2020 Pitmaster Challenge


Competition Rules


  1.   CONTESTANT– A contestant is any individual or group, hereinafter referred to as a team, that will prepare and cook an entry or entries for the purpose of being judged according to the Pitmaster Challenge rules. Each team will be comprised of a head cook and as many assistants as required. No team shall enter more than one turn-in box per meat category in a contest. Neither a family member of a competing cook team nor any cook team member of that cook team may enter the judging area at any time during the contest. All contestants must have at least one representative of their team present at the Cook Team Meeting held on the evening prior to the contest. In the event this is not possible, the team shall contact the Pitmaster Challenge Board at that contest and inform them of their absence. Cook teams absent from the meeting accept all responsibility for understanding these rules and any changes to them that may have occurred. Violation of these rules may result in disqualification from this contest.

  2.   INTERPRETATION of RULES– The interpretation of the Pitmaster Challenge rules and regulations are those of the Pitmaster Challenge Representative at the contest and his or her decisions are final. The Pitmaster Challenge Representative may not deviate from nor change any Pitmaster Challenge rule for any contest for any reason.

  3.   EQUIPMENT– Each team will supply all the equipment necessary for the preparation and cooking of their entry including a cooker, wood, charcoal, or wood pellets. No team may share a cooker or grill with any other team.

  4.   MEAT INSPECTION– Meats must be provided by each registered team, and inspected prior to cooking on Friday, September 4th, starting at 6:00 PM. All meats must be USDA or state DA inspected and passed. No pre-seasoning, injecting, marinating or cooking of any entry is permitted until inspected. Prior to cooking, all meat that is resting in preparation for cooking must be covered at all times. All meats must be cooked to a minimum internal temperature of 145 degrees F. After cooking all meat must be maintained at a minimum temperature of 140 degrees F in a covered container until turned in for judging. All contest meat, once inspected, may not leave the cook team’s site until turn in. If the meat is pre-trimmed, labels from the meat must be kept and verified with the meat inspector.

  5.   COOKING FUELS– The only approved cooking media are wood, charcoal, or wood pellets. Gas of any kind or any electrical heating element may be used only to start the initial fire or to start burn barrels, charcoal chimneys, etc. A gas starter, gas flame, or electrical heating element may not be used in the cooker after the meat has entered the cooker or during the cooking process. Gas bottles must be disconnected from the cooker once the fire has started and must be removed from the immediate cooking area. A gas flame or electrical heating element may not be used in the cooker during any part of the cooking process.

  6.   APPROVED COOKERS– Any wood, charcoal, or wood pellet fired cookers homemade or commercially manufactured, will be allowed to be used in this contest. Electric or manual operated rotisseries or rotating shelves are permitted during the cooking process. Electric or manual operated wood, charcoal, or wood pellet augers are permitted during the cooking process. Electric or manually operated power draft devices are permitted during the cooking process. No electric, gas, wood, charcoal or wood pellet fryers are permitted during the cooking process.  Frying with any form of fat, butter, or any type of oil is prohibited.

  7.   CONTESTANT’S SITE– Each team will be assigned a cook site. All equipment including cooker, canopy, trailer, etc. must be contained within this space. If additional space is required, the team should contact the contest organizer and make satisfactory arrangements. All garbage/waste disposal will be the responsibility of the contestant.

  8.   BEHAVIOR– Every team, including members and guests, are always expected and required to exhibit proper and courteous behavior. A quiet time will be in effect from 10:00 PM on the night prior to the contest judging, remaining in effect until sunrise on the following day. No alcoholic beverages will be distributed to the General Public. Teams will be informed of all local laws and will adhere to same. Failure to abide by these rules of behavior may result in expulsion from the contest and repeat offenders will be barred from competing in Pitmaster Challenge.

  9.   CLEANLINESS AND SANITATION– All teams are expected to maintain their cook sites in an orderly and clean manner and to use good sanitary practices during the preparation, cooking, and judging process. The use of sanitary gloves is required at all times while handling food. Failure to use sanitary gloves may result in disqualification. Teams are responsible for cleanup of their site once the competition has ended. All federal, state and local food safety rules and regulations must be adhered to at all times. Teams should have their own sanitation process for cleaning tools etc.

  10.   COMPETITION MEAT CATEGORIES– the following categories will be used for judging.  Meats will be provided by each registered team, to include:  (2) whole chickens; (2) pork loins; and (3) full racks of Baby Back ribs

      • Chicken: The team may cook chicken whole, halved, or individual pieces.
      • Pork Ribs: Loin back (baby back) only, meat on the bone. No country style ribs and no chopped, pulled, or sliced rib meat loose in the box.
      • Pork Loin: May be bone in or bone out, must weigh at least 5 lbs. or more, must be cooked as single piece of meat and turn in box must contain meat only.
      • Specialty (OPTIONAL): If you have a unique meat/item that you smoke and wish to enter it into the People’s Choice category. This will not be presented to the judges, but voted on by the public.  This would include seafood/fish, flatbreads, Jalapeno Poppers, etc.

  11.   PRIZES– the following payouts for each category will be:

      • Chicken: $25.00
      • Pork Ribs: $25.00
      • Pork Loin: $25.00
      • Grand Champion: $75.00
      • Specialty (OPTIONAL): TBD

  12.   JUDGING– The Pitmaster Challenge allows for blind judging only. Entries will be submitted in an approved container, with NO garnish, or decorating of any kind. Only the entry to be judged is allowed in the container. Marking of any kind will disqualify the entry. Each entry will be judged on PRESENTATION, TASTE/FLAVOR, and TENDERNESS/TEXTURE. Meat may be sauced or un-sauced. A minimum of 6 separate and identifiable portions must be submitted.

  13.   SCORING– Each entry will be scored by 3 judges in the areas of PRESENTATION, TASTE/FLAVOR, and TENDERNESS/TEXTURE. Scoring ranges from a low of 5.0 to a high of 10.0 in increments of .5 points for each category. Using a weighted average, the maximum score for a category is 200 points. Any entry that is disqualified for being turned in after the designated time or not turned in shall receive a score of zero (0) for all three categories: appearance, taste, and tenderness. Any entry that is disqualified for any other reason shall receive a score of two (2) for all three categories from all six judges at that table.

  14.   DISQUALIFICATION– An entry can be disqualified by the Pitmaster Challenge Board only. An entry can be disqualified for any of the following reasons:

    • There is evidence of marking or sculpting. Marking is defined as: any handwritten or mechanically made mark inside or outside the turn-in box that identifies the submitting team to any judge. Sculpting is defined as: the carving, decorating, forming, or shaping of a meat entry contained in a turn-in box that identifies the submitting team to any judge.
    • There is anything in the box besides the meat. Any additional meat will be considered as a judge-able item.
    • There is not a minimum of 6 separate and identifiable portions.
    • There is evidence of blood, such that the meat is uncooked.
    • The entry is turned in after the officially designated time.
    • Gloves are not used while handling food products.
    • Not cooking pork as a single piece of meat.
    • Not cooking the meat that was inspected.
    • All competition entry boxes must be placed on the turn in table with label up.  Any box loaded upside down by the team may be submitted for judging. Teams are not permitted to modify the box in any way from its original configuration as provided. A team will be DQ’d for modifying the box and the Judges will be instructed to score a (2) in each category for that entry.
    • Posting pictures, videos, or description of a team’s turn in boxes to social media or to a judge that is judging the contest before the awards ceremony.

  15.   JUDGING PROCEDURE– The table captain brings all the boxes to the table. He or she announces the number of the box to be judged, opens that box and checks for rules violations such as marking, insufficient number of samples, etc. All judges score this box for presentation. Each judge then takes a sample and scores this box for taste and tenderness. The table captain makes sure that all scores for that box are recorded before moving on to the next box. This procedure is repeated for boxes 2 through 6. After all the boxes have been scored the table captain will return the boxes to a designated area. The table captain will then collect the judging slips and turn them over to the Pitmaster Challenge Board representative. The use of eating utensils is not allowed.

  16.   WINNERS– The winners in each meat category will be determined by adding all the scores together and the team with the most points will be 1st place, the team with the next highest total will be 2nd place, etc. The GRAND CHAMPION will be the team with the most total points. To qualify for the GRAND CHAMPION award a team must submit entries in all three sanctioned categories. Ties in any meat category, grand or reserve champion are allowed. In the event of a tie in a meat category the next lowest rank will be omitted, and the tied teams will be awarded the same rank. In the event of tie for grand champion the tied teams will be declared grand champions and there will be no reserve champion. In the event of a tie for reserve champion the tied teams will be declared reserve champions. Any prize money for the tied rank and the next lowest rank will be combined and distributed evenly amongst the tied teams.

  17.   TURN IN TIMES– Each meat category turn in time will allow for a 10-minute window, that is 5 minutes before and 5 minutes after the time as suggested below:

    • Chicken: 3:30 PM
    • Pork Loin: 4:00 PM
    • Pork Ribs: 4:30 PM

  18.   MULTIPLE TEAMS– No team shall be permitted to cook at the same contest as two separate teams using the same team name and/or members.

Event Properties

Event Date 09-05-2020 10:00 am
Event End Date 09-05-2020 11:00 pm
Cut off date 08-28-2020 5:00 pm
Capacity 20
Registered 0
Available place 20
Individual Price $200.00
Fixed group price $25.00
Location Brewtus Clubhouse

Group Rate

#Registrants Rate/Person ($)
1 200.00
2 100.00
3 66.67
4 50.00

We are no longer accepting registration for this event