“The King” Richard Petty and No. 43 Driver Aric Almirola Join Matt Stonie at Culmination of Smithfield Whole Hog Challenge Amateur Eating Competition Series
Smithfield, Va. – They say it’s not about how you start, it’s how you finish – but in the case of Smithfield, they started and finished the NASCAR season in record-setting fashion. This weekend, Smithfield capped off its 2015 sponsorship of the No. 43 Richard Petty Motorsports (RPM) race team with driver Aric Almirola and celebrated the culmination of the Whole Hog Challenge amateur eating competition series by once again teaming up with Major League Eating’s Matt Stonie to set a world record, this time for how many ribs can be eaten within five minutes – 71 Smithfield Fresh Pork Ribs!
The rib record-setting event was part of the lead up to the final round of the Whole Hog Challenge, a season-long amateur eating competition series where race fans tested their passion for Smithfield Bacon and Fresh Pork Ribs. For the championship finale featuring all the qualifying-event winners, Matt Stonie joined “The King” Richard Petty and Aric Almirola in judging the ultimate eating showdown at the Miami race.
“It’s been such an exciting race season for Smithfield, which is why we really wanted to close things out in a big way, and what could be more perfect than having Matt come back and this time set the five-minute rib-eating record by eating 71 Fresh Pork ribs,” said Dennis Pittman, Senior Director of Corporate Communications, Smithfield. “We’re so appreciative of all our great fans who participated in the Smithfield Whole Hog Challenge this year. We especially congratulate the finale champion, and look forward to another exciting season in 2016.”
Stonie is ranked the number one professional eater in the world by Major League Eating, and is the reigning Fourth of July hot dog-eating champion. He has participated in dozens of eating competitions and currently holds records for eating the most birthday cake, frozen yogurt, pumpkin pie and, now, he holds the record for the most fresh pork ribs eaten in five minutes. Earlier this year he partnered with Smithfield to kick-off the season in Daytona by setting the bacon-eating world record – 182 slices in five minutes.
“I’m a huge fan of ribs, so I jumped at the chance to team up with Smithfield, again, to set the five-minute rib-eating world record,” said Stonie.
Celebrity chef and TV personality, Ingrid Hoffmann, also joined Smithfield for the off-track action to help fuel Almirola, Petty, and the entire No. 43 RPM race team before the big race. She prepared a lunch menu with signature Latin dishes featuring flavorful Smithfield bacon, Signature ground pork, and spiral sliced ham.
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About Major League Eating
Major League Eating (MLE), the world governing body of all stomach-centric sports, conducts more than 80 events annually, including the Nathan’s Famous Fourth of July International Hot Dog-Eating Contest in Coney Island, N.Y. The competitive eating community is made up of more than 8,000 veteran and rookie gurgitators who travel the nation in search of top titles and the glory that they provide. For more information, visit www.IFOCE.com, www.facebook.com/eatfast or Twitter @eatingcontest.
About Richard Petty Motorsports
A performance and marketing driven company, Richard Petty Motorsports, co-owned by NASCAR Hall of Famer Richard Petty and successful business entrepreneur Andrew Murstein, is one of the most recognized brands in all of motorsports. With a history of over 200 wins and business partnerships with national and global leaders, today the race operation fields two teams in competition in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series. Aric Almirola pilots the famous No. 43 Ford Fusion with primary partners Smithfield Foods, U.S. Air Force, STP and Fresh From Florida, and Sam Hornish Jr. drives the No. 9 machine with primary partners Medallion Bank and Twisted Tea. In addition, Dakoda Armstrong wheels the No. 43 WinField Ford Mustang full-time in the NASCAR XFINITY Series. The team is headquartered in Mooresville, N.C.
A leading provider of high-quality pork products, Smithfield was founded in 1936 in Smithfield, Virginia, establishing the town as the “Ham Capital of the World.” From hand-trimmed bacon and slow-smoked holiday hams to marinated tenderloins, Smithfield brings artistry, authenticity and a commitment to heritage, flavor, and handcrafted excellence to everything it produces. With a vast product portfolio including smoked meats, hams, bacon, sausage, ribs, and a wide variety of fresh pork cuts, the company services retail, foodservice, and deli channels across the Unites States and 30 countries abroad. All of Smithfield’s products meet the highest quality and safety standards in the industry. To learn more about how Flavor Hails from Smithfield, please visit www.Smithfield.com, www.Twitter.com/SmithfieldBrand, and www.Facebook.com/CookingWithSmithfield. Smithfield is a brand of Smithfield Foods.
About Smithfield Foods
Smithfield Foods is a $15 billion global food company and the world’s largest pork processor and hog producer. In the United States, the company is also the leader in numerous packaged meats categories with popular brands including Smithfield®, Eckrich®, Farmland®, Armour®, Cook’s®, John Morrell®, Gwaltney®, Nathan’s Famous®, Kretschmar®, Margherita®, Curly’s®, Carando® and Healthy Ones®. Smithfield Foods is committed to providing good food in a responsible way and maintains robust animal care, community involvement, employee safety, environmental and food safety and quality programs. For more information, visit www.smithfieldfoods.com.
Hunter PR for Smithfield