Nathan's Hot Dog Eating Contest Qualifier This Saturday

How many hot dogs can you eat? Ten? Twenty? Sorry, pal. You don't cut the mustard, but I'm betting a mustard-belt or two that there are a few Phoenicians who do and will be down at Arizona Mills Mall on Saturday for the Famous Nathan's Hot Dog Eating Contest Qualifier. The wiener of this tournament gets to compete in the Famous Nathan's Fourth of July Hot Dog Eating Contest at Coney Island. 

What will it take to win? A quick look at the stats on the Nathan's Web site shows that the competition is hungry. On May 16, a gastronomical athlete by the name Eater X stuffed down 50 hot dogs to win the qualifying round in Hartford, CT. Last year's winner, Joey Chestnut tied with former champion Takeru Kobayashi at 59 hot dogs in ten minutes. To determine a true winner the two champions had a five hot dog speed-eating overtime round. That's a grand total of 64 hot dogs!

With any luck, Phoenix has an all-beef champion waiting in the wings for a shot at glory...or at least a free lunch. 

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Jonathan McNamara