WORLD-CLASS ATHLETES COMPETE IN THRILLING GLOBAL CULTURAL COMPETITIONS
IN DISCOVERY CHANNEL’S LAST ONE STANDING
-- Series Launches in October --
(Silver Spring, Md.) – In the thrilling new Discovery Channel series
LAST ONE STANDING, six athletes – three American and three British – are
immersed in the most remote tribes in the world, where they live
alongside and train with indigenous tribesmen as they prepare to
represent their host tribe in raw and intense competition. From
death-defying Zulu stick fighting in South Africa to an arduous foot
race in the Mexican mountains—wearing only handmade sandals—these men
push their physical and mental limits to see who really is the last
warrior standing. This new 12-part series premieres Thursday, October 4,
2007 at 9 PM ET/PT.
The diverse group of athletes are at the top of their game—there is a
BMX rider, a strongman competitor, an Oxford University sportsman, a
hiker and endurance athlete, a kickboxer and a British all-rounder and
fitness professional. Together they compete in an array of tribal games
and rite of passage ceremonies, where competition is frequently a
metaphor for war. Completely immersed in a tribal culture, the
adventurers live among the village warriors to train and prepare for the
battle that lies ahead—no concessions are made.
Will the sprinter be able to keep up in the long-distance running
competitions held by the remote Tarahumara Indians across punishing
terrain in northern Mexico? Will the Florida BMX’er (who had never
before left the United States) stand a chance against the fierce
Kalapalo wrestlers in Brazil? Will any of the six make a showing
endurance canoeing in Papua, New Guinea?
LAST ONE STANDING gives a view into parts of the world removed from
civilization. The competitors travel to Kalapalo, Brazil (wrestling);
Zulu, South Africa (stick fighting); Tarahumara, Mexico (endurance
running); Mongolia (wrestling); Trobriand Islands (tribal cricket); Sumi,
Nagaland (Akikiti kickboxing); Senegal (wrestling); Papua, New Guinea
(canoe racing); Brazil (Kraha log racing); Peru (glacial challenge);
Java (martial arts); and Vanuatu (canoe racing).
Rajko, 29 – British All-Rounder and Ex-World Record Holder
Jason, 21 – Florida State BMX Champion, 2006
Richard, 21 – Oxford University Sportsman — Cricket, Rugby and Croquet
Brad, 28 – American Pro Lightweight Strongman
Mark, 26 – British Salsa Dancer and Kickboxer
Corey, 22 – Hiker and Endurance Athlete
The six athletes are from dramatically different regions and cultures
themselves and, while forced to compete against each other, they also
formed an unlikely brotherhood. For most of them, the journey was
spiritual and emotional as well as a competition. As Corey from Alaska
observes, “We came into this as a competition—we put on our game faces
during the matches. But as soon as we’re done with that, we’re family.”
As well, the competitors formed strong bonds with their host tribal
families. Brad from Oklahoma remarks of the Mongolian villagers, “They
took us in like family and treated us like their adopted sons.”
Not only were the athletes expected to compete in a sport they only just
learned, but they were also faced with language barriers, health issues
and culture shock. “The toughest part for me was the lack of proper
nutrition,” claimed Strongman Brad. “I couldn’t get enough fuel and
energy to compete at a peak level.” And culture shock set in during the
Brazilian rite of passage in which piranha teeth were scraped on the
athletes’ legs and the open wounds were rubbed with salt and chillies.
“It was searingly painful,” recalls Richard. “The scraping was bad
enough, but the chillies brought a new level of pain. However, it made
me feel integrated and was a great boost before the competition.”
LAST ONE STANDING is a joint production with the BBC. BBC executive
producer is Gary Hunter. Mary Donahue is executive producer for
About Discovery Communications
Discovery Communications is the number-one nonfiction media company
reaching more than 1.5 billion cumulative subscribers in over 170
countries. Through TV and digital media, Discovery's 100-plus worldwide
networks include Discovery Channel, TLC, Animal Planet, The Science
Channel, Discovery Health and Discovery HD Theater. Discovery
Communications is owned by Discovery Holding Co. (NASDAQ: DISCA, DISCB),
Advance/Newhouse Communications and John S. Hendricks, Discovery's
founder and chairman. For more information please visit
BRITISH ALL-ROUNDER AND EX-WORLD RECORD HOLDER.
Rajko Radovic is a musician and fitness professional.
He’s played college-level volleyball and basketball in both the U.K. and
United States, but cares just as much about writing songs and performing
on stage. He never travels anywhere without his guitar.
Rajko’s goal is to perfect himself—in mind, spirit and
body. He used both his physical and mental strength to break a world
record in endurance dumbbell curls.
He never enters anything without believing he can win,
and his combination of strength and aerobic fitness makes him a powerful
all-around competitor. A self-professed mental toughness makes him an
especially dangerous competitor. He’s in LAST MAN STANDING to prove he
can beat anyone—both his fellow competitors and local tribes.
At 29 he’s the “big brother” of the team. And Rajko’s
strong spiritual beliefs and soul-searching often have a deep impact on
his fellow travellers.
FLORIDA STATE BMX CHAMPION, 2006
Jason Bennett makes his living cutting trees in his
native Florida, but his passion is BMX racing. He’s one of the best, and
is hoping one day to make the Olympic squad.
Jason took up BMX as a teenager to escape the pain of a
family break-up…and also the fights in which he was finding himself.
Part of the reason he participated in LAST MAN STANDING was to discover
how families live around the world, untouched by so many of the
pressures he grew up with in his home town of Sarasota.
The youngest of the athletes, Jason turned 21 years old
during the production of LAST MAN STANDING. He’s one of the fittest,
fastest and strongest. BMX training has given him an awesome explosive
power, and, like Rajko, he’s difficult to beat in most sports—especially
since he comes from the “if you can’t beat, cheat” school of sport. And
it’s Rajko who he looks to as a big brother…and who is also his biggest
OXFORD UNIVERSITY SPORTSMAN—CRICKET, RUGBY AND CROQUET
At 21, Richard Massey is the same age as Jason, but has
grown up in a very different world of country houses, boarding schools
and Oxford University. As well as competing at the college and
university level, Richard has completed a degree in theology and is
likely to go on to study law after LAST MAN STANDING.
As a sportsman, Richard plays firmly by the rules, and he wants to
compete against the best to prove that just because he’s from a
privileged background, he’s not as soft as he might look.
Richard’s academic background gives him a particular interest in the
cultural activities and beliefs of other societies, and in LAST MAN
STANDING he’s looking forward to “throwing himself blindly” into tribal
The lightest of all the athletes, his best chances will come in sports
involving technique and aerobic fitness, especially if rugby, cricket or
croquet is part of the mix. But he’s more than willing to give his best
shot at anything involving fighting.
AMERICAN PRO LIGHTWEIGHT STRONGMAN
Bradley Johnson is one of the top lightweight strongmen
in America—and for Brad, “light” means a little less than 240 lbs of
pure muscle. There are few things he can’t lift, shift or throw. And
he’s out to show just what strongmen can do!
Until he joined the team of LAST MAN STANDING, Brad, 28, had never
travelled out of the United States. He had no cell phone, no passport,
not even a credit card. Now, he wants to discover what being a man is
really about in tribes around the world. He’s sure of one thing: with
his dreadlocks, tattoos and sheer scale, no one will have seen anyone
like him before.
Brad is the only married athlete. He lives in Oklahoma with his wife and
baby. All his life he’s dreamt of being a superhero, and now he has a
chance to make his little girl proud of him.
Brad is tough to beat in any strength event. But endurance is another
matter—that’s where he’s going to have to dig deep and tell himself, “My
body wants to give up, but I’m not listening. I’m Brad.”
BRITISH SALSA DANCER AND KICKBOXER
By day Mark Hoban is a project manager for a
construction company. By night he’s a ruthless competitor—on the dance
floor and in the ring.
Mark, 26, proclaims that he’s “pretty good at just about anything he
does.” And as a sportsman, he believes his speed and aggression will
prepare him for most tribal events.
But if being both a dancer and a fighter sounds like a contradiction,
Mark’s complexities don’t end there. On the surface he appears to be the
joker of the team, often ready with a one-liner. But deep inside he’s
only recently realized what is really driving him to compete so hard:
Mark’s still trying to make his father proud—even though his father died
unexpectedly eight years ago.
HARVARD NATURALIST AND SKIER
Corey Rennell is a Harvard student with a passion for
the outdoors. At school, he’s studying biology and geology. When he’s
off duty he’s running, climbing or skiing.
At 22, Corey has lived a life chasing his fears. His goal is always to
push himself one step further than anywhere he’s been before. On LAST
MAN STANDING, Corey thinks he has the background to win. Growing up in
Alaska, he’s accustomed to living close to nature and thrives on cold
weather and high altitudes. And the opportunity to travel and live with
tribes will enable this intellectual to read “a few more pages of the
book of life.”
Physically he’s by far the best endurance athlete on the team, and he
wears his intelligence on his sleeve. But when it comes to strength
events, he might face difficulties.
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