FORMER Jeopardy! contestant James Holzhauer appeared on season three of ABC's game show The Chase, which aired on June 14, 2022.
Holzhauer left Jeopardy! in 2019, ranking in the no. 2 spot for the most money won in the show's history.
Who is James Holzhauer?
James Holzhauer was a contestant on the popular quiz show Jeopardy! where he made it to the 33rd round of Final Jeopardy.
A sports gambler from Las Vegas, Nevada, Holzhauer had dreamed of being a contestant on the show and had entered every year he had been able to.
His passion and excitement for the game show started 25 years earlier when he would watch it every day with his grandmother and promised her that one day, he would be a contestant.
Holzhauer took the online test every year and appeared in two auditions for Jeopardy! and one audition for Sports Jeopardy!
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"You know, I’ve never successfully interviewed for a job before in my life – I’ve never had to, and I don’t know whether I have the skills necessary to succeed in that part of the world. But I’m very happy they called this time!" he told Jeopardy! in 2019.
He recalled it taking 23 months after his audition for the call to come through when he was finally given the opportunity to compete on the show in 2019.
Throughout the competition, Holzhauer said he thought of his daughter as his motivation to calm his nerves and ace the questions.
When asked how he maneuvered the pressure and quick-witted questions on Jeopardy!, Holzhauer told the outlet, "What I do is I close my eyes and picture me and my daughter going down a nice slide or doing something together and it keeps me grounded.
"It reminds me what this is for."
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How much money did he win?
Holzhauer lost in the 33rd round against the third-place contestant, Emma Boettcher in a question about Shakespearean literature.
He left the show, having earned a whopping $2,464,216, according to Newsweek.
The final payout of over $2.4million earned him the no. 2 spot for most earned in his time on the show, but he advanced to the no. 1 spot for the highest-earned winnings in one episode with $131,127 on April 14, 2019.
He finished with 32 game wins and 97 percent for his response accuracy, and 71 out of 75 daily doubles.
Legendary champion Ken Jennings still holds the spot for most earned in his 74-game streak which ended with an earning of $2,520,700 in 2004.
Jennings told The Washington Post in 2019, “Honestly, I feel a little bit of the same letdown I did when I lost in 2004," adding, "I was enjoying the streak maybe more than anybody. I really wanted to see what this guy could do.
“I also feel for him, you know? It really does show what a fickle mistress ‘Jeopardy!’ is. A couple breaks go the wrong way, and any night could be the last night.”
What is he doing now?
Holzhauer is on season three of The Chase – a game show in which everyday trivia fanatics go up against reputable and established quiz show aficionados called Chasers.
The contestants have the opportunity to win big money in 60-second rounds called Cash Builders.
If they pass, they then compete against the Chaser in a one-on-one round.
Holzhauer appeared as a Chaser alongside Jennings, Brad Rutter, and Mark Labbett.
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The show airs every Tuesday at 9pm ET on ABC and viewers can stream it on Hulu.
The first two seasons are also available to stream on Netflix.
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