June 30, 2007

The Brooklyn Paper: ‘Injured’ Koby claims jaw pain before date with Joey Chestnut

Every great American holiday has it signature sporting event. Memorial Day has the Indy 500, Thanksgiving means football in Dallas and Detroit. As we work our way through the heat towards the ultimate American celebration, the Fourth of July, our eyes (and stomachs) turn to the great sporting event most closely tied to this date: The Nathans Hot Dog Eating Contest. This year's struggle has a new and exciting twist. The remarkable record of the man known as the "Great Bun" Takeru Kobayashi was shattered last month by American eater Joey Chestnut who downed 59-1/2 Hot Dogs and Buns (HDB) [Youtube video]besting Kobayashi's mark of 53-3/4 set last year at Nathan's Coney Island National Championship. To help you conceive of how much food that is I have to turn to Gersh Kuntzman who is the foremost competitive eating writer in the nation (no, you could look it up … on Wikipedia!)
Jaw-dropping feat

When Joey Chestnut downed 59-1/2 hot dogs and buns in 12 minutes last week, he not only set a new world record, but also took care of his eating for at least a week. Here’s how Chestnut’s stunning performance shapes up (or doesn’t shape up):

Total calories: 18,385 (9.2 days’ worth)

Total sodium: 40,698 mg (17.2 days’ worth)

Total fat: 1,195.95 g (18.4 days’ worth)

The recent news about this year's epicurean epic has been most unsettling. First Kuntzman raised the unsavory specter of air conditioning aiding in Chestnut's record feat. It seems the venue in Tempe Az. where Chestnut set the record as as cool as Nome on New Years, giving the challenger a distinct advantage, akin to Barry Bonds so called skin softener that led to his massive 73 home run season. The Brooklyn based scribe suggests that until Chestnut repeats his record run under the summertime sun, with worthy competitors munching beside him that the record should have an asterisk beside it ala Maris's record breaking season in 1961 (61 homers but in 8 games more than it took the mighty Babe Ruth [who could have won this contest] to hit 60, for the sports trivia impaired)
If that weren't enough it seems that the reigning champ may be trying to dodge the challenger. Kuntzman reports "that The Great Bun, as he is known to his fans, is seeing medical specialists in Tokyo this week in hopes of curing a mysterious case of stiff jaw that some scribes (OK, this scribe) is calling “jawthritis.”"
So its no so Joe! Koby, a coward. I don't believe it. Sounds like a pysch move to me. You know when you try to get your opponent to relax his training by faking injury while you work your buns off (sorry) to get ready for the battle.

The usual suspects: At the July 4th contest, 7-foot-6 giant, P. Theyagarjan, the world tika-masala-eating champion, will make his debut. Here, Theyagarjan is compared to other widely recognized celebrities: the Frankster and fourth-ranked eater Sonya “The Black Widow” Thomas.

I'm betting that Chestnut will be up to the task and that Koby will show but go down to defeat when Chestnut breaks the magic 60 HDB barrier. You can witness all the gut wrenching (or it that retching) drama on EPSN (Channel 25 on Charter Cable north of Oregon Inlet for the sports TV impaired, your mileage may vary) at noon on Wed. The Nathan's event is sponsored by the world's major competitive eating sanctioning body the International Federation of Competitive Eating (hereinafter refferred to as Some of the Strangest People in the World or IFCE for short). The IFCE sanctions competitive eating contests in all variety of foods and in all types of settings (ie. air conditioned and au natural). The list of records is staggering. I guess my fave is 6 pounds of baked beans in One Minute, 48 Seconds. Think about that. Think about being around the winner for the next week. Think about loser who only ate 5 pounds (or took 2 minutes for the requried 6 lbs. not sure which). How much Pepto Bismal does that require.
Will Koby show, can Chestnut stand the heat or will some new champ eat their way into our stomachs hearts. We'll let you know when it's over.


At 9:55 AM, Blogger Paula the Surf Mom said...

Reporting on the wide world of Pro eating... Bob I think you have found your true blog calling


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