World Championship opened back at The Arena just after Claudia Albertario had been eliminated. Host TJ Lavin said it was time to select partners for the season.
They went by order of best finish to worst in Episode 1’s qualifier, with each MVP choosing a Legends partner. It was one man and one woman for each team.
Grant Crapp had the first pick and chose two-time All Stars winner Jonna Mannion. Zara Zoffany picked next and chose Wes Bergmann as the first male Legends player. Sarah Lacina whispered to someone in the stands that Bananas suffered a blow to his ego when Wes got picked first.
Ben Driebergen opted to work with Kaycee Clark because of her social game. Kaz Crossley chose Jordan Wiseley, which was OK with her ex Theo Campbell because he felt they’d argue too much together.
The Challenge: USA winner Danny McCray picked Ride or Dies winner Tori Deal, and Justine Ndiba chose Johnny Bananas for all-USA teams. Benja Alfonso had a hunch that he and Jodi Weatherton would make a good team, even though he noticed she wouldn’t make much eye contact with him from the ground level.
Kiki Morris picked Darrell Taylor. Rodrigo Cascon chose Nia as his partner. Emily Seebohm picked Yes Duffy. Troy Cullen picked Amber Borzotra. Sarah Lacina chose Theo Campbell. The final two picks were Sofia “Jujuy” Jimenez getting Nelson Thomas and Tristan Phipps getting KellyAnne Judd.
The Challenge: World Championship teams talk game
Everyone returned to the house at night and discussed strategies with their teammates or other castmates. In particular, Nelson and Jujuy worked on their communication due to the language barrier.
Jonna talked to Kaycee about who she’s cool with. Jonna said she’d gotten a weird vibe from KellyAnne since she won All Stars twice.
Wes shared tips with his “star pupil,” Zara, about what to focus on. He told her not to worry about yoga or lifting weights but to work on long-distance endurance running to prepare herself.
In a confessional, Kaz vowed that she and Jordan would win the World Championship.
Competitors play Chain Game to show which teams are best
The competitors arrived at their first official daily challenge in the desert, called Chain Game. They started on the other side of a steep dune to race up, over, and through a course to get to a shipwreck. They had to drag chains of different colors corresponding to puzzles they had to solve at the bottom of the dune.
TJ said the chains were over 700 lbs each, and they’d have to drag them to their puzzle-solving spot. The chains were arranged by color from easiest to most complicated puzzles, so the teams that got there first got to take the easier ones.
The puzzles involved positioning the chains around pegs or poles in the sand to create a large shape or pattern. The first team to finish their puzzle, race to the top of the dune, and ring a bell won. Some teams struggled with their puzzles a lot due to communication issues or stress.
Grant and Jonna were the first to finish their puzzle and ring the bell. Jordan and Kaz came in second, followed by Ben and Kaycee. Yes and Emily finished fourth, followed by Benja with Jodi, Darrell with Kiki, and Tori with Danny. The last-place team was Nelson with Jujuy, followed by Tristan and KellyAnne.
Deliberation for the first official elimination brings paranoia
Nelson and Jujuy were automatically going into elimination. The rest of the house had to select two teams for the potential elimination matchup against them.
Wes talked to Jodi about how one of their teams might be going into elimination. Jodi suggested they try to put a target on KellyAnne, but Wes felt she might be safe as his ally.
KellyAnne got paranoid about elimination and tried to talk to other Legends to gain favor. She realized how cutthroat some of the USA cast members are, something she’s not known for. In confessional, she said she may have messed up by doing too much.
Downstairs, Tori told Sarah that KellyAnne suggested someone from the Americans should go into elimination since there are more of them. Sarah said if she’s tossing names out, she needs to go in because she’s not with them.
Almost everyone chose KellyAnne with Tristan and Benja with Jodi. Nia and Jordan burned one of their votes. Jonna and Grant saw the two teams pop up on the screen, and Jonna was conflicted about saying KellyAnne’s name.
Jonna and KellyAnne had a conversation. Jonna said she was stressed. KellyAnne told her if she were in her shoes, she wouldn’t put her in. The episode closed with a cliffhanger over which team Jonna and Grant would choose.
The Challenge: World Championship episodes arrive Wednesdays on Paramount Plus.