Racer Reports

Racer Report - The Finale

Team: David and Jeff
They didn't make it to the finish mat, in the most unusual finishing leg for a team since Team Guido's infamous outcome in Alaska at the conclusion of the first edition of The Amazing Race. As the winners of the previous leg, David and Jeff were the first team to depart the pit stop at Ellis Beach outside Cairns, Australia. Teams receive $1.00 (again) for this final leg of the Race. The route marker clue directs them to an aboriginal cultural park. When they arrive, they find its hours of operation are 6:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. The other teams join them and witness a fire ceremony before all the teams receive their next clue. That clue directs the teams to go to the General Aviation Terminal at the Cairns International Airport. David and Jeff are the first team to depart, but they had a minor problem closing the rear hatch door of the vehicle just after one of the teams voices over that they've made the fewest mistakes of the final three teams. FAMOUS LAST WORDS, Y'ALL.

At the terminal they encounter a detour, "Wing It" or "Wander It." In the first option each team member goes up on a skydiving plane up to an altitude of 10,000 feet and tandem jump with an instructor before they receive their clue. In the second option, a team has to drive to a nearby mangrove farm, get a boat and navigate to the landing zone by water. David and Jeff, as do the other teams, choose to skydive. David and Jeff complete the jump first.

The teams then receive their clue to fly to the Big Island of Hawaii and proceed to Kaubala Bay, the southernmost point in the United States. David and Jeff go to the international terminal. They decide to take a flight to Sydney, because they believe that since it was a larger airport they have a better chance of getting a flight that would get them to Hawaii earlier. But we're not shown them arranging for a connecting flight. In a post-finale interview, David and Jeff mentioned that in fact, they had observed Phil and members of the production staff waiting to board that flight to Sydney, and they figured they might be able to make the same connecting flight. They also mentioned in their interviews that while they waited at the cultural center, they made reservations in about ten directions not knowing which way they might have to go from Cairns, and that flight was one of the ten flights they had a reservation for. They would not have otherwise made that flight since it was booked full.

When they arrive in Sydney, David and Jeff discover that they cannot get a connecting flight direct to Honolulu that day, and there were no connecting flights through other places before the next day. So they were stranded in Sydney until that flight the next morning. And that's the last we see of David and Jeff until the other two teams have reached the finish line. Again, from post-Race interviews, it's learned that David and Jeff made it to Kualaha Bay after their flight from Sydney to Honolulu to Kona. The Bay was the location of the roadblock, which the other teams completed earlier. In the roadblock a team member swims out into the water and retrieves a rock that's about 10-15 feet under the surface. The team member had to return to the shore and break the rock open to retrieve the clue. That clue directed teams to the Volcanoes National Park. It was here where David and Jeff, at 5:30 a.m., learned that Reichen and Chip had crossed the finish line in Phoenix and that Jon and Kelly were second. The Race was over. According to their interviews, Jeff did the roadblock.

For the record, the remaining directions had teams travel to the U.S.S. Arizona anchor memorial in Phoenix. At the memorial, teams were directed to Sun Devil Stadium on the campus of Arizona State University. At the stadium, teams were to look for clues at a location that involved the date, White plus White. The day that day was Valentine's Day (2/14), and the White plus White referred to two players whose retired numbers were visible along the ring of honor in the stadium (33 and 11). Teams had to figure out that they were being directed to Section 214, row 33, seat 11. That clue directed teams to the finish line in Pagalo Park, which required them to ride bikes on a trail once they reached the park.
They join Team Guido of season one as the only teams not to be eliminated and not the reach the finish mat.
And so it goes. David and Jeff never made it to Phoenix. They join Team Guido of season one as the only teams not to be eliminated and not the reach the finish mat. Though, to their credit, they had completed both the detour and the roadblock of the final leg before the Race was over. And you know, it would have be even funnier had they gotten the clue to travel to Phoenix first -- because they would not have officially known the Race was over until they got to Phoenix, possibly the next day.

It's been fun doing these reports this season. I never thought we'd ever see a final three team get Guido'ed again, but at least they completed most of the leg. They should have done their homework better in Cairns. Who knows what might have happened! But these guys did win four, count 'em four, trips for the four legs they won. And that is not a shabby performance, either. Until next time!
–– by theschnauzers

Team: Kelly and Jon
I predicted in my very first report that this team would take 2nd place. Honest. Go look. G’head. I had no idea at the time that I would go from loathing to begrudging respect to outright admiration. Anyway, this leg would find them almost winning the whole enchilada. I think this team, Kelly in particular, has a sense of self-awareness that I didn’t notice at first. Her interview segment where she explains that they don’t even deserve to be here because they’re so “stee-u-pid”, was very cute and she was able to express how thrilled they were to be there, despite their ineptitude.
This team has had fun everywhere they went and I totally appreciated their attempts at frustrating Reichip.
This team has had fun everywhere they went and I totally appreciated their attempts at frustrating Reichip. I enjoyed like hell Jon flipping the guys off in the car and Kelly’s concern for the boys’ safety after they spun out. I think Jon’s cackling was hilarious after he realized they were ok. Kelly later showed that moxie I love so when she was readying herself to skydive. She was petrified and yet she did it. I was proud of her. She even calmed herself down once the parachute opened and enjoyed herself and noticed the fish in the water below. Their ability to enjoy the race in the present was endearing.

Their problems this leg began when they missed their connection in Tokyo. They were sloppy in not figuring out where they needed to be and then compounded it by a lack of finesse at the gate. The guy almost seemed like he was considering letting them on until Kelly started yammering about them being in a race. I think if the guy thought they had a legitimate need to get on that plane he might have made an exception, but talk of a game seemed to solidify his reluctance to cut them a break. But even after this catastrophe, Jon found a way to get Kelly to stop crying and actually laugh. He made a joke about Reichip having cramps from diarrhea, thus preventing them from running. She laughed and said “Those damn Chippendales… Get us every time”. They were quite lighthearted even though she said it was the lowest part of the race.

At the roadblock, much hilarity ensued. Jon got nekkid and Kelly had a field day, teasing him about the full moon, not damaging the merchandise, how big the … rock was, and asking him if he wanted to put his ‘panties’ back on. They knew they were behind and still were able to have fun. They managed to get on the same flight as Reichip, but because of the missed connection, they could only get seats four rows behind. Now why they didn’t use the time on board to use all their extra cash to bribe fellow passengers into either giving them a wide berth or even blocking Chip and Reichen, I may never know unless one of them starts posting.

At the Sunbowl, Kelly and Jon were shown actually figuring out the clue instead of, like Reichip, getting “lucky”. Ah well, we all know by now that it was not to be. They arrived at the finish line (Hi Jon! Hi Al!) in 2nd place. As they walked onto the mat, Kelly gave Chip a congratulatory slap of the hand and then burst into tears and fell into Jon’s arms. Awwww. They consoled each other as the other teams jumped onto the mat and congratulated Chip and Reichen (congratulations guys! And Devajd!) and Kelly and Jon. Their final interview was touching as Jon said “With Kelly being the last girl in the race, I don’t think there’s anyone that wouldn’t be impressed with the things she accomplished. We wouldn’t be here unless it was for her”. Kelly said “The race is a test of love. It’s a test of faith. Because when the chips are down, all you can do is lean on each other. And it was nice to have all the little tests along the way. Because until this race, I don’t think I realized just how much Jon loved me and I don’t think he realized how much I loved him.” Then there were tears. Oh, not Kelly’s. Mine. And I never cry about stuff like this. Well, I did cry when Jon/Al were eliminated. But that’s it. Wait. Monica/Sheree too. Oh, and Tian/Jaree. Nevermind…
–– by emjaytee

Reichen & Chip − The Chipsters
For fans of Reichen and Chip, this was an awesome leg. They did very well, made no mistakes, showed signs of affection towards each other and had a very good trip from Australia to Arizona and of course, won!!!
Reichen and Chip (and I can now tell them apart) drive to the airfield, where we get to see Chip do his impression of Toonces the Cat.
After watching the fire ceremony, Reichen and Chip (and I can now tell them apart) drive to the airfield, where we get to see Chip do his impression of Toonces the Cat. Since Reichen has already faced the scariest thing ever, he has no problem with the detour – skydiving. We get to see an affectionate moment as Chip asks, “where's my boy” as he waits for Reichen to land. When they find out they are going to Hawaii, they go to the Domestic Terminal, which, as they correctly surmised, is less crowded, and they are able to make their flight plans very quickly. They make the correct flight decision and are on their way to Tokyo with Kelly and Jon. With only 45 minutes to make their connection, they find the right terminal and after we hear Chip compliment his sweetie, they are able to make their next flight and as they sit in business class, they leave Kelly and Jon behind in Japan as they are on their way to Hawaii.

They are the first team to arrive in Hawaii and after we see Chip complete the roadblock, Reichen tells him that he did awesome and they are on their way to Phoenix. At the airport, they are able to get the exact address of the route marker and as they arrive in Arizona, they are in full race mode. They get the first cab and are able to find the clue at the Stadium (personal note – at this point at TARCON, I was actually jumping up and down) and are then the first to arrive at the finish line where Phil tells them that they are the winners of the Amazing Race. Reichen and Chip hug and XXXXXXXX (edited by the CBS censors) and TAR4 is over as we go to the closing credits.

Congrats Reichen and Chip! I liked you guys from the beginning and am very happy that you won. Both of you had your ups and downs during the race. For the last leg, you had a good and (finally) mistake-free leg, when it probably was the most important considering how close behind Jon and Kelly were.
–– by M. Darcy for devajd
Phil begins by going back to the beginning (a very good place to start) to Dodger Stadium.
Host: Phil
Phil begins by going back to the beginning (a very good place to start) to Dodger Stadium. He then reminds us of high and low points of the race. We then get to see Debra and Steve, Amanda and Chris, Cindy and Russell, Steve and Josh, Steve and Dave, Monica and Sheree, Tian and Jaree, Millie and Chuck, and the Clowns Philiminated and the histories of the final three teams – Team Who, Kelly and Jon, and Reichen and Chip. Phil dramatically tells us that one of these three teams will win……..the Amazing Race. Credits for the last time and bomp.

As Phil begins the final leg by strolling along Ellis Beach, wearing khaki pants and a green shirt, he tells us about the route info – the teams are going to the Aboriginal Cultural Park. (hee, as Jeff is telling us about the fewer mistakes Team Who has made, we see him having trouble closing the trunk of their car). After we see the ceremony, Phil tells us that the teams need to go to General Aviation and we see him walking towards the camera, away from the plane as he tells us about the detour – wing it vs wander it. All of the teams wing it (Reichen and the Chipsters crew have no problem with wing it – after all its less scary than Chip’s driving). After the teams jump, Phil returns to tell us that the teams are on their way to Kaulana Bay, Hawaii. After we see Team Who make one of their fewer mistakes (sorry, Team Who. I kid because I love), the AYL takes us back to the United States, via Japan.

We (finally) get to see Phil again at the Kaulana Bay, still wearing the same outfit where he tells us about the next task – the teams need to go to the Hawaii Volcano National Park (we don’t see Phil again for a while since he is on his way to the finish line in Phoenix Arizona) and then to the U.S. Arizona Anchor in Phoenix. We then get to see two lucky cab drivers make a massive amount of money as Phil’s voice returns to tell us about the Stadium Riddle.

Then (drum roll) we get to see Phil at the finish line at Papago Park along with the other teams as they welcome Reichen and Chip. Wearing a blue shirt and jeans, Phil says “4 continents, 24 cities, 44,000 miles, Reichen and Chip, you are the official winners of The Amazing Race. You are the winners of the 1 million dollars. Congratulations, You’ve won The Amazing Race.” Phil then welcomes Kelly and Jon and tells them, “Kelly and Jon, you are the second team to arrive, congratulations.” We then see Team Who get the news while still in Hawaii. As we see the Teams pose together, we (sniff) go to the closing credits.

But…Phil Bonus! Our last official Phil moment for TAR4, is on the Early Show the next morning. After the entire five minute segment, Phil walks out wearing (a new outfit), khaki shirt and jeans and carrying a huge check. He presents the check to Reichen and Chip along with a hug for Reichen and points out why this really is an amazing show.

Until TAR5 (I still have hope) see ya Phil! Its been a blast writing about you. You are the best reality show host on television and the nicest guy in the world.
–– by M. Darcy