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A bite to the finish; DINERS IN BID TO FIND UK CHAMPION Cross-border battle of belly-busting burgers EXCLUSIVE.

Byline: Norman Silvester

It has been billed as the burger battle of Britain.

In the blue corner, The Terminator - a gut-busting serving of beef, cheese, bread bun and salad at Glasgow's Ad Lib diner.

In the red corner is English rival The Devastator - with three 6oz patties, 200g of pulled pork, six rashers of bacon, fries and coleslaw at the Red Dog Saloon in London.

The two restaurants have been challenging their hungriest customers to see off the monster burgers within a time limit.

Now, they want to find the champion of the UK - with the best in Glasgow going head-to-head with an English rival.

Both restaurants believe their burgers pose the biggest food challenge in the country.

The pounds 35 burger on sale at Ad Lib has to be polished off in two hours while the pounds 18.75 Red Dog rival has to go in 10 minutes.

Ad Lib's head chef Mark Balarsky said: "Anyone who can complete ours would find the London one easier.

"Diners are advised to eat as little as possible the day before and to consume as much water as possible.

"One customer did it in 25 minutes, which is our record.

"The burger is the equivalent of seven meals and two weeks' meat intake. It has tens of thousands of calories.

"The portion at the Red Dog is much smaller and there is far less meat to eat. We would win."

Red Dog owner Tom Berk said: "I never thought it would be as popular as it has been.

"The milkshake is always the last thing to go. The fries can get people but, ultimately, it's how you play the burger that defines how you are going to do the challenge.

"You don't have to be a big person. It's all about speed - eat it and deal with it later.

"I think we would win the challenge over Glasgow - ours is much harder.

"Anyone who could eat our burger in 10 minutes would easily do the Glasgow one."

The challenges have been inspired by the popular American reality TV show Man v. Food.

In the hit programme, actor Adam Richman travels the USA taking on bizarre eating challenges including 74oz steaks, 30in pizzas and 2ft hotdogs. Two hundred and fifty people have tried the Ad Lib challenge since June but only five have succeeded.

Anyone who finishes the burger - without a toilet break - has the pounds 35 bill waived and gets a T-shirt . Investment banker Dumisani Kapangn, 27, a regular at Ad Lib, tried their challenge last week but gave up after 20 minutes having eaten half the burger.

He said: " Someone is going to die eating this. I have never felt so full in my life.

"I am going to drive home now but I hope I do not fall asleep".

At the Red Dog, about 450 people have taken their challenge since May with only 20 succeeding.

Victors have their photos put on a wall of fame behind the bar and are also given a T-shirt.

Last week, student Francesco Iosca was the latest to admit defeat, narrowly running out of time.

He said: "It's not the time limit, it's the burger. I was 22 but I'd say I'm 25 now. That meal took three years off my life."

ADAM'S MEAL ORDEAL Food show host Adam Richman almost collapsed after one of his Man V Food challenges.

The star of the cult TV show battled with a 12,000-calorie, sevenpound Sasquatch burger at a diner in Memphis, Tenessee.

He said he took on the challenge because only four people had managed it it out of 1300 who tried.

CAPTION(S):

HUNGRY TV host Adam BUN FIGHT Dumisani starts his challenge at Ad Lib last week
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Publication:Sunday Mail (Glasgow, Scotland)
Geographic Code:4EUUK
Date:Sep 9, 2012
Words:624
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