The Washington Post

Hot dog eating contest: Joey Chestnut wins fifth straight, Kobayashi unofficially breaks world record with 69

Grand poobah of gluttony Joey Chestnut scarfed down 62 Nathan’s hot dogs in 10 minutes Monday to capture his fourth consecutive Fourth of July hot dog eating contest title.

But while America’s competitive eating hero — nicknamed ‘Jaws’ — was devouring roughly 20,000 calories on Coney Island, his arch nemesis was doing him seven better on a Midtown Manhattan rooftop.

Takeru Kobayashi — who won six consecutive hot dog eating contest’s from 2001-06 — remains in a lengthy contract dispute with Major League Eating, which kept him off the stage last July and and Monday afternoon.

But the exiled eater was determined to put on his own feeding frenzy Monday. Before hundreds of fans, two judges and a massive television screen airing the Coney Island competition live, Kobayashi crammed 69 dogs and buns into his belly in 10 minutes. The number would have broken Chestnut’s record of 68 from 2009, but MLE — which banned Kobayashi from competing alongside Chestnut — is refusing to accept the score as an official record.

Keep reading to see video of Kobayashi’s performance and his throwdown with a bear.

And Chestnut agrees, citing the influence of a “controlled setting” on stomach performance.

“It wasn’t a competition. It was no different than what I do at practice on my own and I’m able to break a record at my house.”

Fair enough, Joey. But when was the last time YOU challenged a Kodiak bear to a hot dog eating contest?

Sonya “Black Widow” Thomas, an Alexandria resident, won the first annual women’s hot dog eating contest, cramming 40 into her small frame. Juliet Lee of Germantown finished second with 29 1/2.

Here’s Kobayashi’s “would-be” record-setting performance...

Matt Brooks is the high school sports editor for The Washington Post. He's an Arlington native and longtime District resident and was previously a high school sports reporter, editor for several blogs and Early Lead contributor with The Post.


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