Virus doesn’t stop annual hot dog eating contest

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Competitive eaters Joey Chestnut, left, and Miki Sudo, right, pose for a photograph after winning their respective divisions with new world records after the Nathan’s Famous July Fourth hot dog eating contest, Saturday, July 4, 2020, in the Brooklyn borough of New York. AP Photo/John Minchillo)

NEW YORK — The coronavirus put a damper on this year’s Fourth of July celebrations in New York, but some things stayed the same. Joey Chestnut and Miki Sudo repeated as men’s and women’s champions at Saturday’s Nathan’s Famous July Fourth hot dog eating contest.

Chestnut downed 75 wieners and buns in 10 minutes and Sudo downed 48 1/2 in a competition that took place at an undisclosed location with no in-person spectators. Both hot dog totals were world records. “I’m always pushing for a record,” Chestnut said before the contest aired on a live sports-starved ESPN. “I know that’s what the fans want.”

New Yorkers were urged to avoid large holiday gatherings in order to prevent a surge in coronavirus cases like other states are seeing.

Gov. Andrew Cuomo said there were more than 720 new confirmed coronavirus cases reported Friday statewide, and 11 deaths were attributed to the virus.

New York City’s July 4 festivities will be capped by a televised fireworks display over the Empire State Building. Fireworks sponsor Macy’s said the show, to be broadcast on NBC, would feature “a spectacular display choreographed to an epic musical score.”

Copyright 2021 Nexstar Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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