After a quick guided tour in the famous Hermitage Museum, Teams left chilly St. Petersburg, Russia, bound for the deserts of Cairo, Egypt. Capitalizing on discovering a better flight during a layover in Paris, dating couple Colin & Christie arrived in Egypt, completed the Fast Forward and checked into the Pit Stop at the Sphinx in first place hours before second-place cousins Charla & Mirna even landed in Cairo. In a familiar last-place battle between twins Kami & Karli and bowling moms Linda & Karen, the moms lost but learned this was the first of four pre-determined non-elimination legs. However, in a new twist, Teams were stripped of all their money and wouldn't receive any at the start of the next leg.
Departing the Pit Stop at Catherine's Palace in first place on a snowy morning at 9:11am, married parents Chip & Kim opened their clue to discover they must travel 20 miles by train to St. Petersburg and find the Hermitage, one of the world's largest and most famous museums. Once inside, a curator would follow as Teams searched the nearly 3 million works on exhibit to find one painting, "The Return of the Prodigal Son" by Rembrandt, to receive their next clue. On their current standing, Chip commented, "We feel awesome because we're finally number one. We want to keep it that way."
Leaving 31 minutes later, Colin & Christie found a taxi to take them to the train station. On the teamwork between him and his partner, Colin remarked, "Christie and I have been working together as a very cohesive Team. We've barked at each other, but I thought we worked together perfectly."
As Chip & Kim got onto the first train to St. Petersburg, brothers Marshall & Lance left the Pit Stop with some concern about the pain in Marshall's knees, which had escalated during the rest period. (Chip discusses Marshall's knees) Following the brothers were Charla & Mirna, who were unable to find a taxi. They walked to the station through the snow-covered streets, still maintaining a lead over fifth-place dating Christians Brandon & Nicole. (Kami & Kristi in Russia) (Marshall & Lance get directions)
As the last-place Teams, Linda & Karen and Kami & Karli, departed from the Pit Stop, Chip & Kim began their search in the sprawling Hermitage Museum for Rembrandt's "The Return of the Prodigal Son." Soon, dating couple Colin & Christie began their hunt with little success as they bickered about how to find the painting. (Colin & Christie hunt for the Rembrandt) Citing their strong Christian faith and familiarity with the parable upon which the painting is based, Chip & Kim eventually found the painting and received their next clue instructing them to fly over 2000 miles to Cairo, Egypt and proceed to the Tower of Cairo, a 600-foot observation tower overlooking the city.
Chip & Kim hailed a taxi and headed to the airport, while Colin & Christie, also having found the painting, decided to go to a travel agency. At the airport, Chip & Kim were told that the earliest available flight would land in Cairo at 3:15pm, so they booked that flight. At the travel agency, Colin & Christie discovered a flight getting them into Cairo at 2:25pm, which they booked before arriving at the airport. Also arriving at the airport, Marshall & Lance, Charla & Mirna and Brandon & Nicole also secured places on the 3:15 flight, which assured Colin & Christie a 50-minute lead in Egypt. (Brandon & Nicole mellow out)
As Colin & Christie boarded their flight to Cairo, Linda & Karen and Kami & Karli raced into the Hermitage in hopes of catching up to the four Teams waiting at the airport. With the help of a local, Kami & Karli quickly found "The Return of the Prodigal Son," went to a nearby travel agency to book the 3:15pm flight and hurried off to the airport. (Kami & Karli on Russian cabs)
Meanwhile, Linda & Karen continued to search for the painting, commenting, "If we lose, it's because of our stupidity." (Linda & Karen enjoy Russia) After locating the painting, the bowling moms hurried to the ticket counter at the airport, only to find that the taxi driver took them to the wrong airport: the domestic airport. By the time Linda & Karen reached the international airport, the flight carrying the other five Teams, including Kami & Karli, who barely got on board, had already departed. Now stranded in last place, the bowling moms lost hope until they talked to a ticket agent who booked them onto a flight that would connect through Frankfurt, where they would meet up with the five Teams that had departed earlier.
Determination paid off for two Teams, who gained an advantage by finding better flights. In Paris, Colin & Christie found a flight that would land in Cairo at 2:35am versus 2:25pm, creating nearly a 13-hour lead over the other Teams. In Frankfurt, Charla & Mirna secretly found a flight that would land at 2:25pm instead of 3:15pm with the other five Teams. The cousins slinked off during the night when their competitors had fallen asleep.
Landing in Cairo, Colin & Christie took a taxi to the Tower of Cairo to discover it was closed until 9am. Still, they had a nine-hour lead. After a restful night under the stars in Cairo, the dating couple climbed the tower steps in the morning and opened their clue to find the first of two Fast Forwards on the Race. In this Fast Forward, Teams had to make their way to the Pharaonic Village. Once there, they needed to find a sarcophagus and transport it by ferry to a temple and deliver it to the priest inside to receive the Fast Forward reward.
Opting to do this, the dating couple began looking for the village, but disagreed on where to find the sarcophagus. Over Christie's objections, Colin directed the pair to the wrong area. Christie then took over and found the ancient coffin, which they carried into the ferry. Chastising Colin, Christie said, "You know what? You never trust me. And, I said the sarcophagus was on the other side." Colin defended himself as the pair squabbled while carrying the sarcophagus to the priest in the temple.
Upon receiving their Fast Forward reward, the dating couple learned they could proceed directly to the next Pit Stop, the Sphinx. Arriving at the Pyramids, Colin marveled, "We are at one the most incredible places on the planet Earth." Colin & Christie stepped onto the mat at the foot of the Sphinx, and host Phil Keoghan informed the couple they were in first place. On their position right now, Christie remarked, "We're in a huge lead and we're crossing our fingers we'll be able to hang onto it." (Colin loves the Pyramids)
Arriving in Cairo in second place at 2:25pm, Charla & Mirna sped off to the Tower of Cairo and found a Route Marker instructing them to travel 14 miles to the Giza Plateau, home of the three Great Pyramids. Once there, they had to follow yellow rocks to their next clue. As Charla & Mirna made their way to the Giza Plateau, the plane carrying Chip & Kim, Marshall & Lance, Kami & Karli, Brandon & Nicole and Linda & Karen landed in Cairo. In the cab race to the tower, the brothers took an early lead, but were passed by Brandon & Nicole, who arrived first. A concerned Kami & Karli arrived in last place, but passed Linda & Karen on the drive to the Giza Plateau.
As Chip & Kim, Brandon & Nicole and Marshall & Lance began their walk along the yellow stones, Charla & Mirna arrived at the Route Marker to discover a Roadblock. In this Roadblock, one Team member had to climb down a series of ladders to the base of Osiris Shaft, 140 feet below the surface. Next, they needed to search a watery tomb for a satchel, bring it back to the surface and present it to an Egyptologist, who would give them their next clue. (Brandon on getting the shaft)
Citing claustrophobia as a deterrent, Mirna deferred the task to Charla, who began putting on the protective gear to descend down the shaft. A courageous Charla slowly climbed down the ladder, rung by rung, until she reached the base of Osiris Shaft. After lifting the satchel out of the dirty water, Charla found climbing back up to be more challenging because she was carrying the heavy wet bag on her shoulders. In the end, Charla became the hero for her Team: she walked out of the shaft and presented the satchel to the Egyptologist, receiving a map of Giza in return. Teams needed to use this map along with the puzzle pieces in the satchel to plot their course. By assembling the puzzle on top of the map, they would see a hole in the puzzle that marked where they would find their next clue. (Charla explains her Team)
As Charla & Mirna unraveled the mystery of their puzzle, Kami & Karli and Linda & Karen battled in last place, trying to find the path to the Osiris Shaft. The bowling moms received a setback when Linda fell in the sand and twisted her ankle. When Brandon & Nicole and Marshall & Lance arrived at the shaft for the Roadblock, cousins Charla & Mirna found the location designated on their map and discovered a Detour. In this Detour, Teams had to choose either "Rock & Roll" or "Hump & Ride." Teams opting for Rock & Roll had to use ancient tools to transport 600 pounds of rock across an area of sand the size of a football field. While physically demanding, the task could be finished quickly if Teams could master the ancient system used to build the Pyramids. Teams choosing Hump & Ride must pick a pair of horses to lead camels laden with carpets along a one-mile path through the desert. Once they delivered the camels and cargo to a carpet merchant, Teams would receive their next clue. While not physically demanding, the speed of the task was determined by the camels, so it could take a long time. Hoping to do Hump & Ride before it closed at 5:30pm, the cousins raced across the sand, just barely catching the Egyptian men and horses in time.
While Charla & Mirna performed their best "Laurence of Arabia" impression, Brandon & Nicole, Marshall & Lance and Chip & Kim all wondered how to solve the puzzles in their satchels. The brothers, with an ailing Marshall, figured it out. All three Teams walked to the location on the map. Because night had fallen, the Teams had no option but to do Rock & Roll. While Chip & Kim proved to be talented at pulling the concrete blocks by rolling them on wooden sticks, Brandon & Nicole had some difficulty. At one point, Chip even offered a hand to the dating Christians when their massive concrete weight became derailed on the sticks.
As Charla & Mirna checked in for a second-place finish, Kami & Karli became confused when looking at the puzzle pieces from their satchel at the Osiris Shaft. Having absolutely no idea where to go, the twins simply started walking, just as the bowling moms descended the shaft, trying to catch up. Kami & Karli benefited from some good fortune as Chip & Kim, on their way to the Pit Stop at the Sphinx, directed the twins where go for the Detour. (Kami & Karli get lost) (Chip helps the Twins) Trying to prove that the fighting between the Teams was past, Chip said, "Let me tell you, I love you guys! Forgive me now, Kami!" Kami replied, "Okay, you're redeemed." Chip's goodwill came at a price, though. While he stopped to help the twins, Brandon & Nicole, who Chip also helped, finished in third place ahead of him and Kim. On their fourth place finish, Chip commented, "I can't be a pushover, but I can't stop being me."
With Marshall & Lance struggling but completing the Detour for a fifth-place finish, Kami & Karli began the arduous task of hauling the concrete. Having completed the Osiris Shaft puzzle, Linda & Karen were still battling to avoid elimination, desperately hoping to catch up. In the end, twins Kami & Karli finished the Detour and arrived at the Pit Stop in sixth place, and the bowling moms stepped on the mat in last place. Phil delivered some good and bad news to Linda & Karen. The good news was that they were not eliminated, as this was the first of four pre-determined non-elimination points in the Race. The bad news was a new twist, which stripped the bowling moms of all their money. In addition, they would not receive any money at the start of the next leg. On their predicament, plucky Linda commented, "We have no money. We're in Egypt, where everybody's poor. It's going to be hard, but we're not going to give up." Linda & Karen discuss their chances