Amazing Race's Michael and Kevin: Getting Two Penalties Was a "Shock to Us"
by Joyce Eng
The No. 1 rule of The Amazing Race is to always read your clue. Kevin, 20, and Michael Wu, 58, failed to do so twice — illegally having a cab lead them to a location and then taking a cab — causing them to incur a one-hour penalty, which led to their elimination in Russia. "When we got to the Pit Stop, we had no idea we broke two rules," Kevin tells TVGuide.com. "That's why we were smiling walking up because when Chad and Stephanie had to go pay their taxi, we thought we were safe." See what else the father-son duo and YouTube sensations had to say about their time on the race, if Michael's heat exhaustion in Ghana was a factor and more.
TVGuide.com: What happened with the clues? You never looked over them, not even in the cab?
Kevin: No. I mean, that's completely our fault, but that leg was kind of different from any other leg. The clue said we had to solve a Russian mystery. We had to go from location to location, so when we had to go to the top of the tower, we weren't given another written clue and we didn't know if we could take a taxi from the tower to the church. It was a mix-up and a few other teams didn't know that either.
TVGuide.com: At the tower, Brook said you weren't supposed to take a cab. That didn't alert you that you may have done something wrong?
Kevin: No, because we didn't literally take the cab, like sit inside it. We followed it, but we didn't know that was not allowed.
TVGuide.com: Brook and Claire obviously corrected themselves. Did it bother you that they didn't tell you at the Roadblock that you guys messed up? Or did it not matter at that point since it was so late?
Kevin: At the time, they were following us, and all of the sudden, we looked back and they weren't there. We didn't know why. We thought they just got lost. There was another time in Ghana where Brook and Claire didn't tell us about the wheelbarrow. We weren't mad at them. No hard feelings.
Michael: Yeah, and they didn't have a chance to tell us when they were going back since we were in different cabs.
TVGuide.com: You were pretty upset at Nick for lying about a clue. Did you expect him to tell the truth?
Kevin: I didn't expect him to say anything. Nick and us were pretty close. They were just one of the teams we were friends with. It was just ... I don't know.
Michael: [Laughs] As Kevin said, we were close to them more than other teams, so we didn't really expect that. But it's part of the game, so it's fine.
TVGuide.com: Michael, did it really take you an hour to knock over the first formation of pins at the Roadblock?
Michael: I don't know. It probably felt like one!
Kevin: We don't remember. It was probably like 45 minutes or something.
Michael: [The whole Roadblock] felt like hours! I couldn't really concentrate. They didn't show it, but Kevin was trying to teach me angles. I don't know what happened. Maybe I was tired.
TVGuide.com: Do you think getting heat exhaustion in Ghana affected you?
Michael: I don't think so. I guess I should've talked to Kevin more about whether I should've done it instead of just doing it. ... I believe if Kevin had done it, we'd still be in it. [Laughs]
Kevin: Who knows?
TVGuide.com: When you were assessed the penalties, did you think you were out, or did you think you still had a chance?
Michael: We were still hopeful because Chad and Stephanie still had to check in.
Kevin: It was a shock to us more than frustration [at not reading the clues]. We were wondering why we were sitting out. Getting the penalty, we were like, "OK, there's no chance. If we're out for sure, why did they make us sit out?" We didn't know what was going on.
TVGuide.com: Did you lose a lot of time settling with your cabbie and trying to find the Pit Stop? You have had trouble finding it the past few legs.
Michael: It was a few minutes. We gave him another $40 and that convinced him that was all we had, so he let us go. It was extremely tough.
Kevin: The clue isn't specific about where the Pit Stop is. Like last week, it said "Russian Cathedral," but it didn't say the "park across the street," so a lot of teams circled the cathedral like us.
TVGuide.com: You guys got frustrated a few times, but never blew up at each other like a lot of other teams.
Kevin: People enjoyed our father-son relationship. I think it's even the cultural thing. I was never raised to raise my voice at my parents and get angry at them for anything. People are like, "You have such a nice relationship." My dad is my role model, so I'm not going to yell at him if he can't do something.
Michael: From the beginning, I was telling myself, "This is a good opportunity for myself and my son to travel together, no matter how short or long it'll be. I will not get upset." I mean, we had to do this together. ... Of course, it was extremely difficult for me. I'm not going to lie about that. But I ended up doing it because I wanted to spend time with Kevin. He's 20 and this is probably our last time to spend time together for long time, and we got to travel around the world.
TVGuide.com: What are you up to now? More YouTube videos?
Kevin: Probably. I've been working on videos that hopefully I'll release.
Michael: I'll be back to my normal life. If Kevin still wants me to appear in his videos, I'd love to.http://www.tvguide.com/News/Amazing-Race-Michael-Kevin-1025213.aspx