Exclusive: 'The Amazing Race' "Newlyweds" Zach King and Rachel King talk (Part 2)
By Elizabeth Kwiatkowski, 04/29/2016
The Amazing Race eliminated "Newlyweds" Zach King and Rachel King during the most recent broadcast of the CBS reality competition's 28th season.
Zach and Rachel became the sixth team eliminated from the around-the-world competition after they arrived at the Race's ninth Pit Stop at a sailing boat called Phinisi in Bali, Indonesia, in last place.
The team struggled when Rachel opted to take on a Roadblock task that was very physically draining. She was the only girl to attempt the task.
During an exclusive interview with Reality TV World on Monday, Zach and Rachel talked about their The Amazing Race experience. Below is the concluding portion. Click here to read the first half.
Reality TV World: Which team would've been your perfect target for a U-Turn had you gotten the chance or needed to save yourselves?
Zach King: Our target for the U-Turn, we knew the "Roosters" [Ashley Jenkins and Burnie Burns] were a really strong team. They have slowly been staying in second place the last couple of legs. And so, we were keeping a close eye on them.
Obviously [Kurt Gibson and Brodie Smith] are very, very strong. But we did know that Brodie had to do the rest of the Roadblocks... so probably the "Roosters." And [Tyler Oakley and Korey Kuhl] would be up on our list too. We love them in real life, but you know, it is a game and they're very, very smart players.
And, you know, especially Korey. He knows the Race so well and is good at strategy. So, even hearing them talk, we were like, "We need to keep an eye on them, because we think they are going to make it to the end."
Reality TV World: Would you say you had an allies during the Race?
Zach King: And I think this last episode was the first one when we really noticed people weren't helping each other. We weren't saying, "Oh, it's over here," or, "This is what you need to do."
There was absolutely no helping. It was kind of a switching episode where we all realized like, "It's getting real and we need to focus on our own game now, because all these teams could potentially win the money or make it to the end."
So we wanted to be strategic, and up to this point, we had been helping each other. But the allies, kind of, information sharing went down, and it was your own game.
Reality TV World: How do you feel about Sheri LaBrant and Cole LaBrant. I remember Cole made some comment worried people might not think he and his mother would deserve to win since they got saved twice. He at least figured Racers would be annoyed about their multiple second-chances. Say if they did make it to the Final 3 or even won it all, what would be your perspective?
Rachel King: Well, I can tell you that when we found out they were saved again in Dubai, there was definitely a little bit of frustration, because you know, you want teams to start going away and not staying. But I think Zach and I both would agree that this is a game and there's a lot of luck involved.
We were unlucky because I did that [salt] Roadblock without knowing what it was, and I think they got some good luck being saved twice. It's not really a situation where you can be mad at them for that. It's just how their game played out. I know being in the Race, there was definitely frustration that they stayed, but this is how the game goes.
Reality TV World: When you two left the Race, was there a particular team you were rooting for to win?
Rachel King: I don't think there was a particular team. I mean, we really liked everybody, which you don't see I think in a lot of seasons. We actually enjoyed being with the other teams, and like Zach said, it definitely got competitive and everyone was playing their own game, but outside of the game, we really did like everyone. I think we even talked about, like, after we left, we'd be happy to see anybody win this thing.
Zach King: Yeah, there were a few teams like, we knew our biggest threat were the "Roosters" and Brodie. So, secretly, I think we were rooting for, compared to them, some of the underdogs, like Tyler and Korey, [Dana Borriello and Matt Steffanina]. And of course, we were rooting for Sheri and Cole because I honestly had no idea that they would make it this far when we first saw them on the first day.
We were kind of like, "Okay, 'Mother and Son' team, they're probably not going to make it." They were one of the first teams in our minds that we crossed out. The fact that they made it this far, I think we were secretly like, "Go Sheri and Cole!"
Reality TV World: If you were to race again, what might you do differently or how could you better prepare based on the experiences you had?
Zach King: Well, I think we were spot-on for packing. Our bags weren't too heavy. But I think one of the main things we could practice or be really conscious of is taking our time, slowing down, and going over all the clues and details -- not being in a rush, and before we even run off into a taxi cab, figure out what it is and where we are going.
And then focus on the details because we were missing, you know, we were kind of sloppy with a few small details, which made a big difference later down the road. And so, I think that's what I would have done.
Rachel King: Yeah, I think the only other thing would've been to train physically a little bit more. I think, you know, having watched the season a lot, Zach and I knew there was a physical level.
But we also focused more on like, "Oh there's a mental level and an adrenaline level with whether you can get over your fears or not." But there's definitely a physical level, even more than we imagined. I would've trained physically more. (Laughs) That way maybe I would've spread the water faster [in the Roadblock].
Reality TV World: Rachel, I think it's safe to say the toughest part for you in the Race was that salt Roadblock task. Zach, what would you consider the biggest obstacle you overcame or the hardest thing you had to do?
Zach King: I think the toughest thing, well, one of them, was the snake. I really, really hate snakes. So it was ironic that was in the last episode. And I think for me, another challenge was dancing. Just every challenge became harder when you're under pressure.
From watching it, it just looked so easy, but when you're really there experiencing it, the stress really makes it, like, probably four or five times harder than it really should be. And when you're doing memory and dancing and you're hot and sweaty, wearing a wig in Georgia, that was a tough one for me!
Rachel King: Also, the longer you stay in the Race, the more exhausted you are. So, some of these challenges -- just toward the end -- I feel would've been a lot easier had they been in the first couple of legs, just because your body is so tired at that point.
Reality TV World: I know you mentioned wanting to adopt children. Has there been any progress at all? And how is your relationship going now, any updates on anything?
Rachel King: Yeah! We always knew that [adopting] was a goal of ours in how we wanted to build our family. There's still definitely hope of international adoption, but probably more in the future. We're actually starting to foster, so we're going to start doing that process in the next coming year. It's a way to help kids and maybe even grow our family depending on the situations we come across.
Reality TV World: How were you cast on The Amazing Race? Were you fans of the show and actually applied, or were contacted by producers because of your social media presence?
Zach King: Yeah, we were contacted for social media because it was the theme, but it was a very generic email. So, we still went through the whole process and applied after that and made a video and went through the process. But I got the email, and I think that was one of the few emails that I got. I called Rachel right after and was like, "We got asked about casting for The Amazing Race. We have to do this!"
Rachel King: We were both fans with our families, like, we both remember growing up with our families completely separate (laughs) watching seasons. For both of our families, that was one of the main shows [we watched]. So it was kind of a no-brainer when we got asked to do it. We had talked to our families about doing the Race not knowing it was potentially right in front of us. So, we jumped on the opportunity to apply.