Location: Coney Island, NY
Joey ‘Jaws’ Chestnut and Miki Sudo, the number-one-ranked male and female competitive eaters in the world, shattered the Nathan’s Famous Fourth of July International Hot Dog-Eating Championship world records in both men and women's divisions.
After consuming 75 hot dogs and buns in 10 minutes, Chestnut outperformed his personal best and previous world record, set in 2018, of 74 hot dogs and buns. This victory marks Chestnut's thirteenth Nathan’s Famous International Hot Dog Eating Championship win and mustard belt.
Sudo, the number-six-ranked competitive eater overall, ate 48.5 hot dogs and buns breaking the women’s world record previously set by Sonya “The Black Widow” Thomas in 2012. Sudo’s former personal best was 41 hot dogs and buns set in 2018. This year marks Sudo’s seventh consecutive win.
Men’s Division 5th Place: Eric ‘Badlands’ Booker from Selden, NY - 20 HDB 4th Place: George Chiger from Pocono Pines - 24 HDB 3rd Place: Nick Wehry from Torrington, CT - 39.5 HDB 2nd Place: Darron Breeden from Orange, VA - 42 HDB 1st Place: Joey Chestnut from San Jose, CA - 75 HDB
Women’s Division 5th Place: Rene Rovtar from Montville, NJ - 7 HDB 4th Place: Julie Goldberg from Brooklyn, NY - 8.5 HDB 3rd Place: Katie Prettyman from Marysville, WA - 15, HDB 2nd Place: Larell Marie Mele from Long Pond, PA - 18 HDB 1st Place: Miki Sudo from Torrington, CT - 48.5 HDB
Non-Public Event in Coney Island Raises Funds for Food Banks, Honor Essential Workers
Nathan’s Famous conducted the 2020 Fourth of July International Hot Dog-Eating Contest in Coney Island on Saturday, July 4, 2020. The annual contest, an American holiday tradition that traditionally has been held on the corner of Surf and Stillwell Avenues for generations, took place in a private location with COVID-19 safety measures in place. It was one of the first major televised post-COVID competitive events to be held in the United States.
“We’re ecstatic to make the announcement that the Hot Dog-Eating Contest will take place this year,” stated James Walker, Nathan’s Famous Senior Vice President, Restaurants. “2020 has been a year for the history books, and the realization that this storied July 4th tradition would be able to occur, is a great feeling. With that being said, our country and our world has endured so much in the last couple of months, that we’d be remiss if we didn’t use this moment to honor those that have done so much for each of us during this time.”
This year, the contest—which featured an annual donation of 100,000 Nathan’s Famous hot dogs to Food Bank for New York City—was dedicated to raising funds for food banks and to raising awareness of food bank needs. Major League Eating and individual eaters made donations to food banks and used the contest as a platform to highlight the work of these organizations. The contest was also used as a platform to honor essential workers in New York City, many of whom have not received recognition for their efforts.
“We owe so much to those that kept our communities fed and cared for during this unprecedented time, and we look forward to honoring them on July 4th,” continued Walker.
On a typical July 4, thousands have made the pilgrimage to Surf and Stillwell Avenues in Coney Island to watch the event in person. While this was not possible this year, ESPN aired its 12 noon ET telecast of the contest, which routinely draws an audience of millions. Each of the contests included five eaters, rather than the usual 15, to allow for social distancing.
“The Nathan’s Famous contest is synonymous with July 4th, America and the celebration of freedom,” said contest host George Shea. “We are honored to use the contest to highlight the incredible spirit of those who have supported our city and nation through the current challenge.”
According to Major League Eating ("MLE") archives, the Nathan’s Famous Fourth of July International Hot Dog Eating Contest has occurred each July 4th in Coney Island, NY, since 1916, the year Nathan Handwerker opened the legendary restaurant. MLE, the governing body of all stomach-centric sport, sanctions the Nathan’s Famous Hot Dog Eating Circuit and ensures the contests are judged professionally and that safety standards are in place at each event.
About Nathan’s Famous Nathan’s is a Russell 2000 Company that currently distributes its products in 50 states, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, the U.S. Virgin Islands, Guam, and ten foreign countries through its restaurant system, foodservice sales programs and product licensing activities. Last year, over 700 million Nathan’s Famous hot dogs were sold. Nathan’s was ranked #22 on the Forbes 2014 list of the Best Small Companies in America and was listed as the Best Small Company in New York State in October 2013. For additional information about Nathan’s, please visit our website at www.nathansfamous.com.