Journalists versus Food: Reporters take on hot dog challenge in Romford

11:37 10 March 2014

Reporters Harry Kemble, Sam Gelder and Robin Cottle take up the Hot dog challenge at the Sun pub in Romford.

Reporters Harry Kemble, Sam Gelder and Robin Cottle take up the Hot dog challenge at the Sun pub in Romford.


It was a case of journalists versus food on Monday night as three reporters took on a daunting hot dog challenge.

Famous food challenges

Cool Hand Luke: The 1967 classic features a scene where Paul Newman’s character, Luke Jackson, sets and wins a challenge to eat 50 hard-boiled eggs in one hour.

Matilda: The 90s adaption of Roald Dahl’s novel featured Bruce Bogtrotter, an overweight pupil, being forced to eat a whole chocolate cake as punishment for stealing a slice from the evil principal, Miss Trunchbull.

Super Size Me: American Morgan Spurlock embarked on a 30-day spree eating only McDonald’s food in this documentary, released in 2004. Needles to say, he had health issues by the end.

Since launching its new menu at the start of February, The Sun pub in London Road, Romford, has been tempting people with a free meal - if they can tackle an 18-inch hot dog (complete with two bowls of chips and a side of coleslaw) inside the current record.

Between 40 and 50 people have attempted to battle the sausage-led feast, with only five emerging victorious - none of which work for the Recorder.

Robin Cottle, Sam Gelder and Harry Kemble were unable to finish their food, and therefore nowhere near the time to beat of 13 mins 47 seconds, held by a mysterious “skinny” teenager who “even had a two-minute break”, according to landlady Susan Mansfield.

Susan watched on as the reporters limped across the finish line, before declaring “I thought Robin did quite well” in a conviction-lacking attempt to make the exhausted trio feel better after their poor show.

Landlady Sue Mansfield with the T shirt on offer to the winners.Landlady Sue Mansfield with the T shirt on offer to the winners.

She also paraded the proverbial “here’s what you could have won” prize, the “I beat The Sun” winners t-shirt, which goes to anyone who beats the record.

“We’re running this for another month,” said Susan. “Only five people have managed it so far but there’s still time for the record to be beaten.”

Everyone who has a clean plate after 20 minutes will soon be able to see their image on display in the pub, which is also putting the final touches on the next challenge for its customers, which will include consuming a whole plate of “very spicy” hot wings.

If you fancy yourself as a big eater, get down to the pub this month. Chances are you will fare better than our reporters.


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