DraftKings to Offer $25K Free-to-Play Pool for Annual Tradition
NEW YORK and BOSTON, July 01, 2021 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Major League Eating announced today that for the second consecutive year, DraftKings (Nasdaq: DKNG) will be an official sponsor of the 2021 Nathan’s Famous Fourth of July International Hot Dog Eating Contest. While this annual American holiday tradition was held for decades at the Nathan’s Famous flagship restaurant in Coney Island, NY, this year’s contest will be conducted as a ticketed event at Coney Island’s Maimonides Park. Following last year’s restrictions due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the event marks the holiday contest’s return to the public.
“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,” said Johnny Avello, director of sportsbook operations at DraftKings. “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.”
DraftKings, a leader in the digital sports entertainment and gaming industries, will be an official sponsor of the event, expanding upon last year’s collaboration. Sports fans will be able to interact with the event through the DraftKings platform, including a free-to-play pool with $25,000 in prizes. Additionally, customers in Colorado, New Jersey and New Hampshire will be able to place a variety of bets on the contest itself.
On a typical July 4th, tens of thousands converge on the corner of Surf and Stillwell avenues in Coney Island to watch the event in person. After last year’s event was closed to the public, this year’s event is being held in a minor league ballpark and tickets quickly sold out. The event will take place from 11am-1pm ET with an in-person audience, with live broadcast of the contest on ESPN beginning at 12 noon ET.
“We are excited to have DraftKings as the official oddsmaker for this competition, which is the biggest event on the MLE calendar,” said Richard Shea, president of Major League Eating. “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.”
Last year, Joey Chestnut of Indianapolis, IN, set a new world record, consuming 75 hot dogs and buns in 10 minutes. Darron Breeden finished in second place, Nick Wehry in third, George Chiger in fourth, and Eric ‘Badlands’ Booker in fifth. In the women’s competition last year, Miki Sudo of Tampa, FL, broke the women’s world record and took first place, 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, however, the #2-ranked eater in the world, Michelle Lesco, will compete.
According to the Major League Eating archives, the Nathan’s Famous Fourth of July International Hot Dog Eating Contest has occurred each July 4th in Coney Island, NY, since 1916, the year Nathan Handwerker opened the legendary restaurant. Major League Eating is the governing body of all stomach-centric sports. The league sanctions the Nathan’s Famous Hot Dog Eating Contest and ensures the event is judged professionally and that safety standards are in place.
Continuing a long-standing tradition, during the pre-game ceremony Nathan’s Famous will donate 100,000 hot dogs to Food Bank for New York City.
DraftKings Inc. is a digital sports entertainment and gaming company created to fuel the competitive spirit of sports fans with products that range across daily fantasy, regulated gaming and digital media. Headquartered in Boston, and launched in 2012 by Jason Robins, Matt Kalish and Paul Liberman, DraftKings is the only U.S.-based vertically integrated sports betting operator. DraftKings is a multi-channel provider of sports betting and gaming technologies, powering sports and gaming entertainment for 50+ operators in 17 countries. DraftKings’ Sportsbook is live with mobile and/or retail betting operations in the United States pursuant to regulations in Colorado, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Michigan, Mississippi, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Tennessee, Virginia and West Virginia. DraftKings’ daily fantasy sports product is available in 7 countries internationally with 15 distinct sports categories. DraftKings is the official daily fantasy partner of the NFL, MLB, NASCAR, PGA TOUR and UFC as well as an authorized gaming operator of the NBA and MLB, an official betting operator of the PGA TOUR and the official betting operator of UFC. DraftKings also owns Vegas Sports Information Network, Inc. (VSiN), a multi-platform broadcast and content company.
About Major League Eating
Major League Eating is the governing body that oversees professional eating contests worldwide. The organization was formed in the late 1990s to advance the sport safely and maintain its integrity. Major League Eating (MLE) develops, publicizes and produces world-class eating competitions in all varieties of food disciplines. Featuring the world’s top competitive eaters, MLE events provide dramatic audience entertainment. For more information, visit www.majorleagueeating.com, www.facebook.com/eatfast or on Instagram and Twitter: @eatingcontest.
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