Meet the Fierce Competitors of “American Grit,” Who Will be Put Through the Ultimate Challenges Beginning Thursday, April 14, on Fox


Sixteen of the country’s toughest men and women will face a variety of military-grade and survival-themed challenges set in the wilderness of the Pacific Northwest, on the series premiere of AMERICAN GRIT, airing Thursday, April 14 (9:00-10:00 PM ET/PT) on FOX. WWE® Superstar John Cena™ and an elite group of mentors from the nation’s most exclusive military units – Navy Seal Commander Rorke Denver, Army Sergeant Noah Galloway, Marine Gunnery Sergeant Tawanda “Tee” Hanible and Army Ranger Nick “The Reaper” Irving – will push these fierce contestants beyond their limits while instilling in them the ethos of leaving no teammate behind. The diverse group of civilians will be divided into four teams, hand-picked by the military mentors, known as “the cadre.” With up to a million dollars of prize money at stake, this is the ultimate competition and test of courage, determination and, most importantly, teamwork. As these competitors work together, they will only have two options: to persevere and win or give up and “ring out.”

Throughout the season, “the cadre,” who represent top branches of the U.S. Armed Forces and real-life heroes, will impart their first-hand knowledge and experience to help their team work together to surmount near-impossible mental and physical challenges. No test these competitors have ever faced will prepare them for the extreme military-inspired training they will undergo. Each week, the teams will compete in survival-themed challenges, incorporating basic needs, as well as communication, mental prowess, physical strength and adaptability, in some of America’s harshest conditions. The team that wins the challenge each week is safe from elimination, and “the cadre” leaders from the remaining teams must select one contestant to face “The Circus,” a grueling obstacle course built into the wilderness that tests both strength and endurance. The only way for a contestant to lose is to “ring out,” at which point they must leave the competition and forfeit their chance to take home the grand prize.

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Meet the AMERICAN GRIT competitors and watch/share this first look:

Mark Bouquin

Mark Bouquin – “The Lumberjack”
Age: 26
Hometown: Colden, NY
Occupation: Timbersports Athlete


Tabatha Chandler

Tabatha Chandler – “The Roller Girl”

Age: 39
Hometown: Chattanooga, TN
Occupation: Registered Nurse


Ashley Hazlett – “The Marine’s Daughter” Age: 31
Hometown: Cincinnati, OH
Occupation: Event Coordinator



Maria Kang – “The No Excuses Mom”
Age: 35
Hometown: Elk Grove, CA
Occupation: Nonprofit Founder and Author


Chris Krueger

Chris Krueger – “The Hollywood Trainer”
Age: 32
Hometown: Los Angeles, CA
Occupation: Strength and Performance Coach


Kimberly Joy “KJoy” Lipson

Kimberly Joy “KJoy” Lipson – “The Yogi”
Age: 38
Hometown: Houston, TX
Occupation: Yoga Instructor


Marc Lobliner

Marc Lobliner – “The Machine”
Age: 35
Hometown: Elgin, IL
Occupation: CEO of Nutrition Company


David Neville

David Neville – “The Olympian”
Age: 31
Hometown: Fort Wayne, IN
Occupation: College Track and Field Head Coach

Clare Painter

Clare Painter – “The Fisherman”
Age: 47
Hometown: Omak, WA
Occupation: Horse Trainer and Fisherman


Mario Robinson

Mario Robinson – “The Triathlete”
Age: 25
Hometown: Queens, NY
Occupation: Personal Trainer


Ivette Saucedo

Ivette Saucedo – “The Equestrian”
Age: 35
Hometown: Los Angeles, CA
Occupation: Model


Tony Simmons

Tony Simmons – “Touchdown Tony”
Age: 41
Hometown: Chicago, IL
Occupation: Sports Performance Coach and Former NFL Player


Lisa Traugott

Lisa Traugott – “The Bikini Bodybuilder”
Age: 42
Hometown: Austin, TX
Occupation: Trainer and Author


Jim Vaglica

Jim Vaglica – “The Boston Cop”
Age: 54
Hometown: Billerica, MA
Occupation: Police Officer

Brooke Van Paris

Brooke Van Paris – “The Obstacle Course Junkie” Age: 25
Hometown: Indianapolis, IN
Occupation: Sales Rep


Cameron Zagami

Cameron Zagami – “The Wrestler”
Age: 22
Hometown: Salem, NH
Occupation: Professional Wrestler


AMERICAN GRIT is produced by Leftfield Pictures and executive-produced by Brent Montgomery, David George, Adam Sher, Will Nothacker, Simon Thomas, Anthony Carbone and Jon Kroll. John Cena also serves as executive producer. “Like” AMERICAN GRIT on Facebook at Follow the series on Twitter @AmericanGritFOX and join the conversation using #AmericanGrit. See photos and videos on Instagram