We Was Robbed
November 18 - Leg 8
Previously on THE AMAZING RACE...six
teams went from the warmth of Istanbul to the cold of Moscow, Russia.
Abbie & Ryan (Team Dating Divorcees) and Josh & Brent (Team
Beekman Boys) took a flight with a one-hour layover...which was
DELAYED for an hour. As such, they missed their connecting flight
and arrived in Moscow over half-a-day behind everyone else. Upon
arriving, most of the teams tried synchronized swimming, but Trey
& Lexi (Team Texas Two-Step) decided to look for books in the
biggest library in Russia. This enabled them to make it to the ROADBLOCK
and unlock locks faster and win the Leg. James & Abba (Team
Hair Metal) were the fourth team to arrive...but their cabbie at
the ROADBLOCK drove off with their bags and their passports...and
without passports, they can't go on! Six teams STILL remain as the
seventh Leg continues...who will go home NEXT?!
PIT STOP #7
Phil gives Team Hair Metal some GOOD
news, as it were: they are NOT the infamous "last team to arrive"...yet.
As long as they find those passports and get in before the other
two teams, they won't have to suffer a SPEED BUMP or - worse - Philimination!
So the rockers go to a nearby
hotel (with automatic revolving door, no less) to make some phone
Meanwhile, Josh & Brent (Team Beekman
Boys) are trying desperately to swim at the same time as six girls.
This is because it is part of their:
SYNCHRONIZE: Get stroking!
Head for Trud sports complex, home to Russia's next generation
of Gold Medalist synchonized swimmers. Don swimsuits and learn
a synchonized swimming routine. then get into the pool and
perform the routine to the sound of the beat. Once the head
coach believes you have performed the routine correctly, she
will hand you your next clue.
ALPHABETIZE: Read up! Go
to the Russian State Library - home to over 24 million books
- and go to the (rather large) card catalouge index. Choose
a librarian who will give you a list of books (in Cyrillic,
the Russian alphabet). Choose four of the books and search
the card catalouge for where each of them are located in the
library. Then collect all four books. Give the list and books
to Olga (the head librarian) at the main desk and, if you
have given the right books, she will hand you your next clue.
They chose SYNCHRONIZE and have been
epic failing ever since. What's more, Abbie & Ryan (Team Dating
Divorcees) have been WATCHING them epic failing because they made
a pact back in Warsaw that the two teams would run this Leg together
since a flight delay put them 13 hours behind the other teams. Once
again, they get the thumbs-down from the coach. And they get even
WORSE news: the pool is about to close for the night. They have
ONE LAST CHANCE to nail this performance or they'll be sent away.
This means that, in accordance to "Da Rules of Da Race",
they must take a four-hour penalty for not completing a DETOUR before
So that last competitors for the TAR-lympics
are Josh & Brent. They seem to do well...until the final underwater
flip...when Brent just CAN'T flip fast enough. Their scores: 0.5,
0.5, 0.0, 0.5, 1.0...and a 6.0 from the Romanian judge...that's
odd. The bottom line is...they must leave the pool. The judge hands
them their next clue...and they must take the penalty. And the clue
is as such:
COME WITH ME
(MY LOVE) TO THE TREES OF LOVE!
Travel by taxi to Luzhkov
Most and search for the "Trees of Love" to find
your next clue.
As Abbie & Ryan have already FINISHED
the DETOUR, they will NOT get a penalty. As such, Team Beekman Boys
aren't sure why the dating couple are hanging around with them.
Of course,...NEITHER team knows of the chaos happening near Bolshoi
On that subject, James & Abba talk
to the police, the concierge of the hotel...ANYONE they can to get
info on where their bags (and passports) could be. James knows that,
no matter how many times you fall, there is ALWAYS a chance to get
The last two teams arrive at the Trees
and at the:
TO UNLOCK THE FUTURE?
The Trees of Love have countless
locks on them, each proclaiming the undying love of a couple
who placed it there. One team member must go to a tree with
a Race-colored ribbon on it. Grab the abundance of keys at
the base and unlock the ten locks upon it. Once the ribbon
is free, so will your next clue be.
Abbie and Josh choose to do the task
in the middle of the nyet...er, night. While Abbie struggled, Josh
found a pattern in the small rings holding the keys to the BIG ring.
So while Abbie is ready to throw in the towel, Josh gets all ten
locks undone. He pulls out the bank note with the picture of the
PIT STOP on the back. Basically it says:
THE NEXT PIT STOP!
I am a 100-ruble note, the
currency in Russia. You may notice the building on the back
of me. You are to head there, the Bolshoi Theatre, home of
the most famous ballet company in the world and the PIT STOP
for this Leg of the Race.
WARNING! The last team to
check-in MAY BE ELIMINATED!
Josh & Brent come over to hug and...astonishingly,
do the ROADBLOCK for Abbie. Not sure if THAT's breaking "Da
Rules" but...whatever. They promised to stay together and staying
together they will. Once Abbie's clue is out, the four head for
Back at the Bolshoi, Team Hair Metal
have been in contact with the U.S. Embassy to see about getting
new passports issued to them posthaste...and they've pretty much
resigned themselves to pulling a "Zev & Justin" and
dropping out of the Race.
As they walk, four Americans RUN to
the mat where and the accordion player/greeter meet them. All four
hit the mat at the same time. Phil tells Abbie & Ryan and Josh
& Brent...that there is GOOD news! As there is still a team
"struggling on the course", NEITHER of them are the "last
team to arrive"! Team Dating Divorcees are Team # 4...and Team
Beekman Bros are Team # 5 (and will have the four-hour penalty tacked
on at the start of the eighth Leg).
Though they rocked half-way around
the globe, this could be the last curtain call for James & Abba.
They hit the mat and tell Phil that they were not be able to get
their passports. But...then Phil springs some good news on THEM
as well. This is the second N.E.L. of the Race! So...they have more
time to get passports! However, if, at any point in the next Leg,
they REQUIRE a passport and they do not have them,...they will be
Philiminated on the spot. Not only THAT, but they have a SPEED BUMP
to encounter in the Leg. But, as James puts it, "Where there's
breath, there's hope." And they may not be breathing WELL,
but they ARE still breathing!
(They do not give depature times for
the teams for this Leg...)
A rainy morning in the largest city
in the Commonwealth of Independent States (forgot that still existed,
right?) and Trey & Lexi start Leg 8 as such:
TAKE IN SOME
Make your way to Study Building
#6 at the Moscow Timiryazev Agricultural Academy. Once there,
follow a marked path in the building to Large Chemistry Auditorium
# 1 where you'll find your next clue.
You have $1 for this Leg
of the Race.
Team Texas Two-Step gets
in a cab with a driver who says he knows the place...but he drops
them off at a graffitied underground tunnel. So...they get ANOTHER
cabbie to take them. The cabbie...is unusual for a cabbie: pink
shirt and tie, wizened look, smoking and drinking coffee while driving
(with windows rolled up, mind you). But one thing that IS usual:
HE brings them to the wrong place, too! As they continue, Jaymes
& James (Team Full Monty!) are second to depart the PIT STOP,
determined to "stay at the top" as they get their cab.
MOSCOW TIMIRYAZEV AGRICULTURAL ACADEMY
Because of the cabbie
issues, Team Full Monty! reach the building first. They reach the
room...but a man is sitting in front of the door and is denying
entry until 8am local time (which it obviously ain't right now).
So...they wait. But their taxi driver has no other place to be,
apparantly so he waits WITH them. They seem to have plenty of breathing
room as Trey & Lexi are STILL getting the run-around - or, rather,
DRIVE-around - from their cabbie. So they stop at a hotel so that
someone who's bilingual can hit the cabbie with a clue-by-four on
where they need to go. And, sure enough, the language barrier is
broken and the daters meet the Ja(y)mes Boys in front of the door.
As 8am approaches, James
& Abba wake up in the hotel where the PIT STOP teams chilled
overnight. They're packing early (what little they HAVE) and hoping
the U.S. Embassy can either find their passports or send them NEW
ones tout de suite.
0800 and school is in session! The two teams enter the auditorium
and find that James & Abba have the SPEED BUMP waiting for them
when THEY arrive (though they don't know why)...and a professor's
bag filled with clues. They open them to find their next:
WHO'S IN THE
The Russian Federation stretches
across nine (count 'em: NINE) time zones. One team member
must study a map of said time zones and then, using a time
in Moscow as a reference, write down the times it would be
in five Russian cities displayed on a slide. When the professor
tells you, hand in your paper and, if you are right with all
five cities' times, he will hand you your next clue.
Lexi and Jaymes decide
time's on their side and sit in adjacent seats. The first slide
says: "THE TIME IN MOSCOW IS 2:15". This is followed by
a map of the time zones. Moscow is in the time zone "UTC+4"
(which means it's four hours ahead of Greenwich, where all time
zones originate), but Russia stretches from "UTC+3" (Kalingrad)
to "UTC +12" (Vladivostock). The next slide was the SAME
map...only with several cities pointed out like Irkutsk, Tomsk and
Khanty-Mansi. The two worked out what needed to be done: add the
right hours to the 2:15 and come up with the right times. But as
soon as they figure it out...the map disappeared. They both laugh
at this and try their best...but when the professor says "pencils
down" the papers were collected and the professor flunked them
both. They started again with a NEW Moscow time ("4:00")
and NEW cities. But, again, they flunked. They try again...and again...and
again...and...you get the idea.
As they struggle, Nadiya
& Natalie (Team Jersey Twins) leave the PIT STOP in third. They
STILL have their EXPRESS PASS, which they MUST use in this Leg or
they lose it completely. They decide that they won't hesitate; when
they WANT to use it, they'll USE it! So they make their way to the
auditorium (unaware they have a HUGE lead over the next team).
Apparantly, it's all right
to CHEAT in this class because Jaymes and Lexi decide to help each
other. They concentrate on half of the maps and then tell each other
what times they have. But...they're BOTH wrong. The PROBLEM (which
they haven't worked out until Test #12) is that they assumed that
"UTC+4" meant they had to ADD four hours to the Moscow
time...but they had to play it OFF Moscow time so that "UTC+6"
means you add TWO hours and so on. Finally Lexi worked it out and
they BOTH felt rather stupid. Test #12 popped up and the two worked
together again. And, when the professor got the papers...he said,
"I'm very sorry...BUT YOU WIN!" The two teams now leave
in first and second. But no sooner do they leave the ROADBLOCK do
they run into a:
MOVERS or SHAKERS?
MOVERS: Head for the Petrovsky
Hall at the Hotel National and pick an instructor to learn
three moves from the Russian soldier dance. We won't lie:
it's a painful and punishing dance. But if you're able to
perform the dance correctly in front of Russian soldiers in
time to the folk music being played, the lead instructor will
hand you your next clue.
SHAKERS: Head to the marked
hall where an elegant cocktail party is being held which is
attended by many former Russian leaders (or reasonable facsimilies).
Your task is to identify seven of the leaders working from
a list of names. Once you find all seven on your list, bring
them to the room with Alexander Pushkin (famous Russian poet).
If he deems you're list correct, he will give you your next
Both teams decide to dance
their "zads" off in MOVERS. Jaymes & James' cabbie
is busy drinking coffee and having a danish and has to be ushered
out the door to his cab. But Trey & Lexi let their pretentious
cabbie GO upon arrival...so Team Full Monty! does a nice thing and
stops THEIR cab to help call for ANOTHER cab for Team Texas Two-Step.
Meanwhile, Team Jersey
Twins are having issues with THEIR cabbie. They try to argue with
him but he yells back that he's been a cab driver for 37 years and
knows what-the-yebat' he's doing! So the normally mouthy sister
shut their yaps.
Jaymes & James and
Trey & Lexi arrive at their DETOUR...and are immediately given
a demonstration as to what they're in for. They change into Russian
soldier uniforms, each choose an instructor and get to steppin'.
Uh,...there's a problem, though. James sprained his ankle way back
in Shanghai. He's been careful not to do too many stenuous things
throughout the Race...but, when he starts to do that famous Russian
"squat kick", the pain flares up. He starts to sweat and
wince. He doesn't WANT to "self U-TURN" because they WANT
to win this Leg. But Jaymes & he have learned the moves...so
they decide to give it a try before the pain gets even worse.
So out into the main hall
they go. First kicks, OK. Squat kicks, fine. "Coffee grinder"...not
so much. The lead instructor gives it a miss. With Team Full Monty!
out of it, Team Texas Two-Step step up. You'd think that Lexi -
being a cheerleader and all - wouldn't have a problem with this.
And she doesn't. You'd think that Trey - being a football player
- WOULD have trouble. And, man, DOES he. No clue for you!
Back at the ROADBLOCK,
Natalie & Nadiya finally arrive at the Study Building and encounter
the task. I'm guessing they just choose Natalie at random to do
it...but, when they read what needed to be done, both were like
"HELL, NO!" Time to pull out their "Get Out of Task
PASS - NATALIE & NADIYA
The EXPRESS PASS will allow
you 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
You may only use the EXPRESS
PASS once, up to and including the 8th Leg, so you
must determine when it is in your best interests to use it.
They hand the PASS to
the professor (who looks at it almost like it's a forged hall pass)
and he accepts it, handing them the clue for the DETOUR. They, too,
decide to be MOVERS.
Speaking of, Jaymes &
James decide to give it another go (though James is hobbling by
know). They do stay in snych to the music - though not with each
other - and James grits his teeth through it. And, amazingly, the
lead instructor approves! Team Full Monty! are first out of the
DETOUR with this clue:
MAKE YOUR WAY
TO THE NEXT PIT STOP!
Travel by taxi to Sokolniki
Park, a beautiful (and expansive) artisan fairgrounds. Search
the park for Veranda Tantsev, a public performance pavillion
covered in sunflowers and the PIT STOP for this Leg of the
WARNING! The last team to
check-in MAY BE ELIMINATED!
They don't have a heck
of a lot of time to strip off their uniforms and get on their street
clothes: Trey & Lexi give it a go right afterwards. And, despite
Trey's slight lagging behind, the lead instructor says it's good
enough for state work and allow them to leave in second. After they
change, the Ja(y)mes Boys decide they're STILL helping the Longhorn
couple...but the couple run off to the front of the hotel to hunt
for a cab, leaving the dancers to haul off on their own. And LOOK
who shows up in a cab Team Texas Two-Step flags down! It's Team
Jersey Twins! But they are adamant that their cab will STAY "their
cab" for the rest of the Leg. So Trey & Lexi get the next
one while Natalie & Nadiya go inside...and Natalie rips her
soldier pants while practicing the moves.
Back at the PIT STOP hotel
- just a few hours before their departure time - James & Abba
wait. There are still options...so they're not out of the Race yet.
They will fight and scratch and claw to stay in it. At said PIT
STOP, Josh & Brent sit on the steps of the ballet theater, waiting
out their four-hour penalty from the previous Leg. Of course, since
THEY'RE waiting, Abbie & Ryan are departing (officially breaking
the BBDD INTERSECTION formed in the last Leg). Now that they've
been to rock-bottom, they have a greater appreciation for the Race...and
a greater taste for victory than ever! After all, they have something
the other teams DON'T: a chance to win two million dollars instead
of just one!
In the park named for
the falcon hunts once performed there by the Grand Dukes of Muscovy
(when Moscow was a mere Duchy of the Golden Horde), two teams run
around the expansive grounds looking for Phil. It's Jaymes &
James (sore ankle and all) who find him first on the stage with
a greeter in full opera diva get-up. Phil gives them the great news:
for the first time, THEY are Team # 1! And they are off to the "Rich
Coast" or Central America: Costa Rica! Five nights, golf, massages,
cuisine...thanks to the Travelocity Roaming Gnome(TM).
Minutes later, Trey &
Lexi arrive as Team # 2.
Pants changed over and
dignity restored, Team Jersey Twins give the soldier dance a whirl.
They're a LITTLE off but they perform quite well. Well enough, anyway,
for the instructor to hand them the clue and let them leave in third.
As they leave for the
PIT STOP, Team Dating Divorcees arrives at the ROADBLOCK. Ryan decides
to work out the time zones. He knows he's good at puzzles and memorization
he figures it'll only take one go to get out of this 'BLOCK. In
fact, he FINISHES the quiz before the professor even says "Penicls
down!". He's SO confident that, as the paper is handed in,
he stands up, ready to get his clue. However, the professor sends
him back to his seat: he flunked the test somehow. He can't believe
it. And he can't believe it when it happens again. And again! AND
AGAIN!! Were he Russian, I'm sure Ryan would be muttering, "Chto
Natalie & Nadiya are
Team # 3. They're not ecstatic...but they're fine with having made
up time with the EXPRESS PASS.
Back to the Bolshoi...the
four-hour penatly is done and Team Beekman Boys finally head out
on the eighth Leg. As they head out in their cab, James & Abba
depart in last. But their first priority is to get passports, just
in case they have to leave the country during the Leg. (They don't
notice the single dollar in their clue, meaning they'll most likely
NOT be leaving...but, then again, if they check-in with Phil WITHOUT
passports, they're screwed anyway.) They ask someone for a cell
pohne and call the Embassy...but they can't issue temporary visas.
So they head to the police station to see if their thieving cabbie
has been found yet.
It seems that Ryan fell
victim to the same trap as Jaymes and Lexi did: he's adding hours
based on the "UTC+" numbers. After try #18 is a fail,
Abbie whispers that the "UTC" must mean something else.
At try #21, Ryan COMPLAINS to the professor about the "misleading"
numbers. The professor says, "Try to relax. I'm on your side."
(something a Russian would NEVER have said to an American 30 years
ago, I'm sure.) After a few more tries...it finally CLICKS! After
saying "I'm so stupid!" about five times, he attempts
for the 25th time...and NAILS it! They get the DETOUR clue and choose
One thing the fall of
Communism has not dimished in Moscow: the need for police reports.
And Team Hair Metal have to fill out one...in Russian. They ask
a local citizen walking by for help in that regard. After filing
it, the rockers decide to return to the Race course, hoping the
police will return it to the CBS film crew before they finish this
Brent decides to do the
ROADBLOCK (albeit reluctantly). Brent had NO issue with the "UTC";
he knew that Moscow represented "UTC+4" and that other
cities were ahead based on that. And he nails it ON THE FIRST TRY!
They leave the 'BLOCK in fifth and, when given the DETOUR, decide
to be SHAKERS (looks like the Russian aristocracy won't have to
drink their cocktails alone).
Unfortunately, the coaches
will NOT allow the INTERSECTION to perform as half of an eight-person
squad; each team must choose a coach and do their own. Abbie wasn't
nervous; having been a dance instructor, she's used to chroeography.
Josh is not used to swimming and doesn't think he has what it takes.
Ryan thinks having the national team nearby helps perk them up.
At MOVERS, Abbie turns
back into the dance instructor she is back in the States. And Ryan
tries to keep up. After a few practices under the watchful eyes
of Abbie (and the instructor), they give it a go. And the lead instructor
likes it (not LOVES it, based on her expression...but likes it enough)
and lets them depart for the PIT STOP still in fourth.
It's as if Bill &
Ted had a Russian history paper due and used their telephone booth
to bring the best (and worst) of Russia's leaders together for a
big to-do...and then Rufus let them know that it'd be better to
have violin music instead of air guitar. Josh & Brent enter
the party and IMMEDIATELY recognizes Gen. Leonid Brezhnev (Soviet
leader, 1964-1982), checking him off the list. Next up is Josef
Stalin (Soviet leader, 1925-1953), then the "father of Communism"
Vladimir Lenin (Soviet leader, 1922-1924) and the final Tsar, Nicholas
II (Russian Tsar, 1894-1917). Lenin warns Josh about "vodka
and Russian women" before the boys meet Peter I and greet him
as "Mr. Great" (Peter the Great, first Russian Tsar, 1721-1725).
Josh even gets to waltz with Catherine the Great (Catherine II,
Russian Tsarina, 1762-1796). They get Leon Trotsky (Soviet Commissar
of Military and Naval Affairs, 1919-1925) before going to Alexander
Pushkin. They get a courtly "da" from the poet and receive
their PIT STOP clue. They're glad to have done this; they know James
& Abba a) were behind them and b) had the SPEED BUMP so they
had decided to have fun with this task. They thank the leaders with
an empty-glassed toast and headed for the PIT STOP...
...where Abbie & Ryan
check-in as Team # 4. they vow to start the climb back up for two
million starting in Leg 9.
Some time later, Josh
& Brent find themselves in familiar territory: FAR back in the
Race...but still IN it. They are Team #5 and still Racing.
And that leaves the stranded
rockers (who, during the Leg, got ONE of their passports back).
They do their SPEED BUMP (escorting a priest somewhere via limo),
and their ROADBLOCK (Abba did it though it wasn't shown). Apparantly,
their clue sends them straight to the PIT STOP instead of the DETOUR...and
that can only mean one thing: they're last...and they're out. They
had a great time, though. It's been a great road trip...but "they
was robbed" (literally) and, added on top of the sore knee
and the missing money a few Legs back, it was just too hard of a
road to travel. Do svidaniya, comrades...and rock on.
(Hey,...think that, while
they wait for the other passport, they can join the Leningrad Cowboys
for a set?)
AFTER LEG 7:
ISTANBUL, TURKEY to MOSCOW, RUSSIA
1) Trey & Lexi
(EVEN) - Australia, Maui
2) Jaymes & James** (+3)
3) Natalie & Nadiya (+1) - EXPRESS PASS
4) Abbie & Ryan (-2) - $2M Chance, Fiji
5) Josh & Brent (+1)
6) James & Abba (-3) - Antigua, Malaysia Rainforest
ELIMINATED IN 7th) Rob & Kelley
ELIMINATED IN 8th) Gary & Will
ELIMINATED IN 9th) Caitlin & Brittany
ELIMINATED IN 10th) Amy & Daniel
ELIMINATED IN 11th) Rob & Shiela
IN LEG: Jaymes & James
BIGGEST DROP IN LEG: James & Abba
AFTER LEG 8:
2) Jaymes &
James* (+1) - Costa Rica
1) Trey & Lexi* (-1) - Australia, Maui
3) Natalie* & Nadiya (EVEN) - EXPRESS PASS (used)
4) Abbie & Ryan* (EVEN) - $2M Chance, Fiji
5) Josh & Brent (EVEN)
ELIMINATED IN 6th) James & Abba (EVEN) - Antigua, Malaysia
ELIMINATED IN 7th) Rob & Kelley
ELIMINATED IN 8th) Gary & Will
ELIMINATED IN 9th) Caitlin & Brittany
ELIMINATED IN 10th) Amy & Daniel
ELIMINATED IN 11th) Rob & Shiela
* = One ROADBLOCK
more than partner
BIGGEST IMPROVEMENT IN LEG: Jaymes & James (again)
BIGGEST DROP IN LEG: Trey & Lexi
To see this episode in
its entirety, or to apply to be a contestant on "The Amazing Race",
visit the official website at