Judges say hot dog contestant too messy
A participant in Nathan's Famous Hot Dog Eating Contest felt "completely humiliated" after she claims she scoffed 24 franks only for judges to credit her with just four due to the mess she made, the New York Daily News reported Monday.
Grace Lee, a 5-foot-2 (1.57m), 110-pound (49kg) Atlanta native, would have taken home a $1,500 prize for fourth place with a 24-dog total, but instead was demoted to eighth place and left with nothing.
The 29-year-old said she was more concerned about respectability than the cash.
"It's outrageous," said Lee. "I just want someone to explain to me how they came up with that number out of thin air.
"I would have preferred if they had just disqualified me than to come up with a number so low."
Richard Shea, a spokesman for Major League Eating, which runs the July 4 event on New York's Coney Island, said there was so much mess around Lee that it was difficult to determine how many full hot dogs she had actually inhaled.
"We take judging very seriously," Shea said.
"The judge was unable to determine what she had. He was faced with a large amount of detritus. He analyzed the food in front of her and credited her with four."
Shea said Lee would be welcome back next year, but she said she did not know whether she would return.
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