Exclusive: Chester Pitts II and Ephraim Salaam talk 'The Amazing Race' (Part 2)
By Elizabeth Kwiatkowski, 10/16/2013
The Amazing Race eliminated Chester Pitts II and Ephraim Salaam during Sunday night's third broadcast of the CBS reality competition's 23rd season.
The "Former NFL Teammates" became the third team eliminated from the around-the-world competition after they arrived at the Race's third Pit Stop at Castelo Dos Mouros, a ninth century castle, in Lisbon, Portugal, in last place. The pair encountered nothing but problems when it came to booking flights and delayed connecting flights.
During an exclusive interview with Reality TV World on Monday, Chester and Ephraim talked about their The Amazing Race experience and devastating elimination. Below is the concluding portion of their interview. Click here to read the first half.
Reality TV World: When you guys were watching last night's episode, which Detour task do you think you would've attempted and how do you think you would've done?
Chester Pitts II: Oh are you kidding?! We would've crushed those. First of all, we definitely would've done miles because that was completely simple. I'm all about protractors and I completely understand scale. We would've crushed that one.
The only thing that was hard about that leg, was it looked like it was a huge, serious trek to the top of that castle. That castle was literally like three miles going directly north. That was the only thing that was hard about that leg. But other than that, oh my goodness.
Reality TV World: Who would've done the Roadblock out of the two of you?
Ephraim Salaam: I would've done it. It was my turn. I would've done the Roadblock.
Chester Pitts II: Yeah, he was due! He was due, it was his turn.
Reality TV World: What did you guys think about [Leo Temory and Jamal Zadran] while you were racing? When I talked to [Rowan Joseph] and [Shane Partlow] last week, they said they really disliked the guys because they had lied to their faces and cheated them on money and the list kind of continued.
Ephraim Salaam: They lied to pretty much everybody. And I pulled them aside -- they didn't show this in the London airport -- I told them, I said, "Yo, guys, I get what you're doing because you're having fun and it's a race. But you have to realize what this means, not only to people who are of Afghani-American descent, but for the whole Muslim religion. Because I, myself, am Muslim as well."
So I said, "You have to remember, we're coming on American television. And for the most part, all we see about Muslims and Afghanis are something dealing with terrorism or something wrong."
I said, "This is a perfect opportunity for you guys to shed light on just who you guys are and what you mean. So you running around and lying and deceiving people, that could have an adverse effect, not only in this game, but for real-life consequences when you guys get out."
I said, "You guys are squandering a perfect opportunity to really show the type of people you are." And look, they're grown men. I didn't have a problem with them, I just didn't agree with some of the things they did. I didn't think it was necessary. I don't think it's necessary for you to lie and try to bamboozle people through the Race. I just think it's not that type of race.
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It's not that type of race where you have to go and seek someone to lie to, like they were looking for people to lie to. And the Race isn't about that, so you know, I didn't dislike -- I didn't dislike anybody, not even Pinkie -- not even [Marie "Reebs" Mazzocchi].
I didn't dislike anybody. People have just have their way of how they think they want to run the Race. I just wanted them to see that it has bigger implications than what they were seeing in front of us.
Reality TV World: Speaking of Marie, Rowan had referred to her as "the devil" during last week's episode. But he also said he thinks it's a good thing she at least doesn't pretend to be something she's not and she owns who she is. So are you guys coming from a similar perspective on her?
Chester Pitts II: Absolutely. This is the thing, you know what? Everybody's different and to each his own. I don't judge. Who you are is who you are. But the people that make a point that they're going to be a certain way and they own it and that's who they are and they're consistent and they do everything that way... it is what it is and that's who they are.
But when you're someone who's wishy-washy or one minute -- "My pregnant wife is this...," and then the next minute, "My cousin's dying...," and the next minute, it's, "You said it's okay to give you 100 dollars even though it was really 200 dollars." I mean, it's just, at some point, you have to say, "Is this the person that I am and is this who I want the world to see me as?"
And that's why me and Ephraim were like, "No matter what's going on, no matter how hard it gets, no matter how crazy, at the end of the day, we have family, we have children, and we have mothers who have spent a lot of time and effort and energy raising us." I [would never] go on TV and embarrass my mother. Are you kidding me?! (Laughs) No way!
Reality TV World: Do you guys have any insight into whom you think Timothy Sweeney and Marie might give their extra Express Pass to? After last night's episode, it seems like [Nicole "Nicky" Getz and Kim DeJesus] are out of the running when they were originally Timothy and Marie's first choice.
Ephraim Salaam: I have no idea! It seems to me they're holding it ransom, so I guess whoever could help them with -- I don't know. I don't think they really care! I don't think they really care. I think they just like using it as leverage.
Reality TV World: What did you guys think about Nicky and Kim's move to try to get on stand-by by talking to the person at the executive lounge's desk. Tim and Marie and [Jason Case and Amy Diaz] seemed upset about that and thought it was a sneaky stunt. Do you think most of the teams underestimated those girls and what was your opinion of them while you were racing?
Ephraim Salaam: I definitely think most teams underestimated them. That's exactly what we would have done! If no one is at the gate, we wouldn't have waited at the gate. We would've tried to find someone to help us, which they did. That's what they should've done.
Chester Pitts II: I mean, the whole point of the Race and why there's such a huge, huge, huge, huge -- I mean, the slew of diversity in the cast [means] there's going to be a [wide range] of diversity as far as experiences go. The [key] factor in a show like this is the cab rides are a great equalizer. Flights are a great equalizer.
The experiences that you have in your life are the things that separate you, and they had that experience and had the resolve to go back to that experience and use it in that situation, which gave them a much better chance and a much better opportunity. I mean, we wouldn't have gotten to Portugal as fast as we got to Portugal without going to the executive lounge!
Ephraim Salaam: That's exactly right. That's how we were able to get tickets, was going to the executive lounge!
Reality TV World: Who did you think was your toughest competition while you were racing?
Ephraim Salaam: Well what we never wanted to do is underestimate any team, because once you start underestimating people, those are the people who come up and beat you. So we wanted to keep every single team on an even playing field. Everyone had the same threat level. Everyone was a threat absolutely across the board.
Reality TV World: How were you cast on The Amazing Race? How did you end up on the show?
Ephraim Salaam: I had been wanting to do this for quite some time, but while I was playing, I was never able to. So we had reached out seven years ago and talked about doing this, but it never came to fruition because I couldn't get the time off from football. And so, one of the casting people reached out to me this year and asked if I was still interested in doing it, and absolutely I was.
Above is the concluding portion of Chester and Ephraim's exclusive interview with Reality TV World. Click here to read the first half.