The "Competitive Eaters and Friends" team became the fourth team eliminated from the around-the-world competition after arriving at the fifth leg's Pit Stop at Hotel Benvengudo in Les Baux, France in last place.
"It's sad. We really love racing this, but I'm happy me and Tim competed. I'm happy he's my partner," Joey said following his team's ouster. "There were things I couldn't have done that Tim did during the Race, and we succeeded together and we fell together."
Tim added, "It was a tremendous privilege to get to do this, but I think we left so much undone that I don't know when I can let go of the feeling of missing out because of our own failures."
During a recent exclusive interview with Reality TV World, Joey talked about his The Amazing Race experience. (Tim was unavailable). Below is what Joey had to say.
Reality TV World: How far behind Trevor Wadleigh and Chris Marchant did you finally arrive at the Pit Stop when you got eliminated? Any idea what the time gap was between you?
Reality TV World: Trevor and Chris seemed to think they were in last place arriving at the Pit Stop, so I'm assuming you two felt the same way? Did you have any hope another team was behind you?
Joey Chestnut: We had a pretty good idea. When we were driving, we knew that we were behind. We knew it just took way too long to solve the puzzle.
Reality TV World: You said in your final words that Tim accomplished things during the Race that you could never have done yourself. What were you referring to there, anything specific?
Joey Chestnut: It didn't show too much in the first episode, but he solved that first puzzle ridiculously fast. And I know I couldn't have done that... Also, he talks to people really well. He's really good with directions and, yeah, he was a really good teammate.
Reality TV World: From a viewer's perspective, your downfall in this leg was your decision to pass on the bull "Detour" task and keep driving to find the painting one. Did you get lost on your way to the painting task? Because it seemed like it took you a while to get there.
Joey Chestnut: It did. Yeah, we got lost going to the painting task and it was -- it seemed with the two Detours, one was definitely closer and one was definitely faster. One task is always faster or closer than the other one. We were the only team who chose that Detour, the painting task, and yeah, it was our downfall. But it was close.
Reality TV World: So looking back, do you regret not doing the bull task instead?
Joey Chestnut: Yeah, especially because we were driving really good that day and we would've found the bull arena easier... The puzzle was definitely a harder thing to find than the bull arena... It was partly about running.
We knew that there were only so many flags in the bull arena [for all of the other teams to find]... so we knew there would be more running around and more searching.
And we both knew that I'm not that good of a runner. So we thought we could do the puzzle a lot faster than running around the arena. But there were plenty of flags!
Reality TV World: So how long did it take you to actually unlock the painting?
Joey Chestnut: Oh that puzzle, we didn't know what the hell we were doing! We solved it about 10 times but we just didn't know to pull that stupid bar at the top.
We were expecting something to happen and didn't know that pulling the bolt out at the top was [the solution]. It took about 30 minutes. It took way too long. We didn't understand. We thought we were -- and we were -- doing it right, but we just needed to pull [the bolt]. It was a dumb puzzle. (Laughs)
Reality TV World: In the latest episode, Alex failed to read his whole clue properly and therefore picked up only half of the next clue when sailing around on his dinghy. Did you guys experience anything similar to that or would you say attention to detail was a strength of yours?
Joey Chestnut: I think sometimes we looked too much into detail! It was kind of a strength, but even when we were building the sandals, we tried to do it in an exact order as demonstrated.
We watched the demonstration a lot longer than the other teams, I think. While we didn't really lose any ground, we didn't gain any ground either... We did a pretty good job paying attention to detail, but it might have actually slowed us down.
Reality TV World: As you saw in the preview following last night's episode, there's going to be a U-Turn next week. If you guys got to the U-Turn board in first place, which team do you think you would have targeted and why?
Joey Chestnut: We wouldn't have targeted anybody, but we would have most likely chosen the last-place team just to make sure they'd be even farther in last place. Because it's all part of the game. You just have to make sure you don't end up in last place at the end of a leg... If you are in last place, you're a target and most likely to be U-Turned.
Reality TV World: Did you view a particular team as your biggest competition?
Joey Chestnut: The professional skiers [Kristi Leskinen and Jen Hudak] were super competitive and smart and fast, and you could just tell by talking to them. Like, Alex and Conor, yeah, they're competitive, but it didn't seem they were as serious as the skiiers.
And Big Brother [Cody Nickson] was serious. Cody and [Jessica Graf] were clearly very serious, but they didn't seem, at the time, to be the competitive team. The skiers were definitely the strongest.
Reality TV World: What are your thoughts on the new Head-to-Head Competition. Would you like to see it in future seasons or do you think it's unfair how it determines a leg's finishing order?
Joey Chestnut: At first I thought it was really unfair, [but The Amazing Race] is kind of a game of chance all the way through. It's kind of a neat dynamic.
I wasn't really a fan of the [French fry] race because it really turned into just a purely physical thing... one team member just had to be faster than another team member, and it took some of the excitement out of it.
But the Bocce Ball one, nobody is a Bocce Ball aficionado. We all had to learn the game and play fair, so that was a different kind of Head-to-Head, and it was a little more exciting.
Reality TV World: What was your reaction when you heard that Lucas Bocanegra and Brittany Austin got engaged during the leg? Did you get to know the couple at all?
Joey Chestnut: [Brittany] is really a sweetheart, and she and Lucas are really nice people. Brittany, I was super happy for her. They are awesome people. They really want to help others and they are really good people.
Reality TV World: As far as you know, did Lucas share with anyone the fact he was running around the world with an engagement ring in his pocket?
Joey Chestnut: He didn't share it with me! But I think he shared it with producers.
Reality TV World: Did your team consider anyone an ally, or were you hoping to join forces and work with a team in particular down the road had you stayed in the Race?
Joey Chestnut: In Morocco, we hung out with Conor and Alex... I feel like we could've gotten along with anybody. Everyone was pretty nice to us.
Reality TV World: How did you end up on this season of The Amazing Race? Was it your first time applying?
Joey Chestnut: I applied a long time ago and then they reached out to me several times, and this time, it was in October, I was able to clear my schedule.
And they asked me who I wanted to invite -- who my partner would be -- and I was like, [it has to be] Tim! He's really smart and we get along pretty well. He has no problem with holding back; we're not worried about being nice to each other. We just worried about the tasks.
Reality TV World: Would you two race again together, if given the opportunity?
Joey Chestnut: Absolutely. I mean, we would change some things. It was made clear that I'm not in nearly as good of shape as I thought I was. (Laughs) I would take up running a little bit more! If we ever made it back, I would definitely be in better shape, and I think Tim would learn how to read maps a little bit better.