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After extensive deliberation, 28 chefs have been selected by the judges to compete in the cooking competition rounds of the Skuna Bay Chef Challenge - a chance to advance in a tournament cook off against each other to ultimately travel to Louisville and this year's Kentucky Derby.

Here are the chefs: In the Southwest region: Brian Howard from David Myer's Comme Ca in Las Vegas, NV; Jason Rivas of Southcoast Winery, Vineyard Rose in Murietta, CA; Oliver Wolf from the Rockwood Grill at JW Marriott in Palm Desert, Ca.

In the Northern California region: Tedd Romero, Alfredo Cortez, Ramiro Torres, Daniel Hamblett of Lucy at Bardessono Hotel, Yountville, CA

In the Pacific NW region: Sarah Schafer from Irving Street Kitchen, Portland, OR; Stephen Paulson, Hook & Plow, Seattle WA; Edmund Yee, P2B Bistro at Renaissance Hotel, Vancouver, B.C. and Varin Keokitvon, Fare Start, Seattle, WA.

From Colorado: Lon Symensma, ChoLon Bistro, Denver, CO; Juan Coronado, TAG, Denver, CO; Sean Blomberg, The Sky Hotel, Aspen, CO.

From the Midwest: Edward Sura and Cody Cheetham, Perennial Virant, Chicago, IL; Michael Barrera, Streetside Seafood, Birmingham, MI;

From Ohio/Pittsburgh: Alan Peet, Isabelas on Grandview, Pittsburgh, PA; Brian Griffey, Rue Demaine, Dayton, OH; James McCaslin, Point Brugge Cafe, Pittsburgh, PA; Jason Benegasi, Biba, Pittsburgh, PA;

From the East Coast: Thomas Schoborg, PJ Clarkes, Washington, D.C.; Charles Vogt, Mussel Bar & Grill, Atlantic City, NJ; Luke Venner, BLT, NYC

From NYC: Alan Dancyger, 2West, Brooklyn, NY; Adam Salyer, NY Marriott Brooklyn Bridge, Brooklyn, NY; Chris De Luna, La Fonda Del Sol, NYC; Kouri Killmeier, Tommy Bahama Bar & Grill, NYC

Let the battle begin! The first showdown occurs March 19th with the Northern Calfornia competition at Bardessono Hotel. The rest of the battles and the emminent judges to be announced here soon.