Nathan's Champ Scarfs 68 Dogs to Defend Title

Joey Chestnut retains his belt in Nathan's annual contest
By Katherine Thompson,  Newser Staff
Posted Jul 5, 2009 10:23 AM CDT
The Nathan's Famous Fourth of July International Hot Dog-Eating Contest is held in Coney Island in New York, Saturday, July 4, 2009.   (AP Photo/Yanina Manolova)
camera-icon View 4 more images

(Newser) – Champion eater Joey Chestnut pulled off a three-peat by downing 68 hot dogs in Nathan's Coney Island contest yesterday, the New York Daily News reports. Chestnut's rival Takeru Kobayashi consumed a mere 64 franks in the annual faceoff. There was little suspense during the 10-minute bout, as Chestnut developed a two-dog lead right out of the gate.

"I knew it would be hard to beat me," said Chestnut. "After the second minute I knew my body was cooperating. It was such a good day. I've never eaten that many before." A spectator added that "as a doctor, I can say this is probably not healthy, but it's fun to watch." (Read more Joey Chestnut stories.)