STONIE WINS SECOND STRAIGHT NIKO NIKO'S TITLE!
Shout it from the very top of Mount Olympus: Matthew Stonie claimed his second straight Niko Niko's World Gyro Eating Championship on this day. The slim-hipped prodigy put on a textbook display of controlled power eating. Stonie was relentless and tireless throughout the 10-minute contest, showing no signs of slowing or fading as the clock ticked into the final quarter of the event. If anything, Stonie surged as time elapsed, each bite a vindication that he—not his nemesis Chestnut—was the man today.
That Stonie won this event should not surprise anyone. He won in 2014, setting a world record in that effort of 24 Niko Niko's Gyros in 10 minutes. That year, as in this year, he defeated the #1-ranked eater in the world, Joey Chestnut. What makes the 2015 result remarkable is the margin of victory over Chestnut—some 6.75 gyros over a 10-minute event. The manner is which Stonie ate—never flagging, maintaining pace—should also give Chestnut pause. Stonie was, dare we say, Chestnut-like—cruel, unrelenting and always in control.
Weep not for Chestnut. He will bounce back for he always does. Weep, though, for Miki Sudo. Sudo was neck and neck with Chestnut throughout the event, but failed to realize the fact, despite the emcee's commentary. Sudo slowed in the final 30 seconds, happy to coast to her projected third; only in the final analysis did she realize how close she was—only 3/4 of a Gyro separated them—and kicked herself (figuratively) for not pushing harder. She came third. She could have nabbed second. Call it a $600 complacency tax. Six hundred bucks she will never see again. If your scribe was a lesser talent, he would describe this as a "wake-up call." But he won't.
Steve Hendry ate stoically for fourth, while Nasty Nate Biller again drew the official's ire for debris.
"I've got to figure out how to handle my debris better," Biller remarked after the event.
Self-awareness is the first step to rehabilitation. But without deeds it is simply hollow rhetoric.
Big ups to Costa Pollos, an 18-year-old Greek American from Houston who captivated the crowd with a stunning debut at the MLE table. Raised on Niko Niko's Gyros from a young age, he was comfortable and courageous throughout.
Full results below.
RESULTS! 1) Matthew Stonie, 22 Gyros in 10 mins 2) Joey Chestnut, 15.25 3) Miki Sudo, 14.5 4) Steve Hendry, 10.5 5) Nate Biller, 7.5 6) Costa Pollos, 7 7) Nick Trevino, 5.75 8) Alex Perez 4 9) Robb Zipp, Steve Bennett, Kendrick Dean 3.5
This contest* took place at 2pm Central on Sunday, May 17th at the Houston Greek Fest, 1100 Eldridge Parkway, Houston, TX 77077.
About Niko Niko's Greek & American Café and the 2015 Houston Greek Fest! Niko Niko's Greek & American Café has been a Houston tradition for over 35 years. With multiple locations in the city, Niko Niko's largest restaurant remains on the same property it opened it's initial walk-up stand in May of 1977. Regularly voted "Best Greek Restaurant" in Houston, Niko Niko's and owner, Dimitri Fetokakis, were featured on the Food Network's Diners, Drive-Ins, and Dives in 2009. The Niko Niko's World Gyro Eating Championship is part of Houston Greek Fest. Fetokakis and his family have been long time supporters of the festival and the church. Celebrating its 20th year, Houston Greek Fest is a four-day event featuring homemade Greek food & deserts, Greek beer & wine, Greek folks dancing, Greek shops, vendor booths, children's food and a large children's play area. For more information, visit www.houstongreekfest.com and www.nikonikos.com
For information on Houston Greek Fest, visit www.houstongreekfest.com
For information on Niko Niko's Greek & American Café, visit www.nikonikos.com.
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*All applicants must be 18 years of age or older and fully acknowledge and understand the inherent dangers and risks associated with participating in an eating contest. The applicant further acknowledges and understands that the MLE/IFOCE coordinates with event sponsor(s) to select and approve eligible participants, and that the MLE/IFOCE shall decide, at its sole discretion, whether an applicant is eligible to participate in any eating event, and/or related activities. The MLE/IFOCE may revoke an applicant's eligibility to participate in the eating contest, or related activities, at any time, for any reason, at its sole discretion. The MLE/IFOCE and the event sponsors reserve the right, at any time, to change any and all details concerning the event, including, e.g., time, duration, location and prize structure.