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Eleven teams of two, joined by family or relationship, follow a path of twists and turns in a frenetic race around the world for $1 million...again! They tried before and failed...so this is Unfinished Business!

Who will be the first to cross the finish line?

Recaps by Chris Wolvie, GSNN

Host Phil Keoghan
Creator Bertram van Munster
Elise Doganieri
EP Jerry Bruckheimer
Bertram van Munster
Jonathan Littman
Elise Doganieri
Mark Vertullo
Packager Jerry Bruckheimer TV
Worldrace Productions
Amazing Race Productions
CBS Television Studios
ABC Studios
Web www.cbs.com/amazingrace
Airs 8p Sun, CBS

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Don't Ruin the Basketball Game
March 20

From one corner of the Orient to another, the Racers went from remote Japan to remote China. En route, they rode saddled yaks across a waterfall, worked out the Chinese Zodiac, hammered out candy and paraded around with a large horn. Margie & Luke (Team Hear My Song!) arrived at the PIT STOP in first and won a trip...but, just like the first PIT STOP, this was another "gas-and-go", meaning they still had to Race. The only two who haven't "checked-in-and-out" yet are Zev & Justin (Team Puzzle Pieces) - still parading with their horn lost in Old Town Lijiang - and Kent & Vyxsin (Team Dating Goths) - who, after MANY, MANY trials and tribulations, are trying to get back their fanny pack with all their important stuff in it. Who will finish the Leg in 8th? Who will be last? Will they be eliminated? Or will they live to Race another Leg? Let's find out, shall we


"Zev & Justin," says Phil on the portico of a beautiful tower, "you are the eighth team to arrive."

They seem relieved that Kent & Vyxsin didn't (somehow) beat them there. That relief is short-lived, however, as they are handed the next clue by Phil. Ayup, another "gas-and-go" PIT STOP. And the clue they get (as did the seven teams before them) is this:



Travel by train nearly 400 back to the city of Kunming, China (where your flight from Tokyo dropped you off). Then travel to Dounan Flower Market and search for your next clue.

WARNING: A DOUBLE U-TURN will appear at some point of this Leg of the Race.

Oh, great...you all know what THAT means:


A U-TURN forces a team to do BOTH parts of a DETOUR instead of one or the other. Teams may be U-TURNed more than once during a Race, but may only UTILIZE a U-TURN once. A team using a U-TURN must place two pictures up: one for the team they are U-TURNing, and their own so that said team knows who U-TURNed them.

This will be a DOUBLE U-TURN (introduced in the last Race), meaning two different teams can U-TURN two OTHER teams at the same DETOUR.

Phil tells them to hurry up...although it's hardly necessary right now because...


...Team Dating Goths finally arrive BACK at the site of their ROADBLOCK and search for the fanny pack they left in the gondola. Their only hope is that it was turned in at the top of the mountain. Sure enough, at the top, the lost and found department hands them their pack, mush to their relief. .


Meanwhile, Team Hear My Song arrive at the train station they had arrived at mere hours before from Kunming. They ask about tickets TO Kunming...and they find that the earliest one doesn't leave until around 7pm. Aaaaaaaand the Alternate Great Equalizer strikes again! And here come the other teams to claim THEIR seats: Jet & Cord (Team Cowboy Bebop), Gary & Mallory (Team KY/Dad), Ron & Christina (Team Who's Your Daddy?), Kisha & Jen (Team Cardinal Sisters),"Flight Time" & "Big Easy (aka Nate & Herb, Team Trotters), Jaime & Cara (Team Hollaback Girls) and Team Puzzle Pieces bringing up the rear.

Back in Old Town, Kent & Vyxsin find this old clue:



The prayer wheel before you as the twelve signs of the Chinese Zodiac upon in. Unlike the Western Zodiac, your sign of the Chinese Zodiac is based on the YEAR you were born, not the month. You each must figure out which sign is yours, write a wish on a piece of paper and insert it into the slot above your sign, announcing the sign as you do. If you are correct, the spotter nearby will give you your next clue.

They figure out they're Rabbit and Horse respectively, put in their prayers (which hopefully include NOT being eliminated) and are handed THIS clue:



HAMMER: Head for the confectioners. The head confectioner will pour hot molten candy onto a high stump. You must them pulverize the candy using long-handled wooden hammers, the traditional way to do it in Old Town. When you finish making it flat and cutting it into rectangular pieces. The confectioner will give you your next clue.

HORN: Head to Namun Square. There, you must take up a long, cumbersome horn and lead a procession of Nakhi dancers to Wenchang Palace, where a greeter will hand you your next clue.

They choose HAMMER...because Vyxsin does NOT want to navigate anymore this leg. They get to the confectioners, pulverize the molten candy, cut it into a square and package it. The head confectioner gives THIS clue to them:



Travel by foot to the center of Lijiang city, up Lion Hill and to the Eternal Tower, the PIT STOP for this Leg of the Race.

WARNING! The last team to check-in MAY BE ELIMINATED!

They're fairly sure this is the end. They arrive in front of Phil who tell them what they already know: they're last to arrive. The GOOD news is this was another Non-Elimination Leg (NEL, as I call it) and they're still Racing now. But there IS some BAD news. Since they took an alternate flight from Tokyo to Kunming instead of the MANDATORY flight, and since said alternate was NOT on the predetermined list of flights given, they must serve a 30-minute penalty at the next PIT STOP before being checked in. For now, though, they're told to hoof it and try to catch up. First thing they decide: NOT to tell any other teams about their penalty...because they would be easy pickings for a U-TURN. They take a cab to the train station.

While waiting on the Goths, Teams Cowboy Bebop, Trotters and Cardinal Sisters decide to have a 3-on-3 match-up while they wait for the train. The other teams cheer for either Jet/Flight/Kisha or Cord/Big Easy/Jen. And Team Hollaback Girls...duh, they did the cheerleading. When Zev & Justin arrived during the game, they say that Kent & Vyxsin were right behind them...but Team Trotters don't want to hear that to "ruin" their b-ball de-stressing. But, sure enough, Team Dating Goths show up and are happy to be back in it after a HORRIBLE Leg. They tell their sob story to the other team (though they claim it was a car breakdown in Japan, not bad navigating, that made them miss their flight). The others asked about a penalty...but the Goths didn't give a straight answer. As Cord says, this story is "to be continued..."


All out! It's early morning in the city at the end of the Burma Road and eighteen Americans pile out to head for the flower market. They start to take cabs and Ron & Christina again use the Chinese language to get their cabbie to haul. Everyone seems on edge about the DOUBLE U-TURN fast approaching.


As teams tell their cabbies to wait, they rush into a market covered in flowers of every make and color. It's Kisha & Jen who arrive at the clue box first and find this:



Travel by taxi to the Golden Horse & Jade Cock Memorial Arches. Search the grounds for your next clue.

As they leave, Zev & Justin, Ron & Christina, and Margie & Luke get their clues. The others arrive later and snag THEIR clues...except for Nate & Herb whom, despite being tall, get lost in the maze of buildings. As they search, Jet & Cord make off with their cab...so, when they emerge with their clue, they're stranded! Thankfully, they find another one fairly quickly and follow the others to:


In between large arches marked with a horse and a co...rooster, the teams let out, see some tai chi masters and find their clue. Team Who's Your Daddy arrive first, though Team Puzzle Pieces are right behind. And they get:



HONOR THE PAST: Go to a local Tibetan playhouse and watch a traditional Tibetan procession. PAY ATTENTION TO THE ACTORS! Once you've seen the procession enough, go into a booth and place costumes on 15 dolls, placing them in the order they appeared in the procession. YOU MUST NOT TAKE NOTES DURING THIS TASK! When you have them arranged correctly, the judge will hand you your next clue.

EMBRACE THE FUTURE: Head to a nearby Great Wall of China Building where a delivery truck is waiting. You must offload an entire solar water heating panel, bring it to the top of the building and properly install it on the roof. Once the panel is properly installed and inspected, the supervisor will hand you your next clue.

The two teams decide to HONOR THE PAST and head off in their cabs. The other teams choices: Team Cardinal Sisters choose to HONOR THE PAST, everyone else will EMBRACE THE FUTURE.

(NOTE: Jet joked that a nearby McDonalds(tm) were the "Golden Arches"...and I'm glad THEY made that joke and not me! Cost them some time, though.)

Ron & Christina and Zev & Justin both arrive at the playhouse and don Tibetan outfits before entering the theater-proper. Fifteen people parade in a snakelike pattern across the small stage while two others sing. Both teams split the load: one teammate remembers the first seven players' colors, on takes the other eight. After the performance, the team retire to their separate booths and start playing with dolls. The Chinese-Americans seem to being doing well. The two men...not so much. As they work, Kisha & Jen show up and start to watch..

At the building, Margie & Luke emerge from they cab and don white construction helmets. The boxes the panel tubes are in...fairly heavy. Not TOO much of a problem for Luke...but Margie is lagging behind. Eventually, they get it hauled up and start to unpack the tubes. Installation seems to be a breeze.

Back at the theater, Zev & Justin get a shake of the head from the judge, so they run back to see the procession again...and see that they mixed two of them up. As Ron & Christina head back in after being denied, the two friends move the two...and get the nod! They're the first to leave the DETOUR! And their reward?



Make your way to the place pictured in the enclosed photo. There your next clue awaits.

(The photo is that of the Chinese Minority Heritage Center.)


As they leave, Kisha & Jen ask for a ruling...and THEY get it on the first shot! They leave and the two teams show the photo to their cabbies and ask them to take them there. Ron & Christina finally get it right and leave in third. They figure it out from THEIR cabbie, so they all decide to follow the Chinese driver (and passengers).

At the building, Team Trotters get lost and Team Hollaback Girls arrive and heft up the heavy boxes...which makes Luke freak out seeing his "Race girlfriends" catching up. Team Dating Goths also arrives, heaving up the boxes (with Vyxsin saying it "isn't rocket science). Margie & Luke are fourth out of the DETOUR and heading for the 2xU-T, passing the Goths en route. Team Cowboy Bebop then arrive and start on it, passing the complaining Kent & Vyxsin on the way. Nate & Herb finally find the place and heft up the boxes...each one taking one over their shoulders. As the Dating Goths get their last boxes up, Jaime & Cara depart the DETOUR in 5th. More Goth-like bitching from Vyxsin and a quick set of hands gets Jet & Cord a 6th place exit.

At PAST, Gary & Mallory arrive and watch the performance. Gary tries to go by costume and not necessarily the colors. Mallory says she has it, though...so they rush back into their booth and rearrange the dolls.

The three taxied teams stop at near the Kunming Cultural Center...and none of them can find the clue box. A passerby is shown the picture and corrects them: that's the Yunnan Province Cultural Center that they're headed to. OK, they're freaking. The cabbie hauls to...


Team Hear My Song arrives at the DOUBLE U-TURN first. But...they decline to U-TURN anyone. Instead they go to THIS clue:



Travel by taxi to the Shilin Stone Forest, about 75 miles outside of Kunming. Once there, follow the marked path to your next clue.

Kent & Vyxsin finish the paneling and leave the DETOUR in 7th. Back at the theater, Team KY/Dad get the nod for their doll diorama and leave in 8th. As the sun rises and three more FUTURE teams arrive at the U-TURN, Team Trotters finish the DETOUR in last.

Jet & Cord opt out of the U-TURN and head for the Stone Forest in 2nd. They give Kent & Vyxsin directions to the spot, and Jamie & Cara are right on their tails. Dating Goths decide to use their U-TURN...:


(courtesy of Kent & Vyxsin)

Right in FRONT of them! Oh, SNAP! Now...the Rules of the Race state that Jaime & Cara CAN utilize THEIR U-TURN before working on their own. So...they do:


(courtesy of Jaime & Cara)

Team Cowboy Bebop and Team Dating Goths look for a cabbie who knows where they're going while other teams show up. Said teams find both U-TURNs set, breathe a heavy sigh of relief and get their clue: Zev & Justin in 4th, Gary & Mallory in 5th, Kisha & Jen in 6th, Ron & Christina in 7th. Team Cardinal Sisters get a cabbie who knows the way, and everyone else essentially says, "Follow that car" to their OWN drivers. Oh, and Margie & Luke needed to call a translator to tell THEIR cabbie where to go. But Kisha & Jen are tricky girls; they lose the other teams at an intersection.

Team Hollaback Girls arrive at the theater and watch the cavalcade, hoping to get it right the first time. As they struggle, Team Trotters learn the bad news that THEY'VE been U-TURNed. So THEY head for the theater...but not before Jaime & Cara leave their U-TURN in 8th, indeed getting it right on the first try. They return to the U-TURN and get the Stone Forest clue. Nate & Herb go by the hats on the players' heads...and they knock it out...though still in last. Jaime & Cara get deja vu again: their cabbie in Hawai'i stopped for gas on the final Leg in AR16 and now, while they're in next-to-last, their cabbie stops for gas again.


Team Cardinal Sisters arrive at the Stone Forest and head up the path:



Here in Yunnan Province, paleontologists have unearthed the oldest and largest dinosaur fossils in China. One team member will pay homage to those scientists in a unique way. Head for a marked "dig site" and collect pieces of an entire Dilophosaurus skeleton. Then, using the one diagram on the grounds as reference, you must piece together the pieces to make a complete, free-standing Dilophosaurus skeleton. A paleontologist will watch your progress; if s/he feels the joints you piece together are unsafe, s/he will stop you and make you do it right. When you've assembled it correctly, the paleontologist will hand you your next clue.

(Uh, CBS? We have NBC/Universal on Line 1 for you...something about "Jurassic Park" and "infringement"...)

Kisha decides to build the 'saur and they take the shuttle to the "dig site". Team Who's Your Daddy and Team Hear My Song both arrive at the same time. The ladies decide to construct. All three start to build, with Kisha drawing a diagram OF the diagram and Ron telling Christina to "work hard" and "take it slow" in Chinese. Next up are Team Dating Goths, who lets Kent do the task. Vyxsin then lets the pink-and-black cat out of the bag about their 30-minute penalty, hence why they used their U-TURN. Ron's not too happy about that. Jet & Cord are next to the ROADBLOCK and Jet calls it.

While the two U-TURNed teams race in cabs for the forest, the other three teams are lost. Zev shows his cabbie a pebble while yelling "STONE" and knocks on a nearby tree yelling "FOREST". The cabbie says he's got it...but no guarantees.

At the dig site, Kisha is the first to get a "not safe" from the palaeo...the scientist. "Big Easy" is selected for Team Trotters and Jaime for Team Hollaback Girls. Christina is HAMMERING the joints in place as things start getting hectic. And it's MORE hectic when Justin and Gary show up. But, when Team KY/Dad show up and see they're in dead last, it's time to bring out the ace in the hole:


The Express Pass will allow one team the opportunity to bypass ANY task. If you cannot or will not perform a task, simply hand the presiding local your Express Pass, and he or she will give you the next clue, no questions asked!

You may only use the Express Pass ONCE, so you must determine when it is in your best interests to use it.

Well, this seems like the best time to go from worst to first so...they cash it in. As such, they bypass this ROADBLOCK and get this clue automatically:



Head back into Kunming and find Green Lake Park, the PIT STOP for this Leg of the Race.

WARNING! The last team to check-in MAY BE ELIMINATED!

And away they split, much to the chagrin of the eight other teams. Kent asks the scientist for a ruling, but he gets a negative. Margie's doing this for her 4-year-old grandson Bryce, a huge dino-fan. Jet asks for a ruling...and he has it RIGHT! He and Cord leave in 2nd. "Flight Time" wants a explanation for the U-TURN and seems OK with it once it's explained that it wasn't out of malice. Back at the parking lot, Jet & Cord pass Gary & Mallory and get into their cab first, burning rubber back to town. Team KY/Dad's cab is long gone so they get another one to make tracks.

Justin is having labor pains trying to get a hip bone unconnected to the...thigh bones as it was marked unsafe. Margie is third out of the ROADBLOCK and she and her son "go-go-go".


It's a footrace between the father/daughter and the cow-bros through the park. After much huffing and puffing, they both find Phil standing by what I'm guessing is "Green Lake" with a greeter. One team scrambles to the mat and Phil says the magic words:

"Jet & Cord, I am very pleased to tell you that you are Team #1!"

And the reward? Five thousand American dollars EACH!

Gary & Mallory seem all right with being Team #2, despite using their EXPRESS PASS.

Back at the dig site, there are grunts and groans and several "no"s from the crowd. And Kent...falls off his ladder and onto his side like a pro wrestler. Still, LIKE a pro wrestler, he gets up none the worse and works on it. One more check of the diagram tells him where he went wrong; the hip bone is upside down. Jaime's getting tired...and frustrated. Team Hear My Song is Team #3 (though Phil still screws up the ASL; the middle three fingers up is SIX while the thumb, index and middle fingers up is THREE). Kisha finally gets it right and she and Jen leave the ROADBLOCK fourth. Kent rebuilds and gets the nod, he and Vyxsin splitting fifth...and hoping that it takes at least one other team more than a half-hour longer to finish. They pass Team Cardinal Sisters, who lost their cab.

"Big Easy" Nate finishes his dino (which is only a few feet taller than he is) with a shout as he and Herb scram in 6th. Jaime is getting more and more fatigued. Team Dating Goths are the fourth time to arrive at the PIT STOP...BUT there's that half-hour penalty they spoke of back in Lijiang. So they wait...and watch Kisha & Jen arrive. They're the fifth team to arrive. HOWEVER,...since the Goths are chillin', they're actually Team #4. As Team Trotters enter the park, Phil calls for Kent & Vyxsin, who SCRAMBLE to the mat to be checked in as Team #5. The sigh of relief could be heard in Mongolia, I'm sure. The b-ballers are Team #6 again. "DOUBLE U-TURN that, baby," was the victory shout.

Three teams are left to struggle with their dinos. All the slow and steady effort worked out for Christina as she gets the nod and she and her daddy leave in 7th. Team Puzzle Pieces asks for a ruling...but Justin's shut down. Jaime asks likewise...but SHE's denied...and she's near the breaking point. Justin moves a few things around...and he gets the clue! As they leave, Jaime knows what's wrong...but cannot see herself taking the whole skeleton apart just to flip the hip bone. Ron & Christina are Zev & Justin arrive at the same time and are teams #7 and #8 respectively.

Despite her pain and fatigue, Jaime follows through on dismantling and reassembling the Dilophosaurus. Cara is proud of her fellow cheerleader as they head for the park. Phil gives them the double bad news: they're last and they're out. Though exhausted, the team was not going to give up. Was the second chance worth it? Certainly.



2) Jet & Cord (+1) - $5000
3) Gary & Mallory (+1) - Express Pass (USED)
1) Margie & Luke (-2) - Aruba
5) Kisha & Jen (+1)
9) Kent & Vyxsin (+4)
6) "Flight Time" & "Big Easy" (EVEN)
4) Ron & Christina (+3)
8) Zev & Justin (EVEN) - Cancun, Costa Rica
ELIMINATED) Jaime & Cara (-2)

To see this episode in its entirety, or to apply to be a contestant on "The Amazing Race", visit the official website at www.cbs.com/amazingrace