Where\’s Joey Chestnut?

The build-up to the legendary Wing Bowl, set for Feb. 2 in Philadelphia, is reaching such a ferver that a local sportswriter decided he had the guts to consider entry.

The aptly named Dan Gross of the PHILADELPHIA DAILY NEWS writes about how he warmed up to thinking about entering the Wing Bowl by trying to see if he could down a dozen Taco Bell bean burritos. He only” downed seven in 20 minutes before he “threw in the towel”. And he also did it about 1 a.m. — the prime eatin’ time for most sports writers around the country.

Joey Chestnut

Meanwhile, the word around Philly is that defending Wing Bowl champion Joey Chestnut, who downed 173 wings a year ago to go with his world records in wolfing down waffles and pork ribs, has not yet been confirmed for the 20-person field for the 2007 contest. The 23-year-old from San Jose has to be selected to compete by the International Federation of Competitive Eating.

Chestnut, who has somehow never entered a chestnut eating contest, is a man to be feared, as evidenced by this staredown he had with Hot Dog Eating champ Kobiyashi before the 2006 contest at Coney Island: