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Exclusive: 'The Amazing Race's Timothy Sweeney and Marie "Reebs" Mazzocchi talk (Part 2)


By Elizabeth Kwiatkowski, 12/12/2013 

The Amazing Race "Exes" team of Timothy Sweeney and Marie "Reebs" Mazzocchi finished in second place during Sunday night's broadcast of the CBS reality competition's two-hour finale.
 
"Dating Couple" Jason Case and Amy Diaz team was the first team to cross the 23rd season of The Amazing Race's finish line in Juneau, Alaska, claiming the $1 million grand prize. "Married ER Doctors" Nicole Jasper and Travis Jasper claimed third place, and "Cousins" Leo Temory and Jamal Zadran were the fourth-place team.

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In an exclusive interview with Reality TV World on Monday, Tim and Marie talked about their The Amazing Race experience and finishing as the runner-up team.
 
Below is the concluding portion of Tim and Marie's interview. Click here to read the first half.  

Reality TV World: Wen I talked to Allison "Ally" Mello and Ashley Covert, they mentioned they thought some of the teams were phony -- they'd be different people in front of the camera and off-camera. Would you agree with that? Did you get a sense that was going on?

Marie "Reebs" Mazzocchi: Yeah, with some of the teams, the doctors and Jay and Amy a little bit, you know, they were kind of upholding this, "We want to be respected. We want a clean race. We're super nice to everyone. We want to make friends" type of thing. But it was all just kind of smiles and stuff in front of the camera and with each other.

And then the second they weren't with each other, it was a plan to take the other team down. So I get that. We don't want to hate on them for that. We understand that there was an image they wanted to uphold, but for us, being straight-forward and being honest kind of, I don't know, that's more important to us than kind of how we look on-camera or what people think about us.

And I think you kind of saw during stress with Travis and Nicole, they had this whole "holier than thou" type of persona, and when they got stressed, that's when things got a little crazy.

You saw that break and you saw the real side of Travis come out. I think that's a little more embarrassing than being a bitch from the get-go. You may not like who we are, but we were 100% real. We are who we are right from the start, and we're proud of that.

Reality TV World: When Nicole tried to copy Leo's octave instrument earlier in the season, do you consider that being the Nicole that's off-camera, I guess?

Marie "Reebs" Mazzocchi: I think at that point she was just totally frazzled and desperate and was just trying to get out of there. I don't think she was really thinking that she wanted to be sneaky, and you know, they said they weren't going to cheat and now they're cheating.

Nicole was who she was the whole time. I think the edit that they got and the way that they were portrayed from the beginning was a little more Travis that was a little more fake.

You didn't get to see a whole lot of Nicole, but she was pretty consistent the whole time, and we still have respect for Nicole. She was a great Racer and she is a great person. But as the Race went on, we were a little shocked to see the real Travis come out.

Reality TV World: In a previous leg, you guys had some hard feelings towards Nicole "Nicky" Getz and Kim DeJesus because of that time they seemed to skip you two in the standby line when getting tickets for a flight. However, they got their tickets in the executive lounge prior to that moment. When you watched the season back did that surprise you, and if you had known that was the case, would you have still U-Turned them when you had the chance?

Marie "Reebs" Mazzocchi: We U-Turned them for other reasons. We did make the comment at the U-Turn board [about standby], but that actually wasn't the case for us. We weren't mad at them for getting on the standby list. We understand why they did it. However, in the episode before that, we had kind of made a pact with them that we were going to be an alliance.

So we were a little upset, like, "Hey, if you guys went to a VIP lounge, why didn't you tell us you did that? Maybe we would've knocked Nicole and Travis off the flight." We were just mad that they kept the information from us, and to be honest, when we got to that U-Turn board, it was just to give ourselves a cushion.

You don't get to see a lot of the traveling, and even going from the fort to the Wadi Adventure, that was an hour-and-a-half ride where we all got lost multiple times. So just because we were ahead of them at the Detour, it didn't mean that we were safe.

And we did see that the Afghanimals got U-Turned, and we thought strategically, "Let's save the Afghanimals because we can align with them against the doctors. And to be honest, let's just put the Bunnies out of their misery." It was like three strikes. [Nicky and Kim] just kept getting lucky, and we love them, but they did not deserve to race anymore. (Laughs)

Reality TV World: You got to the location of the "Call it Up" phone booth Detour task and decided to get back in your taxi and go to the Japanese game show. Jason and Amy said they didn't understand why you'd risk more driving and getting lost when you could've just done the a Detour right then and there. So what happened there exactly, why did you decide to leave?

Timothy Sweeney: Well we knew -- we got back to the cab. I wasn't sure why they weren't -- we all had decided to go to the bowling, to the game show. And they sort of got out and they just started walking. What people didn't know is that we accidentally ended up in that park. That was not intentional. Jay and Amy and Travis and Nicole realized they were there, but we accidentally ended up there.

We knew by talking to people locally that the other challenge was only about two minutes down the road, and we know how long Detours take. Detours take anywhere between an hour to an hour-and-a-half. So sometimes it's about picking the right Detour and not just going with the one that...

Marie "Reebs" Mazzocchi: Two other teams got to first.

Timothy Sweeney: So we made the decision that we wanted to go to the bowling and we felt we'd be best at it and we stuck with it.

Marie "Reebs" Mazzocchi: To be honest, we knew that we made it this far in the Race. We didn't know where the Afghanimals were. We knew that the clue said, "The first two teams to get to the phone would be able to go."

So even if we did go there, we would've had to sit and wait until they were done. So we didn't want to risk being in fourth place just because we were already there. We knew the bowling was two minutes away, and even if we were about to go home, we wanted to do the Japanese game show.

Timothy Sweeney: Yeah.

Marie "Reebs" Mazzocchi: We wanted to have fun. We wanted to go out having fun. And, you know, it was a risk, but we're glad we picked it. Because if we didn't, we would've been waiting in line to get to the phone booth, and we definitely would've been farther behind.

Timothy Sweeney: We still have our kimono and our bow from the game show. Yes, it's special.

Reality TV World: (Laughs) Well there you go! The show's producers have said this was the most draining and physically, mentally and exhausting final leg in the history of the show and they had intentionally designed it to drain every last bit of confidence you had -- which seems a little intense. Did you actually feel that way? Did you think the producers succeeded in pulling that off?

Timothy Sweeney: There was a lot of physical activity! I mean, listen, Marie and I were the physically strongest and athletic team there, and rowing the boat and rappelling down and sliding up the ice, it was pretty grueling. And the totem poles at the end were unbelievably difficult.

Marie "Reebs" Mazzocchi: We thought there was a little bit more competition in it. It was a little more matched up. Had we actually been side by side racing up a glacier, or had we actually been side by side in the water kayaking, then for us, that would've been a chance for us to kind of excel and really push forward as far as choosing our athletic strengths.

But when we got to that finish line, when we read the clue and it said, "Proceed to the Pit Stop," we kind of looked at each other like, "What?! It's over?" I can understand how it looked so grueling on TV and how doing all those tasks was so draining.

But for us, we were just hoping and praying that there was something else that was harder, more challenging, more grueling coming up, because we knew that that would be where we could kind of catch up. And unfortunately, that never happened. So for us, to be honest, the whole Alaska thing wasn't that bad.

Reality TV World: Marie, what made you assume from the very beginning that you could split the prize money 60/40? I know a lot of shows have very strict rules about how the prize money must be handled.

Marie "Reebs" Mazzocchi: Well when we applied for the Race in the beginning, from the second we applied until we actually left [for the Race], there was about eight months of different things that you had to do -- all kinds of paperwork that you have to fill out, appointments you have to go, videos that you have to make and submit, doctor appointments.

There's all that stuff that goes into preparing for the Race, driver's licenses and things like that that you have to get, and I did all that. I did every single thing, including making Tim -- who was kicking and screaming -- go to the doctor's appointments. It was really frustrating and we got in a lot of fights in the process with me telling him, "You have to come here. You have to do this at this time."

And he just didn't do it, and I got so frustrated that I said to him, "I did all of the leg work to get us on this race and if you're not going to help out, I don't want to do it anymore." I said, "I feel like I'm the one who got us here, so if we're going to continue to do this, then whatever we win is 60/40."

And that wasn't necessarily for the million. Because honestly, if we won the million, we would split it down the middle. It was if we don't win the million and we end up with a substantially smaller amount of money, I don't want to feel like I wasted that nine months doing all this work for nothing.

Because Tim just kind of hung out, he was along for the ride, and he just showed up at the Race. He did awesome on the Detours and the Roadblocks and everything, but he had never watched the show.

He didn't prepare for it in any way. I basically packed his bags and he knew that. It wasn't a mean, spiteful thing in that I said, "Oh, I'm going to take half the money." It was this agreement that in preparation, I did take on at least 60% of what we had to do to get there, and it was fair. If he didn't think it was fair, he wouldn't have agreed to it.

Above is the concluding portion of Tim and Marie's exclusive interview with Reality TV World. Click here to read the first half. Also, check our The Amazing Race show page for more interviews with the Final 4 teams.   



(Photo credit CBS)


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