'Jeopardy! Masters' contestants talk strategy ahead of competition

Season 2 of the popular tournament begins tonight on ABC

ByGina Sirico OTRC logo
Wednesday, May 1, 2024
'Jeopardy! Masters' contestants talk strategy ahead of competition
"Jeopardy! Masters" Season 2 contestants are ready for anything as the popular tournament begins on ABC.

LOS ANGELES -- It. Is. On.

"Jeopardy! Masters" is back for season 2 and this one promises to be just as competitive as last year's tournament. The winner will receive the grand prize of $500,000.

James Holzhauer is the reigning "Masters" champion and he told On The Red Carpet he is ready to defend the title.

"It's a real tough field this year. I'm not taking anything for granted. I'm just gonna play my best and hope that's enough," Holzhauer said. "I feel pretty comfortable out there and maybe that could be an advantage over the other competitors."

Matt Amodio and Mattea Roach played against Holzhauer last year and they are ready to take him on.

"I was the only one to beat him last year. It was just one game, he had more against me. But I'm gonna try to get out of my normal spirit and maybe gloat in front of him a little bit. He deserves it," Amodio said.

"One thing that James has really done is he demonstrated, I think, as close to optimal game play as you can really get to in terms of maximizing all the wagering clues, being aggressive in the way that you play the board," Roach explained. "When you have a player that plays that aggressively, it forces everybody else in the field to play that way. Or to play close to it."

Amy Schneider also competed in the first season, but failed to make it to the semifinals. She is back this year as the wildcard pick and is ready to redeem herself.

"It puts a different kind of pressure on me. Like, did I earn my way in? I feel like I want to go out there and justify being the wildcard," Schneider said.

The two new contestants are Yogesh Raut and Victoria Groce. And while this may be their first "Jeopardy! Masters" tournament, this isn't their first rodeo when it comes to trivia competitions and the "Jeopardy!" world.

"I've been doing competitions of some sort, you know, my entire life really. I did geography bee, spelling bee at a young age so I'm pretty used to that, blocking out distractions and focusing when I need to," Raut explained.

"The feeling of getting back up on that stage, it's, I mean, I think exhilarating is really the best word to describe it, Groce said. " Mostly you're very zoned in on playing the game, doing your best, focusing on listening to Ken and reading the clues."

"Jeopardy! Masters" begins tonight on ABC. It'll continue for three weeks, with the semifinals beginning May 17 and the finals airing May 22.