"That's a hard way to lose, but my biggest fear coming on the Race with Rob was that we may have conflict during the Race. And I'm really thrilled. He's fabulous. He's the best partner I ever could have chose to run the Race with," Sheila explained.
"You didn't choose me. I chose you," Rob joked.
The first episode of The Amazing Race's 21st edition began with the Race's 11 teams arriving at the Colorado Street Bridge in Pasadena, California, where they met The Amazing Race host Phil Keoghan and learned if the team that wins the first leg of the Race eventually beats their 10 competitors in the final twelfth leg of the season to become The Amazing Race champions, that victorious pair will double their prize money from $1 million to $2 million. Should any other team win the Race, their prize will remain only $1 million.
The 11 The Amazing Race teams included Rob and Sheila, "Twin Sisters" Natalie Anderson and Nadiya Anderson, "Goat Farmers and Life Partners" Josh Kilmer-Purcell and Brent Ridge, "Married Monster Truckers" Rob French and Kelley Carrington-French, "Dating Couple" Trey Wier and Alexis "Lexi" Beerman, "Friends" James LoMenzo and Mark "Abba" Abbattista, "Dating Divorcees" Abbie Ginsberg and Ryan Danz, "Chippendales Dancers and Best Friends" Jaymes Vaughan and James Davis, "Best Friends" Caitlin King and Brittany Fletcher, "Best Friends and Substitute Teachers" Gary Wojnar and Will Chiola, and "Dating On and Off Couple" Amy Purdy and Daniel Gale.
Phil then explained to the teams in order to receive their first set of clues, both members of each team had to rappel down the 10-story Colorado Street Bridge.
Jaymes V. and James D. were the first team to retrieve their clue, which featured their next set of instructions. Following the "Chippendales Dancers" were Trey and Lexi, Josh and Brent, Caitlin and Brittany, Amy and Daniel, Rob F. and Kelley, Abbie and Ryan, James L. and Abba. The order of which the remaining three teams received their clues was not shown.
Upon opening their departure clues, the teams were instructed to hop in a vehicle and head to the airport. They would be making their way to Shanghai, China via one of two available flights scheduled to land at 10:50AM and 12:05PM. The teams were warned only the first seven teams to check in at the China Airlines counter would get tickets on the fastest flight.
The teams then rushed to the airport and the first seven pairs to secure seats on the earlier flight were Jaymes V. and James D., Caitlin and Brittany, James L. and Abba, Amy and Daniel, Abbie and Ryan, Natalie and Nadiya, and Rob F. and Kelley.
Josh and Brent were technically one of the first seven teams to arrive at the ticket counter, but Josh failed to be aggressive and allowed another team to cut in front of them in the line. As a result, Josh and Brent became the eighth team in line and were therefore forced to buy seats on the later flight.
The teams aboard the second flight were Josh and Brent, Trey and Lexi, Rob S. and Sheila, and Gary and Will.
Upon landing, the teams learned they must proceed by taxi to the Yuanshen Sports Center Stadium to find their next clue.
Jaymes V. and James D. were the first team to arrive at the stadium, and they were soon followed by Caitlin and Brittany, Natalie and Nadiya, Abbie and Ryan, James L. and Abba, Amy and Daniel, Rob F. and Kelley -- whose team got lost because they couldn't find the clue box at the stadium, and therefore, lost valuable time -- Trey and Lexi, Rob S. and Sheila, Gary and Will, and finally Josh and Brent.
Once at the Yuanshen Sports Center Stadium, the teams learned they had to complete a Roadblock task.
For the Roadblock task, one member of each team was required to play table tennis against a Chinese junior champion and successfully score one point in a quick match. However, if a team member failed to score a point, he or she had to wait until his or her next turn as the young Chinese female champion went from table to table using household items in the place of her paddle.
Natalie, James D., Caitlin, Daniel, Abbie, James L., Kelley, Trey, Rob S., Gary, and Josh all opted to attempt the season's first Roadblock task.
Although Natalie and Nadiya had a fairly good lead on their other teams, Natalie struggled to defeat her table tennis opponent and saw many teams finish before and surpass her in the Race. Although Nadiya was seemingly even more frustrated than Natalie, the girls finally finished the task and were able to move on.
Abbie and Ryan were the first team to complete the Roadblock task, and they were then followed by James L. and Abba, Jaymes V. and James D., Caitlin and Brittany, Amy and Daniel, Natalie and Nadiya, Rob F. and Kelley, Trey and Lexi, Rob S. and Sheila, Gary and Will, and Josh and Brent.
Upon completion of the Roadblock task, the teams learned they must make their way to Cui Ping Jiu Jia Restaurant.
James L. and Abba, who managed to jump into the lead, arrived at the Chinese restaurant first. They were soon followed by Abbie and Ryan, Caitlin and Brittany, Amy and Daniel, Jaymes V. and James D., Natalie and Nadiya, Rob F. and Kelley, Trey and Lexi, Rob S. and Sheila, Gary and Will, and Josh and Brent -- who were lagging behind the rest of the teams.
One there, the new set of clues instructed the teams to participate in another Roadblock, which noted the teammate who completed the prior Roadblock could not compete again. For the task, one member of each team had to eat frog fallopian tubes out of two large papaya bowls using only chopsticks or their mouths.
Abba, Ryan, Brittany, Amy, Jaymes V., Nadiya, Rob F., Lexi, Sheila, Will, and Brent were all forced to take on the disgusting-sounding Roadblock task. The task seemed fairly easily except for those team members with a weaker stomach.
While most of the participants looked queasy while consuming the noodle-like food, Rob F. didn't follow the rules closely enough and opted to use his hands to drink from the bowl. Because of his mistake, Rob F. was instructed to eat another set of tubes from two papaya bowls, and he was certainly not thrilled about the challenge.
James L. and Abba were the first team to suck the frog tubes down and move forward in the Race. They were then followed by Abbie and Ryan, Jaymes V. and James D., Abbie and Daniel, Caitlin and Brittany, Natalie and Nadiya, Rob F. and Kelley, Trey and Lexi, Rob S. and Sheila, Gary and Will, and Josh and Brent.
The next set of clues then instructed the teams to make their way to a waterfront destination called The Bund and search for a woman using an abacus. The woman was off to the side of a large patio, wearing a red dress and sitting beneath an umbrella. She was easy to miss if the Racers weren't very observant while looking around.
Amy and Daniel managed to snag first place when they found the woman before any of the other teams. However, they chose to be kind and generous and told two teams -- Abbie and Ryan and Caitlin and Brittany -- where to find the woman using an abacus while they were still on the premise.
Meanwhile, James L. and Abba, along with Jaymes V. and James D. and Rob S. and Sheila ran into a lot of trouble finding the woman's location. Jaymes V. and James D. wandered around aimlessly and had no clue where they were going. Rob S. and Sheila happened to walk right by the woman without noticing her, allowing Gary and Will to approach the woman first and pass them.
Gary and Will and Natalie and Nadiya both had an opportunity to help other teams find the woman at The Bund when asked for help, but they decided to lie to the other Racers in order to get ahead and maintain their lead.
The order of which the teams found the woman at The Bund was Amy and Daniel, Abbie and Ryan, Caitlin and Brittany, Natalie and Nadiya, Rob F. and Kelley, James L. and Abba, Josh and Brent, Gary and Will, Trey and Lexi, Rob S. and Sheila, and finally Jaymes V. and James D.
Upon receiving their next clue, the teams were instructed to race on foot to the Bund Observatory, which would serve as The Amazing Race's 21st season's first Pit Stop.
In a foot race to the finish, Abbie and Ryan rushed right up to Amy and Daniel and ran quickly enough to pass them. Amy, a double amputee, was clearly upset about the chain of events because she was running as fast as she could and was well aware she and Daniel had told their opponents where to find The Bund woman earlier on -- basically giving away their first-place finish.
Abbie and Ryan were the first team to arrive at the season's first Pit Stop. They were greeted by Phil and thrilled to learn they had earned the opportunity to potentially double their money if they could win the final leg of the Race.
Amy and Daniel were the next team to arrive at the Pit Stop in second place and they were followed by Caitlin and Brittany in third place. Natalie and Nadiya then arrived and secured fourth place, while Rob F. and Kelley made it to the mat in fifth place.
James L. and Abba were the next team to be greeted by Phil in sixth place, and they were then followed by Josh and Brent, Gary and Will, Trey and Lexi, and Jaymes V. and James D. -- who beat Rob S. and Sheila to the punch by about 15 seconds.
Stepping onto the mat beside Jaymes V. and James D., Phil declared Rob S. and Sheila had finished in eleventh -- and last -- place and had been eliminated from The Amazing Race's 21st season.
(Photo credit CBS)
DISCUSS AND COMMENT ON THIS STORY Reality TV World now offers Facebook Comments on our stories. To post a comment, log into Facebook and then 'Add' your comment. To report spam or abuse, click the 'X' in the upper right corner of the comment box. Get more Reality TV World! Follow us on Twitter, like us on Facebook or add our RSS feed.