Records set at socially distanced hot dog contest

Coney Island in the US has hosted a special socially-distanced version of an annual hot dog eating contest amid the coronavirus pandemic.

New records were set in both the men’s and women’s categories at the climate-controlled indoor event in Brooklyn, New York City, on Saturday.

Californian Joey “Jaws” Chestnut won the men’s division for the 13th time, swallowing 75 hot dogs in 10 minutes.

Miki Sudo, from Connecticut, took the women’s title by downing 48.5 hot dogs.

The contest is usually held outdoors and is watched by thousands of people lining the beach.

Speaking ahead of the competition on Saturday, Ms Sudo, 35, said she was unsure how she would perform in an air-conditioned setting.

“To be honest I’m a creature of habit, so having any unknown variables might throw me off,” she said.

Mr Chestnut, 36, said the precautionary measures in place were “super weird”, adding: “One of the best things about this contest is the energy and the energy the audience brings. There’s been years where I don’t feel my best and the audience pushes me.”

The Fourth of July competition – Nathan’s Hot Dog Eating Contest – has reportedly taken place every year on the US Independence Day holiday since Polish immigrant Nathan Handwerker opened his stand on Coney Island in 1916.

While Mr Chestnut has won the men’s category on 13 occasions, there was an upset in 2015 when he came second to competitor Matt Stonie.

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