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Springhill Outfitters' Pitmaster Challenge

Springhill Outfitters’ Pitmaster Registration Information

1. Registration Fee is $125 per team. Deadline for registration is 6pm June 17, 2017. Registration can be completed online using the attached form. Please insert your team name in the comments field and send payment in the mail by check to:

Springhill Outfitters, LLC

Attn: Pitmaster Challenge

773 Seafood House Road

Selma, NC 27576

Make checks to Springhill Outfitters. Checks must be received, not postmarked, by the cutoff. You may also pay by check or cash at the store.

2. Only 25 teams will be accepted into this competition on a first come, first served basis.

3. We will provide two racks of spare ribs, 1 Brisket for the Judges Award and one Boston Butt for the Peoples Choice Award. Competitors may bring up to two additional Boston Butts, two additional Brisket and two racks of spare ribs. They must be in their original packaging with the label from where they purchased it with the date, stamp, etc clearly legible.

Rib Category is open, with either St. Louis or Baby Back Ribs being accepted for Judging.

4. Awards include:

        1st: $300 and Trophy

        2nd: $200 and Trophy

        3rd: $150 and Trophy

        People’s Choice Butt Trophy

        Individual Meat Category Awards

5. Set up will begin on Friday, June 23rd, 2017 at 1pm. Cooking sites will be available first come, first served.

6. Pit Master meeting and meat distribution will be held at 6:30pm.

7. Quiet time to begin at 11pm and extend to 6am the following morning. 

8. Turn in time for Ribs is at 11am. Brisket will be 11:30am. Butts will be 12 noon. (Refer to rules below on time variances)

9. Between 11:30am-1:00pm the general public will be allowed to sample your food. Small plastic cups will be provided to provide samples to the public so that they can choose the People’s Choice Winner in the Boston Butt category.

10. Awards presentation will take place following the judging of the meat, with breakdown and cleanup following.

Springhill Outfitters’ Pitmaster Challenge Rules

1. The decision and interpretations of the Springhill Outfitters’ Pitmaster Challenge are at the discretion of the Springhill Outfitters’ Pitmaster Challenge Representatives at the contest. Their decisions and interpretations are final to the extent consistent with the rules.

2. Each team shall consist of a chief cook and as many assistants as the chief cook deems necessary.

3. Each team shall be assigned a cooking space of 10x20. Pits, coolers, props, trailers, vehicles, tents, or any other equipment (including generators) shall not exceed the boundaries of the team’s assigned cooking space. All seasoning and cooking product shall be done within the assigned cooking space. Teams shall not share an assigned cooking space or cooking device. 

4. Contestants shall provide all needed equipment, supplies and electricity, except as arranged for in advance. Contestants must adhere to all electrical, fire, and other codes. A fire extinguisher (not provided by Springhill Outfitters) shall be near all cooking devices.

5. Meat will be provided by Springhill Outfitters. We will provide two racks of spare ribs, one Brisket and one Boston Butt. Competitors may bring up to two(2) additional Boston Butts, two additional Briskets and two racks of spare ribs. They must be in their original packaging with the label from where they purchased it with the date, stamp, etc clearly legible.

6. It is the responsibility of the contestant to see that the team’s assigned cooking space is clean and orderly following the contest. All fires must be put out and all equipment removed from the site. It is imperative that clean-up be thorough. Any team’s assigned cooking space left in disarray or with loose trash, other than at trash containers, may disqualify the team from future participation. 

7. Fires shall be of wood, wood pellets, or charcoal. Gas and electric heat sources will be permitted for cooking and holding. Propane or electric is permitted as fire starters. Electrical accessories such as splits, augers, or forced draft are permitted. No open pits or holes are permitted. Fires shall not be built on the ground.

8. Turn-in times will be confirmed at the Cook’s Meeting. An entry will be judged only at the time established by the contest organizer. The allowable turn-in time will be five (5) minutes before to five (5) minutes after the posted time with no tolerance. A late turn-in will receive a one (1) in all criteria.

9. Garnish is required, garnish is limited to chopped, sliced, shredded or whole leaves of fresh green lettuce, curly parsley, flat leaf parsley and/or cilantro. 

10. Sauce is optional. If used, it shall be applied directly to the meat and not be pooled or puddled in the container. No side sauce or containers will be permitted in the turn-in container. Chunky sauce will be allowed. 

11. The container shall not be marked in any way so as to make the container unique or identifiable. Aluminum foil, toothpicks, skewers, foreign material, and/or stuffing are prohibited in the container. Marked entries or containers with the above listed material will receive a one (1) in all criteria from all Judges. 

12. Each contestant must submit at least six (6) portions of meat in an approved container. If there is not enough meat for each judge to sample, the shorted judge(s) will score a one (1) on all criteria, and the judges having samples will change the Appearance scores to one (1).

13. The following cleanliness and safety rules will apply:

        a. Cleanliness of the cook, assistant cooks, cooking device(s) and the team’s assigned cooking space is required.

        b. Shirt and shoes are required to be worn.

        c. Sanitizing of work area should be implemented. Each contestant will provide a separate container for washing, rinsing and sanitizing of utensils.

        d. First aid is not required to be provided by the contest expect at the election of the contest organizer.

14. There will be no refund of entry fees for any reason.

15. Quiet time will begin at 11pm and will be observed until 6am.

16. CAUSES FOR DISQUALIFICATION & EVICTION of a team, its members and/or guests: 

        A cook team is responsible jointly and severally for its head cook, its team members and its guests.

        a.     Serving alcoholic beverages to the general public.

        b. Use of illegal controlled substances.

        c. Foul, abusive, or unacceptable language or any language causing a disturbance. 

        d. Excessive noise, including but not limited to that generated from speakers, such as radios, CD players, TVs, public address systems or amplifying equipment.

        e. Fighting and/or disorderly conduct.

        f. Theft, dishonesty, cheating, use of prohibited meats, or any immoral act.


Judging Procedures

1. Springhill Outfitters’ Pitmaster Challenge allows for blind judging only. Entries will be submitted in an unmarked container provided by the contest organizer. The container may be renumbered by the Springhill Rep or authorized personnel before being presented to the judges. 

2. Judging will be done by a team of five (5) persons, who are at least 16 years of age. Only Judges, Contest Reps and necessary support staff are allowed in judging area during the judging process. No other activities are permitted in the judging area, during the judging process.

3. Each judge will first score all of the samples for appearance of the meat. The turn-in containers will then be passed around the table and each judge will place a sample from each of the containers in the appropriate box on the judging plate. Judges shall not lick their fingers while taking these samples; paper towels, non-scented wipes or damp wash clothes are preferred. The judge will then score each entry for taste and tenderness, before moving on to the next entry.

4. The scoring system is from 9 to 2, all whole numbers between two and nine may be used to score an entry. 9 excellent, 8 very good, 7 above average, 6 average, 5 below average, 4 poor, 3 bad, 2 inedible.

5. A score of one (1) is a disqualification.

6. The weighting factors for the point system upon deployment of Springhill’s Score will be: Appearance - .5600, Taste – 2.2972, Tenderness – 1.1428.

7. The low score will be thrown out. Results will be tallied. If there is a tie in one of the categories, it will be broken as follows: The scores will be compared (counting all five judges) for the highest cumulative scores in taste, then tenderness, then appearance. If still tied then the low score, which was thrown out, will be compared and the higher of the low scores will break the tie. If still tied, then a coin toss will be used.

8. Total points per entry will determine the champion within each meat category.

9.     By submitting your entry you declare that you have read and understand the above rules and that you will abide by them.