Reporter's reign as 'Jeopardy!' champ is brief

Published on Monday, 10 July 2017 22:20


BRISTOL - What does it feel like to lose on “Jeopardy!”?

Not great. My second show aired Monday, July 10, so by now, viewers know I came in last.

By the end of Double Jeopardy, I realized I had basically no chance of winning unless my two opponents really messed up. I got the Final Jeopardy response correct, but so did my opponents, and I just didn’t have enough money to get out of third place.

But I can say I gave it a shot, and even though I didn’t come close to setting any records, only one contestant out of three will win each game, and some people get to win more than one. Maybe only a quarter of all the contestants even get to win once.

Considering I beat the odds even to get on the show, I feel pretty good about that.

So how do you get to be on “Jeopardy!”?

The website ( ) has an online test. It’s 50 questions, each from a different category, with 15 seconds to answer each question. It moves very quickly. There are some practice tests available.

If you do well enough you will get an email invitation to a regional audition. Mine was in Boston, with people from all over the Northeast and eastern Canada attending.

At the audition, everyone takes another test of 50 questions, this time on paper. Then Maggie Speak, the show’s contestant wrangler, answers questions and puts everyone through interviews and a mock version of the show.

Your name then goes into a pool of potential contestants for 18 months, with no guarantees. Some people audition multiple times.

Speak said the record was a man who auditioned seven times before getting the call. She told us that every year about 100,000 people take the online test, maybe 3,000 get invited to audition and about 400 make it on to the show.

Last February, it had been just about 18 months for me. I figured my time in the pool had expired, and that I should take the test again next time it was offered. And that’s when I got the call. So you never know.

Susan Corica can be reached at 860-973-1802 or

Posted in New Britain Herald, , General News on Monday, 10 July 2017 22:20. Updated: Monday, 10 July 2017 22:23.