Cable Crossing with Dana and Adrian Davis of The Amazing Race 16
by Reg Seeton
The Amazing Race is back on CBS for Season 16 with a new crop of teams on a global race for the million dollar prize. After forcing the new Amazing Race teams to take the bus from downtown Los Angeles to LAX airport, The Amazing Race competitors were off to Chile in the first leg of Season 16 where the field was quickly put to the test. The first Roadblock of The Amazing Race 16 saw the teams cross a cable the size of a football field over the city of Valparaíso before The Amazing Race competitors painted houses ahead of the Leg 1 Pit Stop.
Unfortunately for high school sweethearts, Dana and Adrian Davis of Texas, the cable cross became The Amazing Race obstacle that was too much of a challenge when Adrian had to also battle his fear of heights. Although Adrian tried twice to overcome his fear and cross the cable, the Roadblock forced Dana and Adrian out of the race early when all of the other Amazing Race teams hit the mat ahead of them.
This week we caught up to Dan and Adrian for a post Amazing Race chat to find out what went wrong and how the two high school sweethearts felt about leaving The Amazing Race after only one leg.
THE DEADBOLT: So how long does it take to go from downtown L.A. to LAX by bus?
ADRIAN DAVIS: [laughs] Oh, man! Here's the crazy thing about it: Dana and I were raised in South Central, Los Angeles, but so much has changed. So when they said Union Station, I'm like, "Union Station? There's no Union Station in L.A." So the last time we were there, the only public transportation we knew was the bus. So it took awhile to get out. But we actually made it, as you see on the show, that we were one of the first three to get to the airport, although it didn't help us any because of that delay.
THE DEADBOLT: How windy was it up there on the wire?
ADRIAN: Oh my goodness! If you could look at the background on a lot of it, you can see that it was extremely windy. What happens when you first get on the cable, it's tighter on the edges. But as you go towards the middle, it gets real bouncy or loose. It feels almost like it gets loose in the middle. Maybe it's gravity pulling it? But if you combine that with the wind blowing the way that it was, combined with the fact I was afraid of heights, it was just not a good combination.
THE DEADBOLT: What did it do for your fear of heights? Were you able to confront it?
ADRIAN: I would say it worsened it, to be honest with you [laughs]. My wife, for her 40th birthday she wants to go skydiving, she's like, "Honey, you've got to overcome your fear. You need to go." And I'm like, "No. Absolutely not!" The biggest thing when you're afraid of heights, what you're actually afraid of is falling. For me, willing to try to overcome my fear, to get out there and to actually fall, was just like a nightmare coming true. So yeah, it'll be awhile before I get up on anything high.
THE DEADBOLT: Since you guys didn't stick to your original strategy, did it force you guys to look into how you make decisions as a couple after the show?
ADRIAN: Absolutely. That's what we're asking. What did you get out of the show? What did you take from the show? That's our biggest one, is that if you have a game plan and you know what your strengths and weaknesses are, you don't veer from that. Especially when things are on the line. Obviously, with my philosophy, I don't back down from a challenge. But that wasn't the time to do that. There's a time and place for everything. I don't know whether you play golf or not, but there's the old adage that if there's a team in front of you and they're working on their game, the course isn't the place to work on your game! Go to the back of the course, there's a lot at stake here and you need to keep the game moving. So we were on the course practicing and it cost us. It absolutely cost us.
THE DEADBOLT: What type of patience does that require? Obviously it's a different type when you're getting up to a challenge like that, but what does that do for you after the show?
ADRIAN: Well, we had quite a bit of time to think about it. You don't get to go home when you're eliminated, you go o Elimination Station. So you've got quite a bit of time after that to think about it. I think you end up doing a lot of self assessment, a lot of "what if". If we only had of done this or done that. There's a lot of second guessing that goes on and a lot of play and rewind, play and rewind.
I think at the end of the day, you ultimately get to the point where you say, "Hey, you know what? It was a chance at winning a million dollars. It was a chance to travel around the world with the person you love. Take it for what it was worth and you move on from there." I got over it a whole lot quicker than my wife did. She was still at Elimination Station still kind of feeling mad about it. I was kind of like, "Hey, it is what it is." I've played sports my entire life, and it's something to get to the big game and to lose, but you have to ultimately say, "Hey, at least we made it to the big game."
DANA DAVIS: And I think Adrian said it best. It's so much to get on this show. So with all of preparation, everything, at least you're out there. And you don't know if you want the number two spot or the last spot, the number two spot next to the million dollars. But there's so much that goes into it that I just felt like I tasted it. I'm so happy we weren't in season fifteen when the one couple didn't even get to leave L.A.
THE DEADBOLT: When you look back, have you thought that maybe it was a good thing you got eliminated first? On some seasons it's really taken a toll on relationships.
DANA: Yeah, I would've rather got eliminated first than second.
ADRIAN: I think so. I think for Dana and I, because of our relationship - we've been together since we were teenagers - we know each other in and out. I think we would have been able to endure a lot more without falling apart had we been able to stay on the race. I'll never forget that one season when the girl in her exit interview, she just flat out said, "No, me and him ain't going to make it. I'm pretty much through with this guy." [laughs] I mean, talk about WOW! It is that impactful to people. I don't think, whether we came in first or last, we'd look at each other like, "You know what? We're going straight to Judge Judy when we get back and file for divorce." But I think it probably would've been more exciting for us if we would've been able to represent a loving couple, how they respond to each other, even under pressure with a million dollars on the line.
DANA: A lot of that is we already know where we fall short in our relationship. I don't want people to think we don't have our weaknesses, we do. But we know them. Let's say that Adrian knows that time management has been an issue in our life for so long, I think if we would've lost because of time management that he's been trying to warn me about for twenty years, and we would've lost a million dollars in spot two because of my time management, I think that kind of stuff can come back and bite you. But what we try to do is deal with our issues now and try to figure out how to get through them in our marriage and our finances and our communications and our private life.
ADRIAN: Right, and how we raise our kids and all of that.
DANA: We still have our challenges but we try to get better with them. But the key is ... You know how some people are like, "I'm late and I'm going to be late and that's just who I am."? Well, hell, if that would've cost me a million dollars and I've been with you for twenty years, I think a lot of times people think it's just going to go away. But if you still did what I've been telling you about for twenty years when it counts, it's going to be a problem.
THE DEADBOLT: Since your relationship is so strong, if it wasn't for that one challenge, what do you think it would it have been like for you guys? That's a big advantage, the relationship.
ADRIAN: Yeah. Again, I think we would've gone a whole lot further than we obviously did. Obviously we have to wait and see the rest of the show and you have to see what other challenges the folks are going to come up against. I don't know if you've had a chance to look at the extra outtakes online at CBS.com, but they let Dana do the cable walk after we were eliminated. Sure enough, she just walked right across [laughs]. So then you just stand there and go, "I can't believe that we did that." So yeah, you kick yourself, you beat yourself up a lot, then you just say, "It is what it is at this point."
THE DEADBOLT: Well, did you get that kiss yet? The one you were talking about at the Elimination Station.
ADRIAN: Oh yeah, man. I finally got the kiss [laughs]. I finally got the kiss.
DANA: All of my friends will say, "Dana, you were in a really good mood at Elimination Station." I still won because I think that somewhere down the line my hormones kicked in and I'm like, "I'm at the freaking Elimination Station." That's what he's talking about. http://www.thedeadbolt.com/news/107124/adrian_dana_amazing_race_16_interview.php