Scoresheets arrived. 32, my lowest Finals score yet.
Man this was really not my year! I guess ya never know; even that slam dunk you call your best ever just might not hit the judge's palate right that day.
...see ya in Baltimore. I plan to return to that stage!
I know you've seen it working both ways.
This year in the 2nd round, in one of my flights was a decent beer -- I gave it a 35 or 36 or so -- solid beer, fit the style pretty well, but small imbalances/lack of intensity caused it to be a bit lacking in the "wow factor" department. It happened to score well enough to send it on to mini-BOS. I then judged on the mini-BOS panel, when the 2nd bottle of that entry came out. It was night and day. The beer ended up taking Silver for the category. There was a VERY noticeable difference between the two bottles, and in this case, it happened to work out to the guy's advantage. Had the steward chosen the bottles in the opposite order, the guy would have absolutely kicked butt in the flight and gotten a superb score, but would be eliminated quickly in a sea of much better contenders.
That said, I've had many other times where I've sent fantastic beers forward to BOS/mini-BOS and felt almost embarrassed to admit to the others I sent them forward after the 2nd bottle came out.
It happens a lot more often than folks would think. The real lesson for all of us is to pay the utmost attention when bottling, to be as consistent as possible.