July 4th is American Independence Day and the day of the annual Nathan's Hot Dog Eating Contest. This year, ESPN has reported that the winner on the women's side was Miki Sudo, who accomplished something that no other woman has done: becoming the first 4-peat champion of the event.
When it comes to the world of competitive eating and especially the famous Hot Dog Eating Contest which has taken place on Coney Island, New York since 1972, the men have always been the stars.
In the early 2000s Takeru Kobayashi became a sensation when he won the competition six years in a row from 2001-2006. Then in 2006 he was beaten by Joey Chestnut who would go on to win 8 in a row and after a loss in 2015, come back strong in 2016 to win his 9th title and set a world record by devouring 70 hot dogs.
Prior to 2011 there was just one Nathan's Hot Dog Eating Contest every year and the men and women competed alongside each other. However, in 2011 they split up the sexes and since then only 2 women have held the title.
For the first three years from 2011-2013, it was Sonya Thomas taking home the belt with totals of 40, 45, and 36.75 hot dogs eaten over ten minutes in each respective year. Then in 2014 Miki Sudo began her reign as the queen of the Hot Dog eating world and she hasn't looked back since and with her win on this July 4th she is now the first 4-peat female champion. Her intake numbers for her 4 victories are, in order, 34, 38, 38 and 41.
Sudo was born in New York and lived in Japan between the ages of 4-12 (her father is Japanese). In 2011 She made a name for herself when she became the only person to complete Pho 87's PHOzilla challenge in Las Vegasand things just grew from there.
Prior to the competition Miki did an interview with Las Vega Review Journal and her goal for this year's competition was to tie the 45 hot dog record held by Sonya Thomas.
She wasn't able to reach that goal this year, but she did beat her previous best by 3 full hot dogs. She did hold on to her championship, and next year she can go for five in a row and try to tie, or even break, the record.