Stuck in the Desert and Officially Detained - or, Philiminated with extreme prejudice.
Matthew and Daniel (already eliminated)
Idries and Jamil (Black twins) (down from “Passing”) - When one of the twins commented in their interview that they both had the same weaknesses, which may be a problem, I thought he was being modest. Turns out he was making an objective diagnosis. Their Detour performance was pretty wretched, and they were seriously - seriously as in arguing for tens of minutes - discussing quitting and taking a six hour penalty, which would have almost certainly eliminated them, rather than dipping a toe into the water. A little cooler reasoning would have suggested checking out the other Detour option - which one of the twins did, in passing, but they acted on only after fruitlessly diving for one clam at a time and dropping hopelessly behind. Probably one of the top three worst Detour performances ever, and this team is understandably eliminated/
Flat Tire - or, not likely to get anywhere soon.
David and Connor (Father & son) (down from “Passing”) - Yikes. If that injury is as severe as it sounds, we might get the first TAR injury withdrawal, which would make next week’s leg somewhat less exciting. Even if not, Dad’s going to be limping for a long time, which is not good when you’re, y’know, racing. That’s a little disappointing, becasuse up until now this team was doing pretty good, with a pair of top-three finishes.
Stopping for Gas - or, not broken-down, exactly, but not a good sign.
Chuck and Wynona (Married Alabamans) (holding steady) - Chuck, at least, is pounding through the tasks, but it didn’t look like Wynona was doing anything in this episode. I feel a little sorry for her, because it’s pretty obvious that competing on the Race is Chuck’s idea, and she’s just struggling along, doing the best she can, because it’s important to him. At some point, though, she’s going to have to do something that’s more physically demanding than she can handle, and that’s when they’ll hit the mat in last place and we’ll get to hear the “Tearful Banjoes Disappearing Into the Sunset” theme.
Max and Katie (Douchy newlyweds) (holding steady) - What is going through Max’s mind when his clever insights boil down to, “the other team is going to try to beat us, so we should try to beat them”? Good God, it’s a Race! The word is right there in the title of the show! I guess Max is just so enamored of his own cleverness that he assumes that every thought he has is automatically insightful and worth sharing.
"Rapido! Por Favor?" - or, making meaningless ineffectual comments from the back seat, but in no immediate danger.
Joey and Meghan (YouTube hosts) (up from “Stopping”) - Richard Simmons. Heh. Always a funny reference. I’m still skeptical of Joey and Meghan’s long-term viability, but I admit they’re doing far better than I thought they would, and their division of labor decision on the Detour would have made Henry Ford proud. I’m tentatively moving them up a notch.
Caroline and Jen (Blonde bandmembers) (holding steady) - A pretty good recovery this week, and Caroline and Jen beat not only Max and Katie (who they thought they had to beat), but two other mistake-prone teams, too.
Pamela and Winnie (Asian women) (down from “Passing”) - Yeah, that was a pretty bad navigation error, when it allowed the teams that started an hour-and-a-half behind to catch up. Plus not-great performance on both the Detour and the Roadblock, and Pamela and Winnie wind up starting in last place next week.
In the Passing Lane - or, ahead of the pack, but not quite comfortably.
Mona and Beth (Brunette derby girls) (holding steady) - Mona and Beth haven’t really finished all that well, but in this episode it was because of picking the “wrong” Detour option, and I’m not sure I can ding them for that. The disparity between the options surprised me - I would have picked the same option Mona and Beth did, on the theory that the pearl-hunting option was a needle-in-a-haystack task that’s best avoided. However, it seems the dining task was more time-consuming than I thought, since it dropped Mona and Beth behind everyone who didn’t either make big mistakes or start out 90 minutes later. Still, I’m hopeful for the roller derby girls, and I’ll leave them ranked here.
John and Jessica (Dating surfer couple) (up from Rapido!) - John and Jessica now have a pair of top-three finishes, and an Express Pass, so that’s enough to vault them up into this category. Although I think they’re trying to be too clever by half with this second Express Pass - what they don’t seem to realize is that the more teams they lead on, the more teams will be irritated at later when someone else gets the Express Pass. It would be, I think, a perfect strategy to hand it over to David and Connor, because (a) that was the agreement to begin with (silly as it was), (b) no other team is going to be pissed that it’s used to help an obviously gimpy team that needs the help, and © David and Connor are pretty clearly no longer a long-term threat, so the choice wouldn’t bite John and Jessica later.
Anthony and Bates (Hockey brothers) (up from Rapido!) - So Anthony and Bates are, quite quickly, the only young(er) male-male team left (and it’s not unlikely that next week they’ll be the only male-male team left, period). I still think TAR has a slight skew toward male teams, even if not as much as in the past, so that gives this team an edge. Also Anthony and Bates seem to be a little more clever and laid-back than I first gave them credit for. That, with the addition of pretty extensive travel and competition experience, makes this team look pretty good in the long term.
Cruisin’ with Earl - or, drivin’ on the shoulder, takin’ shortcuts, and generally kickin’ butt.
No one yet.