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Megabyte Ronnie returns to Coney Island

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Posted at 5:01 PM, Jul 02, 2021
and last updated 2021-07-02 17:01:20-04

WEST SENECA, N.Y. (WKBW) — After a year away from competitive eating, "Megabyte" Ronnie Hartman is back on Major League Eating's biggest stage on Sunday. But there's been a big change in his life since his 10th place finish in 2019.

He's a professional wrestler now, too.

"I have to look good in spandex, so I don't want to be eating a lot of food that's high in calories," Megabyte Ronnie said. "So I'll just eata lot of broccoli, cauliflower, and watermelon. If there's a broccoli shortage in Buffalo, it's my fault."

Without qualifiers this year, Major League Eating's rankings are the sole prerequisite for competing in this year's hot dog eating contest.

"Lucky for me that they were able to bump it up from 12 to 18," Megabyte Ronnie said. "Due to COVID, they didn't know how many people they could get in there."

Megabyte Ronnie is currently ranked 18th.

Not only has he had to adjust what he eats to train, but he also has a much shorter window. He got his invitation to Coney Island about a month ago. In a training session at his home, Megabyte Ronnie put away 20 hot dogs in six minutes.

"That probably puts me on pace to break my personal best," he said. "But breaking 30, even though that's my personal best, is not the end goal with this for sure."

Megabyte Ronnie will go up against the likes of Joey Chestnut and Matt Stonie this weekend. You can watch on the 4th of July at 11:00 a.m. on ESPN.