Tula “Big T” Fazakerley was among the veteran competitors who returned for MTV’s The Challenge: Battle For a New Champion after taking a brief break from the show.
While she entered the game optimistic about her chances to become a first-time champion, many castmates made her a target early and often.
Big T was sent into multiple elimination rounds by an opposing alliance, as her main ally was friend Melissa Reeves.
Following the recent airing of another episode where she entered potential elimination at The Arena, Big T commented about her situation during Season 39.
She talked about some essential advice she was given by multi-time champion Chris “CT” Tamburello, which she plans to take into future seasons.
This article contains spoilers from The Challenge Season 39, including elimination results through Episode 8.
Big T plans to use valuable advice she got from CT
During MTV’s Double Agents season, viewers saw Big T emerge as a strong competitor, partly thanks to partnering with CT. The multi-time champ instilled confidence in Big T and helped her learn to tap into her physical abilities.
She won her first-ever elimination that season, defeating MTV vet Aneesa Ferreira before losing to one of that season’s eventual champions, Amber Borzotra.
Big T returned for Spies, Lies & Allies, where she survived late into the season before getting eliminated for good by rookie Emy Alupei.
She took a brief break from the competition show to pursue her education in culinary arts before returning for Battle For a New Champion.
Viewers saw Big T getting targeted quite a bit by her castmates, and she said it was due to her lack of friendships at the house. Melissa was her only friend outside the game when she got to Season 39.
In an interview with Entertainment Weekly, Big T mentioned how many of the other cast members knew each other from Ride or Dies, which resulted in her not being able to excel at the social or political game as much as in previous seasons.
She was able to win two of the eliminations that she was thrown into. Big T seized victory in Episode 1 against castmate Jessica Brody and then another against two-time Challenge winner Kaz Crossley.
However, Episode 8 brought her a tough test as she was thrown back into The Arena and ultimately was eliminated by former Challenge winner Kaycee Clark.
Following her exit, Big T told EW what she planned to use strategically for her future seasons, and it was key advice she’d received from her former teammate.
“I’m definitely not going to take people at face value as much. I’m going to approach people slightly differently. I remember CT said to me one season, ‘The Challenge is not a place you go to make friends,'” she shared with Entertainment Weekly.
Big T told the publication that her best friends from the show include Melissa, Priscilla Anyabu, Bayleigh Dayton, and Kaycee.
“And that’s enough. I don’t need to make more friends on the show. I just need to focus on just the game and really just study people and see and not be naive in that aspect,” she said.
Big T revealed another champion’s kind gesture
In Episode 8, viewers saw Melissa nominated for possible elimination by the winning group in the daily challenge. At the deliberation, other cast members voted for her friend Big T as the other individual up for elimination.
Host TJ Lavin brought out the latest champion for the elimination, as Spies, Lies & Allies winner Kaycee Clark entered The Arena. She randomly selected Big T’s name from the draw.
According to Big T, Kaycee and her girlfriend, Nany Gonzalez, taught her positions to use in Pole Wrestle with a broom on Double Agents. She also said Kaycee felt terrible about having to go against her in the Season 39 elimination.
“I felt so upset for Kaycee because I knew how much that would kill her — she had heard through the grapevine how I was winning eliminations this season, and so for her to be in a situation where she could possibly take me out literally broke her heart,” Big T shared.
They’d compete in a Pole Wrestle with Big T again, showing her abilities. While she lost to Kaycee in the first round, she didn’t give up and won the second round by continuing to fight and overpowering her opponent.
Big T would continue to fight in the final round, but ultimately, The Challenge champ was victorious at The Arena. Before exiting, Kaycee praised Big T to the rest of the cast on camera and said she believed she could become a future champ.
According to Big T, that’s not all that Kaycee did. She revealed that the Season 37 champion “felt so bad” about having to take her out that she split half of the $10,000 prize money she won from the elimination.
The Challenge: Battle For a New Champion airs Wednesdays at 8/7c on MTV.