Students eat for cash
The crowd was electric with anticipation. John Cactucci, the host of the Food Network’s You Gotta Eat Here, leaped onto the stage of the Drake Hotel in Toronto, ready to begin the competition. The challenge was one all students can relate to: the Just-Eat.ca Campus Chompionship. Just-Eat.ca is a website designed for students who swear by take-out, and can’t stand stepping into a kitchen. You can search through local take-out restaurants, and even order from them using the Just-Eat app.
The website searched across Canada looking for the most qualified contestants, students who clearly had no business producing food for human consumption, and therefore had to rely on the professionals for their sustenance. Five of the best of these take-out junkies came together to compete in a three -minute pizza eating competition.
challenge was simple: to eat more pizza in three minutes then the rest of the competitors. That would have been easy if it wasn’t for the guest of honour, competitive eater Takeru Kobayashi. Luckily Kobayashi, who holds the world record for most hot dogs eaten in ten minutes (110), was only there to set the pace, and not actually compete for the $5,000 grand prize and $20,000 prize to the student’s school.
The competitors were brought out, and at first glance Simon Fraser University student Jeremy Pearce looked to have the contest in the bag. Pearce, an offensive lineman for the SFU Clan, held a solid weight advantage against the other competitors. But as is the case in professional eating, the skinny guys always seem to obliterate the opposition, and it was Steven “The Clutch” Dorgo from the University of Guelph who took home the top prize, finishing 18 slices. But the Clutch was still no match for the World Champion, with Kobayashi pounding back an astounding 32 slices of pizza.
Despite the loss, Pearce, a native of Hamilton, took the experience in stride. “It was amazing having the opportunity to eat along side a professional like Kobayashi, the guy takes what he does seriously and trains really hard” Jeremy said after the competition. “I am incredibly thankful for the opportunity that Just-Eat gave me to come home and see my family and friends.”