HENNWS-09-13-22 HOT SAUCE FEST 3

Marc Blake (left) struggles to finish a jalapeño in the allotted 30 seconds as defending pepper-eating contest champ Benjamin Welch gulps down some water to cool the flames at Saturday’s N.C. Hot Sauce Festival in Oxford. Blake didn’t finish his pepper, enabling Welch, who’s from Arizona, to claim the crown for the second year in a row.