Bet On The Wurst: NH Bettors In Exclusive Company For Nathan’s Hot Dog Eating Contest

Posted on July 2, 2020

There are only three states where people can legally wager on Nathan’s Famous Fourth of July International Hot Dog Eating Contest this weekend. New Hampshire is even more exclusive among those three, however.

Colorado and New Jersey are the only other two states where DraftKings is accepting wagers on the biggest competitive eating event of the year. The action in NH may be exceptionally robust.

Why NH is the best place for hot dog eating contest betting

In NH, you only have to be 18 years or older to bet on sporting events. In every other state to legalize sports wagering so far, that minimum age is 21.

Because DraftKings essentially has a monopoly on legal betting in NH and a unique partnership with Major League Eating (MLE), NH is the only place where people between the ages of 18 and 20 can wager upon Nathan’s contest this year.

So far, DraftKings is also the only US sports betting app in CO and NJ to offer action on the event.

DraftKings announced the deal with MLE on Wednesday. It is now an official sponsor of MLE. To commemorate the occasion, it is offering a free-to-play pool with $25,000 in prizes for all customers.

New Hampshirites can get some skin in the game, however. DraftKings offers action on both the men’s and women’s events slated for Independence Day.

Chestnut and Sudo against the world

DraftKings’ markets for the contest are pretty simple. NH bettors can wager on the favorites or the field and how many hot dogs the favorites will consume.

Joey Chestnut is the favorite in the men’s contest. He is seeking his 13th Nathan’s title this year. As of Thursday morning, the action on him to win sits at -1,000. The line on the field rests at +550.

Miki Sudo has won the women’s event every year since 2014. She carries -835 odds to make it seven titles in a row. Right now, a bet on the field would pay out +500 if she falters.

The lines on the hot dogs consumed by both favorites are quite ambitious. For Chestnut, DraftKings offers two different lines. The conservative over/under sits at 72.5, which is just short his record of 74 set last year.

There is also an aggressive line of 74.5. The best odds are on Chestnut breaking his record, as the over on 74.5 currently sits +140. The action on Chestnut’s total going under 72.5 isn’t far off at +125.

DraftKings also expects Sudo to flirt with her personal best. In 2018, she put down 41 buns and dogs. The line on her 2020 performance sits at 40.5, meaning she’ll at least tie her record if she hits the over. The better line of +115 is on the under, however.

The event will take place at noon EST on July 4, and ESPN will televise it as usual. However, other conditions make this year’s iteration of the hot dog eating contest unique. Bettors need to know these details.

Why this year’s contest is different

Typically, Nathan’s holds its contest in front of a crowd of Coney Island visitors. This year, it will be in a private location and be closed to the public.

Additionally, contestants may battle some rust. MLE hasn’t been isolated from the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic, canceling prior events to keep people safe.

It’s hard to predict how all these factors will affect the outcome of the contest. The lack of a crowd roar, the difficulty of simulating live competition in training and the new venue may have some psychological effects.

Regardless of how the events turn out, the option to bet on the contests presents a fun, new wrinkle to Independence Day weekend for New Hampshirites. That includes all residents and visitors who are at least 18 years of age.

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Derek Helling

Derek Helling is a freelance journalist who resides in Kansas City, Mo. He is a 2013 graduate of the University of Iowa and covers the intersections of sports with business and the law.

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