It's unfortunate he won't be able to compete this year against 4-time consecutive and defending champ American Joey Chestnut.
The 2011 competition is tomorrow, 7/4/11 at noon ET on ESPN.
"Today's MLE [Major League Eating] stars train hard for contests and consider themselves athletes.
This is intensely personal. It's primal. Most of the world snickers at these people. To Kobayashi, eating is life."
UPDATE - Though Joey Chestnut again won this year, apparently, Kobayashi bested the world record when he ate 69 hot dogs in 10 minutes.