Chris, 40, and Bret, 44 -- who raced as friends and former Survivor castaways from Moore, OK, and Dedham, MA, respectively -- were ousted from the Race to win $1 million after arriving at the ninth Pit Stop at Matejuska at Split Harbor in Split, Croatia, in last place.
"We started out great and it just went downhill," Bret explained. "I'll never make detective because I didn't find those coins!... Croatia kicked our butts."
"But the bromance is still going!" Chris noted with a laugh.
During an exclusive interview with Reality TV World that took place after the episode aired, Chris and Bret talked about their time on The Amazing Race and unfortunate ouster. Below is the concluding portion of what they had to say.
Reality TV World: The Double U-Turn was an interesting and shocking twist this season. What did you guys think of the twist in general? And do you think all the teams would have voted the same way had the vote been anonymous?
Chris Hammons: You know, that's an interesting question. If it's anonymous, I think it might have went a little different. I'm not sure how, but we might have even -- I don't know. I think it could've went different if it was anonymous.
I think everybody changes their mindset, but I'm not sure for Bret and I. We probably still would have voted for the Reillys [Rachel Reilly and Elissa Slater] just because it was our best chance to get through that leg of the Race.
But I think it could've changed tremendously, because as you go down the line, you could tell some of the people probably just [threw away] a vote so it wouldn't matter.
But if you were voting anonymously, you wouldn't know that and you might actually vote for who you wanted to be U-Turned. So, I think it would've changed things.
Reality TV World: Were you surprised Tyler Oakley and Korey Kuhl didn't receive a single U-Turn vote? I know they're very likeable, but they had two first-place finishes under their belts, and they went on to have a third win that leg.
Chris Hammons: I think a big part of it is because, I mean at least for most of the teams who were paying attention, Tyler and Korey -- it wouldn't have stopped them. They would've made it through it and then you'd have another really good team targeting you.
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Bret LaBelle: I mean they did it before! They got U-Turned and beat everybody. You know? They're the best!
Reality TV World: So it sounds like your decision to U-Turn Rachel and Elissa wasn't just made with your heart then, like you two had said during that episode. Were you thinking short-term strategy in that you wanted to just survive that leg rather than long-term strategy in that you were trying to eliminate a top team?
Chris Hammons: Yeah, that was it. It was, "Let's get through this leg of the Race," and the way to do that matched up with how we felt also.
But that's where Survivor strategy comes in. We were basically or essentially at Tribal Council and Bret and I wanted to carry favor with everybody who's already mad at the O'Reillys.
So why wouldn't we make this big speech about, "We don't know you and we have these great relationships with everybody else...?" And we go ahead and U-Turn the team we wanted to U-Turn anyways because they're the weakest team and we're going to beat them, even if we screw up. So we carried a lot of favor with everybody over that.
Bret LaBelle: We were taking it one leg at a time. That was our big thing when we went out, is that we just wanted to take it one leg at a time. And taking it one leg at a time, we were thinking, "Who can we U-Turn that's not going to come back and bite us and is probably going to go out?" And that was a wise choice, you know?
Reality TV World: How would you two compare your time on The Amazing Race to Survivor, and which of the two do you think was more challenging?
Chris Hammons: I think it goes kind of two ways. After the show, Survivor is colossally harder. It, like, crushes your soul when you get out of Survivor. It's like you're trying to physically recover for a year, and mentally, you never recover, I don't think.
Chris Hammons: So, Survivor is difficult. But the Race, at the time, it's just the speed of it shocks you. It's "go." When [Phil Keoghan] sends you off, it is go time! So, it's very physical and you have to sprint. It's like a hard, long sprint.
And Survivor is just kind of this grueling marathon type of situation. So, they are both hard in their own way. But after the show, The Amazing Race is just fun. You're like, "Man!" You go back and you're all charged up, whereas Survivor is a really hard thing to get over.
And like I said, I mean, Bret and I have talked about this a million times, we've never gotten over Survivor.
Chris Hammons: I would want to do both again and I would do both of them again in a heartbeat. In a second. I'd walk out the door right now if [a producer] or [Jeff Probst] called right now. I'd walk out the door and go play.
But that's a hard question. They are so different but they're both so wonderful. It's like choosing which one of your kids you want to throw off a cliff. (Laughs)
Bret LaBelle: (Laughs) Yeah, that's a really hard question! I love them both for different reasons. But yeah, I don't know, man.
Because I have unfinished business on Survivor, but I had so much fun and so many laughs with Chris on the Race that I would definitely say yes to both of them. I'll tell you that right now.
Reality TV World: You seemed to be friends with most -- if not all -- of the teams remaining on The Amazing Race. Who were you rooting for to win the $1 million at the time you left the Race?
Chris Hammons: You know, I don't know! We had such close bonds with all of them. I'm not sure I had a favorite, honestly. I just thought, "Whomever wins out of these teams is deserving." All of the teams left deserve to be where they're at.