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HOME > The Amazing Race > The Amazing Race 22

Exclusive: Pamela Chien and Winnie Sung talk 'The Amazing Race' (Part 1)


By Elizabeth Kwiatkowski, 04/01/2013 

Pamela Chien and Winnie Sung were eliminated from The Amazing Race during Sunday night's seventh broadcast of the CBS reality competition's 22nd season.

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The "Best Friends" team became the fourth team eliminated from the around-the-world competition after they arrived at the Race's sixth Pit Stop at Royal Tree Lodge in Botswana in last place. The pair fell behind when they decided to switch Detour tasks.

In an exclusive interview with Reality TV World on Monday, Pam and Winnie talked about their The Amazing Race experience. Below is the first half of their interview. Check back with Reality TV World on Tuesday for the concluding portion.

Reality TV World: How far behind Max Bichler and Katie Bichler do you think you girls finally arrived at the Pit Stop? 

Pamela Chien: It's hard to tell exactly how much time, but I think we were actually pretty far behind. By the time we started the second go-around of horses, at that point, I think we had already lost. So, it could've been quite a lot, and then going back to the donkeys, we spent quite a bit of time just getting our donkeys to move again.

Reality TV World: Did you think you had a good shot at a non-elimination leg or did you figure that wouldn't happen because the prior leg was one?

Winnie Sung: We probably figured that this is not a non-elimination leg because the last one was, but you know, we were hoping that something was going to happen so that you're not actually eliminated from the Race.

Pamela Chien: We were hoping someone got a penalty or like, you know, something crazy happened and we miraculously slipped by.

Winnie Sung: There's always that little glimmer of hope.

Reality TV World: Did it kind of worsen the blow of your elimination knowing you left the previous Pit Stop in second place? That must've been a little frustrating.

Pamela Chien: I mean, it's not so frustrating but I'm just disappointed to know that we were kind of frontrunners for a little bit and then to end up getting eliminated the way we did.

But at this point, having gotten pretty far along in the Race, it's like we were just so happy to have been there. We went into this whole thing feeling so grateful to even be selected for this. So, it's hard to be disappointed -- or it's hard to be really disappointed -- because we were just so pleased to be there.

Reality TV World: You girls were pretty certain Bates Battaglia and Anthony Battaglia got to the Roadblock task before you, so the show showed you opting out of doing the Fast Forward task. Had you been a little more uncertain about the standings, do you think you definitely would've gone for the Fast Forward? And looking back on what the task was, how do you think you would've done?

Winnie Sung: We knew that Bates and Anthony did it because they got there first. We saw their car at the location, so we knew that there was no way that they didn't do it. If we had gotten there and we were the first ones there, like our car was the only one there, we probably would've gone for it.

But seeing how it was like a water skiing task, I don't know. We both never water skied, and I know that that requires a lot of upper-body strength, which we both don't have.

Pamela Chien: Hey, speak for yourself! (Laughs)

Winnie Sung: (Laughs) But I don't know. I don't know how we would've done. We probably would've gone for it for sure, but it looked really, really hard.

Pamela Chien: Based on the luck we were having with animals, I bet a crocodile would've come up and [taken] one of us out that way, because we had some serious bad luck with animals.

Reality TV World: How long would you say the Roadblock task take you girls to complete?

Winnie Sung: The Roadblock was pretty quick. It was like 20 minutes.

Pamela Chien: Yeah, that's about right.

Winnie Sung: Yeah.

Reality TV World: How did you determine who would do which Roadblock? Were you just alternating or was there a strategy behind it?

Pamela Chien: In the beginning, we tried to strategize and like guess based on our strengths who should do what. That didn't turn out well because I apparently thought I had good balance, but clearly, I don't. (Laughs) At that point, we just started to kind of switch off but try to gauge what the clue said it might be, you know?

Winnie Sung: So I mean, we thought switching off was probably the best way to go to, because that evened it up all the time. We were pretty even. We did three and three.

Pamela Chien: And we saw that it was like a giant stick in the water. And we were like, "No more sticks! I can't look at another one!" (Laughs)

Winnie Sung: There was this big, long stick. (Laughs)

Reality TV World: Why did you originally decide on the "Brawn" Detour task instead of "Brains?" It seemed like an odd choice considering you girls pride yourselves on your memory skills. "Brains" just seemed like the obvious way to go for you two.

Winnie Sung: I mean, we knew that we were like good at memory stuff, we didn't think that we were like complete utter weaklings. So it's like "Brawn" didn't scare us, because we knew that "Brawn" was probably going to be a lot quicker.

Because it's not like we were like, "Oh my God, we're only going to do memory stuff from here on out." But yeah, we were just stronger in our memory stuff, but we were still thinking strategically that "Brawn" was going to be much quicker, and it didn't look too difficult.

Reality TV World: So how long do you think you spent attempting the "Brawn" task before you decided to switch?

Winnie Sung: We were probably there for a good 20 minutes trying to get the donkeys to move after we had loaded up our cart. So they just looked like they were not going to budge. That's when we decided to switch Detours.

Reality TV World: The show showed you girls making a couple attempts to line up the animals properly for the "Brains" task? How many tries did it take you and what did you find difficult about that specific type of memory challenge?

Pamela Chien: We didn't have a problem with the memory. The problem was we completely missed a cutout. So we didn't even see one of them, so we were going to be wrong every single time.

Reality TV World: So how long did that "Brains" task end up taking you then? Any idea?

Pamela Chien: The "Brains" task probably took -- well the first time around on the horses, it was like an hour, and the second time, it was maybe like 40 minutes.

That Detour was definitely a lot longer, and we got thrown off too because the last cutout was two animals -- it was a bird on a hippo. And then we mistaken the rhino for hippos, so we thought for sure that was 10 animals, 10 species. But all along, we just completely missed an entire animal cutout.

Reality TV World: When David O'Leary and Connor O'Leary told you girls they needed to remove themselves from the Race earlier this season due to Dave's ankle injury, you decided to keep that a secret from the other teams in the hope of slowing them down because they might've assumed Dave and Connor were behind them. Now that you've been watching the season unfold on TV, do you think that strategy worked at all?

Pamela Chien: We didn't really think of it as a strategy. It was just like, "Why share information? That's not necessary to do. I think maybe we should just keep it a secret." Especially at that point for us too, there were quite a few teams left, we'd do anything to kind of alleviate the pressure and stress of all the teams practically.

Winnie Sung: And how sweet would it be to see someone U-Turn Dave and Connor? (Laughs)

Above is the first half of our exclusive interview with Pam and Winnie. Check back with Reality TV World on Tuesday for the concluding portion.

(Photo credit CBS)


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