Fourth Of July Hot Dog Eating Contest Open To Public, Bettors

Fourth Of July Hot Dog Eating Contest Open To Public, Bettors
By Lou Monaco

One of summer’s best tradition returns to the public on Sunday and New Jersey bettors will have another event to wager on this holiday weekend.

DraftKings announced Thursday it has joined with Major League Eating (MLE) as an official sponsor of Nathan’s Famous Fourth of July International Hot Dog Eating Contest for the second straight year.

The sold-out contest is open to the public as a ticketed event at Coney Island’s Maimonides Park (home of minor league baseball’s Brooklyn Cyclones) in New York from 11 a.m.-1 p.m. ET. ESPN will have live coverage, starting at noon. Last year, COVID-19 restrictions meant a reduced field

The event usually takes place on the corner of Surf and Stillwell avenues at Coney Island.

Place Your Bets

DraftKings bettors in Colorado, New Jersey and New Hampshire can bet the contest and the online sportsbook will be holding a free-to-play, $25,000 contest.

Last year’s contest was ranked second by handle among the most-bet novelty events on DraftKings Sportsbook historically, just behind the 2020 Academy Awards, and brought in more handle than all other eating events DraftKings offered combined.

“The Nathan’s Famous Fourth of July International Hot Dog Eating Contest is an epic event that epitomizes both patriotism and the will to compete,” Johnny Avello, director of sportsbook operations at DraftKings, said in a news release. “We are excited to work with Major League Eating once again to offer people everywhere the opportunity to engage with this July Fourth tradition with true skin in the game.”

Who To Watch

Last year, Joey Chestnut of Indianapolis set a new world record, consuming 75 hot dogs and buns in 10 minutes and won for the 13th time. Darron Breeden, Nick Wehry, George Chiger and Eric "Badlands" Booker finished second through fifth, respectively.

Tampa’s Miki Sudo broke the women’s world record in 2020, marking her seventh consecutive win by eating 48.5 hot dogs and buns. Larell Marie Mele came in second, with 18 hot dogs and buns in 10 minutes.

Sudo will not be competing this year, but the second-ranked eater in the world, Michelle Lesco, will.

“We are excited to have DraftKings as the official oddsmaker for this competition, which is the biggest event on the MLE calendar,” MLE President Richard Shea said. “It is sure to be a great July Fourth with the return of a live audience, a full slate of Major League Eaters and Joey Chestnut going for an unprecedented 14th Mustard Yellow Belt.”

During the pre-event ceremony, Nathan’s Famous will donate 100,000 hot dogs to Food Bank for New York City.

BetMGM Sportsbook will also offer the ability to bet on the contest.

“Joey Chestnut is a massive -5000 favorite to win the Nathan’s Hot Dog Eating Championship,” . BetMGM sports trader Darren Darby said. “With Chestnut being such a resounding favorite, the real action will come on his prop for total hot dogs eaten. The over 73.5 is the early betting favorite.”



Lou Monaco had been East Coast Scene columnist for Gaming Today in Las Vegas since June 2019, covering the East Coast sportsbook scene with emphasis on NJ and PA. He also currently is a part-time writer for the high school sports department for NJ Advanced Media ( in Iselin, NJ. Lou has over 30 years sports experience with previous stints at ESPN SportsTicker, Daily Racing Form and Oddschecker.

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