This 26-year-old from kingston broke a world record and won free tater tots for life – times leader – timesleader. com
Dave Wood won free tater tots for the rest of his life. All he has to do is roll up to any Bar Louie in the country, present a card proving he ‘rocked the tot,’ and a pile of crispy, deep-fried potato perfection will be on its way, on the house. Talk about boss status.
The 26-year-old Kingston resident said his journey to tater tot domination started two years ago following a gym injury.
“I blew out my shoulder and was out of the gym for months,”
Wood said. “I was usually in the gym six days a week.”
Bummed that he couldn’t pump iron and get his swole on, Wood hungered for something to do.
“I realized I wasn’t doing anything cool anymore,” he said. “Then I saw this post on Twitter for a Nathan’s Famous International Hot Dog Eating Contest qualifier, in Boston, and I decided to do it.”
In June 2014, Wood competed in the qualifier. The winner from that round would compete at the big event in Coney Island, New York. Wood said he had no clue what he was doing. Regardless, he came in second place, eating 14 hot dogs in 10 minutes.
The contest was initially a one-time good ol’ college try, to relieve his boredom, Wood said. After getting high on the spirit of the animated crowd, however, he was determined to become a competitive food eater.
“There were probably three or four thousand people there, watching, cheering, going crazy,” Wood said. “Feeling that energy of the crowd was an unbelievable feeling. I’ve played sports my whole life — baseball, basketball — and feeding off that reaction from the crowd brought out the competitor in me again.”
Fast forward a year and Wood found himself competing in nearly 20 different food eating contests, most recently #RocktheTot.
Wood competed alongside nine others to see who could eat the most tater tots in 3 minutes on Oct. 8 at Bar Louie inside Mohegan Sun Pocono. He came out on top, eating 3 pounds 12 ounces.
Since his effort was among the top five out of every location’s contest, he was sent to compete in the national event on Oct. 24 in Cleveland, Ohio.
“I refused to lose,” Wood said.
And he didn’t.
Wood conquered 4 pounds 2 ounces in 3 minutes, winning the event and breaking the world record, previously set at last year’s #RocktheTot by Dave Brunelli, who championed 3 pounds 12.7 ounces of Napoleon Dynamite’s favorite food.
“I think it’s the coolest thing ever,” Wood said about breaking the record and winning a prize of free tots for life. “I’m not the smartest person I know. I’m not the strongest. I’m not the fastest. But I broke a world record, and I don’t know anyone that’s going in the Guinness Book of World Records.”
Now in his off-season of competing, Wood can be seen on his weekly YouTube videos, posted every Sunday, and found by searching Dave “The Termite” Wood, participating in a different food challenges, from drinking a gallon of tomato soup to grubbin’ on the entire McDonald’s breakfast menu.
The competitiveness that flowed through his veins in high school is now being channeled through competitive eating, and it seems to be working out for him.