Hot dog champ Joey Chestnut expects this year’s contest to be ‘a battle’

NEW YORK — Eleven-time champion Joey Chestnut says he expects this year’s Nathan’s Hot Dog Eating Contest to be “a battle.”

But the 35-year-old Chestnut said Wednesday that he’ll “find a rhythm and do what it takes” to win the Fourth of July eat-off in Brooklyn’s beachside Coney Island neighborhood.

Chestnut joined other competitors at the Empire State Building for the weigh-in for Thursday’s contest.

Chestnut weighed in at 216.5 pounds (98 kilos), while defending women’s champion Miki Sudo weighed 114 pounds (52 kilos).

Chestnut ate 74 wieners and buns to claim the 2018 title. Sudo ate 37 to triumph on the women’s side.

Thursday’s top five winners of each gender will split $40,000. The two first-place winners will each earn $10,000.

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