Stuck in the Desert and Officially Detained - or, Philiminated with extreme prejudice.
Natalie & Nadiya and [del]Bopper[/del] Mallory & Mark and Joey & Meghan and Margie & Luke - (already eliminated)
Flat Tire - or, not likely to get anywhere soon.
Caroline & Jennifer (down from “Stopping”) - Caroline & Jennifer are right, in that they didn’t really make any mistakes on this leg, yet they still wound up in last place, with a Speed Bump to perform on the next episode. And that’s Caroline & Jennifer’s problem, really: they’re not realy good enough to beat any of the other teams without someone else making an error. That (and Jet & Cord’s express pass) has carried them this far, but really they can’t count on other teams eliminating themselves for much longer.
Stopping for Gas - or, not broken-down, exactly, but not a good sign.
Brendon & Rachel (holding steady) - Finally Brendon & Rachel will be leaving the Pit Stop in something other than last place. That’s no thanks to Rachel, who can thank John that she’s not still pumping gas into random green tuk-tuks rather than carefully reading the clue. They’re really lucky they were able to bunch onto the same train as the other teams; combined with the Globetrotter’s near-fiasco with their cab and Caroline & Jennifer being Caroline & Jennifer, Brendon & Rachel sneak into fifth place.
"Rapido! Por Favor?" - or, making meaningless ineffectual comments from the back seat, but in no immediate danger.
John & Jessica (holding steady) - John & Jessica finally make it into the top three. I’m not sure they can stay there; they essentially got lucky (or skillful, if you prefer; the point still holds) coming off the train bunch and getting the “right” Detour option. Good for them, but let’s see how they do on the next episode.
Flight Time & Big Easy (holding steady) - Speaking of the top three, guess which team has not yet had a top three finish? Yes, the Globetrotter, who so far have managed, at best, an uninspiring fifth place. Yes, they’re right that all you need to do is beat one team every leg, but that sounds to me like a rationalization rather than a strategy.
In the Passing Lane - or, ahead of the pack, but not quite comfortably.
Leo & Jamal (holding steady) - Finally Leo & Jamal wind up in first place. They seem to be getting slowly better as the season progresses (or maybe the competition is getting worse). Stll a tentative pick to make it into the final three.
Cruisin’ with Earl - or, drivin’ on the shoulder, takin’ shortcuts, and generally kickin’ butt.
Dave & Connor (holding steady) - Dave & Connor might be losing half a step: they went head-to-head with the Cowboys and the Afghanimals (the other two top teams) and came out behind. That was only on this task in this episode, but it does make me wonder if Dave is slowing down now that we’re deep into the Race.
Jet & Cord (holding steady) - The cowboys battle for first place yet again. This time they wind up literally seconds behind, but they’re always in the front of the pack, and should be a shoo-in for the final three.