SUWON AIR BASE -- Soldiers of the Suwon's Iron Horse dining facility are putting in extra work to hone their craft in preparation for the upcoming Phillip A Connelly competition. The competition will be held 23 May and the Iron Horse DFAC is looking to build off their Eighth Army victory in this competition last year.

"The Connelly is a competition in which all aspects of being a food service specialist will be graded," said Sgt. Shawn Saunders, food service specialist shift leader. "Cleanliness is the money making area of the competition. I've seen many DFACs lose the competition for failing this area." The cooking team will be graded on how well they prepare, cook and serve a meal.

"I feel confident in all these Soldiers," said Saunders. "They do outstanding work on a daily bases so I'm confident we will win." The cooking team day to day routine didn't change. "To prepare for the Connelly competition, we're just doing business as usual," said Malcolm Mack, a food service specialist. We're just doubling down on the procedures we're use to doing."

The DFAC's administration team is headed up by Staff Sgt. Omar Duran, administration's Non-commissioned officer in charge. The team will also be graded on how well they keep accurate numbers of diners at each meal, and appropriate accounting of money received and change given to diners.

The ration team consists of two Soldiers that work under Sgt. Kimberly Horton, rations' Non-commissioned officer in charge. The processes that ensure only authorized diners get the appropriate portions that have been properly stored is yet another aspect that will be judged in the competition.

This competition is a great opportunity for young Soldiers, said Saunders. It gives Soldiers experience they can use if they're planning on staying a cook. Italian cuisine is the theme for this year's Connelly competition. The meal will include a choice of four meats, pasta, vegetables, soups, bread and three different desserts.