Quarantine expansion puts Nathan’s field in doubt

New York governor Andrew Cuomo announced that he is expanding the list of states whose residents must self-quarantine for 14 days after arriving in his state, which will apparently prevent Matt Stonie (CA), Gideon Oji (GA) and Michelle Lesco (AZ) from competing in the 2020 Nathan’s Finals if they cannot get an exemption. Earlier today, Rich Shea appeared to confirm that Michelle Lesco will not be able to compete. Joey Chestnut is already in New York, so he is not affected by the directive.

update MLE has announced Nick Wehry will replace Matt Stonie.

update July 1 George Chiger will replace Gideon Oji.

update July 1 #2 A press release lists Miki Sudo, Katie Prettyman and Larell Marie Mele as female competitors. Katie Prettyman does not think that Sarah Reinecke and Sophia DeVita will compete due to schedule conflicts.

update July 2 NJ.com reports Rene Rovtar will be the 4th female competitor.

update July 2 #2 Julie Goldberg will apparently complete the women’s field.

Comments (14)


  1. Anonymous said

    June 30, 2020 @ 4:06 pm

    Oh well. Guess no Stonie then. 🙁
    I know Joey is gonna win it again and again

  2. Anonymous said

    June 30, 2020 @ 6:38 pm

    What about the two guys who actually qualified for the finals? They don’t live in states on NY’s restricted list.

  3. Anonymous said

    July 1, 2020 @ 2:54 am

    @6:38 excellent question

  4. Anonymous said

    July 1, 2020 @ 2:58 am

    @6:38 Tennessee is on the list, but Washington is not.

  5. Anonymous said

    July 1, 2020 @ 10:42 am

    If I invested my time and money to qualify, and then I got bumped for a bunch of guys who can’t win anyway, I would be pretty angry with MLE, especially because this year is the best year to “be seen” on TV. The five guys on TV will get more attention than the top five on TV ever got because there is no one else up there to talk about.

  6. Brett Healey said

    July 1, 2020 @ 12:47 pm

    @10:42 I sort of feel that way, but here’s my take on it. I am auto qualified for 2021 and it reasons to believe that Steve Hammond is also. I agree that the small eater field will provide better TV exposure (which is very cool don’t get me wrong!) but if I had to pick between doing it this year and doing it next year, I’d rather get the real deal Nathan’s experience with the crowd at Surf and Stillwell next year than a quiet closed studio for extra TV time this year. That’s just my personal preference and there’s really no way Steve or I (or most of the world) will get through 2020 without several unfair inconveniences anyway. And since my state is banned from NY, I would have been left out to dry either way haha. I’m extremely lucky to be healthy and employed and look forward to making my debut next year!

  7. Anonymous said

    July 1, 2020 @ 2:28 pm

    The fact that they are traveling from many states alone as fact will make MLE look bad. They are condoning pull people from locations of contamination. Huge mistake.

  8. Anonymous said

    July 1, 2020 @ 2:50 pm

    Well, you have a good attitude, Brett. Before they made their decisions and before Gov. Cuomo restricted entry from your state, did MLE ask you if you wanted to participate?

    Maybe next year, they can guarantee you at least 6th place prize money since you would be guaranteed at least 6th this year.

  9. Pirate Press said

    July 1, 2020 @ 7:59 pm

    This year’s Nathan’s sounds boring AF and I’m giving it a hard pass! First one I haven’t watched in 15 years. Hopefully, this COVID-BS will be over next year and we’ll have a real Nathan’s Contest again!

  10. Anonymous said

    July 1, 2020 @ 11:23 pm

    I haven’t watched in years. The broadcast is stale. If I were ever going to tune in, I would tune in just for the eating, but even that isn’t exciting because no one has risen to the challenge. It’s a runaway that they pretend isn’t a runaway by trying to distract you with a bunch of shitty dad jokes.

  11. Hidden Time Bomb said

    July 2, 2020 @ 8:26 am

    I don’t like watching people destroy themselves.

  12. Brian Seiken said

    July 3, 2020 @ 9:50 am

    This would be the perfect year to give Beautiful Brian Seiken a complimentary seat at the table.

  13. Anonymous said

    July 3, 2020 @ 1:07 pm

    No, Brian, this year would be insulting.

  14. Anonymous said

    July 3, 2020 @ 8:26 pm

    Brett, There’s no such thing as a guarantee with the $i$ter$.

RSS feed for comments on this post · TrackBack URI

Leave a Comment

Log in | Register | Comments by users who have not logged in will be held for approval