CRAZY LEGS SECURES WORLD OYSTER EATING TITLE
Crazy Legs Conti, a rookie competing in his first IFOCE contest, ate 14 dozen Louisiana oysters in ten minutes to win the World Oyster Eating Championship, which was held in New Orleans on Saturday, April 13, 2002.
More than 1,000 eating fans watched as Conti went head-to-head against noted IFOCE competitors Crawfish Nick Stipelcovich and David "Moe Ribs" Molesky. With just three minutes remaining in the contest, Conti and Molesky were tied for first with Stipelcovich holding a close second. Conti was resolute, maintaining his pace each step of the way, and when the buzzer sounded he finished on top with 168 oysters.
In all, 15 eaters competed in the contest, which was held in the midst of French Quarter Festival, a weekend long celebration of New Orleans food and music that draws more than 200,000 people to the city's most famous neighborhood. Conti, who some fans referred to as "mollusk king," won over the festival crowd with his fun-loving style and impressed other competitors with his modesty.
"I have to hand it to Crazy Legs," said Molesky who lost by less than one dozen oysters. "This kid eats to win and he seems to have the focus needed to succeed in this sport." While new to the IFOCE circuit, the Louisiana Oyster Eating Competition is listed as a major on the 2002 tour. The contest was sponsored by Acme Oyster House, Tabasco Brands, the Louisiana Seafood and Promotions Board, Culinary Concierge Magazine and Miller Lite.