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Corn Dog Eaters Compete For Fun and Funds at State Fair

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(Sacramento, CA)
Monday, July 23, 2012
Eight men lined up on the stage and gorged themselves on breaded hot dogs as fast as they could for 8 straight minutes. Some dunked the dogs in water before taking a bite. One guy whipped his head back as if swallowing a pill. The smallest of the bunch bounced up and down and looked at the sky while eating, as if to use gravity to push the fried food down.

MC: "They're at two minutes in and someone's already eaten 8 corn dogs!"

Milo Franks supplies the corn dogs. He's been selling at the fair for 43 years.

FRANKS: "The more they eat, the more fun it is, I think"

Twenty-one year old Wisconsin student Eric Dahl traveled here hoping he'll take home the $2,500 prize.

DAHL:  "You don't slow down, you don't think about it when you're doing this stuff, otherwise you're not going to win."

Dahl has become a professional of sorts. In just a little over a year of competitive eating, he's raked in $10,000 in prize money. It's helping pay his way through school.

DAHL: "Sweets have been bad for me. I did cupcakes and needless to say that wasn't a pretty sight afterwards.

Dahl beat last year's winner. He packed away 20 corn dogs in 8 minutes. He walked off stage looking like he just went for a jog, unlike third place winner Roy Bustillo.

BUSTILLO: "This is bad, I don't think I've ever hurt this bad before. I'm really done ...Like, I, I want to go home and cry"

Pain or no pain, Bustillo says he'd do it again next year.

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