Junior Nate Jakobs, winner of the taco-eating contest, scarfs down his last taco.

Chomp away for charity – CLSU raises hundreds for Breakthrough through taco-eating contest (slideshow included)

Junior Nate Jakobs came in first in a taco-eating contest sponsored by the Chican@ Latin@ Student Union (CLSU) on Dec. 8, downing seven tacos in  1 minute 30 seconds.

Junior Yelin Mao came in a close second, followed by English teacher Jason Hinojosa.

“(I started) with (eating) three (tacos at once), then two, then one and then another one, ” Jakobs said.

Prior to the competition, both Jakobs and Hinojosa considered each other their greatest  competitor.  

“Nate had the will to win, and I could see that,” Hinojosa said.

“Word on the street is that Mr. Hinojosa can fly through some Mexican cuisine,” Jakobs said jokingly.

Senior Sonja Hansen, who also competed, said she could have improved her eating strategy.

“I should have been ripping them up as I went so I didn’t have to chew as much,”  Hansen said  

Hinojosa and Hansen agreed that having something to moisten the tacos was very helpful.  Hinojosa kept a big glass of water next to him.

“If you take a big gulp of water, it gets the food wet and makes it easier to swallow,” he said.

Hansen, on the other hand, used salsa.

The $421 raised will support Breakthrough Sacramento. The price to participate in the competition was $10, and the winner received a $15 gift card of their choice.

CLSU co-president junior Yanele Ledesma said the club members had the idea during the summer.  

“(Junior) Gabi (Alvarado) was the one who suggested a taco-eating contest, and we all decided to sell tacos, too,” Ledesma said. “We thought it’d be a great opportunity to raise money for something we all supported and are involved in.”

According to CLSU co-president senior Esme Bruce-Romo, all the food was homemade by club members.

Contestants had a choice of vegetarian or meat tacos. 

  —By Kristine Schmitz

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