Missouri-based Gettin’ Basted barbecue team claimed the title of Grand Champion at the 32nd Annual Jack Daniel’s World Championship Invitational Barbecue in Lynchburg, Tenn.
As Grand Champion, Gettin’ Basted earned $25,000, braggin’ rights as winner of what many consider to be the most prestigious barbecue competition in the world, and the chance to defend its title next year in 2022.
“Best feeling in the world right now – on top of the world, and we’re so glad that The Jack is back in 2021,” said Gettin’ Basted Pitmaster Brad Leighninger. “We’ve won at some other prestigious events, but this one has always been on the bucket list. You never know when you’re going to be able to qualify for this event or when you’re going to be able to come back. This is certainly a big one to win!”
Gettin’ Basted, a team led by Leighninger, Jason Roberts, and Derrick Melugin, added to its list of accolades that includes Reserve Grand Champion at the American Royal in 2019, the 2018 and 2020 Kansas City Barbecue Society (KCBS) Team of the Year, and the first-place team in the pork category of The Jack™ in 2018.
After initially starting out as a food truck in 2012, the Missouri-based team currently operates restaurant and catering locations in Branson, Nixa, and Springfield. Billing themselves as “Ozark-style barbecue,” Gettin’ Basted cooks over open flames using Missouri hardwood charcoal without the use of commercial smokers.
A total of 77 teams from across the county competed in The Jack™ in 2021. To qualify, teams must win a state championship with at least 25 teams or a competition of 50 teams or win one of the premiere barbecue competitions in the U.S.—Memphis in May, American Royal Open, or Houston World’s Championship Bar-B-Que—which qualifies a team for an automatic berth. At The Jack™, each team competes in seven categories – Pork Ribs, Pork Shoulder/Butts, Beef Brisket, Chicken, Dessert, Cook’s Choice, and Jack Daniel’s Sauce.
“After a year off, it was great to see smoke back in the Jack Daniel’s Hollow in 2021. It’s exciting to see each team’s passion and dedication at the Jack Daniel’s World Championship Invitational Barbecue,” said Jack Daniel’s Master Distiller Chris Fletcher. “We want to congratulate Gettin’ Basted on winning the title of Grand Champion—that’s an incredible feat.”
Slap’s BBQ of Kansas City, KS, was named the Reserve Grand Champion, taking home the second-place cash prize of $10,000. Finishing third overall was Razor-Racks BBQ of Prairie Grove, AR.