Nic P's Blog Post
My Wheel story really begins with my wife, who was a contestant on the show a few years ago. She had an amazing experience and was the big winner. I was her biggest fan. She told me that I should audition the next time the Wheelmobile was in our area. About a year ago, I got my chance when the Wheelmobile rolled into town. Seeing that mock stage setup and feeling the music and the energy of the crowd gave me a great preview of what it would be like on the actual show. I was thrilled when my name was called to come on stage to play.
To my surprise a few months later I received an email inviting me to come to a second audition to determine if I would be a good fit for the show. I was actually more nervous about this part of the audition then I was when I was taping the show. There I was with the contestant coordinators, who were the ones who would make the decision, listening to them tell me and the other hopefuls in the room what they are looking for in a contestant. I hoped that I had what they were looking for.
About 7 months later, I received an email telling me that I would be a contestant on the show. The theme for the show was going to be “Wheel Loves New York.” I thought to myself, “Holy Cow I am going to be on Wheel of Fortune!”
Then the day of the filming arrives. When I got to the studios I met all of the other fabulous contestants who would be on the show that week and I started to get pumped up. Once again our contestant coordinators who were at my audition greeted all of us and got us ready for a day of fun. I will never forget when they took all of us on stage and I got up and close with that dazzling Wheel. What was even more impressive was the number of people that it takes to film a half hour show. All of the staff were so gracious and welcoming to me and the rest of the contestants. I could tell that everyone loved what they did to make such a great show.
As the day progressed I got myself mentally ready to be on the show. Before the show, the coordinators offered all of us a great piece of advice. They said stay in the moment, don’t get discouraged because you never know what the Wheel can do. I kept that advice in mind. Then all of a sudden, it was time for my episode to film. The lights were on, the music played, I heard Jim Thornton’s iconic voice and then out walks Pat and Vanna! My game was on. Little did I know what an exciting game was ahead of me. Both of my fellow
contestants were really good puzzle solvers and when they each solved a Toss-Up puzzle I realized that I had better do my best.
What you can never predict is what the Wheel will do. For my game, the Wheel was in a generous mood. Not one of us landed on either a Bankrupt or Lose a Turn Wedge. Not one of us even called a letter that was not on the puzzle. So when it was our turn we did not lose control of the Wheel. As a result, we each solved our puzzles when it was our turn in a big way. I was fortunate enough to have my turn begin in the 3rd round, the Prize Puzzle. At this point, I had no money and my fellow contestants both racked up huge scores. So the 3rd Round was the first time I was actually able to spin the Wheel on the show. It was such an intense moment for me. I knew that I had to focus and stay in the game no matter what. I couldn’t believe my eyes when I landed on the Express Wedge, I hopped aboard the train and my next stop was to solve the puzzle. To my delight I look up at the puzzle board and read what was up there: “WHAT AIRPORT SHOULD WE FLY INTO?” I actually solved a puzzle! When Pat told me that I was going to Maui and then I looked at my score and saw that I pulled into the lead I about jumped off the stage.
Then the Hurry Up round came and Pat landed on that 5,000 Wedge, it was anybody’s game. The competition was fierce. Would I be able to solve the puzzle? At just the right time, without a second to spare, the solve came to me: “HEALTHY COMPETITION” what an appropriate puzzle to describe my game. All of a sudden, Pat shakes my hand and tells me that I am going to the Bonus Round, it was a dream come true!
Now the Bonus Round comes up, I call the letters BHG O and I had a Wild Card so I called P. The letters lit up and I started to laugh and shouted out “BACK ON TOP!” Again, the perfect puzzle to describe how I felt. I won the brand new Passat, my family came out and I felt like I had won the Super Bowl. Everything happened so fast and it seemed like this was a dream, but I guess dreams come true.
This was an experience of a lifetime. I am so grateful to everyone at Wheel of Fortune who helped make this possible. I have such respect and appreciate for the entire staff and production team. Thank you all and keep watching Wheel!