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Chestnut falls in Corinth slugburger contest

Reported by: Tyler Hill
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Updated: 7/13/2013 11:45 pm
CORINTH, Miss. (WTVA) - For 26 years, Corinth has celebrated something most in the world will never enjoy, the slugburger.

Main Street Corinth wrapped up its 26th annual Slugburger Festival with its big finale, a slugburger-eating contest.

The festivities included live music, carnival rides, entertainment and the local delicacy, slugburgers.

Slugburger chef and festival attendee Ken Hastings said, "The event is great. It has a great environment, it's good for the kids and the whole family and the slugburgers are great."

"If someone hasn't had them, then they are something to try," Hastings said. "It's something new. They're great."

The highlight of the festival is the Slugburger-Eating Competition, and 2013 marked the second year of the world championship.

Contestants from across the nation traveled to Corinth to have their chance at winning the title of Slugburger World Champion.

Over the years, the Slugburger has managed to make it's way to the Major League Eating Competition.

"It's something about the slugburger that demands greatness from our athletes," said International Federation of Competitive Eating emcee Sam Barclay. "It will be a tough competition."

In 2012, Matt Stonie became the world's first Slugburger Champion, scarfing down 30 in ten minutes.

"Those things go down rough," Stonie said. "I got it down somehow."

This year, Stonie faced his biggest competitor and the number one competitive eater in the world, Joey Chestnut.

Most recently, Chestnut inhaled a record 69 hot dogs in ten minutes.

"I just came out of the hot dog eating contest, so my body is use to ingesting a ridiculous amount of food," Chestnut said.

Prior to the competition, Chestnut never laid his eyes on a slugburger.

"They look a little bit different from hamburgers," Chestnut said. "I'm just hoping they taste good. If they taste good, I should be able to get in a good rhythm, and I'll do well in the contest."

This year with so many world competitive eaters, expectations were high.

"I am expecting the world record to be broken," Barclay said.

Barclay said the slugburger may differ from most foods, but the contestants are prepared.

"Our athletes are highly trained athletes," he said. "They are ready for this. They have been preparing for this moment to break the world record."

Stonie said training for the slugburger was difficult, but he's ready to defend his title.

"My goal is to be one ahead of the competition," he said. "That's the ultimate goal."

That's exactly what he did. Stonie beat his own record and major opponent Chestnut by one slugburger.

"Its feels great," Stonie said. "I killed two birds with one stone today. I kept my title and beat my own record. It's amazing."

"I was watching him [Chestnut] the whole time," Stonie explained. "He was picking it up at the end there, but I edged it out. I won."

Within ten minutes, over 100 slugburgers were consumed by the contestants.

The festival was held in Corinth's Historic Downtown, and officials say the World Slugburger Competition will be held again next year.
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