19.10.2017 | Uta Spörndli at the BBQ World Championships in Ireland

With fire and flames

Uta Spörndli, Treasury Controller at Axpo, has an unusual hobby - and is very successful at it. Last weekend she and her team competed at the BBQ World Championships in Limerick, Ireland. In an interview she talks about the competition and her passion for barbecuing.

How do you balance your time between work and your hobby?

That's not always easy, because before a competition you want to practice. We spend most of the weekends between May and October at the grill. We use our grill in the winter as well, but then for more private occasions.

What was the highlight at the BBQ World Championships in Ireland?

That's hard to say. Just being able to participate at the BBQ World Championships with 91 teams from 30 countries was a highlight in and of itself. And I have to mention the atmosphere, meeting old friends, good talks about barbecuing and the super food that all the teams prepared at the grill. It's hard to describe the event in words; you really had to be there. It was very impressive on Friday when all the highly motivated teams paraded through Limerick in the rain with their flags. And the feeling when the other teams cheer for you at the awards ceremony is indescribable. 

You are the Swiss BBQ Vice Champion 2017 and placed 3rd in the category pork shoul-der/pulled port at the World Championships. What is your motivation, what's the future goal?

The motivation is first and foremost to enjoy barbecuing. We are a great team and the experience of being successful at competitions while having fun is very important to us. We've been going to national and international BBQ competitions for 10 years and have never come home without a cup. At the BBQ World Championships 2015 in Sweden our team was the Vice Champion. Of course that continually motivates us... although it also puts a bit of pressure on expectations. Our main goal is to do our best and to be 100% satisfied with the result. The rest is up to the jury.

Is it true you don’t eat meat? How does that work with your hobby?

Yes, it's true and totally baffling to lot of people... It's not a problem for my hobby though. Our team has 7 members, 4 of which are professional cooks that know how to prepare meat. I am more needed when it comes to the vegetarian courses. I also organise the trips to competitions, look after guests and our team's finances.

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