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A bear, a sumo and a lot of PIE

By editorial assistant Sandi Toxic

Posted September 15, 2012
Takeru 'Kobi' Kobayashi pizza
Poised for pizza: Takeru Kobayashi is keen to keep his crown. © PIE Wood Fired Pizza Joint

Forget moose in maple syrup. It's 14" Margheritas they'll be eating by the tonne at the Third Annual Pizza PIE Eating Competition in Barrie, Ontario tomorrow (16/9/12).

Billed as having "quickly become Canada's largest eating event", the 12-minute all-you-can-eat pizza gobathon will take place at the PIE – Wood Fire Pizza Joint at 15.00 local time, with Japanese eating phenomenon Takeru 'Kobi' Kobayashi looking to retain his crown for the third year in a row.

At the same time, the man who inspired the Rake and Herald's favourite gurgitator Sonya 'the Black Widow' Thomas to take up the sport back in 2003, will no doubt also be looking to spank his own personal best of one slice short of 11 pizzas.

But these pizzas won't be like those piddly little frozen jobbies booze editor Miltov Lamprey scavved from that skip the other day.

Oh, no.

Each of these things will apparently tip the scales at a whole pound, or just under half a kilo.

Even with all that mould on them, the ones Lamprey swiped didn't weigh more than a hamster's chuffter.

Especially after the rats had been at them.

Anyway, it certainly won't be just Kobi who'll be doing his damnedest to scoff his way to glory in Barrie.

While we're still not exactly sure what the full line-up of eaters will be, we know from a PIE press release that Kobi will be pitting his pizza-pummelling powers against Toronto power-eater 'Furious' Pete Czerwinski; five-foot tall Stephanie 'Xanadu' Torres, who PIE describe as the "world number two female eater in the world"; and Jamie 'the Bear' McDonald, who is apparently "making the trip up after winning back-to-back pizza contests in the States this summer".

A newcomer to the arena of alimentary athleticism will also be taking part in tomorrow's chow-down, although spectators with poor eyesight might find it hard to pick him out.

Or maybe not.

Weighing 680 lbs (308.4 kg) and standing 6' 8" (2 m) in his socks, Emmanuel 'Tiny' Yarborough is not what most people would call slightly built.

In fact, as well as addressing him as sir, you'd be more correct in calling him the world's largest athlete, which is also what the Guinness Book of Records call him.

"After a limited career in [The Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC)] and national notoriety in Japan as the first African American sumo wrestler in Japanese history", Tiny, the press release says, is now looking to take on the greatest sport of all.

But will his giant stature and physique intimidate his fellow gurgitators once the pizza munching gets underway?

Probably not.

After all, as the Bear puts it: "Size means little in this sport."

Just ask the Black Widow.

Jamie McDonald big breakfast
The Bear's breakfast: How to start your day right. Just not too much coffee, OK? © Jamie McDonald

As he geared up to compete in the Chef One two-minute dumpling sprint eating show-down in Brooklyn, Noi Yoik today, the Bear exclusively told the Rake & Herald via email: "My biggest worry is Kobi."

"I really just want to see how close I can get to him."

"I am a rookie this year but confident in my abilities."

"If I don't place in at least second it is nobody's fault but my own."

Describing himself as being "super excited" about the tomorrow's pizza meet, the Bear continues: "It's a chance to gauge myself against one of the top eaters ever and to compete against ['Furious'] Pete, which I have not had the chance to do yet."

This past Saturday (8/9/12), the Bear wolfed downed 5.5 lbs (2.5 kg) of fungi in eight minutes to win the 2012 Mushroom Festival National Fried Mushroom Eating Championship in Kennett Square, Pennsylvania1.

But what about pizza?

"Each food is unique and requires practice to get an efficient method down," he says.

"I don't practice with a specific food outside of contests so I am learning as I go."

"If I want to take my performance to the next level, I will have to change this as my starts are relatively slow as I figure the food out."

But when the munching in Barrie gets underway, how much pizza will the Bear be looking to shove down his gob?

"As much as I can," he replies.

"It really depends on the crust but I would like to shoot for at least 30 pieces."

Well, as with all the other gurgitators taking part in tomorrow's pizza fest, we wish him well and all power to his gnashers and chompers.

But right now I've gotta get another Special Brew 'cos this one's done and I'm getting a right thirst on.

In the meantime, have a butcher's at the Bear at work courtesy of the following YouTube vid uploaded by fellow indie eater Michael 'Munchin' Mike' Longo.

Right, gotta go.

Lamprey's heading to the kitchen with a carrier bag.


We have just learnt that in the aforementioned Chef One dumpling sprint eating contest in Noi Yoik, Dave Brunelli has managed to wolf down a total of 74 of the things in two minutes.

As well as picking up $1,000 for his efforts, he has also succeeded in setting a new competition record.

Furthermore, according to the excellent EatFeats website Brunelli also usurped Joe Menchetti's crown, which until very recently had sat on his head for a whole seven years.

Hopefully, it's not too sweaty.

Anyway, it appears that the Bear placed equal second with the aforementioned Menchetti after gulletising a total of 69 dumplings.

Here are the results as twittery tweet tweeted by Will Millender:

1) Dave Brunelli (74);

=2) Joe Menchetti (69);

=2) Jamie McDonald (69);

4) Wayne Algenio (55);

5) Will Millender (50);

6) John Bradley (44); and

7) Pat Philbin (36).

Top eating and congratulations all round.

Now back to my fresh can of Spesh...


1) The results of the National Fried Mushroom Eating Championship were as follows:

1) Jamie McDonald (5.5 lbs);

2) David Brunelli (4.75 lbs);

3) Eric Dahl (4.5 lbs); and

4) Mike Longo (3.5 lbs).

We understand that Will Millender came fifth. However, we haven't got a clue how much he ate. Ditto all the other participants. Sorry, but we do live on the other side of the Pond, you know.

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