Amazing Race's Elliot and Andrew: We Knew We're Better Than That
Mar 5, 2012 02:23 PM ET
by Joyce Eng
If Elliot and Andrew Weber had a redo, they would tackle The Amazing Race's Paraguay leg completely differently. After toiling at the harp-stringing Detour for hours, the twins wound up slightly ahead of Vanessa and Ralph — who slaved away themselves at the watermelon-stacking option — at the Roadblock. But the bottle-balancing task proved too difficult for Elliot, the front man of the music group Enova, to handle. "I probably have better balance than he does, especially with things on my head," Andrew, a goalkeeper for MLS' Seattle Sounders, tells TVGuide.com. "Should I have done it? Maybe, but at the time, neither of us knew [from the clue] what the task was." Find out why Elliot took the Roadblock, why they had such a hard time with the harp and more.
How close was it between you and Vanessa and Ralph?
Eliot: It was pretty close. They left about seven minutes before us and we ran so fast that we caught up at least four minutes. It ended up being really tight at the end. Probably two minutes after they finished we showed up at the mat.
What went wrong with the harp?
Elliot: [Laughs] Well, what we should've done was work from the bottom up. It was crazy because our harp, and I think Nary and Jamie's harp, had an extra hole at the end of it. So when we were about to finish, all of a sudden we noticed, "Wait a minute, there's an extra hole." So we were off by one string in the middle. We had to undo a lot of strings and go back at it again. It was just so frustrating watching everybody leave too. We got there first, I think, and even leaving that whole city, it was like the haunting harp.
Andrew: Yeah, we're haunted by harps. Everywhere you go, there was a harp! There were harps in gift shops — harps everywhere. We were just dying. We were gonna buy our mom a harp.
Were you overconfident since you've strung guitars?
Eliot: I don't think I was overconfident. Stringing guitars is different. It's not so condensed a space. The space in the harp you have to go through to string is so tiny and we have huge fingers.
Andrew: There's a little tool you use to pull the string through, and he and I were going back and forth with it. I just think there could've been a better way we went about doing it. And then there were a couple little pieces in the middle of harp, where I had to chip away at it so I could get the string through the hole because it was blocked off by the wood. It was pretty frustrating. We showed up and nobody was there, and there was already a group that was on a plane a few hours ahead of us. The fact that we showed up and watched everyone on that plane come into the room, we were like, "Oh, man, we're in great position!" Then everyone leaves before us!
Why did you choose the harp?
Andrew: I just thought it seemed easier. And Elliot's strung guitars before. It's not like it's gonna be too much different. ... The thing was, it wasn't really that hard. It was just small spaces and we have big hands, so it was one of those things where we probably should've slowed down. Sometimes less is more and you need to work efficiently.
Do you regret choosing it, even though the watermelons seemed way harder?
Elliot: A little. We can't say we would've done better there, but we're so physical and on our way to the harp, I was just looking at Andrew like, "Are you sure you wanna do the detail-oriented one, man?" Not like the watermelon one isn't, but it's more of a physical activity. To be honest if we could go back and do it again, I think we would've done the watermelons.
When did you decide you wanted to switch?
Elliot: It was like, "We're so over this harp, man. Let's just go do the more physical activity with the watermelon." But then it was like, "You know what? We started something and we need to finish it." That's our motto. I think a lot of people think that way. You don't want to be the person who set out to do a task and didn't finish it because I let my feelings get in the way.
Andrew: And it would've taken so much more time to do the watermelon. We talked to some other teams and they said the watermelon took them three hours to do. The harp, if you did it correctly, took, like, 40 minutes. When we walked outside and saw the traffic, we were like, "Nope! We're going back inside. We're gonna finish this."
So you couldn't find a cab? Would you have gone to the watermelons if you had found a cab quickly?
Andrew: I think we wanted to switch in the moment, but we just looked at each other and decided to just go back and finish it. When we got back in there, we actually calmed down and got it done. I think that was the best task we had done so far. It was good for me to know that. We thought we were dead last and when [Vanessa and Ralph] pulled up at the Roadblock a little after we did, we were like, "Oh, man! We're not the only ones still here!" That got us a little pumped up, but unfortunately they finished first.
Did you waste a lot of time thinking about whether or not to switch?
Elliot: No. I feel like everything wastes time, but maybe if we didn't step out of the auditorium, we could've been five or 10 more minutes ahead. Maybe that would've made a difference in beating Vanessa and Ralph if everything else happened the same way as it did up to the Roadblock. But I think stepping away for a second allowed us to come back and focus on getting it done. If we hadn't stepped out, who knows? We may still be there. I think we lost at most 10 minutes. It's significant in the Race, but it's not too much. It's not like 30 minutes or an hour.
It was pitch-black outside by the time you finished. How long did it take you?
Andrew: [Laughs] Yup! I'm guessing three hours! That's just a guess, but it was just frustrating. When you have the whole thing strung and one that's left at the end, it's like, "What did we do wrong?!" It's not like we missed a string at the top or the bottom. We missed something in the middle, so we had to go back and restring the whole thing. And the strings get re-tangled too, so you're fighting to get them through again. It's like trying to make a shoelace go straight.
Elliot: We should've started from the bottom up. You work on one side and me on the other. [Laughs] We were there for a while. It was disheartening, but we finished it and we are proud of that.
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I think a lot of fans are thinking you, Andrew, should've taken the Roadblock since you're a soccer player.
Andrew: Yeah, well, Elliot was like, "Let me take this one, man." I was like, "All right, buddy, you got it!" I probably have better balance, but who knows what would've happened? As you saw, people were doing it with bottles that were completely full and [Dave] didn't even get it done. It was hard. I think I started screaming out at Elliot and you're not supposed to help the person, so [producers] were screaming back at me. It didn't matter. He did his best. I don't blame him at all for our elimination. You can't say that I would've done better; I wasn't in that situation. Is my balance better? I think we can agree it's probably a little bit better. Right, Elliot?
Elliot: Yeah. I mean, I have a mop-top and Andrew has a shaved head and balance. He works on that stuff all the time, especially as a goalkeeper. If I could go back and change it, I would've been like, "OK, man, you take this one. You do this kind of stuff day in and day out." It was tough seeing Ralph finish. We got there [before they did] and just like the Detour, the team after us passed us. It was minutes. But you know, [the decision] was made in the moment.
You would've redone a lot of things this leg.
Andrew: [Laughs] Yeah. Let's [redo] the whole leg! It was heartbreaking, but it was fun. The whole experience was fun. It sort of sucks because we knew we're better than that. It came down to the little details. It was hard, but we had a great time. http://www.tvguide.com/News/Amazing-Race-Elliot-Andrew-1044482.aspx