I read alot about "competition" bbq. I have attended Memphis in May many times (I was an honerary team member with a team one year!-learned a lot) and have attended several other competitions. I will be entering a few this year. Here is my take on several generalizations...seems to me these apply to comps AND back-yard... what do you do different for comps that you don't do at home for friends and family??? please comment! Chicken: most do thighs - more forgiving. Skin should be "bite-able". do you brine for competition? any one ever do breasts? Pork: Good bark, not over cooked and "mushy" (kind of goes without saying doesn't it??!). inject (I always do). pack on a good rub? (I always do). cook it low and slow over consistant heat? (we all do!). what else?! Ribs: No "fall apart" ribs...(although a lot of folks I know prefer them that way!) 10 years ago many teams at MIM were turning in ribs that you could twist and pull the bone right out...they were excellent!!! Today for competitions it seems judges are looking for ribs that have a little "pull" to them. Sauced or rubbed? sweet or spicy? what works best in your experience? Brisket: Tender, good smoke ring, not dried out... what else?? Presentation: Picture perfect presentation - perfect slices, uniform chicken pieces, perfectly placed lettuce - all a must! just like the restaurant biz, that first impression can make you or break you. Do you present pork with slices, pulled and chopped?