ENID, Okla. — Kelly Wertz collected his third and final trophy for the weekend when he took home Grand Champion honors at the 14th annual Hanor Smokin’ Red Dirt Barbecue.
Four Legs Up also took first place in the pork and brisket categories and placed fourth ribs. As Wertz walked through the Grand Ballroom of the Stride Bank Center, yellow award ribbons dangled from his back pocket. He was stopped repeatedly by competitors, both congratulating him and wishing him a safe trip back home to Great Bend, Kan.
This wasn’t Wertz’s first trip to Enid for the annual Hanor Smokin’ Red Dirt Barbecue. He’s competed in all but once since its inception.
“I’ve missed one, so it’ll be 13,” he said, noting he’ll return next year for the competition. Taking home grand champion means he’s automatically entered for next year’s competition.
Wertz said he felt good but it was relief to be done for the weekend. “It’s been a long day.”
Saying he was pleased with the pacing he was taking home, Wertz explained he'd been a lifelong cook when he caught the barbecue bug.
“I’ve been cooking all my life, and about 20 years ago I started barbecuing for something a bit different,” he said. “I’ve been at it ever since. I can’t run and this is the slowest thing I could find to do.”
Wertz said he enjoyed the competition in Enid because of how well organized it was and the people who are involved and competing.
“This is one of the better contests in the country,” he said. “This is probably one of the organizations I belong to that everybody is down-to-earth, good people. It doesn’t make any difference if you are a banker or a lawyer or a plumber. It’s all about cooking. It’s about what you do.”
More than 30 teams participated more than five categories throughout the weekend.
Coming in second overall and taking home reserve grand champion honors was Texas Car-B-Cue, third place overall went to Scott’s BBQ Shack, fourth to Rise N Swine, fifth to American Dream BBQ Team, sixth to Petie’s Smokin Pits BBQ, seventh to Buffalo’s BBQ, eighth to Spicy Spitfire BBQ, ninth to Butcher BBQ and tenth to Clark Crew BBQ.
White Moose BBQ took first in the category of chicken. Taking second in chicken was Petie’s Smokin Pits BBQ, third place was 56 Smokehouse, fourth place was Spicy Spitfire BBQ, fifth place was Smoking Dan, sixth place was Dead Bird BBQ, seventh place was Big Butts Need Rubbin Too, eighth was American Dream BBQ Team, ninth was Iron Will Cookers and 10th was Clark Crew BBQ.
Texas Car-B-Cue took first in the category of ribs, second place went to Pit Bull BBQ, third to Scott’s BBQ Shack, fourth to Four Legs Up BBQ, fifth to Barry and Erica, sixth to Gemini BBQ, seventh to American Dream BBQ Team, eighth to Devine Swine, ninth to Iron Will Cookers and tenth place went to Buffalo’s BBQ.
Top honors in the category of pork went to Four Legs Up BBQ, second place went to Evil Monkey BBQ, third to Wood Hook BBQ, fourth to Big Butts Need Rubbin Too, fifth to Buffalo’s BBQ, sixth to Devine Swine, seventh to Butcher BBQ, eighth to American Dream BBQ Team, ninth to Boom Chicka Cow Cow and tenth to Rise N Swine.
Four Legs Up BBG also took first place in the brisket category, second place went to Rise N Swine, third to Evil Monkey BBQ, fourth to Boom Chicka Cow Cow, fifth to Petie’s Smokin Pits BBQ, sixth to Clark Crew BBQ, seventh to Scott’s BBQ Shack, eighth to Buffalo’s BBQ, ninth to Texas Car-B-Cue and tenth place went to Butcher BBQ.
Bacon Bash Texas took first place in the dessert category, second went to Pit Bull BBQ USA, third to Smoking Dan, fourth to Buffalo’s BBQ, fifth to Smoke Wagon and sixth to Three Hog Night.