America continued its dominance at that most-American of sporting events — the world hot-dog-eating contest at Nathan’s Famous on July 4 in Coney Island — as defending two-time champ Joey “Jaws” Chestnut stunned the world by defeating former champ Takeru Kobayashi by a huge margin.
When all the hot dogs, buns and dog/bun detritus was counted at the end of the 10-minute contest, Chestnut had eaten an all-time record 68 HDBs to Kobayashi’s 64-1/2 HDBs.
The champion was his humble self.
“I have to credit my mom,” he said. “She helped me every night as I was training.”
For his part, Kobayashi said he would not retire from the sport that made his name known to every household in the world.
“I will be back,” he said. “I made a promise to The Brooklyn Paper that if I retire, the Paper will be the first to know. But you will not get a call this year. I will be back.”
Kobayashi’s loss was foreshadowed a day earlier when a trio of elephants from the Ringling Brothers and Barnum & Bailey Circus defeated three humans in a six-minute hot dog bun contest by a score of 505 to 147.
After the spectacle was over, International Federation of Competitive Eating President George Shea said, “This is as dark a day for humanity as the evening of the Hindenberg crash. My heart is screaming, ‘Oh, the pachydermity! Oh, the pachydermity.’”