REGINA — In the end, there was simply no stopping Joey Chestnut at the mini-doughnut eating competition at the Queen City Ex.
Chestnut was the star attraction, and the runaway champion at the event Friday at Brandt Centre, a special fundraiser to raise money for Regina Food Bank.
Several local Regina personalities, including REAL President and CEO Tim Reid and Food Bank CEO John Bailey, tried their best to keep up with Chestnut, the 15-time champion of the July 4 Nathan’s hot dog eating contest in New York.
It turns out Chestnut is pretty good at eating donuts as well. He holds 55 competitive eating records in total, including doughnuts, and he quickly left the competition in the dust right from the start.
The contestants had eight minutes to down as many doughnuts as they could. A few did their best, but no matter how many mini-doughnuts they ate it was never enough. When time was called, there was no question that Chestnut was the winner.
The biggest winner of all was Regina Food Bank, which received a cheque for $62,099. That will pay for 186,300 meals, and tripled their original goal.
“The cause is beautiful,” said Chestnut afterwards to reporters. “It’s awesome, it’s great to be part of it and great to see the community come together.”
Chestnut ate a total of 255 mini-doughnuts in eight minutes, which is close to the record he set of 257 in Philadelphia in 2018 for a different type of doughnut: Hostess Donettes.
It was a large and enthusiastic audience for the event, and while the different competitors each had their supporters it was obvious that Chestnut was the crowd favourite.
“It felt great, the audience was yelling a little bit and pushing me,” said Chestnut. “Competitors were eating, nobody really gave up. I did like 255 (doughnuts), so it’s pretty awesome.”
As for the quality of the doughnuts used in the competition, “these were delicious,” Chestnut said. “It was one of the tastier contests I’ve had in a while.”