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HOME > The Amazing Race > The Amazing Race 14

Exclusive: Cara Rosenthal, Jaime Edmondson talk 'Amazing Race'


By Reality TV World staff, 05/13/2009 

After visiting three continents and traveling more than 40,00 miles around the world, The Amazing Race's fourteenth edition came down to a fateful taxi-ride race and a memory recall task in Maui, Hawaii.

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However after encountering difficulties with both, the controversial "former NFL Cheerleaders" team of Cara Rosenthal, a 26-year-old law student from Boca Raton, FL, and Jaime Edmondson, a 29-year-old former police officer from Ft. Lauderdale, FL, came up short and finished second in the race-around-the-world competition.

On Monday, Cara and Jaime spoke to Reality TV World about whether they feel any of their behavior was inappropriate or have any regrets -- and in the process, seemed to demonstrate why the show's CBS.com "Elimination Station" segments showed most of the Race's previously eliminated contestants repeatedly hoping the women would be the next team eliminated.

Reality TV World: First of all, congratulations on finishing second

Jaime and Cara: (in unison) Thank you.

Reality TV World: What was your reaction when you got to that final Roadblock and saw that Luke was already practically done and Victor seemed to have already pulled quite a few of his boards [as well]?

Jaime: Um, I don't think at the moment we really worried about them.  I mean we lost about 45 minutes between the gas, going to the wrong place -- which was selling surfboards as opposed to the surfboard fence -- and then sitting on the side of the road since he didn't know which direction to go in, so when we got there we were trying to focus more on catching up as opposed to seeing how far along they were.

But we were happy to see they were both still there.

Reality TV World: But at that point, were you optimistic still at your chances of winning or did you kind of begin resigning yourselves to not winning?

Jaime: Neither of the above.

Cara: No, we were absolutely optimistic and I have to say that Jaime really rocked that task.  I mean we did have to come from behind but it's a position we had been in before.  The one thing that we're very proud of, and were at the time always confident in, was that when we got to tasks -- no matter where we started in the rank -- we always did them well and quickly and successfully. 

So neither of us was worried that we didn't stand a chance.  You know, it just turned out the way it did.  But at no point were we concerned -- I was not concerned -- that Jaime couldn't do it at any point.

Reality TV World: So did you guys know that was the absolute last task at that point or were you still hoping that there might be something else after that?

Jaime: Well I mean of course before you get handed the clue you -- if you see one team leave you have the hope that it's not over -- but once you're handed the clue and it says go, you know, 'Make your way to the mat,' you know, you -- and in a place such as Maui, where there was literally only two ways to go on the island. 

I mean you could go forward or backwards and knowing that it was a straight shot to the mat we realized that we were going to be second.

Cara: But while Jaime was doing the task we had no clue that there wasn't anything else [after that]

Reality TV World: So until Tammy and Victor got their clue and you overheard them or whatever...

(Unintelligible, Jaime and Cara talking simultaneously)

Cara: No we didn't overhear it, it wasn't until we received the clue that said go to the final mat that we realized that was where Victor and Tammy had just taken off to and at that point we knew that, I mean barring some extenuating circumstances...

Jaime: ...a flat (laughs)

Cara: ...a flat tire, that we were gunning for second at that time.  We knew that as we were taking that final ride.  But while Jaime was doing the task and until we received the clue after completion of our task we did not know that it was straight to the mat. 

Reality TV World: Okay...

Cara: So as far as we were concerned at that time, there was a lot of hope.  Because as far as we were concerned Tammy and Victor could have been doing another task and just have gotten a chance to get there earlier and get started faster.

Reality TV World: So both of the other teams seem to have anticipated that there was going to be a task at the end that had something to do with remembering everything that had happened on the race before that.  Was that the same case in your situation?

Jaime: Yeah, I wrote everything down along the way.  I kept a journal of -- and you know, it was actually more for my own memories because I knew were couldn't take photos, we couldn't take anything personal with us.  No cameras, nothing like that.  So for my own self, knowing that we were so in-and-out of every place, I wanted to log everything so that later on in life I could go back and read it. 

It wasn't that I was anticipating a memory challenge but I'd seen the show enough times to know that that has happened in the final leg on several occasions. So it didn't hurt to take the notes but, yeah.

Reality TV World: But did you just take them or had you been studying them on the plane rides, you know, apparently like Luke [had]?

(Unintelligible, Jaime and Cara talking simultaneously)

Cara: [Unintelligible] read it

Jaime: I read it right before...

Cara: She had read it right before we had gone, which was ultimately why we decided for Jaime to do the task instead of myself. I knew what we had done but Jaime had taken the time to re-read her journal and I said 'You know what, this is all you girl, you got it' and this is her dream, so it was perfect for her to do our final task.

Reality TV World: During that task, it almost seemed like instead of pulling his boards off and taking them over to the side [to his private mounting area], Victor was kind of just pulling them out of the pile and putting them a little bit on the side.  Were you ever tempted to take a look at what he had over there?

Jaime: No, I was never tempted to cheat my way to win.  I'm not a cheater and Cara and I earned every single thing we did along the way ourselves without the help of anyone else.

Every task was done by us and we're very, very, very proud of being the highest finishing female team ever on The Amazing Race and no one can take that from us and no one can say that they did it for us and I was never going to be able to win the race because I cheated. That's not something that would have made me proud.

EDITOR'S NOTE: Like most other teams in The Amazing Race history, Jaime and Cara were shown working with other teams or looking at how another team was completing a task several times during the season, including during the finale episode.  In addition, their second-place finish only matches that of eleventh-season female contestants Dustin Konzelman and Kandice Pelletier.

Reality TV World: Yeah, but weren't there some situations...

Cara: Additionally, even if Jaime wanted to, she couldn't see what Luke had up or...

(Unintelligible, Jaime and Cara talking simultaneously)

Cara: ...they were all facing away from each other so they couldn't see each other's boards

Reality TV World: No, I understand that, Cara, but there was a point before Victor took them over to his area where they were just off on the side.

Cara: Yeah, Jaime didn't have time...

Jaime: ...he was never over in my area

(Unintelligible, Jaime and Cara talking simultaneously)

Reality TV World: Okay, that's fine...

Cara: She couldn't see them from there, she was in the middle of the pile doing she her own transport of boards.  And additionally, from where we were standing as the team supporters, we couldn't see anything they were doing. 

Literally, we couldn't see the pictures on the boards in the pile, we couldn't see the boards the they were putting up on their fence, on their wall.  I mean we were rendered entirely hopeless to our teammate, which honestly is very frustrating.  When it's a team sport, to get down to the final task and that...

(Unintelligible, Jaime and Cara talking simultaneously)

Cara: ... beyond one person, [like] seasons prior....

(Unintelligible, Jaime and Cara talking simultaneously)

Jaime:  ...yeah, if it had been like Season 13

Cara: ...where they could at least talk

Jaime: ...(unintelligible) each other

Cara: ...where I'm seeing, is any of this ringing a bell, and I'd have said 'Yes, this rings a bell' or 'No,' it just would have been helpful.  At that point you're so tired and you've traveled for so long.  I think Jaime just did an amazing job.

Reality TV World: Once Victor and Tammy left the Roadblock there was that point there where you guys came to the decision to work with Margie and Luke to help each other finish the task and who ended up going first [in revealing the other's missing symbol] basically ended up determining who finished second and who finished third.  How did you guys determine who was going to help whom first?

Cara: We didn't

Jaime: It wasn't like that

Cara: It was 'Why don't you help each other?' and they said 'Okay' and Luke was standing there and he pointed his out and then Jaime said 'Alright,' she moved it and said 'Let's see if this is right.' [They] then said 'Right' and she said 'Okay' [and] turned all of hers around for Luke to see and he went and did his and we got our clue and we hopped in the car and you know, it was never...

Jaime: It was never...

Cara: ...but that point we weren't even, we weren't racing like thinking who would be second or third, it was neither of us is probably going to be first so let's just get there and get it done.

Reality TV World: Cara, you had comment at the end where it seemed like for a split second you were worried that Jaime was going to leave the Roadblock without honoring her end of the deal with Luke.  Was that the case, or if not, what was the comment actually about?

Cara: Um, which comment are you referring to, I'm sorry?  What did I say and then I can answer your question.

Reality TV World: It was comment where after you guys had completed the Roadblock task you were telling Jaime to help Luke -- to tell Luke what [his missing board] answer was.  It seemed like you had some concern that she was going to leave the Roadblock...

Jaime: Are you trying to say that I had the intention of not doing it and only did it because Cara told me to?

Reality TV World: No, I'm not...

Jaime: Is that what you're asking?

Reality TV World: No, I'm not making that implication at all, I'm simply asking Cara what that comment was about.

Cara: Um, I think because we -- when you're in the Race your so focused and sometimes details can get forgotten about easily and we got the clue and we were like 'Let's go!' and I was like 'Wait, we didn't show Luke yet' and...

Jaime: That's actually not how it happened at all.  There was no way, whether Cara told me or not, that I was going to not tell him.

Cara: Right.

(Unintelligible, Jaime and Cara talking simultaneously)

Reality TV World: I understand that Jaime, I'm trying to understand what Cara was thinking at the time when she made that comment.

(Unintelligible, Jaime and Cara talking simultaneously again)

Jaime: ...because if she hadn't told me I wouldn't have done it, that was not the case at all.

Reality TV World: Nobody's accusing you of that Jaime, I'm just trying to understand why Cara made that comment

Jaime: 'Oh, I forgot?' I didn't forget anything.

Cara: No, no, no -- I wasn't trying to suggest that she forgot anything,  What I was saying was I probably said that just like 'Okay, let's show Luke and let's get a move on' you know type of a thing.

Reality TV World: Okay. Jaime, did you really call the police for directions [during that Maui cab ride]?

Jaime: Yes I did.  Because you know, he took us to get gas, he took us to a surf shop instead of the surfboard fences and then, he -- after we left there he just pulled over to the side of the road, because she literally did not know which direction to go in. 

And I'm like, there's only two options.  We can either move forward or backwards because it's just a two-way street in Maui, there is no other way we could go.  So I said it either has to be in front of us or we need to turn around. 

So he called dispatch [and] as you saw, she refused to offer any assistance, which I thought was really unfortunate considering that we were, you know, paying customers and our fare was running, so even if we weren't in a race or...

Reality TV World: So you don't think your [own] behavior was inappropriate or anything?

Jaime: No, I don't think my behavior was inappropriate, asking if we could call dispatch or someone to help us because if I wasn't in a race and if you were in the race and you were a paying customer and your fare cab is running up...

Reality TV World: I'm not talking about asking to call dispatch, I'm talking about the comments and the way you were berating the driver...

Jaime: Berating the driver?  I'm... I'm confused what you're asking.  You asked me if I called the police and I'm telling you the scenario that we went through prior to me resorting to calling the police.

Cara: Right, and you have to remember that Jaime has experience as a former police officer so she knows that at any point the police officers have to know the map of their territory and working zone just better than anyone else because they get calls, you know, in emergency situations. 

They have to know how to get there, they don't have time to like [check] Google Maps or whatever...

Jaime: Yeah...

Cara: So we knew that they would be able to help us...

Jaime: ...if the cab company wouldn't help us I figured that at his point the only people that could possibly help us had to be the police.  So I actually called 911...

Reality TV World: [But] I would think that as a [former] police officer...

Jaime: ...and I said 'I hate to bother you, it's not an emergency like or death, but you know, to us it's an emergency, at this moment.  And the lady was very nice. 

The dispatcher at the police department was very helpful, she knew right away the cross streets and they had no problem helping us and once she gave us the mile marker we determined that we just needed to keep going straight, we were heading in the right direction.  They were very, very helpful, the police department.  It was the only thing I could think of at that point to figure out where we need to go.

Reality TV World: So when you were a police officer, would you have deemed calling 911 for that type of a situation to be appropriate behavior?

Jaime:  I'm -- you're really rubbing me the wrong way.  I mean your tone and the way that you're trying to insinuate that everything that I'm doing is wrong or bad, I don't appreciate it.

EDITOR'S NOTE: 911 is intended for genuine emergency use only.  Illegitimate or frivolous use is increasingly choking 911 systems nationwide and resulting in critical delays for callers that are experiencing a genuine emergency.  Non-emergency use of the 911 system can result in fines or jail time in several states.  Please do not attempt what you saw on TV at home.

Reality TV World: I'm just asking a question...

Jaime: If you're going to treat me this way then I'm not going to have an interview with you.

Reality TV World: I'm just asking a question Jaime. If you don't want to answer it that's fine, I guess, but...

Jaime: One it's wrong to ask the driver to call dispatch -- it's just the way that you're coming across, you know.

Reality TV World: Okay, so there were a lot of scenes on the show where your behavior -- the way you were treating your drivers in general, not just in Hawaii -- seemed to give, you know, an "ugly American" impression.  Are you saying...

Jaime: ...obviously this is a role that you want to take so (unintelligible)

EDITOR'S NOTE: Jaime appears to leave the call

Cara: I think the thing is, and you know people have to remember [that] reality television as a whole, you know, you're putting yourself out there for hours and hours on end. You know we're filmed 24-hours a day, barring Pit Stops, so, you know, sometimes when you have to compact hours and hours into one hour, aspects of your journey and your adventure are going to be left out.

And for Jaime, often times what was shown was when we had been pushed to the point -- pushed past the point of me dealing with the taxi cab driver and saying 'Hey, do you know how to get us here, blah, blah, blah' and we'd reached the point -- and Jaime is person who is going to say it like it is, you know.

Here in New York for the finale, we've had so many people stop us on the street be like 'You're a New Yorker at heart' because, you know, they would tell you that they wouldn't have held back at all either. 

And you know what, Jaime didn't hold back.  Jaime was herself and I guess, you know, people have misunderstood or misinterpreted that that was the only form of communication she had was getting frustrated with the taxi cab drivers.

There were many times where she was not frustrated or we had been lost twice before she got frustrated.  Or been lost an hour before Jaime started getting, like, frantic and riled up, and you know, that happens. 

And Jaime understands that and she -- they always, Jaime always at the end of the day, with our taxi cab drivers, after we hit the final mat and had to go back and you know, settle our taxi bills and get our backpacks or whatever -- where she said 'I'm so sorry, I know I was horrible to you today, thank you, thank you for everything.'  We would give them extra money, we would tip as big as we could -- and that was all Jaime, because Jaime was our money gal.

So, you know, I mean, it is unfortunate that one aspect of our journey in taxi cabs was really highlighted but a lot of people have asked me -- in interviews and just in random emails and such -- why I didn't step in more or whatever. 

And the reality is I didn't have to step in, Jaime was Jamie and she's my friend.  And you know, I said earlier that friendship is about being there for your friends at the very highs and the very lows and everything in between and I am proud of the way Jaime handled herself and that she didn't, you know, fake anything [and] that she was true to herself. 

And it's just unfortunate that this 'ugly American' stereotype has been kind of stamped on this team.  Surely, I hope people can understand that what we were doing was racing for a million dollars, not having a leisurely vacation around Maui.

I assure you when Jaime goes there for a vacation in the next few weeks -- which she is -- she's not going be yelling at her taxi cab driver for not knowing his way or not getting us there soon enough.  Because she's not racing for a million dollars and having to block, you know, 45 minutes, or in China the same thing, or whatever we were. 

So it is unfortunate but I have told Jaime that I believe not many people can handle that situation better.  And you know, a lot of other teams didn't have quite as unfortunate luck quite as often as we did with taxi cab drivers so yes, did that hold it together better than us?  Sure. 

We would have held it together much better if we had a good driver too, as you could see in Beijing.  We had this wonderful driver at the very end and Jaime was wonderful, she was happy.

Reality TV World: So Cara, are you saying that you regret some of that behavior?

Cara: Do I regret some of that behavior?

Reality TV World: Yeah, do you regret any of that or you just saying that's the way it was and, you know...

Cara: I... what do you mean by 'regret that behavior,' do I regret Jaime's behavior?

Reality TV World: Collectively as a team...

Cara: I'm feeling very sad for viewers that that's the only way that some of them had interpreted our team.  Because we brought a lot more to the table than just...

(A female voice whispers 'the edit')

Cara: ...the edit.  And we brought more to the table than just bad taxis.  We were really good at our tasks even with troubles getting to and from them.  We survived because we excelled.  When we were driving ourselves we were having a good old time, we even turned on music for some of it -- we were happy, you know.

But I have no regrets about the way we performed, about the way we ran this race.  I think if we had run it any different we may not have been the most successful female team of all time.

Reality TV World: Were you aware [during] that pig-carrying task in Maui that part of the problem seemed to be the pig was unbalanced on the pole? It seemed like the pig was practically touching you most of the time when you were struggling to carry your end of it.

Cara: Are you talking to me or...

Reality TV World: Yes, I'm sorry

Cara: It really wasn't that it wasn't unbalanced.  It actually was in the middle but what really was the problem was, what happened I have extremely abnormally small hands.  I swear, I can take any (unintelligible) challenge and I'm 5' 8" and I can take anyone to a challenge and mine will be smaller than yours (laughs)

It's silly, really.  But I actually could not get my hands around the pole.  And it was funny because at the time you know, Jaime -- and this was a perfect example -- Jaime's not being mean to me or blaming me, she wasn't even upsetting me, it was I was getting frustrated that I could not get my hand around the pole (laughs)

I was like 'Damn these small hands!' and it's funny because when we got back in the cab Jaime was 'I was so surprised, that's so unlike you, you know, to have struggled with that' because we're both very, very tough. 

But I said 'Jaime, my hands couldn't fit around the pole!' and she said 'Oh my god, I forgot about your freakingly small hands!' and we had a good giggle about it, small hands and oils [from seasoning the pig earlier].

But I don't think either one of us was carrying a greater burden.  I mean, we even thought at one point, we switched sides of the bamboo pole so if it looked unbalanced on camera it didn't appear unbalanced to us in person.

EDITOR'S NOTE: Jaime appears to rejoin the call

Jaime: And we knew that the proper way to do that task was to carry the pig on our shoulders, and we tried...

Cara: ...for a while

Jaime: ...that numerous times, before, you know, beginning to walk down the beach.  But we, literally, we just did not have the upper body strength to get it up there [on our shoulders].  And we tried and tried because we knew that was the proper way to do it [and] we knew it was the most efficient way to do it, but it was just unfortunate that we just did not have the physical upper body strength to lift it up there.

The highest we could lift it was to our waist and we couldn't get any higher so we said 'You know what, we're going to have to walk it' and between the greasy hands and the slippery bamboo pole it was just extremely physically challenging.

Cara: Oh yeah, my hands, Jaime could tell you, my hands...

(Unintelligible, Jaime and Cara talking simultaneously)

Jaime: ...for weeks

Cara: ..ripped open, my fingertips especially because of the way my hands fell into that pole and weren't really able to grasp it.  My fingertips, literally, each one of them had been ripped open.

Reality TV World: Given what happened to Kisha and Jennifer on last week's episode, there's been a lot of discussion about exactly what people would be willing to do for a million dollars....

Jaime: I told Cara, and she agrees, that she probably would have wet her pants!

(Jaime and Cara laugh)

Cara: I probably would have for a million dollars [but], you know, I don't fault Jennifer at all.  First of all, there was five minutes between us.  Five minutes in Race language is equivalent to five hours.  I mean so many things could have happened in just a matter of minutes that it did not come down to Jennifer going to the bathroom.

It was a combination of things.  Some people have asked if I think they underestimated how quickly I would eat those bugs, well yeah, I underestimated how quickly I would eat those critters, you know?  (laughs)

I really powered it out somehow and I think that if they had any concern about us being even remotely in the race at that point that she would have wet her pants too.  I think that there was comfort, she was really in pain and I think we can all understand how that is. 

I mean that had a long way to run to get to the mat -- it was almost impossible to find Phil.  Once you got there there were just so many people at the Bird's Nest and it was hard for us even to find him.  So I think it was a combination of so many factors and they were great, great athletes.  Great competitors. 

We even felt bad, we were so shocked.  We were sure we were out of it, I mean positive we were out of it. So when Phil said we were third we almost thought he was playing a joke on us at first, that's why we started laughing.  We didn't understand what he was saying.

We felt bad because they were so wonderful to run the race with and we've maintained a wonderful friendship with all of the Final 4 teams.  We were just with Jenn and Kisha and Tammy last week at the Kentucky Derby, just having a wonderful time, all by our own accord.

It is just the way the race goes and we all certainly understand that.

Reality TV World: Can you tell me, how did you guys end up on the show?  Who originally applied and why?

Cara: It was all Jaime.

Jaime: Yeah, I'd been a fan since the show first began.  I always wanted to be on the show, there just never was -- between college and cheering for the Dolphins and then being a police officer -- there was really never an opportunity to just take off, you know, six weeks of my life without any penalty. 

And so finally this last May when I saw that they were accepting applications I said 'You know what, it's now or never' and I said 'Who gives me the best shot at winning this race?' and without a doubt, the first person that came to mind was Cara.

So I sent her a text message at 7 o'clock in the morning (laughs)

Cara: 7AM, no lie...(laughs)

Jaime: ...saying 'Do you want to go on The Amazing Race with me, I think we could win?' And she wrote back 'Sure, what is The Amazing Race?'

(Jaime and Cara laugh)

Jaime: so she had never seen the show and I was like 'Oh, okay, well go online to ah, there's a groovy site dot com, and you can see past episodes.' And so she watched some and she just knew if it was something I would want to do, she's very competitive as well, she know it was something she would want to do. 

And after watching a few episodes she said 'Absolutely' and began doing her homework and catching up on as many seasons as she could. And we just made a one-take video at her parents' house in south Florida (Cara laughs)

[Just] one time and we were thinking 'You know what, no one is ever going to watch this video, I'm sure they get thousands of people who apply' and about a month later they called us and the rest is history.

(Photo credit CBS)


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