'All-Stars' Eric Sanchez and Danielle Turner finish last but stay alive
By Christopher Rocchio, 04/16/2007
Eric Sanchez and Danielle Turner were the last team to arrive at the ninth leg's Pit Stop during last night's broadcast of CBS' The Amazing Race: All-Stars, however the duo wasn't sent packing just yet as they were pleased to learn they had encountered one of the competition's non-elimination legs.
Instead of going home, Eric and Danielle were now "marked for elimination," which means they must arrive at the next Pit Stop in first. If they fail to do that, they'll incur a 30 minute penalty, allowing other teams to check-in before them and possibly spelling the end to their game.
"This race is really important to me and I want to show that I'm stronger than people think I am," said Danielle. "Being 'marked for elimination' is scary but I want to make it to Top 3 and I want to win."
The Amazing Race: All-Stars' tenth episode began with beauty queens Dustin Seltzer and Kandice Pelletier departing at 12:28AM in first place among the final four teams. Their departure clue instructed them to fly over 1,500 miles to Hong Kong and travel 22 miles by taxi to Sun Wah Kiu Laundry.
"We don't know how Eric and Danielle will bounce back from having been Yielded by us," said Dustin, questioning the potential reaction they'll receive for their decision to Yield Eric and Danielle during All-Stars' ninth leg. "We're not expecting to be their best friends."
Cousins Charla Baklayan Faddoul and Mirna Hindoyan were the next to depart at 1:29AM, followed closely by Eric and Danielle at 1:50AM and Ozwald Mendez and Danilo Jimenez at 2:19AM.
"Charla and I have coined a new phrase. It's called 'Yield karma,'" said Mirna. "There's really no reason to resort to dirty play like the beauty queens using a Yield. Otherwise they might get some bad karma back." Added Eric, "We're definitely not happy with the blonde girls for Yielding us. So if we have an opportunity to pay them back with anything we will."
Upon arriving at the empty and mostly closed Kuala Lumpur airport, Dustin and Kandice learned that China Air would be the earliest flight, departing Malaysia at 8AM and arriving in Hong Kong at 11:55AM. The second quickest flight would be on Malaysian Air, departing at 9:15AM and arriving at 12:55PM. However like always, there was a twist -- although its flight left later, the Malaysian Air counter opened at 4AM while the China Air counter didn't open until 5AM.
Dustin and Kandice chose to wait for the Malaysian Air counter to open while Ozzy and Danny decided to take another approach -- walking down to the China Air office. While down there, they serendipitously walked right into the Malaysian Air office and placed their name on the wait list ahead of Dustin and Kandice, who sat idly at the closed counter. Dustin and Kandice quickly learned of their mistake and had to settle for being the second team on the Malaysian Air wait list. Eric and Danielle were third.
Not wanting to leave anything to chance, Ozzy and Danny then went to the China Air office, where they ran into Charla and Mirna, who were already waiting for the office to open. Desmond, a China Air employee, then arrived at the office and eventually placed the two teams on a standby list for the 8AM flight ahead of Dustin and Kandice and Eric and Danielle, who talked to agents at the counter. With two possible ways to get to Hong Kong, Ozzy and Danny promised Charla and Mirna that if they made the China Air flight, they would give their standby reservation on Malaysian Air to the cousins.
Realizing how far along it was in the competition and hoping to take advantage of his feelings towards the beauty queens, Mirna attempted to strike a deal with Eric. "We have been screwed over one too many times by the bubbly, giggly girls," she told Eric. "The final three: you guys, us and Danny and Ozwald." The two shook, and Mirna commented, "It's going to be a fun final three!"
With only half-an-hour before the China Air flight departed, Danny and Ozzy were informed they'd be on it. They were the only team to be placed on the flight, meaning they would arrive in Hong Kong at least an hour before any other team. They also honored their word and offered their standby reservation code for the Malaysian Air flight to Charla and Mirna.
"We gave Charla and Mirna our standby code for Malaysia Airlines because they have shared information with us," explained Ozzy. "Again, it goes back to the whole issue of karma."
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Charla and Mirna and Dustin and Kandice then rushed over to the Malaysian Air counter while Eric and Danielle -- thinking they had already secured a spot on standby -- decided to exchange some of their money. Once at the counter, Dustin protested Charla and Mirna's use of Ozzy and Danny's standby code during a verbal confrontation.
"She wins the pushy award of the year," said Dustin to Mirna. Mirna replied, "Good luck, Yield queens. Good luck", which prompted Kandice to comment, "[Mirna's] so manipulative." All the bickering was for not, as both teams made the flight to Hong Kong that arrived at 12:55PM. Eric and Danielle then learned it was completely booked, and they had to buy tickets for a flight that wouldn't be arriving in Hong Kong until 3:20PM.
"You've got to be kidding me... this is ridiculous," opined Danielle. "The standby fairy doesn't like us apparently, so we're absolutely dead last."
Danny and Ozzy were the first to arrive in Hong Kong at 11:55AM and -- after receiving a discounted rate on their taxi since they were running low on funds -- they opened their clue to find the second of two Fast Forwards on the race. In this Fast Forward, Ozzy and Danny had to travel five miles to a film set where a high-speed stunt was being filmed for an action movie. When they arrived, they had to get in a car with a professional stunt driver and participate in an action-packed stunt sequence.
Ozzy stated he was a "little scared," and as they suited-up for the stunt he was visibly nervous as Danny told him, "You'll be fine." Danny thought it was going to be "so much fun" and "amazing," while Ozzy kept his eyes closed throughout the entire stunt.
"You have to do a good job here. My mother wants me back," Ozzy told the stunt driver. "If I wet these pants, they're the only clean pair of pants that I brought."
As the car they were driving in sped-up, hit a ramp and tipped on its side, the Fast Forward was over and Ozzy and Danny learned they could proceed directly to the eleventh leg's Pit Stop at the Hong Kong Jockey Club. "That was amazing. Thank you for being such a good sport," said Danny to Ozzy as the two celebrated. Replied Ozzy, "Baby I told you I was coming to this thing to win it." Danny and Ozzy reached the tenth leg's Pit Stop and finished first.
Charla and Mirna and Dustin and Kandice then arrived in Hong Kong at 12:55PM and realizing Danny and Ozzy had already taken the Fast Forward, they opened their clue to find a Detour requiring them to choose between "Kung Fu Fighting" and "Lost in Translation." In "Kung Fu Fighting," teams had to travel five miles to Tonkin Street and find a nearby building. Once there, they had to climb up an 11-story bamboo scaffold while avoiding "an ongoing battle between stunt kung fu experts" to reach the top and retrieve their next clue. In "Lost in Translation," teams needed to make their way four miles to Kowloon City and find Nga Tsin Wai Road. Once there, they had to search among hundreds of similar-looking Chinese signs for the specific sign shown in a photo in their clue. Once they matched the photo with the correct store sign, the owner would hand them their next clue.
While Mirna was initially nervous that Charla would be unable to complete "Kung Fu Fighting," they eventually decided that was the Detour challenge they'd try. Dustin and Kandice also chose "Kung Fu Fighting," and were able to complete the Detour before Charla and Mirna even arrived at Tonkin Street. After completing the Detour task, the beauty queens learned they had to take the Star Ferry across to Hong Kong Island and then travel four miles by taxi to an abandoned building, an old police headquarters, where they would receive their next clue.
Charla and Mirna had a much more comical time at the Detour. "How the heck are you going to climb that? Each step is longer than your legs!" Mirna told Charla upon seeing the scaffolding with the kung fu fights happening on them. "Okay... that's enough fighting!," Mirna yelled after they had started their ascent. "We are trying to make love not war!" The cousins eventually made it to the top and celebrated their victory.
"Charla is here to prove on the race that she can break down what people's expectations are of her," explained Mirna. "And the Detour was very hard, but she did a great job with it."
Eric and Danielle eventually arrived in Hong Kong at 3:20PM, and Eric instantly realized, "Right now we have to play major catch-up." As they made their way to the laundromat and eventually chose "Kung Fu Fighting," Dustin and Kandice boarded the ferry while Charla and Mirna's cab driver took them through a tunnel, and Mirna questioned if they were going the right way. Charla and Mirna reached a ferry, but only learned once it had departed the dock that the cab driver had taken them to Hong Kong Island via the tunnel and they were now on a ferry to Kowloon. Luckily they were only slowed a little, as they just remained on the ferry for its return trip to the island.
Once they reached the abandoned police headquarters, Dustin and Kandice opened their clue to find a Roadblock. In it, one teammate had to kick down doors in the building until they found the room with their next clue. "Kicking Kandice" went to work ,busting down doors until she came across the clue instructing her and Dustin to drive five miles to Victoria Park. Once there, they needed to find a model boat pond that had Travelocity roaming gnomes positioned on floating junk boat models. Then, in a local tradition practiced by Hong Kong children, they had to pull the junk boat models across the pond to receive their next clue.
After slowly leading the model junk across the the pond and getting it to shore without toppling the gnome into the water, the beauty queens received a clue directing them to go to the Pit Stop at the Hong Kong Jockey Club. They finished the leg in second place.
Eventually arriving at the old police headquarters, Charla decided to complete the Roadblock. "I'm not afraid of getting a little dirty. My legs are very strong and I love kicking things, so I'm very proud of how I kick each door," explained Charla. Meanwhile, Eric and Danielle flew up the scaffolding and began to make their way to the ferry. Charla eventually found her clue and she and Mirna made their way to Victoria Park. Eric kicked down doors and also found the clue, however he made a blunder by trying to navigate to the park himself instead of asking to follow a cab.
"Eric is very stubborn. He thinks he can do everything. He doesn't like to hear me give opinions. It's very frustrating," said Danielle. "Don't even start with me," Eric replied as Danielle scolded him.
Once they navigated through some rush-hour traffic, Charla and Mirna located the park and pulled their gnome across the pond. They finished the leg in third place. Eric and Danielle finally stopped for directions to the park, pulled the gnome across the pond and arrived at the Hong Kong Jockey Club in last place. However host Phil Keoghan informed them it was a non-elimination leg and they were now "marked for elimination."
"I'm not sure if this is a good thing or a bad thing," said Eric. "I was wrong. Danielle was right in this case, we should have gotten the taxi earlier. I can't blame Danielle because we're a team. We're doing it all together. Danielle and I have are work cut out for us at this point... I'm just going to try and keep Danielle strong."