By Eliana Flores-Barber
The obstacle course competition series ‘Wipeout’ has been a hit game show for over a decade. With its revival on TBS, the show has picked up more popularity and features celebrity hosts John Cena and Nicole Byer. The painfully hilarious show challenges contestants' endurance, athleticism, and perseverance, all while trying to avoid epic wipeouts.
Contestants come from all over Southern California to compete in teams to win a cash prize of $25,000. This past season two Long Beach residents auditioned for the show and got the chance to compete in Wipeout season 1 episode 7.
Uncle and niece duo, Matt Hardin and Ashley Steinkoenig, were thrilled to compete in Wipeout. Hardin previously auditioned for Wipeout 10 years ago, however, wasn’t cast so once he heard of the team competition he immediately called his niece and told her to join him for the audition.
“So it happened during covid...you do the paper audition you send in a video then they do an interview, usually in person but cause if covid it was all on zoom. So you know we dressed up, had a team name, had out cheers, had out little celebrations and all that good stuff and did an interview with a couple producers from casting for a few days then got another call,” Hardin explains.
After a few rounds of casting Hardin and Steinkoenig traveled out to Santa Clarita to begin filming Wipeout.
Once all contestants were at the studio, producers began preparing them for the obstacle courses. “The first round they show you all on a PowerPoint. You don't get to see the course at all and then they show you a video of the producer doing it in a suit and tie and he runs across those four giant balls, no big deal,” Hardin says with a chuckle.
For this new season, teammates work together to get through each round. For the first round, to keep it easy on them, each team has to make it through the course, however, they do not need to complete each obstacle. If you wipeout, no worries just move on to the next obstacle. The second round is a race between three teams of two and each person has to complete each obstacle.
After some wipeouts, lots of teamwork, and partaking in the season's most challenging obstacle course, our Long Beach duo won Wipeout.
Ecstatic about their win, the pair decided to keep their win a secret from their family. Acting as though they had lost, they thought it would be a good idea to let their families find out about the win as they watched the episode when it premiered on May 13th. As one could assume their families were over the moon as they watched Hardin and Steinkoenig win.
You can stream their episode on the TBS app or website at tbs.com.
To hear our interview with Matt and Ashley head to our podcast here: https://open.spotify.com/episode/66P1awo3oThKYy5pejFvIc?si=1gdvE_3KRT6__QvTeoaSCg