Mel and Mike White the sixth team ousted from 'The Amazing Race'
By John Bracchitta, 03/30/2009
The "Father and Son" team of Mel White, a 68-year-old writer/clergyman from Lynchberg, VA, and Mike White, a 28-year-old writer, producer and actor from Santa Monica, CA, became the sixth team eliminated from The Amazing Race 14 during last night's broadcast on CBS.
"I had aches and pains an groans and groins, but I was pretty good and loved it when my son thought so too," Mel said following his ouster.
"We've been father and son my whole life, but I don't ever really think we've been teammates, and being teammates brings a whole different kind of camaraderie than you get in normal life, so that was a great gift that the Race gave us," added Mike.
The Amazing Race 14's seventh episode began with the six remaining teams departing from the Jaigar Fort, a 15th century fortress in Jaipur, India that had served as the Pit Stop for the Race's sixth Pit Stop.
Following the mandatory rest period, the "Sibling Lawyers" team of Tammy Jih, a 26-year-old lawyer from San Francisco, CA, and Victor Jih, a 35-year-old lawyer from Los Angeles, CA, were the first team to depart at 10:21AM. As they left the Pit Stop, they received a clue that instructed them to fly 2,000 miles to Phuket, Thailand. Once there, they would have to use a picture of an monkey statue provided to them to determine that their next clue was located at the Phuket Zoo.
They were followed by the teams of Mel and Mike, who left at 10:50AM; "Sisters" Jennifer Hoffman, a 24-year-old marketing assistant from Louisville, KY, and LaKisha Hoffman, a 28-year-old program coordinator from Bronx, NY, who left at 11:02AM; "Mother and Son" Margie Adams, a 51-year-old clinical research associate from Denver, CO, and Luke Adams, a 23-year-old college graduate from Denver, CO, at 11:03AM; "Former NFL Cheerleaders" Cara Rosenthal, a 26-year-old law student from Boca Raton, FL, and Jaime Edmondson, a 29-year-old former police officer from Ft. Lauderdale, FL, at 11:04AM; and "Brothers/Stuntmen" Mark Munoz, a 48-year-old stuntman/jockey from Los Angeles, CA, and Michael Munoz, a 51-year-old stuntman/actor from Maui, HI, at 11:11AM.
All six teams eventually reconvened at the airport where they learned that the earliest flight to Phuket would not be touching down in Thailand until 8:30AM the following morning.
After waiting and eventually boarding their flight together, all six teams landed in Phuket and quickly ran to grab cabs as they also attempted to discover where the monkey statue was located.
Mark and Michael were the first to jump into a cab and figure out that the statue was located at the Phuket Zoo. They were followed by the teams of Jaime and Kara, Margie and Luke, Jen and Kisha and Tammy and Victor.
However, Mel and Mike fell behind after they were unable to initially find a cab. To make matters worse, upon finding a cab and leaving the airport in last place, Mel and Mike were told incorrectly where the monkey statue was located and headed to a beach instead.
The first five teams all arrived at the Phuket Zoo in tandem and began searching its grounds for the statue in order to receive their next clue with little initial success. However, Jaime and Cara eventually became the first team to find their statue.
Once at the statue, the teams received a clue which told them they had to complete a Roadblock task that required both their team members to first travel to the zoo's tiger station and take a picture with a large tiger. Then, after the tiger picture, the teams would have to find an elephant and take part in a traditional Thai ceremony in which they would lie on the ground as an elephant stepped over each of them, lightly touched on of them on the back with one of its feet and then squatted over the other team member.
Upon completing the ceremony, the team would travel back to tiger station where they would receive their next clue.
However, upon seeing Jaime and Cara find the clue, Mark and Michael grabbed the clue second and raced ahead to become the first team to make it to the tiger station. Despite their initial nerves of taking the picture with the tiger as its handler -- who was missing an arm -- looked on, Mark and Michael completed both parts of the challenge first and received their next clue which instructed them to travel to the Nguan Chon Ton herb shoppe in an old nearby Phuket town. Once at the shop, they would have to ask the storekeeper to search through 99 herb drawers until they found their next clue.
Mark and Michael were followed by Jaime and Cara, Jen and Kisha, Tammy and Victor, and Luke and Margie.
Mel and Mike eventually found their way to the zoo in last place after initially arriving at the beach area and being unable to find the monkey statue and then compounding their error by initially dismissing a local resident's suggestion that the statue was actually at the zoo.
"Nobody knows where the ape is, he's probably on top of the Empire State Building," Mel said as they tried to figure out the right directions.
Mark and Michael were the first team to arrive at the herb shoppe and began looking for the clue in the drawers in what turned out to be an exhausting search for all of the teams. However, they were able to maintain their lead and be the first to find their next clue: a Detour asking them to decide between "100 Barrels" or "2 Miles."
"100 Barrels" required the teams to make their way to a new nearby harbor and prepare fishing ship by filling 47 barrels with drinking water while also moving 53 empty barrels to the top of the boat before receiving their next clue.
"2 Miles" required the teams to pick up a rickshaw, pump up its tires if needed, and then switch off as one team member pulled the rickshaw two miles to a temple where the next clue was located while the other team member sat in the rickshaw and relaxed.
While Mark and Michael chose "2 Miles," the teams of Kisha and Jen and Margie and Luke -- who found the clue at the herb shoppe in second and third place respectively -- chose "100 Barrels." Tammy and Victor found the clue in fourth place and chose "2 Miles," while Jaime and Kara chose "100 Barrels" in fifth place. After arriving after the other teams, Mel and Mike found their clue last and chose "100 Barrels."
Upon arriving to pick up their rickshaw, Mark and Michael committed their first of two costly errors when, in an attempt to slow the other teams down, one of them tangled all of the air pumps together in a box. They then employed the help of their cab to lead them to the temple they needed to get to although the directions specifically stated that they had to find their way on their own.
With the help of the cab, Mark and Michael had no trouble making it to the temple in quick time and were the first team to receive their next clue that instructed them to travel to the Tim Wat Theo Nimit Temple, the Pit Stop for the race's seventh leg. They received an additional buffer zone between them and the other teams after Margie and Luke and Jaime and Cara both decided to switch Detour challenges after their cabbie traveled to the wrong location while Kisha and Jen, who also were led to the wrong location, decided to press on with the "100 Barrels" challenge.
Upon arriving at the temple and meeting with The Amazing Race host Phil Keoghan, Mark and Michael were disappointed o learn that despite being the first team to arrive at the Pit Stop they would be assessed two 30 minute penalties for tampering with the air pumps and using the cab for directions during their Detour challenge.
"That's crazy, that' a bummer," said Mark after learning of the penalties his team had incurred.
Each of the other teams seemed to struggle with their respective Detour challenges, with Kisha and Jen not remembering to simultaneously fill their barrels as they moved them to the top of the ship and Margie being unable to make contact with Luke when he was pulling the rickshaw and needing to do it herself and tiring herself to the point where she felt dizzy and could not feel the tips of her fingers.
Tammy and Victor were the second team to finish the Detour challenge and head to the Pit Stop. However because they arrived before Mark and Michael's hour-long penalty had worn off, Phil revealed to them that they had in fact won the leg.
Jaime and Cara followed them in second place, arriving at the Pit Stop with one minute to spare on Mark and Michael's penalty. Following their penalty, a dejected Mark and Michael officially ended their leg in third place.
Margie and Luke followed in fourth place. However the team suffered from a frightening moment when, immediately following their check-in, Margie passed out and had to be held up by Luke and Phil as she was attended to by paramedics and given fluids in the shade until she regained her consciousness.
Both Kisha and Jen and Mel and Mike had trouble with their "100 Barrels" challenge, but Kisha and Jen were able to finish it first and head to the Pit Stop to finish in fifth place. Upon arriving in sixth place, Mel and Mike were informed by Phil that they had been eliminated from the race.
The next episode of The Amazing Race will air Sunday, March 5 at 8PM ET/PT on CBS.
(Photo credit CBS)
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