Well, about a month ago, I entered my first competition. (Cascade Brewers Cup, in Seattle) I brewed an IPA, but folks on my homebrew club liked it, but said it was more like an ESB, so that's were I entered it.
I just got the judging sheets, and one judge says "too hoppy", the other said "good hoppiness" Rather confusing to new competitor. Both were consistant in identifying some off flavors (solvent) and suggested I pay better attention to sanition. So that was good feedback.
But when the two judges say different things about the hoppiness, I have to wonder a bit....... I've entered an Irish Red into NHC, and going to keep entering. Regardless of winning or not, the objective judging of my beer is well worth the price to enter.....