James Holzhauer, the professional sports bettor and apparent genius, has broken another record on Jeopardy! — but this time, it’s his own. The Chicago-born 34-year-old, who currently lives in Las Vegas, beat his own single-day earning record of $110,914 from last week to rake in $131,127 on Wednesday night’s episode. His total now stands at $697,787 won over ten days, thanks in large part to his unique strategy of finding Daily Doubles and betting big on them. He also added another adorable message to his family on his Final Jeopardy answer, writing, “This is for you, Granny.” His previous answers have contained messages to other family members, including a person named Booger, you may recall.
Holzhauer used to watch the show with his grandmother, whom he told Vulture was “the most beautiful person the world has ever seen.” In an interview earlier this week, the Jeopardy! champ said that promised her he’d be on the show one day. His focus wasn’t on winning, but on “fulfilling the promise I made to her 25 years ago,” said Holzhauer. “Once I really decided to take this seriously, I wasn’t going to half-ass it.” His dedication to his family even extends to his hefty winnings: Holzhauer strategically won $110,914 because those are the numbers that make up his daughter’s birthday.
After 11 games, Holzhauer is on a fast track to reach the great Ken Jennings’s all-time winnings record, whose famous 74-game streak brought him over $2.5 million. Jennings has been tweeting about his excitement at watching Holzhauer’s Jeopardy! run and said he’s always wanted to see someone who bet boldly and “had the skills to back it up.”