The "Twin Brothers and Firefighters" became the sixth team eliminated from the around-the-world competition after arriving at the seventh leg's Pit Stop in Harare, Zimbabwe, in last place.
Eric and Daniel admitted their demise in the Race was singing and dancing, as not having rhythm led to having the blues.
During an exclusive interview with Reality TV World on Thursday, Eric talked about his The Amazing Race experience. (His brother, Daniel, unfortunately could not participate in the phone call because he currently has military duties).
Below is the first half of what Eric had to say.
Reality TV World: How many minutes after Jessica Graf and Cody Nickson did you finally arrive at the Pit Stop when you got eliminated? How close was it?
Eric Guiffreda: It was super close. Because we were going back and forth on the singing deal, and as soon as they got it, we got up there. And however long the song is, you know, it was probably six minutes.
From the finish of the song, it was probably a couple of minutes, and then to run there [to the Pit Stop], so I'd say probably five to 10 minutes max.
It was just a matter of, we knew whomever [the band] said did it right was going to be the one that got it and the one who didn't was definitely going home. So, we knew it was happening before we got there.
Reality TV World: I want to talk about that singing task. Do you have any idea how far ahead of Jessica and Cody you arrived at the task in the gardens?
Eric Guiffreda: I'm not exactly sure. It's kind of foggy. I know we got there a decent amount of time [ahead of them], plenty enough that we should have got it, you know? But I think I did us in when I told Daniel that I thought it was going to be more about the language.
And so I said, "Before we even try it the first time, we need to try to have it all down," you know?
And so instead of getting in the mix and getting a feel for it, we spent way too much time trying to learn the words instead of just going in there and getting it done. Because once it started, we were like, "Okay, now we see what they want." And it was too late for that.
Reality TV World: Okay, that answers my next question. Because I didn't understand how you left the final task in last place when you arrived at the gardens in fourth place and it only took three attempts for your team to sing the song correctly -- which was the same number of attempts it took Jessica and Cody to receive their next clue.
Eric Guiffreda: Yeah, in hindsight of course, you know, but we were there for quite a while. Because you'll notice all the teams going three or four times before we even did our first one, and we were just trying to get the hang of it first instead of just going onstage like we should have. And that's what the delay was. It was just a bad assumption.
Reality TV World: Would you say you were there for hours? How long do you think you were at the singing task in total?
Eric Guiffreda: I don't think it was hours, but the Race has a way of making time not exist anymore. (Laughs)
So, we were just so focused on getting things done, it's really hard to say. At least an hour! For sure. Because there were so many teams and they had time to go three or four times, so we had to be there an hour-and-a-half or more, and probably even longer than that.
Reality TV World: As we saw in last night's episode, Lucas Bocanegra and Brittany Austin, as well as Alex Rossi and Conor Daly, both chose to take advantage of the U-Turn even though it wasn't necessary for them to survive. So if you arrived at the Double U-Turn board in first place, would you have U-Turned a team? If so, which one?
Eric Guiffreda: We were really trying to stay away from it. If we were in first or second and had known there was a singing task, we would've absolutely had to have done it, and it just would've depended on who was behind us.
We didn't have any bad blood between us and any of the other teams. We all got along great. People ask us a lot about Jessica and Cody: "How were they? And were they awful?" And not to us! We can only speak on our relationship with them, but through everything, we got along great.
So we didn't have a particular team we were aiming for at that time. It just really depends on your position and who you need to take out. So to answer your question, no, we weren't really aiming to do that if we didn't have to.
Reality TV World: When Jessica and Cody have been in trouble, Jessica has been shown doing sneaky things to get ahead, like leaving Brittany's gnome on the floor. Big Brother also U-Turned Trevor Wadleigh and Chris Marchant, sending them out the door.
But as we saw last night, Jessica got angry at Evan and Brittany for doing similar things to her. Do you think Jessica was being a little hypocritical or do you think her frustrations were justified?
Eric Guiffreda: All I'll say with those is that I'll let everyone make their own judgments on that. But we got along good and I don't want to say anything that could be misconstrued or taken the wrong way, but I think everybody did what they had to do.
Of course things could have been handled differently, especially in this last episode that wouldn't have been taken so harsh, you know?
Reality TV World: So it sounds like you think, for the most part, U-Turn decisions in this last leg were strategic rather than personal?
Eric Guiffreda: The teams that were U-Turned were both strong teams, and I know Lucas and Brittany and Jessica and Cody -- mainly the two girls, I would say -- might've had a little friction between them, of course.
So that possibly could have played a role, but I think putting all that aside, they were a strong team, and they had to do what they had to do.
And we talked about it a lot and I even told those teams, "I'll help you whenever we possibly can, but when it comes down to it, if it's between us two, we're just going to have to go off on our own and get it done." If we're U-Turned or we get on the bottom and we have to U-Turn, it's just part of the game.
If we would've gotten U-Turned, I wouldn't have thought twice about it in a negative way. I mean, I told them it's like playing Monopoly and passing go, I mean, it's just part of what you have to do in some parts of the game. It's not a personal thing and it shouldn't be taken that way.
Eric Guiffreda: Yeah, that was a little surprising because, to me, Kristi and Jen were the strongest team in the Race from beginning to end, as long as we raced with them. They were very consistent, they minimized their mistakes, and they got it done consistently time after time after time.
You know, they played every part of the game, mental and physical, and they got along with everybody.
They just got it done, and I always thought they were the biggest threat as far as a team goes. We got along with them too, but as far as a threat, they were definitely the team you needed to look out for, because their history showed it on that Race!
Reality TV World: What did you think of the "Partner Swap" twist? Did you learn anything about yourself or your brother from working with other teammates?
Eric Guiffreda: We actually loved it! We got along great with Henry and Evan. Actually the whole train ride from when we got to Harare to the wildlife [conservancy], Henry and Evan taught me how to play a new card game.
We played cards the whole way there, and we've always talked at all the airports and got along great. Evan actually, when we were leaving Prague to go to Africa, Daniel left our money back in a store in the airport, and five minutes later -- it was all our money and everything -- and Evan walked up to us and said, "I think this is yours."
So she didn't have to do that. That showed their integrity and who they were, and we really appreciated them even more after that.
Reality TV World: Jessica made a comment that Evan was never really "a team player" during the Race, but it sounds like she was at times then.
Eric Guiffreda: Oh yeah, absolutely. Her and Daniel worked together in Prague. I think me and Henry ran a lot in Morocco, although they didn't show it.
Throughout the whole time, we'd help each other when it was mutually beneficial for everybody, and they were more than willing to help when they could... [Evan and Henry Zhang] were definitely team players. They might've thrown one example out, and it wasn't even valid.