Texas Outlaw Barbecue of Brandenburg, Ky., won the top prize Monday at the 15th annual Best in the West Nugget Rib Cook-Off for the second year in a row.
An estimated 300,000 people ate more than 130,000 pounds of barbecued ribs during the five-day festival that ended Labor Day, said Frankie Vigil, spokeswoman for John Ascuaga's Nugget hotel-casino, the event sponsor.
"Great people, great event, best ribbers in the world," said Jim Clayton, the champion from Kentucky who collected the $7,500 first-place check. "I've said it before and I'll say it again, there's not a hair's difference in any of us. It's all good."
Kinder's Custom Meats Inc. of Concord, Calif., won the best sauce award and finished second overall in the field of more than two dozen competitors from across the country.
Bone Daddy's of Midland, Mich., was third for "Best Ribs," followed by The Barbecue Company of Phoenix, Ariz., and Sweet Meat Cooking Team of Euless, Texas. Carson City BBQ Company won the "People's Choice Award."