Amy Schneider's record-breaking 'Jeopardy!' winning streak ends at 40 games

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By Carina Murphy

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It's all over for Amy Schneider.

The record-breaking Jeopardy! champion met her final foe on Wednesday when a Chicago librarian brought her historic 40-game winning streak to an end.

But software engineer manager Schneider can leave the game show with her head held high.

Not only does her 40-game streak make her the second most successful contestant of all time (beaten only by host Ken Jenning's eye-watering 74-wins) but it also makes her the highest scoring female and transgender contestant in Jeopardy! history.

What's more, she's taking home a grand total of $1,382,800 in winnings - and she won't be gone for long, having qualified for the Tournament of Champions this fall.

In a statement provided by the show, Schneider said she had suspected that multimedia librarian Rhone Talsma might be the one to beat her.

"I had thought that Rhone was going to be tough going into it. I loved hanging out with him, we had a great conversation before the taping, but I could tell that he was here to play and that he was going to be good," she said.

"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," she added.

Nevertheless, Schneider still held the lead as they headed into Final Jeopardy, with a score of $27,600 to Talsma's $17,600.

However, the last clue - 'the only nation is the world whose name in English ends in an H, it’s also one of the 10 most populous,' - left her stumped, and paved the way for Talsma to take the victory with his correct answer ('what is Bangladesh?').

Speaking to the Chicago Tribune, Talsma said that he had mixed emotions about ending Schneider's historic run.

"I am, first and foremost, incredibly proud of myself," he said, but added that he has huge admiration for Shneider and sees her as a "role model."

"Once I realized Amy’s significance in ‘Jeopardy!’ history, I felt incredibly humbled to play against her, let alone be the one to bring her streak to an end," he added.

Talsma knows that Schneider - who has amassed enormous popularity and almost cult status among fans - will not be an easy contestant to replace.

“There is the lingering nervousness around how I’ll be received by fans. Amy is enormously popular, and I know that I’ll likely be compared to Amy now, probably in an unflattering way," he said.

"I know that many will comment on how luck played a role in my win, but one thing I learned from being on the show is that luck is a much bigger determining factor in anyone’s ‘Jeopardy!’ success than people realize," he added.

Talsma will face off against two new challengers on Thursday.

Featured Image Credit: Everett Collection Inc / Alamy

Amy Schneider's record-breaking 'Jeopardy!' winning streak ends at 40 games

vt-author-image

By Carina Murphy

Article saved!Article saved!

It's all over for Amy Schneider.

The record-breaking Jeopardy! champion met her final foe on Wednesday when a Chicago librarian brought her historic 40-game winning streak to an end.

But software engineer manager Schneider can leave the game show with her head held high.

Not only does her 40-game streak make her the second most successful contestant of all time (beaten only by host Ken Jenning's eye-watering 74-wins) but it also makes her the highest scoring female and transgender contestant in Jeopardy! history.

What's more, she's taking home a grand total of $1,382,800 in winnings - and she won't be gone for long, having qualified for the Tournament of Champions this fall.

In a statement provided by the show, Schneider said she had suspected that multimedia librarian Rhone Talsma might be the one to beat her.

"I had thought that Rhone was going to be tough going into it. I loved hanging out with him, we had a great conversation before the taping, but I could tell that he was here to play and that he was going to be good," she said.

"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," she added.

Nevertheless, Schneider still held the lead as they headed into Final Jeopardy, with a score of $27,600 to Talsma's $17,600.

However, the last clue - 'the only nation is the world whose name in English ends in an H, it’s also one of the 10 most populous,' - left her stumped, and paved the way for Talsma to take the victory with his correct answer ('what is Bangladesh?').

Speaking to the Chicago Tribune, Talsma said that he had mixed emotions about ending Schneider's historic run.

"I am, first and foremost, incredibly proud of myself," he said, but added that he has huge admiration for Shneider and sees her as a "role model."

"Once I realized Amy’s significance in ‘Jeopardy!’ history, I felt incredibly humbled to play against her, let alone be the one to bring her streak to an end," he added.

Talsma knows that Schneider - who has amassed enormous popularity and almost cult status among fans - will not be an easy contestant to replace.

“There is the lingering nervousness around how I’ll be received by fans. Amy is enormously popular, and I know that I’ll likely be compared to Amy now, probably in an unflattering way," he said.

"I know that many will comment on how luck played a role in my win, but one thing I learned from being on the show is that luck is a much bigger determining factor in anyone’s ‘Jeopardy!’ success than people realize," he added.

Talsma will face off against two new challengers on Thursday.

Featured Image Credit: Everett Collection Inc / Alamy