CONEY ISLAND - An American defeated six-time defending champ Takeru Kobayashi, of Japan, to win the Fourth of July International Hot Dog Eating Contest at Coney Island.
Joey Chestnut, 23, downed 66 hotdogs in 12 minutes to claim first place. Kobayashi was forced go give up the yellow mustard belt to the San Jose, California, resident. Chestnut?s win marks the second American victory in 10 years.
Kobayashi stunned his fans a week ago when he announced he had painful jaw surgery. Many feared he would be sidelined, but on game day he gave it his all.
For most of the competition, Kobayashi and Chestnut were neck and neck. However, the Japanese record holder inhaled just 63 dogs and buns on the day.
Kobayashi said he will beat Chestnut next year.
Seventeen eaters competed in the 92nd annual contest. Third-place honors went to Patrick Bertoletti of Chicago.