After an explosive second episode that aired last week that saw a victorious Dani Speegle ascend to the top of Mt. Olympus (that’s where the winners go), episode three of The Titan Games hosted by Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson aired on Monday, June 8th.
Episode 3 was the final round of competition for athletes from the Central Region. For newly crowned Titan Dani Speegle and male counterpart Joe Thomas, that meant one more defense on Mt. Olympus would claim victory of the Central Region and book them a ticket to the Titan Championship.
The first of the preliminary events were three-way battles with the third place finisher eliminated for good. The first event of the night was in the male division between 28-year-old Deputy Sheriff Steven Shelby, 42-year-old 2012 Reebok CrossFit Games runner-up Matt Chan, and 35-year old Sports Medicine Physician Kaleb “Doc Thor” Redden.
Hammer Down — Male Division
The goal of the event was to knock down three poles. First, each competitor had to acquire a sledge hammer laying beneath three heavy boxes. Once obtained, competitors hammered a pin that allowed each pole to fall. Once a competitor knocked down their third or “Golden” pole, they climbed it and pulled the Victory Chain. First two to to do so advanced to the next round.
All three athletes were quickly able to lift the boxes to retrieve their sledge hammers. Chan was the first to drop a pole, with Redden right on his tail. Chan swiftly knocked down his second pole with precision to add to his lead as Shelby fell behind.
Out of nowhere, Redden knocked down his Golden pole to take the lead. Chan didn’t make it easy for him as he was able to drop his Golden pole as well. Redden ascended the pole with the speed required to take the win. Chan was unfazed, maintained his ascent, pulled his own Victory Chain to send Shelby home.
- First Place — Redden — Advances
- Second Place — Chan — Advances
- Third Place — Shelby — Eliminated
Hammer Down — Female Division
The women’s division saw 24-year old boxing world champion Claressa Shields versus 35-year-old OB/GYN Jaime Seeman versus 31-year-old former track and field Olympian Chantae McMillan.
All three athletes were within seconds of each other retrieving their respective sledge hammers. Their strategies varied from there: Shields and McMillan used short strikes to inch their pins quickly, while Seeman swung fewer but heavier strikes. McMillan managed to drop two poles before Seeman or Shields dropped their first — an absolute runaway performance. She went on to drop her Golden pole and pull the Victory Chain to win the event.
Shields took a slight lead over Seeman on the first pole and extended it by knocking down her second pole in swift fashion.
In a big turn of events, Shields struggled heavily to climb her Golden pole and left the door of opportunity open for Seeman, who took full advantage. Seeman slid up the pole and sent Shields packing.
- First Place — McMillan — Advances
- Second Place — Seeman — Advances
- Third Place — Shields — Eliminated
Resistance — Female Division
Each athlete had to toss five 50lb barrels out of their portion of the arena. The catch is that both athletes were tied to each other via a thick rope, effectively pulling against each other when moving in opposite directions. First to toss out all five of their barrels advanced to Mt. Olympus.
Note: this is a challenge where a heavier bodyweight would likely provide a significant advantage. However, the bodyweight for each competitor was not provided.
Seeman scored first after an aggressive start by both athletes. When getting overpowered by Seeman, McMillan switched things up by bounding back and forth between barrels to get them closer to the edge. The strategy ended up costing her more than it gained as the lateral movement kept knocking her off balance and allowed Seeman to throw out three more barrels.
Exhaustion set in for McMillan who seemed to throw in the towel when confronted with a four to zero deficit. In a five to nothing blowout, Seeman claimed victory and put an end to McMillan’s hopes of becoming a Titan.
- Winner — Seeman
- Eliminated — McMillan
Resistance — Male Division
Redden vs. Chan — one on one.
A shocking start stunned the arena as Chan, the smaller athlete, built enough opening momentum to send Redden flying backwards. It paid off with the first barrel being tossed out by Chan.
Chan put his strategic prowess on display by rolling two barrels side by side and tossing them out in rapid succession to take a three to nothing lead.
Redden was not about to let two shutouts occur on the same night and went into beast mode. He picked up two barrels and hurled each out to bring Chan’s lead down to one.
Chan’s strategy of bunching barrels together and throwing them out quickly continued to pay off as he was able to launch the last pair out of the arena and punch his ticket to Mt. Olympus.
- Winner — Chan
- Eliminated — Redden
The course on Mt. Olympus consists of ten obstacles:
- Starting Gates — weaving over and under thick triangular hurdles.
- Box Flip — flipping a humungous box three times.
- Iron Ascent — using only their hands, athletes pull themselves up using a lever system.
- Log Lift — hauling a large log up a long flight of stairs. Note: entirely different from a strongman log lift.
- Sky Bridge — lifting two 120lb weights on a gear that is then spun to lower a bridge.
- Crank Down — turning a heavy crank to lower a pillar that is then climbed.
- Cage Crawl — a series of narrow crawl spaces built atop each other that must be crawled through.
- Drop Zone — a mounting series of large panels that hinge when the athlete places their weight at the edge.
- Ball & Chain — an spherical stone is dragged via chain across the arena.
- Titan Tomb — competitors smash a stone block to retrieve the Titan Relic (a metal relic shaped into The Titan Games logo).
Speegle vs. Seeman
Speegle immediately hopped out to a lead in the Starting Gates as Seeman tripped up early. Speegle took a full obstacle lead heading into the Log Lift while Seeman battled her way through the Iron Ascent — the obstacle the cost her the win her first time on Mt. Olympus.
Seeman conquered what quelled her previously and advanced to the Log Lift with a lot of ground to make up.
It was ultimately insurmountable as Speegle blazed through Ball & Chain and Titan Tomb to become the Central Regional Champion.
- Winner — Speegle
Check out the entire run between Speegle and Seeman on Mt. Olympus below via the Titan Games’ YouTube channel:
Speegle will appear in the Titan Championships against whomever is able to win the East and West Regions.
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Thomas vs. Chan
Former NFL offensive tackle and 10-time pro-bowler Joe Thomas is three for three on Mt. Olympus including an extremely narrow win over Chan in the season premiere.
Thomas and Chan looked nearly synchronized through the Sky Bridge. Chan took a slight lead but not one that could safely determine an outcome in his favor.
The Cage Crawl was the first obstacle where Chan seemed to have the advantage of as the shorter competitor — Thomas stands an imposing 6’6. That edge gave Chan the upper hand as he darted toward Ball & Chain, which has historically been Thomas’ strongest obstacle.
Chan learned from his mistakes in the premiere. He retrieved the Titan Relic first and without hesitation locked it in. Matt Chan beat Joe Thomas to become the Central Regional Champion.
- Winner — Chan
Watch the entire battle on Mt. Olympus between Thomas and Chan below courtesy of Titan Games’ YouTube Channel:
Chan joins Speegle as the Titans of the Central Region in the Titan Championships.
Feature image from Dani Speegle and Matt Chan’s Instagram pages: @dellespeegle and @matt1chan