http://www.thedeadbolt.com/1003028691-the-amazing-race-james-and-abba-i-ran-the-race-with-two-broken-legs.htmlThe Amazing Race: James and Abba, “I ran the race with two broken legs”
by Reg Seeton
This week on The Amazing Race, lifelong rocker friends James Lomenzo and Mark “Abba” Abbattista were eliminated in Moscow after losing their passports a week earlier.
Although the former White Lion and Megadeth guitarist and his attorney friend got a second shot this week on The Amazing Race after leaving their bags in a Moscow cab, James and Abba couldn’t get new passports issued in time to remain in competition.
Despite overcoming seemingly insurmountable odds in Bangladesh when twin sisters Natalie and Nadiya stole their cash, along with Abba’s reactivated knee injury, James and Abba were forced to accept their fate in Russia.
However, as The Deadbolt learned a day after their elimination from The Amazing Race, Abba’s knee injury was much worse than expected.THE DEADBOLT: So, what’s tougher, the music industry or The Amazing Race?
JAMES LOMENZO: Well, that depends on your point of view, because you get robbed in both of them.
MARK “ABBA” ABBATTISTA: [laughs] And you deal with a bunch of rats in both of them.THE DEADBOLT: Well, how do you guys feel now about the money situation with Natalie and Nadiya?
ABBA: I think it was an unfortunate thing. Personally, it’s disappointing to think this is what happened because we had nice relationships with them throughout. Trey and Lexi were a little bit more shocking for me.
You hope for the best. But when you see something that isn’t that, especially after the fact – we didn’t learn about it until it was on TV – you don’t move forward by looking in the rear-view mirror.
JAMES: It was a great experience for us anyway. Overcoming the adversity of not having the money and then meeting all of those wonderful people in Bangladesh, really wonderful people who helped us out, it was a great experience because of it.
It was a negative turned into a super-positive and one of the most memorable days of my life. It was really something.THE DEADBOLT: After getting time to fix the passport situation, were you hopeful at all?
JAMES: We were holding on to hope the whole way, man. It was the only way we could operate. We did realize that it was the longest shot on earth. But it was like when someone gives you a lottery ticket for your birthday. You’re like, “What? You’re giving me nothing,” but you still hope you win the lottery. So that’s kind of where we were at with it.
We were bolstered by the other adversity we overcame on the race, getting through losing the money. It was a long shot from hell, but let’s take it, as usual. It was an interesting experience. We got to see things we probably never would have seen in Russia, and we’ve been there a couple of times prior. So, mostly jail.
ABBA: [laughs] We were inside Russian jails. I got to spend several hours inside of Interpol. I don’t know anybody else who has ever done that.
We knew that it was pretty dim. At the same time, it wasn’t over yet and we weren’t dead. While we still had some breath, we were going to keep kicking with it and take everything in at the same time.THE DEADBOLT: Abba, given how bad your knee was, do you think you could’ve still continued the entire race?
ABBA: Here’s what happened with my knee: it turned out that it wasn’t my knee. We had thought it was potentially the meniscus. But when I came home and had a few MRIs, it turned out that I fractured both tibias. So, I ran the race with two broken legs.
You know, I probably should not have been running. Even now, I’m sitting as I’m speaking to you with these magnetic bone growth stimulators. I’m still in doctors’ care and still healing several months later.
Could I have done that Russian dancing thing? I wasn’t going to quit. I didn’t go there to quit. It might not have been pretty, but I would’ve powered through it like I powered though everything else that we did not knowing that I was running the race on two broken legs. I’d like to think that toughness isn’t the question when it comes to me. But it wouldn’t have stopped me at all.
We were running on cobblestones and broken streets. It was awful from a pain point of view. At the same time, Amy was there with no legs. Until they cut mine off, I think that her story was more important than mine.
How do you feel about the way James and Abba ran The Amazing Race?