as a note to myself, the next time a team asks me to critique their turn-in boxes (I get many such requests), it’s better to wait until after awards to do so.
I suggested some ideas for improvement for Bam Bam BBQ’s rib box during awards. Lo and behold, I was pretty sheepish when two minutes later Cameron Treu of Bam Bam takes 1st place in ribs!