After earning $1,382,800 and securing the second-longest consecutive winning streak in Jeopardy! history, Amy Schneider’s historic 40-game run has finally come to an end.
As reported by NBC News, Schneider, who is an engineering manager from Oakland, California, was defeated by a Chicago librarian named Rhone Talsma. While Schneider was able to win $19,600, it wasn’t enough to best Talsma’s $29,600.
Despite Schneider not being able to best Ken Jennings’ record streak of 74 wins, she has become the first transgender contestant to make it into the Tournament of Champions and is the highest-earning female competitor in Jeopardy! history.
Her winnings place her at #4 on the list of the highest-earners in regular season play, and put her behind only Matt Amodio’s $1.5 million, James Holzhauer’s $2.4 million, and Jennings’ $2.5 million.
The match was close heading into Final Jeopardy, but Schneider could not come up with the answer to which country ends its English spelling with an “h” and is also one of the Earth’s 10 most populated nations. The answer, for those curious, was Bangladesh.
“It’s really been an honor,” Schneider said. “To know that I’m one of the most successful people at a game I’ve loved since I was a kid and to know that I’m a part of its history now, I just don’t know how to process it.
“I had thought that Rhone was going to be tough going into it,” she said in a statement released by the show. I loved hanging out with him, we had great conversation before the taping, but I could tell that he was here to play and that he was going to be good. I still came very close to winning, but I did feel like maybe I was slipping a little bit. And once it was clear that he was fast on the buzzer, I knew it was going to be a battle all the way.”
Talsma also shared a few words of his victory, saying it’s still hard to believe what he accomplished.
“I’m still in shock,” Talsma said. “This is my favorite show. … I was so excited to be here, and I just wanted to do my best. I did not expect to be facing a 40-day champion, and I was excited to maybe see someone else slay the giant. I just really didn’t think it was going to be me, so I’m thrilled.”
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