The Challenge: World Championship has kicked off with its first episodes now streaming on Paramount+, and some of the newly-formed teams are looking especially strong. In the first episode, the global MVPs from international spin-offs of The Challenge from the UK, Argentina, Australia, and the USA were immediately sent into a competition to test a variety of skills necessary to become a champion of The Challenge. Their finishing place on that first challenge determined the order in which they got to pick their partner, selected from a pool of returning legends from the series.

In total, 14 teams were formed with both a global MVP and a returning legend. Considering the higher level of competition this season, every single competitor on The Challenge: World Championshipshows promise and could very well wind up winning the whole thing. However, of the 14 teams, there are clear front-runners based on the combined power of both team members and their past performances on the show. The first weekly competition illuminated who will likely dominate this season or at least has a solid chance of coming out on top.

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5 The Challenge’s Troy Cullen & Amber Borzotra

One of the strongest teams will likely be underestimated by the other competitors due to its smaller stature, but it should be remembered that Amber Borzotra and Troy Cullen are both extremely powerful players. Amber is the winner of The Challenge: Double Agents, while Troy also pulled off a victory on The Challenge: Australia, making them an experienced and worthy duo.

Troy’s specialties lie in balance and agility, using his expertise gained from competing on Australian Ninja Warrior. Amber complements his skill set with a focus on speed and endurance, making their combined abilities more far-reaching than what some of the other teams have to offer. Together, the two former winners of The Challenge will likely slip under the radar before dominating when the time is right. The ability to go unnoticed by other competitors early on could be what makes the difference for Troy and Amber, as has been seen in past seasons of The Challenge and even other reality competition shows.

4 The Challenge’s Darrell Taylor & Kiki Morris

Darrell Taylor on The Challenge. He is standing with his hands on his hips with a serious expression on his face.

Darrell Taylor automatically makes any team he joins significantly stronger, and Kiki Morris showed massive potential by winning The Challenge: Australia, making them another powerful pairing. With a legacy of winning four seasons of The Challenge in a row, Darrell has consistently shown off his physical strength and endurance. Kiki, likewise, dominated in intense physical eliminations on her winning season, making both of them a huge threat to win weeklies that involve brute strength.

Kiki and Darrell have also historically had positive attitudes, which will likely make their partnership stronger and unique among their competitors. As the season goes on, they’ll be able to lift each other up and temper any frustrations they may have with the competition. It could be the secret weapon that propels them to a win on The Challenge: World Championship.

3 The Challenge’s Jonna Stephens & Grant Crapp

Jonna Stephens on The Challenge. She is looking into the camera with a serious expression against a light green background.

Jonna Stephens already has experience beating out intimidating competitors, considering she’s won two seasons of The Challenge: All Stars. Although Grant Crapp struggled a bit on The Challenge: Australia, he’s already made up for it by winning the first MVP challenge of the season. Grant’s victory proved he not only deserves his spot on The Challenge: World Championship but is also a worthy partner for Jonna who can more than hold his own.

As evidence, the pair showed an incredible variety of skills during the first weekly challenge, which involved carrying a 700-lb chain and arranging it into a specific shape. The display of strength, speed, and puzzle-solving makes Jonna and Grant an extremely promising team. The only downside is that their comprehensive skills and ability to work well together likely won’t be underestimated by the other teams. In this way, their solid performance early in The Challenge: World Championship could wind up hurting them long-term.

2 The Challenge’s Danny McCray & Tori Deal

Danny McCray on The Challenge. He is carrying a flat black board and running across a football field.

Danny McCray and Tori Deal are probably the pairing with the greatest combined physical strength, which has already struck fear into their fellow competitors. A former NFL player for the Dallas Cowboys, Danny used his skills to crush the competition and win the controversial final of The Challenge: USA. Meanwhile, Tori is the reigning champion of The Challenge, and her greatest asset is likewise her overall strength.

The only thing that could keep Danny and Tori out of first place is the conflict between the two that was teased in the season trailer. If they don’t work well together, that could hamper their chances of winning The Challenge: World Championship​​​​​​. Hopefully, their performances can overcome any miscommunication, continuing to leave them one of the top teams to beat.

1 The Challenge’s Jordan Wiseley & Kaz Crossley

Jordan Wiseley on The Challenge. He is sitting with his arms crossed and looking off camera.

Kaz Crossley’s decision to draft Jordan Wiseley for her team was the best possible move, considering his consistently stellar performances on The Challenge. Kaz also showed incredible strength and endurance on The Challenge UK, ultimately winning alongside Tristan Phipps. It helps that Jordan is prone to pushing his teammates to achieve their maximum potential, as he did with Aneesa Ferreira on The Challenge: Ride or Dies, where they placed third.

Jordan’s become well-known for his strategic way of tackling each challenge and has a past history of being an extremely well-rounded competitor. However, it stands to reason Kaz could bring a new side out of him that viewers haven’t seen yet. With Kaz and Jordan’s combined skills, they seem poised to crush this season of The Challenge, though it’s clear they and all of the teams have some hard work and tough competition in the weeks ahead.

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The Challenge: World Championship releases Wednesdays on Paramount+.

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