After competing in his first barbecue contest 10 years ago, Mike Richter decided it was too much work. Then, after entering the next several years anyway, he "tended to over-participate in the enjoyment of adult beverages" while cooking and didn't produce anything remotely resembling a competitive entry, he says, chuckling at the memory.
Camaraderie was then, and still is now, one of his top reasons for competing.
But by 2008, after deciding to "get serious," a different story line began developing for the Jessup resident.
Wanting to win so much he could taste it, literally and figuratively, ignited a fire that led last year to his entering 34...