Friday, June 29, 2007

Eating Hot Dogs For America On The Fourth Of July

CONEY ISLAND, N.Y. (Wireless Flash - FlashNews) – World War II may be over, but there’s a Fourth Of July bun battle raging between Japan and the U.S.A.

Japanese competitors have nearly swept the infamous Nathan’s Hot Dog Eating Contest in Coney Island, New York, for the past decade, but this year it looks like Americans may have a food-fighting chance.

Major League Eating executive Richard Shea says the hot dog eating championship belt is up in the air, because reigning Japanese champ, Takeru Kobayashi, is suffering from acute jaw pain.

Shea says, “Kobayashi is getting physical therapy for his jaw, and he will be competing to defend his honor. But there’s some speculation that he may be just playing mind games with the challenger.”

That’s because American eater Joey Chestnut beat Kobayashi’s record with 59-and-a-half hot dogs at the Southwest regional qualifier for the Nathan’s contest in Arizona on June 2nd.

And the rivalry is going to make this year’s event, which is even featured on ESPN, bigger than ever.

Shea jokes, “Competitive eating is the most popular, fastest-growing sport in the world – and that’s based on no data whatsoever.”

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