'The Amazing Race' crowns Josh Kilmer-Purcell and Brent Ridge champions
By Elizabeth Kwiatkowski, 12/10/2012
The Amazing Race crowned Josh Kilmer-Purcell and Brent Ridge the winners of its 21st season during Sunday night's two-hour finale broadcast of the CBS reality competition.
"We hope that winning this actually proves to all the underdogs out there that it doesn't matter how bad things are going at the moment..." Josh began after he and Brent finished the final leg in first place.
"You just can't quit," Brent interjected.
"Nice guys do finish first sometimes," Josh added.
The "Goat Farmers and Life Partners" team was the first team to cross the 21st season of The Amazing Race's finish line in New York, NY, claiming the $1 million grand prize.
"Chippendales Dancers and Best Friends" Jaymes Vaughan and James Davis finished second.
"It was amazing. It was still fantastic. It was an incredible experience. I'm just grateful to be able to share this with everybody, and I got my mom a car, so I'm so happy about that. I hope you enjoy your new wheels, ma!" James said.
"It was an amazing journey to compete with you guys. It's been a real honor and a privilege, it really has. Thank you."
"Yeah, well, we didn't win the million dollars but we had an incredible experience. Maybe the world will have a different view of Chippendales now. I don't know if that's better or worse," Jaymes joked.
"For better or worse, I guess," James noted definitively.
"Dating Couple" Trey Wier and Alexis "Lexi" Beerman finished the Race in third place.
"It's just been an amazing journey. It's been something that's just absolutely priceless, and to spend it with Trey and have a solid month with him was just amazing. It's very special -- a very special experience," Lexi said in tears.
"Our relationship has just become stronger. This Race has definitely put us to the test on whether we're ready for that next step," Trey explained.
"I think we're definitely ready for that next step. It's just a matter of when Trey's ready for that next step," Lexi said with a laugh.
The two-part eleventh episode of The Amazing Race's 21st season began where last week's broadcast left off, with the Race's four teams meeting with host Phil Keoghan and leaving the course's tenth Pit Stop.
Since they had been the team to finish in first place at the Race's tenth Pit Stop, Trey and Lexi were the first team to depart from Castell De Bellver, a fourteenth-century castle with "a lovely view" that previously served as a prison, at 9:32AM.
Upon opening their departure clues, the teams were instructed to fly to Barcelona, Spain and then catch a train to Loire Valley, France. Upon their arrival, they'd find their next clue on a brand new Ford Escape vehicle.
Following Trey and Lexi, Jaymes and James departed the castle at 9:46AM. They were then followed by Josh and Brent at 10:27AM and Natalie and Nadiya -- who were told they must encounter a Speed Bump task in this leg for surviving the prior non-elimination leg after arriving at the tenth Pit Stop in last place -- at 11:14AM.
While on the train, Josh and Brent overheard the other three teams talking and discovered they were all in an alliance together without them. Although Josh and Brent called it "demoralizing" and felt like they were back in high school, the guys noted they were going to let the news motivate rather than destroy them.
Once they all received their next clue on the vehicles, the teams were instructed to pick up eight empty crates from a cafe, load them into their cars and then drive themselves to the Chateau De Villandry -- home to a large garden where they must find a stone dog and their next set of clues. Josh and Brent decided to follow the other teams since they were working together in a clump anyway. Natalie and Nadiya picked up on the fact Josh and Brent were following them and determined they needed to "lose the guys."
Trey and Lexi were the first team to find the stone dog and their clue. They were quickly followed by Jaymes and James, Josh and Brent, and Natalie and Nadiya.
The teams then learned they must find the site of Leonardo DiVinci's final resting place, the Chateau D'Amboise, where they would find their next clue.
Before they could continue on with the three other teams, Natalie and Nadiya had to first complete their Speed Bump task, which required the girls to help dress a lady in an eighteenth-century costume by lacing up and down her tight corset. Jaymes and James and Trey and Lexi decided to follow Josh because he could speak French. Josh and Brent believed the major alliance was breaking down simply because the twins were racing in last place.
Trey and Lexi were the first team to arrive at the Chateau D'Amboise and were soon followed by Josh and Brent, Jaymes and James and Natalie and Nadiya.
It then became time for the teams to complete one of two Detour tasks: "Chow" or "Plow."
"Chow" required the teams to make the daily meal for a pack of hungry hunting hounds. They must sort, weigh and cut various types of meat to create a well-balanced meal for the canines and then serve it up in the feeding area. Once it was ready for consumption, they would receive their next clue.
"Plow" required the teams to use a traditional horse and plow and till four burrows in a field. Once the field was properly cultivated, they'd receive their next clue.
Trey and Lexi waited for Josh and Brent in their car so they could follow each other, as both teams had decided they wanted to take on the "Chow" task and could potentially help one another. But Lexi was growing frustrated, realizing that they had to be aggressive in order to finish in first place. So at the last minute, Trey and Lexi changed their minds and decided to try the "Plow" task instead in order to lose Josh and Brent and maybe forge ahead in the Race.
Trey and Lexi clearly made the right choice, because they arrived at the Detour task location before any of the other teams. Jaymes and James and Josh and Brent had trouble finding where they needed to go, so Natalie and Nadiya jumped ahead and made it to the Detour spot in second place. They opted to take on the "Chow" task.
Following Natalie and Nadiya were Josh and Brent -- who tried "Chow" as well -- and finally Jaymes and James, who chose the "Plow" task.
Trey and Lexi, maintaining the lead, were the first team to complete the Detour task. The "Plow" task seemed to be the easier and faster option of the two. Trey and Lexi were soon followed by Jaymes and James, Josh and Brent, and Natalie and Nadiya.
The teams' next set of clues instructed them to find La Cave Des Roches. Trey and Lexi arrived there first and then learned it was time to complete a Roadblock task.
For the Roadblock, one member of each team had to examine three distinct types of mushrooms and then, relying only on their memories, search a dark maze of tunnels inside a cave to find them until they collected 10 of each variety. Upon grabbing 30 mushrooms total of the correct type, they'd receive their next clue. The mushrooms were to be placed in the crates they had in their cars.
Jaymes and James arrived at the Roadblock next, and they were soon followed by Natalie and Nadiya and Josh and Brent.
Lexi opted to take on the Roadblock task for her team in addition to fellow Racers Jaymes, Natalie and Brent.
Trey and Lexi completed the Roadblock task before any of the other teams. They were followed by Jaymes and James, Natalie and Nadiya and Josh and Brent.
The teams' next set of clues required them to drive to the Chateau De Chenonceau, known as "the castle of the ladies," which would serve as the Race's eleventh Pit Stop. On their way, Trey and Lexi stopped at the wrong castle and realized they had to drive 15 minutes longer to get there.
As a result, Jaymes and James beat them to the finish and arrived at the Pit Stop in first place. As the winners of the leg, Phil told the guys they had each won a new Ford Escape. Trey and Lexi subsequently secured second place.
It seemed like a close race between Josh and Brent and Natalie and Nadiya, as both teams got confused over their directions while driving to the Pit Stop. Natalie and Nadiya began driving in the complete wrong direction, while Josh and Brent hit a detour in the road and had to find an alternative route.
Josh and Brent then arrived at the Pit Stop mat in third place. Natalie and Nadiya finished in fourth -- and last -- place.
"Although we made it so far, there was a million dollars on the line and we completely blew it. I'm telling you, the Beekmans have tricks up their sleeves," Nadiya said following her team's ouster.
"If we can take anything from this Race, it's to say that we need to harness the potential we have into a more positive reaction instead of crazy, but at the same time, we had a lot of fun with what we were doing," Natalie explained.
"Yeah, I had a lot of fun on the Race," Nadiya added.
"Now we're going back to our lives and we have each other, and that's more important than a million dollars at the end of the day. But whatever, we suck, but it's fine," Natalie joked.
The second half of The Amazing Race's finale broadcast then began with the Race's Final 3 teams leaving the course's eleventh Pit Stop at the Chateau De Chenonceau. Since they were the team to come in first place during that leg, Jaymes and James took off first for the final twelfth leg at 1:33AM.
Upon opening the season's final departure clues, the teams learned they must fly 3,600 miles to their final destination of New York, NY. Once there, they had to figure out that their postcard was sending them to the Coney Island Boardwalk, where they would need to discover their next set of clues hidden with a big sign.
Following Jaymes and James, Trey and Lexi then departed at 1:44AM. Josh and Brent left the eleventh Pit Stop at 3:06AM.
Josh and Brent and Natalie and Nadiya both had home court advantage, as both teams were from New York. Trey and Lexi weren't too worried about the potential advantage, but Jaymes and James were seemingly a little intimidated. Everyone was ready to lay it out all on the line. If Josh and Brent were to win The Amazing Race, it would actually be their first win of the whole season. The guys surprisingly had never finished a leg in first place.
Jaymes and James were the first team to arrive at Coney Island and they were soon followed by Trey and Lexi and Josh and Brent. All the teams had incredible trouble finding the clue on the red and yellow sign that read "The Amazing Houdini."
Trey and Lexi eventually found the clue first, and Josh and Brent found it quickly afterwards. Jaymes and James were wandering around the correct area but just didn't realize the sign held their clue until about 15 minutes after the other two teams had figured it out. The clue instructed the teams to race to the Brooklyn Navy Yard.
Once at the Navy Yard, it became time for one member of each team to complete a Roadblock task. The Racers learned they must attempt a Houdini classic in which they had to wear a straight jacket, be suspended 15 stories above the ground upside-down over a dry dock and then try not to panic. If they were able to release themselves from the jacket and figure out how to escape, they'd be surprised with a "gut-wrenching bungee free-fall," according to Phil.
Trey, Brent and Jaymes all opted to attempt the Roadblock task for their teams. Brent and Jaymes got to watch Trey from below, which ended up working to their benefit since they got to see first-hand how to get out of the jacket.
Trey and Lexi completed the Roadblock task first and were then instructed to make their way to Lombardi's Pizzeria, the oldest pizzeria in New York. Josh and Brent finished next and then Jaymes and James completed the task in third place. Jaymes and James were desperate to close the gap.
Trey and Lexi were the first team to arrive at the pizzeria. Their next set of clues instructed them to memorize three orders and then deliver 10 pizzas onfoot to Lombardi customers scattered around Little Italy. Josh and Brent made it to Lombardi's in second place, while Jaymes and James were still racing in third. Josh and Brent ended up making a couple incorrect deliveries, which was sure to delay them upon eventually discovering their mistake.
When they found out they had not successfully completed the task, Brent was aggravated because he had memorized the addresses and was disappointed Josh couldn't keep track of which pizzas were going to which place. Brent said he could do his job but clearly questioned whether Josh could do his. This error allowed Jaymes and James to gain some ground and catch up, but Josh and Brent still took off from the pizzeria in second place.
After receiving their next set of clues, the teams had to figure out the emblem was from The United Nations, an organization represented by 193 countries, and then proceed to United Nations Headquarters. Once they arrive, they'd receive their next clue.
Trey and Lexi were the first team to arrive at The United Nations and learned it was time to complete a Roadblock task -- the season's final challenge. Whoever had finished the prior Roadblock was ineligible to participate in this one. As a result, Lexi was ready to take on the task on behalf of her team.
The Roadblock task required one member from each team to identify the way they had heard "hello" and "goodbye" in the nine UN countries they had visited during the Race. They had to join the correct "hello" and "goodbye" with the appropriate flags of the countries they were from. Once finished, they must raise the UN flag, which would in turn lower their last clue.
Josh and Brent arrived next, and Josh was responsible for completing the task. Lexi noted how time-consuming the task was going to be. Finally, Jaymes and James arrived at the task and it was all up to James. All the teams ended up in the same spot one after the other, and the Race became extremely close from there on out.
Lexi was confident she got all the flags right but ended up getting one wrong. She then broke down and began crying, saying she wanted to win so badly. Trey reached out and tried to calm her down, while Josh made sure she was okay after one of the poles hit her in the head on its way down.
After two-and-a-half hours, all three teams were still plugging along at the final task. Lexi was struggling and crying, while Josh was actually doing pretty well at a slow but steady pace. Josh and Brent finished the Roadblock task in first place and received their next set of clues, which instructed them to head to Gotham Hall. Gotham Hall would serve as the Race's twelfth and final Pit Stop.
Jaymes and James finished the task in second place and Trey and Lexi eventually made their way to the Pit Stop in third.
After rushing to the finish, Josh and Brent met Phil at the mat before any of the other teams to claim their The Amazing Race victory. Previously-eliminated Racers and locals cheered the team on, and Josh and Brent couldn't have been happier about how they had dominated the final leg of the Race. Josh fell to his knees because he was so overwhelmed, and the partners shared a big kiss.
"Three continents, nine countries, 20 cities, more than 25,000 miles -- Josh and Brent, I am pleased to tell you that you have won the $1 million prize, and you are the official winners of The Amazing Race," Phil told the ecstatic team.
"We never, ever thought you would say those words to us -- ever," Brent said in tears.
"We were the underdogs. And what I hope this proves to people whether they're a minority, out of work, or they're losing their house or whatever, that if they just keep going and just keep working as hard as they can, people will help and at some time, you will win," Josh explained.
"This Race really has brought us back together again. I've had to work in the city and he's on the farm, so winning this Race will actually physically bring us back together again -- for the next 50 years," Brent said.