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Professional eater Santel conquers KC Finn’s 6-pound meal

December 29, 2018
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YouTube star and professional eater Randy Santel bites into a portion of KC Finn's Big A** Burger as he took on the challenge, Wednesday, December 26, in Jackson, Tenn. Santel finished the challenge, which included a 5lb burger, 1lb of fries and a drink, in 12:44. (Kenneth Cummings/The Jackson Sun via AP)

JACKSON, Tenn. (AP) — After Randy Santel finished the massive meal at KC Finn’s he stood up, flexed and received a roaring ovation from the packed crowd at the food truck’s South Highland location.

“I expected Randy to beat it,” KC Finn’s co-owner Charlie Finn said. “He does this professionally, and I knew he’d be able to eat it, plus we needed someone to win.”

Santel defeated KC Finn’s Big A(asterisk)(asterisk) Burger Challenge on Thursday. The meal is 6 pounds of food. It includes 1 pound of fries and a burger with 16 slices of cheese, eight 0.5-ounce beef patties, a 5-inch bun, lettuce and tomatoes — and a 20-ounce drink.

In order to win the challenge the contestant must eat the entire meal in less than 30 minutes.

“Everybody started coming for these fresh burgers,” Finn said. “People would ask, ‘do you have anything bigger,’ and we’d laugh about it at first. But then a double turned into a triple, a triple into a quad, next thing you know we stacked eight of them together and we finally got people to where they couldn’t finish it.”

According to Finn, no one had ever won the burger challenge, the closest someone came was when they finished the burger but couldn’t get the fries down.

Santel ate the entire meal in just under 13 minutes, at 12:40, finishing the burger part of the meal in less than nine minutes.

“It would have been difficult if I had taken longer, because it’s cold out here and the food would have dried out,” Santel said. “But I was able to get the juicy burger down while it was still hot.”

According to Santel, KC Finn’s Burger Challenge was his 694th win in his food challenge career.

With 6 pounds of food in his stomach, Santel’s happy and friendly attitude were on display as he stayed at KC Finn’s long after finishing to sign autographs and chat with fans.

Santel is known through his YouTube channel, which has nearly 600,000 subscribers. On the channel fans can see him try all kinds of food challenges, from English steak to tacos to his most recent video, eating a burger with pulled pork and fried pulled chicken.

Santel is a professional eater. He treats his stomach muscle like he would any other muscle, by training it to be able to absorb more and more food.

“I don’t train as much as I used to,” Santel said. “Back in the day I used to eat 12-13 pounds of watermelon about 18-22 hours before the challenge. Now my half-hearted training is, I’ll eat two footlong subway sandwiches and drink a gallon of water all within 10 minutes.”

The ironic part of the whole food challenge is, Santel is a bodybuilder and studying to be a dietitian. He might eat some of the highest calorie meals on the planet, but after he completes his challenge tours, he focuses on losing weight and maintaining a solid diet of lean meats and other healthy foods.

“I’m in my final semester of school, so I’m going to start winding down,” Santel said. “After I’ve completed 800-900 challenges, I can stop professionally eating and use my YouTube to promote some of the dietitian things I’ve studied.”

Santel said as much as he would like to get to 1,000 food challenge wins, he doesn’t think he can do it. Santel is currently doing a winter food challenge tour of the South.

His next stop is in Selmer for a burrito challenge.

Find KC Finn’s at 1027 S. Highland Ave., across from R&J Feed Supply, in South Jackson.

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Information from: The Jackson Sun, http://www.jacksonsun.com

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