I like Donny & Alison..the cousins and the bowling moms..
A 75,000-mile race around the world began with a bang as ex-military man Jim fell on the boardwalk of the Santa Monica Pier. His injured knee required stitches and almost caused him and daughter Marsha to miss their flight to Uruguay. Once in Uruguay, Teams struggled to carry an enormous side of beef and faced their fears on a zip line 18 stories above the ground. After missing a clue at a Route Marker, married couple Chip & Kim and twins Kami & Karli were forced to go back, allowing dating couple Alison & Donny to cruise into first place. Nice guy Dennis allowed other Teams to take taxis in front of him and Erika, causing their last-place finish and elimination from THE AMAZING RACE.
AND THEY'RE OFF!
The fifth installment of THE AMAZING RACE began along the shores of the Pacific Ocean in Santa Monica, California, as lifeguard transport vehicles carried 11 Teams of two, each with a pre-existing relationship, to the world-famous Santa Monica Pier. The Teams are Brandon & Nicole, a dating Christian couple from Los Angeles; Kami & Karli, identical twins from Eugene, Oregon; Linda & Karen, best friends, mothers and amateur bowlers from Palmdale, California; Marshall & Lance, brothers who run a pizza restaurant in Dallas, Texas; Charla & Mirna, cousins from Baltimore, Maryland; Dennis & Erika, formerly engaged, now trying to find their way back together from New York; Bob & Joyce, widowers who found each other on the internet, from Mount Laurel, New Jersey; Colin & Christie, dating from Corpus Christie, Texas; Chip & Kim, married parents from Orange County, California; Jim & Marsha, an ex-military father/daughter wanting a closer relationship from Florida; and Alison & Donny, an on-again, off again-couple from Pennsylvania.
Host Phil Keoghan met the Teams on the edge of the Santa Monica Pier, where he informed them there would be thirteen legs on this race, with eight being elimination points. However, he also warned of a new twist for the last-place Team on a non-elimination leg that would make their lives "very, very difficult." Wishing the Teams good luck and adding, "The world is waiting for you," Phil signaled the start of the race around the world for one million dollars.
As the Teams ran along the boardwalk, two people--ex-military man Jim and Dennis--fell amid the jostling for position, but recovered quickly and joined the race to get their bags and the first clue. Switching on the afterburners, dating couple Colin & Christie ripped open their clue first and discovered they must find the hand in the sand in Uruguay. Teams also learned they could only travel on one of two available flights, on which seating was first come, first served.
In the lead off the pier, dating couple Colin & Christie opted for surface streets, taking advantage of the fact that Christie used to live in Los Angeles. Meanwhile, twins Kami & Karli, dating couple Alison & Donny and couple Dennis & Erika all headed for the freeway. Marsha drove off the pier as her father, Jim, assessed his injury: a bloody knee caused when fell on a nail on the boardwalk. When Marsha expressed concern over the noticeable wound, Jim replied, "It's okay, baby! Go, go!"
As the last-place Team, internet dating couple Bob & Joyce, left the pier, Colin & Christie were already seeing signs for LAX. The Texans continued to set the pace, arriving at the Park One parking lot first and taking a shuttle to the American Airlines terminal, intending to secure tickets on the earlier flight to Uruguay. In a battle for second place, brothers Marshall & Lance parked their car, followed closely by Dennis & Erika, Alison & Donny and Kami & Karli. Getting on a shuttle first, Marshall & Lance told their driver to continue past the other three Teams waiting to board. On the next shuttle, Dennis & Erika, Alison & Donny and Kami & Karli made a pact to work together to determine the better flight to take.
HOLD THAT LINE
With cousins Charla & Mirna lost and best friends Linda & Karen still on the freeway, Colin & Christie entered the American Airlines terminal, followed by Marshall & Lance. The two Teams quickly became perplexed when they couldn't find the flagged counter to purchase tickets. Their confusion allowed Dennis & Erika to arrive first at the American counter. Dennis & Erika's allies, Allison & Donny and Kami & Karli, were first to arrive at the United Airlines counter. BIG BROTHER 4 finalist Alison discovered that the United flight was leaving later than the American flight, but it would arrive in Uruguay first because of a shorter layover. She and Donny, along with Kami & Karli, were the first two Teams ticketed on the United flight, which could hold a total of seven Teams.
Meanwhile, unaware of the information their alliance partners had received, Dennis & Erika purchased tickets on the slower American flight and held up the line forming behind them to secure two more seats for their friends. Married parents Chip & Kim, internet dating couple Bob & Joyce, brothers Marshall & Lance and dating couple Colin & Christie all expressed their discontent as Dennis stalled for almost twenty minutes, hoping his alliance members would return. Realizing the tension they were creating, Erika remarked, "Every other Team hates us right now!" Finally Kami & Karli arrived to deliver the news to Dennis & Erika that the United flight arrives an hour before the American flight. However, Dennis & Erika had already purchased their tickets on American and couldn't exchange them for the earlier-arriving United flight. Soon, also unaware of this information, Colin & Christie, Marshall & Lance and Chip & Kim secured the remaining three spots on the slower flight.
Back at the United terminal, the late-arriving Teams, including Linda & Karen, Charla & Mirna and Jim & Marsha, all received a pleasant surprise when they learned they would be on the faster flight to Uruguay with Alison & Donny, Kami & Karli and dating couples Brandon & Nicole and Bob & Joyce. Jim & Marsha's celebration was tempered when an airport paramedic inspecting Jim's injury told him he required stitches. As Jim & Marsha were transported to a nearby emergency medical clinic, the four Teams on the slower American flight boarded their plane bound for Uruguay. Chip commented, "It's disconcerting being on a slower flight behind seven other Teams."
In a race against the clock, Jim & Marsha arrived at the clinic, where Jim received medical attention. Leaving the clinic, Jim informed Marsha that his cut had required 25 stitches and had almost taken out a tendon. With their United flight now boarding, a nervous Jim & Marsha found themselves in traffic, unsure whether they would make the flight before it departed. The other six Teams were in their seats when Jim & Marsha rushed to the gate in the nick of time. Once on the plane, Jim joked, "Probably would have been quicker just to amputate the leg."
HAND IN THE SAND
After traveling more than 6800 miles, the first seven Teams landed in Uruguay to learn that they must take a 75-mile bus ride to the town of Punta del Este and find the hand in the sand, a statue that sits on the beach along some of the roughest waters in South America. The fingers of the statue represent the last thing you see of a person before they drown. All seven Teams on the earlier flight boarded the first bus leaving for Punta del Este just as the slower flight carrying the remaining four Teams landed in Uruguay. Getting on a bus forty minutes behind the first bus, Colin commented, "We're a little bit concerned about the fact that we're in the back of the pack."
As Colin and the other Teams on the second bus worried, Brandon spotted the hand on the beach across the street as the first bus pulled into the station. Cousins Charla & Mirna took a quick lead running off the bus, but were soon passed by dating couple Brandon & Nicole, who reached the clue first. Opening it, the pair received instructions to travel by ferry to Gorriti Island to find their next clue. Believing that every second counts, dating couples Alison & Donny and Bob & Joyce, twins Kami & Karli, father/daughter Jim & Marsha and cousins Charla & Mirna all flagged down taxis to the port to catch a ferry. Only dating couple Brandon & Nicole and best friends Linda & Karen opted to walk. Pointing out that everybody else was taking cabs, Nicole became annoyed when Brandon replied, "It's okay. We have to save our money."
Arriving at the port in first place, Bob & Joyce happily boarded the ferry, only to become disappointed at the appearance of Alison & Donny and Kami & Karli before the ferry could depart. Making it to the port a few minutes later, a limping Jim & Marsha and cousins Charla & Mirna took a second ferry to Gorriti Island. Still walking, an angry Nicole told Brandon, "We're in last now. We've got to focus on making smart decisions together." Brandon replied, "I need you to support me, Nic." The pair arrived at the dock with Linda & Karen and took a third ferry to the island.
INTO THE WOODS
As the second bus carrying Colin & Christie, Dennis & Erika, Chip & Kim and Marshall & Lance arrived in Punta del Este; the first ferry reached the shores of Gorriti Island. Jumping off the ferry, Alison & Donny, Bob & Joyce and Kami & Karli all opened clues informing them to search among 100 marked trees in a nearby wooded area for tickets for ferries leaving the next morning at three different times: 8 am, 8:30 am and 9 am. Once a Team ripped a ticket off a tree, they could not change their minds. Running into the woods, Alison shouted at Donny, "Look for times before you rip it!" After finding an 8 am and a 9 am ticket, the pair kept looking while twins Kami & Karli grabbed an 8:30 am ticket, unaware they could have done better. As the second ferry carrying Charla & Mirna and Jim & Marsha landed on the island, Alison & Donny and Bob & Joyce each secured spots on the 8 am ferry the next morning. After rebuffing attempts by Charla & Mirna to work together, Jim & Marsha found an 8:30 am ticket. Charla & Mirna, also finding an 8:30 am ticket, said about Jim & Marsha, "They're playing nice, but they're not."
Arriving on the third ferry, Linda & Karen found the final ticket for the 8 am ferry, leaving Brandon & Nicole to find 9 am tickets. Soon, the dating Christian couple was joined by the Teams on the final ferry. Colin observed, "Look, they're still looking for theirs." All five Teams took the remaining tickets on the 9 am ferry. A disappointed Brandon felt responsible for his Team going from the first flight to the last ferry because of his decision to walk to the port. Feeling in a similar position, Chip joked, "Here we go again. The bottom feeders."
After a night of rest allowing Teams to relax and mingle with one another, Bob & Joyce, Alison & Donny and Linda & Karen departed Gorriti Island at 8 am, returning to the shores of Punta del Este. At the port, the three Teams found their next clue instructing them to make their way to the suburb of Maldonado to find the next Route Marker at the Jose Francisco Gonzales meat warehouse. They all decided to take the bus together to Maldonado just as Kami & Karli, Charla & Mirna and Jim & Marsha all docked at Punta del Este. The cousins quickly found the cluebox and sneaked away, leaving Jim & Marsha and Kami & Karli to walk endlessly up and down the docks. As Charla & Mirna hailed a taxi, the twins carelessly strolled passed the box. Charla remarked, "They wouldn't even talk to us. That's what they get for it."
Arriving in Maldonado, Alison & Donny took a quick lead off the bus, but were shocked to see Charla & Mirna's taxi pull up behind them. Alison yelled, "There's the midget. Go!" Arriving at the meat warehouse, both Teams ripped open their clue. The clue instructed them to carry a 55-pound side of beef one-half mile to a butcher shop, La Rosada Carniceria. Once they complete the task, Teams would receive their next clue. With Bob & Joyce and Linda & Karen close behind, couple Alison & Donny took the lead. Donny carried the cumbersome beef, while Charla & Mirna struggled together.
Couple Alison & Donny became the first Team to reach the Yield, a new feature in the Race. There is only one Yield on each leg of the Race. The Team that uses it may force a Team behind them to stop racing for a pre-determined length of time. A Team forced to Yield must turn over an hourglass and wait for the sand to run out before they move on, even as other Teams pass them. However, Teams can only exercise their Yield power once during the Race, so they must decide when it is in their best interest to use it. Alison & Donny decided not to exercise their Yield option on this leg and continued on with their side of beef. Meanwhile, back on the docks, Jim & Marsha and Kami & Karli finally found the cluebox just as the last five Teams arrived on shore from the 9 am ferry. All seven Teams raced to Maldonado in hopes of catching the four lead Teams.
As Alison & Donny continued to lead the way, Bob & Joyce and Linda & Karen kept up, but Charla & Mirna showed signs of trouble. "The beef was disgusting," Mirna later complained, "The cow smelled. I don't even eat beef cooked, let alone just raw beef." As Mirna forced herself to continue carrying the heavy beef, Alison & Donny placed their side of beef in the meat locker at the carniceria and claimed their next clue. The clue instructed the Team to return to Punta del Este and find the Route Marker across the street from the blue and white hotel. Alison & Donny hurried into a cab as Bob & Joyce and Linda & Karen deposited their meat in second and third place.
Finding the energy to keep walking, cousins Charla & Mirna realized they were lost and had walked four blocks past the butcher shop. This allowed twins Kami & Karli and the still-injured Jim & Marsha to catch up. Running out of the shop in fourth place, Charla & Mirna became exasperated looking for a taxi. Mirna lamented, "After we carried that beef, we cannot lose because we can't find a taxi." The cousins eventually found a taxi, but a logjam formed as the other seven Teams all completed the task and had to wait while locals called taxis for them.
Standing in an area separate from the larger group, Marshall & Lance and Chip & Kim grabbed the next available cabs. Being the first of the larger group to call for a taxi, Kami & Karli also headed back to Punta del Este. Having called together, Dennis & Erika, Colin & Christie, Brandon & Nicole and Jim & Marsha had to decide which Teams got to take the taxis first. After the Los Angeles airport incident in which he held up the line, Dennis offered a "good faith gesture" and let the other three Teams take taxis first. This left Dennis & Erika to take the final cab to Punta del Este. A frustrated Erika told Dennis, "I don't know why you'd let them take a taxi before us."
Dating couple Alison & Donny continued to set the pace, but instead of going to the cluebox across the street from the hotel, they entered the hotel itself after seeing yellow and red flags. Alison quickly realized their mistake, but the pair was passed by bowling moms Linda & Karen as both Teams opened their clue to discover a Detour. A Detour is a choice between two tasks, each with its own pros and cons. In this Detour, Teams had to choose either "Zips" or "Chips." Teams choosing Zips must make their way to the top of the hotel and pull themselves across a horizontal zip line 210 feet above the ground. Once on the other side, they must take a second zip line 18 stories down to the pool below. While this option was frightening, Teams with guts could finish quickly. Teams opting for Chips must make their way into the hotel casino to play roulette with 20 chips. They would receive their next clue only if they hit their number. While the task wasn't scary, the gamble was. If they didn't get the clue, they still had to complete the Zips option and would have only succeeded in wasting time. Linda & Karen, Alison & Donny and Bob & Joyce all made their way to the roof of the hotel to perform Zips.
As the Teams geared up and pulled themselves across the zip line, Kami & Karli arrived at the hotel and followed the flags directly into the casino without finding the Route Marker. Unaware they made a mistake, the twins began playing the roulette game. On the roof, Alison overcame her fear of heights to complete the Zips Detour with Donny. The couple opened the next clue, which directed them to travel by taxi to the first Pit Stop ten miles away at Casa del Pueblo. The last Team to check in would be eliminated.
Back in the casino, twins Kami & Karli got lucky and hit their bet, 17 black, thus winning their clue. Making the same mistake as the twins, married parents Chip & Kim also entered the casino without seeing the Route Marker and began to play roulette. The couple was soon joined by brothers Marshall & Lance, who got their Detour instructions before entering the casino. The brothers won on the first bet by playing their family's birthdays. Having also finished Zips, Linda & Karen joined Marshall & Lance, Alison & Donny and Chip & Kim, who completed Chips on the next bet after the brothers, in a cab race to the Pit Stop. On the way to Casa del Pueblo, Kami & Karli realized they may have made a mistake by not crossing the street from the blue-and-white hotel to get their clue.
As Bob & Joyce finished the zip line, Brandon & Nicole and Jim & Marsha reached the cluebox and opted for Zips, while Charla & Mirna excitedly headed for Chips, declaring, "We are a gambling phenomenon." As Brandon & Nicole braved the heights of the zip line, Jim & Marsha got lost looking for the roof, allowing Colin & Christie to pass them. In the casino, cousins Charla & Mirna celebrated hitting their lucky number and rushed to the Pit Stop.
Arriving at Casa del Pueblo, married parents Chip & Kim ran onto the mat, where Phil awaited them. After telling the couple they were first to arrive, Phil delivered the bad news that they had missed a Route Marker and had to retrieve it before they could check in. A stunned Chip & Kim hurried back to their cab, crying, "We are so dead, it's unbelievable," just as twins Kami & Karli received the exact same news from Phil forcing them to return to the hotel as well.
This mistake allowed dating couple Alison & Donny to step onto the mat in first place. For their efforts, the pair won a trip to Hawaii, compliments of American Airlines website, AA.com. About their win, Donny remarked, "To be number one feels great because we're going to lead ourselves and lead everyone in the pack." As Dennis & Erika arrived at the cluebox in last place, the couple chose Zips as Jim & Marsha began the task. Worried that her father's injury could hamper them, Marsha pulled herself across the expanse of the hotel.
With brothers Marshall & Lance and bowling moms Linda & Karen finishing second and third respectively, married parents Chip & Kim and twins Kami & Karli raced back to the Cluebox at the hotel. Time was slowly running out for the two Teams to rectify their huge mistake as Bob & Joyce arrived in fourth place and cousins Charla & Mirna in fifth. As Jim & Marsha finished the zip line, Chip & Kim picked up the missed clue. Soon Dennis & Erika also completed the Detour, while Kami & Karli got the clue they missed earlier. Thus began a four-way race to avoid elimination.
As Christian couple Brandon & Nicole claimed sixth place and couple Colin & Christie took seventh, the remaining Teams hoped for the best as they rode anxiously in their taxis. Erika remarked, "I hope this taxi driver knows exactly where he's going." Catching a huge break, Chip & Kim recovered from their mistake to finish in eighth place, followed by twins Kami & Karli in ninth place. In his taxi, a stunned Dennis said, "I can't believe it's coming down to this." Defying the odds after a potentially Race-ending injury, father/daughter Jim & Marsha finished in tenth place. Jim commented, "Pain is not a factor. Nobody's ever died from pain. I still think we can win this thing."
Arriving at the Pit Stop in last place, dating couple Dennis & Erika were informed by Phil that they were eliminated from THE AMAZING RACE. Erika quipped, "We knew our downfall was Dennis' kindness. But I'd rather be with a nice guy than a jerk." Dennis reflected on the experience with his partner, "Erika's a great girl. I love her to death. I really feel like the Race showed that we were really meant for each other." Erika added, "I can't imagine myself with anybody other than Dennis. He's amazing to everybody, and I wouldn't want to be with anybody other than him."
Tuesday, July 13 10PM ET/PT
One delayed Team gets angry, thinking another Team intentionally misled them with bad information.
Frustration and fighting erupt when a Team switches Detour tasks halfway through. Will they fall far behind the other Teams?
Tempers flare when an all-out sprint between two Teams leads to a standoff for a taxi.
A Team member's strategic mistake leads to tense talk, testing that Team's relationship.