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Bonds will be forged, tested, and strained, as eleven teams of two, joined by family or relationship, follow a path of twists and turns in a frenetic race around the world for $1,000,000.

Who will be the first to cross the finish line? 

For more information and current standings, visit GSNN's Amazing Race Log!

Recaps by Chris Wolvie, GSNN

Phil Keoghan
Creator: Bertram van Munster, Elise Doganieri
EP: Jerry Bruckheimer, Jonathan Littman, Bertram van Munster
Packager: Jerry Bruckheimer TV, Worldrace Productions, Amazing Race Productions
Airs: Tuesdays at 9:00pm ET on CBS

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"Courteous? This Is a Race! - Leg 1" - March 1


The first flight into... *sniff*... oh,...sorry... *sniff sniff* I think I'm getting a nosebleed from the altitude this recap is becoming. Anyway, the first flight into Cuzco arrives and the three teams on board get off... and immediately feel light-headed. But not to worry because, just before the Route Marker is a cart handing out "Mata de Cola" to help with the altitude sickness. Bottles in hand, the three front teams get their clues:

Make your way in the marked taxis to the small town of Huamutio (22 miles away). Near the entrance to the city will be a line of food kiosks. Find the 'Coca-Cola' one with the owner Felipe and he will give you your next clue.

The taxis are right nearby... and all of the cabbies speak Spanish solamente. No problem for Team Well-Traveled Babes. BIT of a problem for Team Survivor and Team First Mom/Son. All three enjoy the mountainous view along the way.


Debbie & Bianca are the first to the kiosks thanks to the driver of the taxi loco. They find Felipe's kiosk and receive this:

Drive by taxi across the bridge and head to the top of the nearby gorge (2 miles away). Once there, you will ride on a zip-line to the other side of the gorge (about 1000 feet across) and then another one to the bottom of it (about 1400 feet down). You will receive your next clue before you both hit the bottom but you must NOT open it until you are together at the bottom of the gorge.

Susan & Patrick see the ladies' taxi before it pulls out so they're able to find the kiosk. Before THEY take off, Rob & Amber arrive, grab the clue and go in pursuit.

At the gorge, Team Well-Traveled Babes is Team #1... down the zip-line, that is. The other teams line-up behind them. Bianca is first and SCREAMS down the line. Debbie's a little less nervous, even letting go of the harness. As Bianca goes down #2, Debbie is given the clue and, again, informed not to open it until she hits the bottom. As the two friends reunite to the sounds of a native band, Debbie & Bianca hit their first:

DETOUR - Rope a Llama or Rope a Basket?
ROPE A LLAMA - Go to the nearby field and rope two llamas. Then take them down a path to a marked pen. Once both llamas are secure in the pen, the herdmaster will hand you your next clue.
ROPE A BASKET - Each team member must take a rope and tie it around a basket full of 35 pounds of alfalfa (a big crop in Peru). You must then carry it 2/3 of a mile to a local marked store (Tienda de Victoria Verdia). The storekeeper will then hand you your next clue.  

As the two girls argue which way to go, Susan & Patrick start THEIR slide down. And Patrick is glad to have relieved himself first. Once they get down, they IMMEDIATELY decide to ROPE A LLAMA. As they pass the STILL-arguing Debbie & Bianca, they make up their mind FOR them: THEY'RE gonna ROPE A LLAMA as well.

Suddenly, from the gorge comes the echo of "HOLY CANNOLI!" Rob has followed Amber down the zip-lines, both of them screaming their heads off. And, when they get to the DETOUR, they decide to ROPE A BASKET.

As those on the first flight get to their tasks, the 7:40 flight lands, crowded with Racers looking for their "Mata de Cola" and their clue. Brian & Greg are the first off the plane and into the taxi towards Huamutio. The rest come out in a few clumps, with Ryan & Chuck, Ray & Deana, Ron & Kelly and Megan & Heidi coming out last since they were in the back of the plane. Yet another "Cannonball Run" montage ensues.

I was waiting for them to use the Rascal Flatts' song "Walk the Llama". Of course, I was ALSO waiting for one of the llamas to talk like David Spade. Nevertheless, Team Well-Travelled Babes arrive in the llama field and proceed to easily rope two llamas. That's the EASY part. The HARD part is making them move! Team First Mom/Son likewise rope a pair but have a little LESS difficulty making them move. Still DIFFICULT, but not by much. Finally, Debbie tells Bianca that she wants to quit and go to ROPE A BASKET. After a minute of arguing, Bianca finally relents.

Meanwhile, Team Survivor dons sarapes, wraps the ropes around the baskets and HEFT them onto their backs. Rob's upset that the Incan hat blocks his "Red Soux" cap but "when in Incaville, do as the Incans do". The basket slips out of Rob's ropes about a third of the way but, after a brief stop to relax, they get re-organized and on their way into town.

Now, llamas are really just Incan camels. And Robin Williams should've been there to tell Susan & Patrick, "Watch out...they spit." And they do... a FEW times. The mother and son are not liking it... but at least the animals are cooperating... to a degree. Meanwhile, Team Well-Travelled Babes hefts up their baskets, Debbie more confident that they can accomplish this one.

As Team Barroom Bros arrives at Felipe's store and the rest of the teams follow close behind, Team Survivor arrives at the store. They are rewarded with this clue:

Make your way to Huamutio Police Station and ride in the back of a marked delivery truck to the town of Pisac (close to 20 miles away). Trucks depart every 20 minutes from the police station. Once in Pisac, find the local marketplace for your next clue.

As Rob & Amber go to find the station (passing Debbie & Bianca en route), Susan & Patrick manage to get the llamas moving well. Though getting them into the pen is a little hard, they manage it and get into second place. Debbie & Bianca get their alfalfa delivery to the store and follow Rob & Amber, though technically in third. Team First Mom/Son manage to jump on the truck just before it headed out with Team Survivor already in the back. That means Team Well-Travelled Babes have to wait 20 minutes for the next truck. They are alone on that truck.

Meanwhile, back at the gorge, Brian & Greg are the first team to head down the zip line, followed closely by Lynn & Alex and Meredith & Gretchen (a very SCARED Gretchen). As they go off to their DETOURs (see below), the last group arrives at Felipe's. They all take off for the gorge and head down in this order: Ray & Deana, Uchenna & Joyce, Ryan & Chuck (saying they're "gonna be the first ones to load test it"), Ron & Kelly and, in the rear, Megan & Heidi. They choose THEIR DETOURs as follows:

LLAMA: Team Socially Secure, Team Will Race For Food, Team Dukes of Landrum and Team American Beauties
BASKET: Team Barroom Bros, Team Fab Two, Team On-Again-Off-Again and Team Cali Roomies

As the last group reaches the gorge, Brian & Greg reach the store and head for the police station in 4th place. Meredith & Gretchen find two co-operative llamas to take to the pens. Meredith leads them while Gretchen swats their heinies to get them to move. Deana, however, has problems with her rope choking her. What's more, the thin air is starting to get to her. En route to the station, Team Barroom Bros tell Team Fab Two that they passed the store... then said they were kidding. Lynn & Alex get into 5th place. Both "bad boy" teams make the 3rd truck out of town.

Team Socially Secure get into 6th place after penning their llamas. Team On-Again-Off-Again struggle, but get their alfalfa to the store in 7th place. But... Deana is exhausted and wants a breather before they continue. Ray'll have none of that. They fail to catch the bus that Meredith & Gretchen are on... and that upsets Ray to no end.


En route to the village, Team First Mom/Son strike up an alliance with Team Survivor... but for the sole purpose of bringing them down. (Doubt THAT'S gonna work!) They arrive right in front of the marketplace and start to navigate the twists and turns of the various tents, searching for the Route Marker. Rob walks around asking the locals, "Do you have a clue?" (That's probably what said locals would like to ask THEM.)

It's Susan & Patrick, however, who find the clue box and, in a show of honor, yell for Rob & Amber to go get it. They rip it open to reveal:

Make your way to the first PIT STOP of the Race: La Merced in Cuzco (a 325-year-old church 22 miles from Pisac). WARNING: the last team to check-in will be ELIMINATED!

A pair of taxis locos await the two teams...but Team Survivor's cab turns much faster, vaulting them into first. Meanwhile, Debbie & Bianca (having bribed the children on the truck with bracelets) waste no time leaping off the truck and running through the marketplace. They find it in no time and head off in third for now.

On the other trucks, Lynn & Alex are singing showtunes, Brian & Greg are trying not to rip their ears off, Meredith & Gretchen break the eggs of a family who brought their chickens along for the ride (and pay compensation for them) and Ray & Deana get on the fourth one to Pisac, but have to wait 20 minutes.

At the llama field, Team Will Race For Food and Team Dukes of Landrum fins a llama each and push them along, Ryan & Chuck having an easier time than Uchenna & Joyce. They both get the llamas to the pen... and then turn around and look to get the second ones. Team American Beauties and Team Cali Roomies take off with their baskets, breathing heavy in the high altitude.

Back at Pisac, the brothers and the lover disembark and, like teams before them, search for the clue together. It's Team Barroom Bros who find it and scream at Team Fab Two to get over there. They both leave in taxis for the PIT STOP. Meanwhile, Uchenna & Joyce are lucky to get a runner for their second llama and move ahead of Ryan & Chuck into 8th. Team Dukes of Landrum get into 9th with THEIR second llama.

Team American Beauties are breathless... literally. But they push on to get into 10th, leaving Team Cali Roomies STILL in last as they dump off their alfalfa. (Please note... not a SINGLE 'Little Rascals' joke in that ENTIRE segment!) Ray & Joyce, having waited all this time in the truck, are joined by Uchenna & Joyce (making Ray MUCH less happy). They pull out, leaving Ryan & Chuck and Ron & Kelly in their dust.

Meanwhile, three taxis are practically neck-and-neck heading towards:


Traffic woes, wrong directions and other mishaps plague the Racers. Rob & Amber have to get out to help a stalled car off the road so that they can get through. Debbie & Bianca's cab has so many "Virgin Mary" rear-view-mirror hangers that it's amazing the driver can see. And Susan & Patrick are just riding on Team Survivor's coattails.

All three decide not to wait for traffic and to get to the church on foot. But only one will make it into the courtyard in first place.

The team enters the courtyard, runs to the red-yellow-and-black mat in front of Phil and a native Incan who welcomes them to Cuzco. Then Phil says those magic words:

"Debbie & Bianca... you are Team Number 1!"

So...where are CBS sending Team Well-Traveled Babes for winning this leg of the Race? Mexico? Europe? The Caribbean? Actually, none of the above. See, the reward for winning THIS leg is... $10,000! EACH! That's 20 "large" the ladies have won to travel wherever the hell they WANT to.

Susan & Patrick arrive a few minutes later as Team #2... and Rob & Amber a few minutes after THAT as Team # 3... and this after starting off in LAST! Brian & Greg show up a little later as Team #4 and Lynn & Alex right behind as Team #5.

Meanwhile, back on the road, Uchenna & Joyce and Ray & Deana are at least happy that three teams are 20 minutes behind them. Said three teams make the last truck out of Huamutio (with Megan & Heidi JUST making it). Team Will Race For Food and Team On-Again-Off-Again do the same thing as others: worked together to find the clue for all four of them (Ray finds it, BTW). But... Ray & Deana can't seem to FIND Uchenna & Joyce. So, not wanting to waste time, they haul ass. The GOOD news is Uchenna finds it not-too-soon afterwards.

More truck-bed singing? Team Dukes of Landrum aren't much better than Team Fab Two... and THEY'RE torturing TWO teams. They all get to the market and do NOT team up. But they DO have something going for them: the marketers have seen 16 Americans pass by them to the Route Marker so they can give a general direction to the others. They find the clue at just about the same time... so it's truly a race to see who will be out of the Race.

Meredith & Gretchen arrive at the church as Team #6, followed closely by Ray & Deana as #7... which is AMAZING with all the bad breaks they had this leg. A few minutes behind THEM are Uchenna & Joyce, who are Team #8... and have sworn off llamas as pets.

On the roads, the last three taxis ride towards Cuzco, each team within all but begging their driver to go faster and faster. Ron & Kelly's car passes EVERYONE across the double-yellow line and into 9th... and Megan & Heidi's cab follows suit, leaving Ray & Chuck behind.

But, getting closer to the church, it's still rather tight. They're all close to the church... but two teams get lost finding the entrance. That gives Megan & Heidi the chance to arrive as Team # 9 uncontested. That means it's the trim military man and beauty queen vs. the portly redneck "good-buddies" in a foot race to stay in the game.

(Anyone care to place wagers? Didn't think so.)

One team runs into the courtyard... the other team about ten second behind them. The front team pounds on the mat with their feet as Phil says,...

"Ron & Kelly,'re Team Number 10!"

A mere twenty feet behind them, Team Dukes of Landrum have run out of gas. The walk to the mat and Phil gives them the double-bad news: they're the last team to arrive... and they're out of the Race. They traveled nearly 8000 miles in the last few days... but now they have to have Carolina on their minds because that's where they're heading. They tearfully say that their friendship is much more important than how they place (yeah,...right...).

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