In the past 25 runnings of
The Amazing Race, the teams of two have always been
connected through blood, marriage and/or admiration. The
two on each team KNEW each other...KNEW their strengths
and weaknesses...KNEW how to motivate each other. For
this upcoming Race, though, things have changed. While
six of the eleven teams circumnavigating the globe have
been dating from between seven months and ten years,
five teams will be going on the most exciting "blind
dates" ever; they will have only first met mere MINUTES
before the Race begins and will have to take on the
other teams with very little advanced knowledge of their
partners! Can any of them beat out Winter Olympians,
hairstylists and two boy band members to win the million
dollars at the FINISH LINE!!? Find out now as we begin
the twenty-sixth iteration of THE AMAZING RACE!!
LOS ANGELES, CALIFORNIA, USA
Our six teams of previous knowledge are...
- Aly Dudek & Steven Langton (24/31; Milwaukee/Boston,
Olympic athletes) - #SochiLove
- Harley Rodriguez & Jonathan Knight (41/46; New York
City, fitness trainer/former New Kid on the Block) - #TeamNewKid
- Jeff Magee & Lyda Grawn (57/49; McCall, ID/Scottsdale,
AZ; pilot/flight attendant) - #FlightCrew
- CJ Harris & Lebya Simpson (26/25; Tuskegee, AL; IT
tech/medical support assistant) - #TeamTuskegee
- Matt Cucolo & Ashley Gordon (30/28; Scarsdale, NY;
hairstylist) - #TheHairstylists
- Rochelle Nevedal & Michael Dombrowski (29/26;
Kalkaska/Traverse City, MI; contract engineer/truck stop
manager & pro wrestling promoter) - #TruckStopLove
And the five teams that
are meeting each other for the first time are...
- Hayley Keel & Blair Townsend
Petersburg/Jacksonville, FL; registered nurse/Navy
physician) - #RxForLove
- Jackie Ibarra & Jeffrey Weldon (27/26; Las
Vegas/Tampa; dancer/account executive) - #TeamJJ
- Laura Pierson & Tyler Adams (29/26; Los Angeles/Santa
Monica, CA; talent booker & mobile app developer) -
- Jenny Wu & Jelani Roy (32; Los Angeles/New York City;
lawyers) - #TheLegalTeam
- Bergen Olsen & Kurt Jordan Belcher (23/24; Sunnyvale,
CA/Butler, KY; HR project manager/pageant consultant) -
As interesting (?) as
this twist is, the rules for the Race remain the same.
The clue you're about to receive will lead to another...
and another... until ultimately you arrive at a Pit
Stop. There are 12 legs in the 26th Race, so eight of
them have been designated as Elimination Legs. Arrive
last to one of these Pit Stops... and your date is OVER.
But survive and you are one step closer to the million.
And we begin right here
with a Starting Line obstacle course mud run. As a team,
you have to navigate the course as fast as you can to
get one of eight seats on the first flight to your first
destination city... TOKYO, JAPAN! There are three other
seats, but they are on a later flight. Once you have
your tickets and your clue, hop into your Ford Fusion
Hybrid, the official hybrid of the Amazing Race, and
head to the airport.
If you win the first leg
of the Race, you will get... THIS.
Pass allows a team to skip any single task
(including Roadblocks, Detours, and miscellaneous
tasks, but not the Fast Forward task), once, during
the race. The choice of which task to skip is at the
team's discretion, but the power, if unused, expires
at the end of Leg 8.
... and that might get
you out of trouble sooner rather than later, because in
this first leg, there is a Blind U-Turn.
The mud run and the Race
will not begin until Phil has given the signal...
speaking of... Phil Keoghan, IT IS YOURS!
"The world is waiting for
you.... Good luck.... Travel safe... GO!!!!"
And the 26th Amazing Race is UNDERWAY!
And the mud run is indeed
one tough mudder.
- Matt & Ashley
- Jeff & Jackie
- Laura & Tyler
- Aly & Steve
- Harley & Jonathan
- Jeff & Lyda
- Bergen & Kurt
- Jelani & Jenny
- Hayley & Blair
- Mike & Rochelle
- Libby & CJ
Now that everyone's
showered, they all get the same video clue from Phil in
Tokyo, Japan! When you land, make your way to Kanda-myojin
and search for your next clue. CAUTION! There's a
Blind U-Turn ahead! Bon voyage!"
NARITA INTERNATIONAL AIRPORT
The fastest way to the shrine is the Skyliner train.
This according to the clerk at the airport. Some people
have opted for the taxi. Others, the Narita Express.
The second flight touches
down, and they're all going to the shrine via taxi or
Skyliner... except for Hayley & Blair, who are left
behind. "Worst. First date. Ever." They get another one.
First team to the shrine
are Jelani & Jenny. And they get...
STEPS or SAMURAI SAKE
SYNCING STEPS: Make your way to
Shinjuku Central Park where you must perform a
series of synchronized dance of "robotic" moves
along with members of World Order. When World Order
leader Genki Sudo is satisfied with their
performance, you will receive your next clue.
SAMURAI SAKE: Make your way
to Nakano Sakaue Station Tavern. You will be shown
ten bottles of sake (Tōkō, Nanbubijin, Okunomatsu,
Kanbe, Yoshinogawa, Michisakari, Tsukasabotan, Zaou,
Momokawa, Shōchikubai). One of you must take an
order for one brand of sake from a table of
"Samurai." Your teammate then has to find the
correct bottle from a much larger display of
bottles. Once you present the correct bottle to the
Samurai, and take a toast, you will receive your
Jelani & Jenny step off,
while Jeff & Jackie take a sake. Focus... Speaking of,
Jelani & Jenny are learning how to robot like champs.
Laura & Tyler will follow them... Harley & Jonathan
choose sake. Instead of dancing. Which Jonathan used to
Jeff & Jackie get the
right order of sake, take a toast, and get this...
WAY TO SHINJUKU WAKABA HIGASHI PARK!
Make your way to Wakaba Higashi
Park in Shinjuku, where you will find your next
CAUTION! Blind U-Turn Ahead!
Dancing like robots is
hard. Jelani can't seem to hit that four-count. Well,
the dancing steps is about to get a little bit crowded,
because all three of our late teams are going to see
World Order, including Hayley & Blair, who start their
relationship... by going in the wrong direction.
Jonathan & Harley serve
up sake to the samurai, and get seen off... just as Jeff
& Jackie find a cab, finally.
Jelani & Jenny are at
their fifth attempt at dancing.... and mess up. Matt &
Ashley are on their seventh.... And mess up.
CJ & Libby head to the
Detour via the subway. The same subway they admit to
knowing nothing about.
And Matt & Ashley mess up
again. Yep. A lot of teams relearning how to walk.
Laura & Tyler, though...
making it look EASY. Jelani & Jenny ALSO get it on the
9th try. Meanwhile, Jonathan & Harley are taken to the
WRONG PLACE. That kills.
Jeff & Jackie arrive
team that arrives at a U-Turn may choose to force
another team to complete the Detour option that they
did not complete. However, teams may only U-Turn
another team once in the entire Race, so it is to
the discretion of the teams as to when it is most
advantageous to use it.
In a Double Blind U-Turn,
two teams may U-Turn other teams, but they do not
have to disclose themselves as the perpetrators.
Jeff & Jackie decide not
to use the U-Turn, so it's on to the Clue Box...
WAY TO THE PIT STOP!
Phil is waiting for you at one
of Tokyo's rarest commodities - a parking space.
Search for him in the vicinity of the UDX Building
WARNING! The last team to
check-in MAY BE ELIMINATED!
Bergen & Kurt don't even
wait until the music starts in order to make their first
mistake. Meanwhile Aly & Steve finish on their 10th.
At the U-Turn... still no
takers, as Jelani/Jenny & Tyler/Laura decline.
UDX BUILDING PARKING
AKIHABARA, TOKYO, JAPAN
Jeff & Jackie are the first to find the parking lot...
but where's Phil? Jenny & Jelani decide that they are to
look AROUND the building, but not necessarily in the
building. Who is in the right?
"Welcome to Tokyo,
Jelani & Jenny have been
dating for all of ONE DAY... and they are TEAM #1! This
gives them the right to the Express Pass. Jeff & Jackie
end up in the 2 spot. Laura & Tyler... Team #3!
At the U-Turn... no one
wants to block anybody. At the Detour... no one can
concentrate. Except for Hayley & Blair.
later... Matt & Ashley... FINALLY get it while Aly/Steve
and Harley/Jonathan clock in.
Three teams left at the
Detour... and not one of them is getting the hang of the
World Order steps... except for Libby & CJ. That leaves
Mike/Rochelle & Lyda/Jeff. Mike & Rochelle finally nail
Hayley finally finds a
taxi for Blair. The rest of the teams... just struggle
to calm down.
Meanwhile, Bergen & Kurt
are locked into the six-spot, while teams are wondering
where they are.
At the U-Turn, Mike &
Rochelle apologetically U-Turn Jeff & Lyda. So far,
they're the only teams to do so.
Back at the Detour... 3
hours and 42 minutes after arriving, Lyda is not going
to give up, telling Jeff to get his head in the game.
They... FINALLY get the dance right, but they're NOT
going to like what Mike & Rochelle left for them.
Speaking of, they're Team #7. Jeff & Lyda find the
U-Turn and decide to use it on Jeff & Jackie, who have
ALREADY CHECKED IN!
Hayley & Blair come in
8th. Matt & Ashley, 9th. Jeff & Lyda... sake.
Libby & CJ... are still
looking for the park, so Jeff & Lyda are still alive.
Interesting thing, Libby & CJ run into the same taxi
driver THREE times, and ask about the park THREE TIMES!
They FINALLY find the park and head to the Pit Stop.
But only one team will
get there in time... it's LIBBY & CJ! Jeff & Lyda are on
the first plane back the States. A lot of missteps, but
ultimately the ones with World Order cost them a chance
to survive THIS Japanese game show.
1: USA - JAPAN
Jelani & Jenny - Express Pass
2) Jeff & Jackie
3) Laura & Tyler
4) Aly & Steve
5) Harley & Jonathan
6) Bergen & Kurt
7) Mike & Rochelle
8) Hayley & Blair
9) Matt & Ashley
10) Libby & CJ
ELIMINATED) Jeff & Lyda
WARNING! The last team to
check-in MAY BE ELIMINATED!
To see this episode in its entirety, go