The Forth of July is a great holiday. The only downside is that traditionally, it hasn't involved a lot of gambling. Well, thanks to the Internet, you can now wager on the most American event of all: The 2014 Nathan's Hot Dog Eating Contest.
God bless America. But more importantly, God bless Caribbean and European sportsbooks.
The contest is held at Coney Island, in Brooklyn, and begins at 11:30 a.m. (EST). The men's competition doesn't actually kick off until 12:40 p.m. (EST), but why on earth would any red-blooded American skip an opportunity to watch women force feeding themselves hot dogs? But for the purposes of gambling, we're sticking to the men, mainly because I'm lazy.Among the male participants, there are five ways to play.
If you don't want to get into specifics about the participants, this is a great bet to make. Do you think the winner will eat more than 68.5 hot dogs? If so, bet the Over. If not, bet the Under. Your odds are the same either way, so a winning $20 bet pays off $16.67.
Joey Chestnut (-1200)
Aside from J. Edgar Hoover, Joey Chestnut is the most patriotic American to every force a bunch of wieners down his throat.
From 2001 to 2006, the contest was dominated by Takeru Kobayashi, a competitive eater from Japan. I shouldn't have to explain to you why a Japanese guy dominating an American hot dog eating contest is a god damn travesty. Luckily, that's all in the past thanks to Joey Chestnut. In 2007, he crushed Kobayashi, eating a record breaking 66 dogs. Since then, he's never lost the contest, which is why you won't get rich betting on him. A $20 bet on Chestnut will only win you $1.67.
Matt Stonie (+900)
Matt Stonie is a 22-year-old San Jose native, and the youngest member of the Major League Eating organization, which is apparently a real thing. But his age hasn't stopped him. Earlier this year he ate 24 gyros in ten minutes. That's a world record. That's also f*cking disgusting. But despite the hype, Stonie is still a long shot, and a $20 bet on him will $180.
The Field (+700)
Apparently, the bookies don't have a lot of respect for the rest of the contestants. Either that, or it's just pretty damn hard to handicap a hot dog eating contest.
At any rate, rather than setting odds on the rest of the participants individually, they've all been lumped into "the field." So if anyone besides Chestnut and Stonie win, "the field" wins. And a $20 on these guys will win you $140.
Good luck betting, and God bless America.