Christie Volkmer and Jodi Wincheski avoid 'The Amazing Race' ouster
By John Bracchitta, 03/16/2009
The "Flight Attendants" team of Christie Volkmer and Jodi Wincheski were the last team to arrive at The Amazing Race 14's fifth Pit Stop. However instead of being eliminated, the couple discovered that the leg was the race's first non-elimination leg.
Instead of going home, Christie, a 37-year-old flight attendant from Choctaw, OK, and Jodi, a 40-year-old flight attendant from Houston, TX, will get to continue in the race's sixth leg but have to overcome a Speed Bump, a special task that only they will have to complete.
"We felt like we've been the underdogs every since we started with [The Amazing Race]," Christie said following the revelation of the non-elimination leg by The Amazing Race host Phil Keoghan. "So once again we're just the underdogs and we have something else [to prove]."
The Amazing Race 14's fifth episode began with the seven remaining teams departing from The Theater of Musical Comedy, a theatre in Krasnoyarsk, Siberia which had served as the Race's fourth Pit Stop.
Following the mandatory rest period, Christie and Jodi were the first team to depart at 12:34PM. As they left the Pit Stop, they received a clue that instructed them to ride a Transsiberian Railways train over 400 miles to the town of Novosibirsk, Russia. Once there, they would have to race to the Punkt Technicheskogo Osmotra, a Russian auto shop, for their next clue.
"Sisters" Jennifer Hoffman, a 24-year-old marketing assistant from Louisville, KY, and LaKisha Hoffman, a 28-year-old program coordinator from Bronx, NY, were the second team to depart at 12:36PM. However, after working with Christie and Jodi to find their way to the rail station, the two teams were disappointed to learn that their early starts would be rendered meaningless since the next train wouldn't depart until 10:26PM, which gave all seven teams plenty of time to board it.
After the teams convened and boarded the train together, Mike White, a 28-year-old writer, producer and actor from Santa Monica, CA, told his father and teammate Mel White, a 68-year-old writer/clergyman from Lynchberg, VA, that he had not given much thought to the "Mother and Son" team of Margie Adams, a 51-year-old clinical research associate from Denver, CO, and Luke Adams, a 23-year-old college graduate from Denver, CO, as serious competition until their U-Turn of Amanda Blackledge and Kris Klicka during the previous Race leg that ultimately led to their elimination.
"They got rid of Kris and Amanda, and now I realize they're the power players here," Mike said.
After arriving in Novosibirsk, the teams ran off the train and found cabs to bring them to the auto shop. "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, were the first team to find a cab and leave the train station. They were followed Margie and Luke; Mel and Mike; "Sibling Lawyers" Tammy Jih, a 26-year-old lawyer from San Francisco, CA, and Victor Jih, a 35-year-old lawyer from Los Angeles, CA; Christie and Jodi; "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; and Jen and Lakisha, who fell into last after not following the other teams to the cabs and getting lost.
Jaime and Cara were the first team to arrive at the motor shop and receive their next clue: a Detour asking them to choose between either "Russian Bride" or "Russian Snowplow."
"Russian Bride" required the teams to get into a "Lada," a small four-speed manual transmission Russian car, and find a nearby Soviet-era apartment building. Once at the apartment, teams would have to grab a bouquet of flowers and find a waiting bride in one of the building's rooms. After finding the bride, teams would have to drive across town to a church and drop the wife off with their husband in order to receive their next clue.
"Russian Snowplow" required the teams to drive downtown to a local stadium where both team members would have to operate a large Russian snowplow and drive it through a training course before receiving their next clue.
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Jaime and Cara, as well as Margie and Luke who arrived in second place and Tammy and Victor who arrived in third, chose "Snowplow," while Mel and Mike chose "Bride" after arriving in fourth place.
After the three teams who chose "Snowplow" left together to find the way to the stadium, Tammy and Victor angered the other teams when they took off without informing the other teams upon receiving some directions from a local. While Margie and Luke were able to follow them for a while, Tammy and Victor lost them as well after stopping for directions a second time and leaving while Margie was still getting directions on her own.
"They're sneaky, he got directions and he just took off," Luke said. "I was really surprised. We thought he would wait and he didn't wait. Now Victor and Tammy, we're a little suspicious, we're not sure we wanna work with them."
Christie and Jodi were the fifth team to arrive at the motor shop and choose "Brides." Mark and Michael chose "Snowplow" after arriving in sixth, while Jen and LaKisha chose "Brides" after arriving in last place.
After arriving at the stadium first, Tammy and Victor were the first team to complete the Detour challenge properly and receive their next clue telling them to drive to the largest library in Siberia for their next clue. They were followed by the teams of Jaime and Cara and Margie and Luke, who finished the "Snowplow" challenge in second and third place respectively.
Mel and Mike were the first team to complete the "Bride" challenge and leave for the library in fourth place. Mike and Michael and Mark completed the Detour and fifth place, while LaKisha and Jen followed in sixth place. After struggling with driving in the traffic of Novosibirsk with their manual transmission car and going to the wrong church initially, Christie and Jodi completed their "Bride" challenge in last place and decided to try and follow a cab to the library to try and make up ground.
Upon arriving at the library, the teams learned that it was time for them to complete a Roadblock task that required one member of each team to strip down to their underwear before going for a 1.4 mile run with two local runners. The run would end at the Novosibirsk Theater, which would serve as the Pit Stop for the leg of the race.
Margie and Luke were the first team to arrive at the library and Luke chose to do the challenge for his team, as did Cara, Tammy, Mike, Mark, Jennifer and Christie upon their teams' arrivals at the library.
Upon arriving at the library, Jodi suffered an injury to her hand after closing a door on her hand.
Immediately after finishing his cold run, Luke met up with Margie at the theatre and went inside where they met with Phil and learned that they were the first team to arrive at the Pit Stop and had won a trip to Saint Lucia as their prize.
"First place two times. We're doing a lot better than we thought we would," Luke said after his win. "We're very confident that we can win the Race."
Tammy and Victor followed, finishing the leg in second place, with Jaime and Cara following them in third place. Mel and Mike finished the leg in fourth place while Mark and Michael came in fifth place.
Jen and LaKisha followed in sixth place, leaving Christie and Jodi as the final team to meet with Phil. However, they were relieved to learn from him after arriving at the Pit Stop that the leg had been a non-elimination leg and that they would survive into the next round.
"It just goes to show you that in this race you can go from first to last just like that," Phil told them.
"We do best when we're in last. We climb up, we start fighting," said a determined Christie.
The next episode of The Amazing Race will air on Sunday, March 22 at 8PM ET/PT on CBS.