The Amazine Race: Travel Tips from Holland
For the seventh leg of The Amazing Race, teams flew 3,000 miles to the Netherlands where cars, counting, cross-dressing, carnival games, clogs and partially clothed golfing tested their skills, strength and patience. But going Dutch proved too difficult for one team. Maybe they'd have fared better with these hindsight travel tips. --Carrie Bell
1. Test drive cars and practice driving stick: Because all the teams caught the same midnight flight from Dubai, everyone started on equal ground in Amsterdam. Unfortunately, Mr. America was tripped up by the controls of his Mercedes and immediately fell behind. It was probably humiliating for him to ask a stranger to put it in drive. And his wife nagging him all the way to the causeway statue was surely unwanted icing.
2. Count carefully: For the roadblock, one player had to climb around the bell tower of Groningen's tallest building, the Martinitoren, and count the bells while they clanged loudly. Matt was the first to come up with the number 62. Sam and Meghan decided to work together and finished soon after Matt despite a communication setback when the chiming kicked in. The All-Americans were not thrilled when Sam saved Tiffany from the whole second floor by sharing the answer. Miss America was the only contestant to miscount and did so several times before pouting to her partner. He met her frustration with patience and a pep talk and it gave her the boost she needed to return and come up with the correct tally.
3. Get into character: In the rural town of Vierhuizen De Marne, duos had to don traditional dress. One member of same-sex teams was required to gender-bend. The wooden clogs were uncomfortable, some items didn't fit well and skirts on bikes were unwieldy, but teams who got a good chuckle out of it seemed to go a little faster. Already in panic mode, Mr. and Miss America failed to be amused, misread the clue, walked a long way to the detour and bickered the entire time.
4. Play against type: After revealing their sexuality to the opposition (in a very positive and touching moment), the gay brothers chose the sportier detour option -- swimming across a cold creek in undies and playing three holes of farmer golf. Despite high winds, freezing water and clog clubs, they played like pros and left the All-Americans in their wake as they biked to the Zoutkamp Harbor pit stop. The Globetrotters decided to dance and added Soul Train flair and chest bumps to their folk routine.
5. Know when to fold ‘em: Despite Tiffany's impressive past physicality, she simply couldn't muster the strength required to ring the striker's bell (dance option's first element). They made 30-plus attempts before trying golf (which was also easier with muscles) and then switched back. After 70-plus swings and a sob session, the “weaker and more freezing” gals tried the green again but simply could not make par and quit. Maria explained: “We've given our all but we can only do so much.” It was welcome news for Mr. and Miss America who were nervously waiting out a 30-minute penalty, sure their bickering and mistakes had sealed their fate. Erica surmised, “This was not my finest hour.”
Tell us: Had the poker players grown on you? Did you start to see a kinder, gentler side of them on the last legs? Which male player made the best woman?Monty Brinton/CBS
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