Chestnut led Kobayashi for the first half of the contest, establishing a two hot dog lead before falling behind the five-time winner from Nagoya. By the 10 minute mark, Chestnut was a dog and half behind and could not mount the comeback necessary to win.
Never before, however, has an American performed so well against Kobayashi and never before has an American been so galvanized by a sports hero. The crowd of more than 30,000 cheered Chestnut on throughout the contest, but especially in the final minutes chanting "Joey", "Joey".
Sonya Thomas placed third with 37 hot dogs and buns.