July 3, 2024 2 min read


Nathan’s Hot Dog Contest Heats up amid Joey Chestnut’s Absence

Although the champion and GOAT player won't participate, the tournament is expected to be quite competitive

Traditionally, besides celebrations for Independence Day across the United States, plenty of other exciting events take place on the Fourth of July.

Nathan’s Famous International Hot Dog Eating Contest is among the events planned for July 4 but this year, a long-term champion recognized as the greatest of all time, Joey Chestnut, won’t compete in the tournament.

This became a fact after the long-term competitor and winner of 16 titles in the last 17 years was disqualified by Nathan’s Famous International Hot Dog Eating Contest.

The unexpected disqualification followed a collaboration between the champion and Impossible Foods, a company that produces plant-based hot dogs. The collaboration was, according to the tournament, in breach of its policies which is why the long-term champion was disqualified.

DraftKings Releases Odds for the Upcoming Eating Competition

Yet, Chestnut’s absence may have a positive side as the upcoming tournament is expected to be more competitive than before. In light of the upcoming competition, the leading betting and gaming operator with a solid presence across the United States, DraftKings, released odds on the tournament.

Geoffrey Esper, a serious player with experience in eating contests that holds records for chowing down chicken wings, pretzels, tamales and SPAM, was recognized as the favorite with -120 odds as of Tuesday.

Next in line was James Webb and Nick Wehry with +200 and +550 odds. Patrick Bertoletti and Gideon Oji were also among the underdogs with +800 and +400 odds.

On the other hand, in the women’s side of the tournament, the wife of Wehry, Miki Sudo, is identified as the favorite with -1,600 odds, followed by Mayoi Ebihara with +700 odds.

Nathan’s Famous International Hot Dog Eating Contest will air on ESPN2 this Thursday with coverage starting around 10:45 AM ET. The women’s side of the tournament will air on ESPN3 at around 10:45 AM ET on the same day.

Chestnut to Face Takeru Kobayashi in September

While Chestnut won’t participate in the upcoming tournament, he is set to meet one of his long-term rivals, Takeru Kobayashi, in another upcoming eating battle. The two competitive eaters and champions will participate in an upcoming event by Netflix called “Chestnut vs. Kobayashi: Unfinished Beef.”

Upon the announcement of the hot dog eating competition, oddsmakers saw Chestnut as the favorite with -1,000 odds, while Kobayashi was deemed as the underdog with +550 odds. The thrilling event is scheduled to take place on September 2.


Jerome is a welcome new addition to the Gambling News team, bringing years of journalistic experience within the iGaming sector. His interest in the industry begun after he graduated from college where he played in regular local poker tournaments which eventually lead to exposure towards the growing popularity of online poker and casino rooms. Jerome now puts all the knowledge he's accrued to fuel his passion for journalism, providing our team with the latest scoops online.

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