Exclusive: "Dating Pro Wrestlers" Brooke Adams and Robbie E. Strauss talk 'The Amazing Race' (Part 1)
By Elizabeth Kwiatkowski, 12/24/2014
The Amazing Race "Dating Pro Wrestlers" team of Brooke Adams and Robbie E. Strauss finished the CBS reality competition's 25th season in fourth place during Friday night's finale episode.
Brooke and Robbie were eliminated halfway through the twelfth and final leg following a twist which allowed "Food Scientists" Amy DeJong and Maya Warren to compete in the first-ever Final 4. Amy and Maya ended up winning the twelfth leg and the $1 million grand prize.
"Married Dentists" Misti Raman and Jim Raman finished the Race in second place, while "Married Surfers" team of Bethany Hamilton and Adam Dirks claimed third place.
In an exclusive interview with Reality TV World on Monday, Brooke and Robbie talked about their The Amazing Race experience. Below is the first half. Check back with us soon for the concluding portion and for more interviews with the season's Final 4 teams.
Reality TV World: Before you sawThe Amazing Race host Phil Keoghan at the Hollywood stunt task, what was going through your minds? Did you feel pretty defeated already or were you thinking you could probably jump ahead of another team before the middle-of-the-leg elimination?
Robbie E. Strauss: I would normally say we wouldn't have felt defeated because we know when you have so much ahead of you no matter how far behind you are. You can always catch up. I think just on this one leg, because we knew there was a mid-leg elimination, like you said, we kind of were...
Brooke Adams: Yeah.
Robbie E. Strauss: Possibly expecting it. Still, never say never on the Race, but I think this time we kind of knew it was coming at some point and we were far behind.
Brooke Adams: We were so far behind that it was just like, "Ugh!"
Reality TV World: Do you have any idea how long you got lost for on your way to City Hall?
Brooke Adams: Oh yeah. Oh yeah. We were out of the way for, like, what? An hour or something, right Rob?
Robbie E. Strauss: Oh, dude, we took a tour of Cali, we stopped at a few hotels, I think I actually had coffee at one of the hotels we stopped at for directions. I mean, at a gas station, I bought an ice cream cone because I was starving. Where weren't we in California?
Brooke Adams: And we got -- afterwards, in the cab, and producers could hear what was going on, and they were like, "They totally told you guys the opposite direction, like twice, on two accounts." So the first set of directions that I don't remember were East, Northeast, Southwest -- regardless, whatever they gave us, we should've been going the exact opposite [way].
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So when we found that out, we got more directions, and then those directions were the complete opposite. So, it just happened to fall in with luck, and we don't know LA. Nobody really knows if you're not from that state where you're going, so you're trusting in a stranger to help you get there.
And we just kept driving and driving and were like, "I don't know if this is right," so we'd stop to get more directions. And then we had been driving 30 minutes in the wrong direction and then 30 minutes back! So we were really out of it.
Reality TV World: You two seemed pretty pissed off when you learned Amy and Maya were competing in the first-ever Final 4. Did you ultimately think that was unfair? Could you see the show doing that again in the future? Because viewers couldn't help but feel bad for you guys considering you had earned an actual spot in the Final 3 but couldn't even run the whole leg.
Brooke Adams: Yeah, I think that was just something they did for the anniversary, the 25th anniversary, you know? They wanted to have like a kicker or surprise, and I hate that it happened to be this season when Rob and I were there.
And like you said, I truly believe that him and I -- not saying that they didn't deserve, that they didn't fight the whole race -- but we also, I think, deserved to be there. We went from last to first, and to have them show up when they should've been eliminated -- and would have been any other time -- it just really stung, you know?
Reality TV World: So it sounds like you don't think the twist made Amy and Maya's win any less legitimate or significant, right?
Brooke Adams: Um...
Robbie E. Strauss: It was the rules. They changed the rules. It is what it is.
Brooke Adams: Yeah.
Robbie E. Strauss: It's the Race. It happens. It sucks but, you know, they're in it and they won it. They deserved it, so they won and they won fair, you know?
Brooke Adams: Yeah.
Robbie E. Strauss: It just happened to be the rules. We hated that that happened to be the rules. There's nothing that we can do about it and you know what? Rob and I got lost. That's it. That's the name of the game.
That's what happened and that's how we went out. It was no one else's fault but our own. I mean, we can go back all day and say, "What if? What if?" But that's just how it ended up playing out this season.
Reality TV World: Did you two ever really view Amy and Maya as a threat? The impression viewers got was that they were the underdogs and no one really considered them tough competition to beat. And looking back, do you think that was a mistake on your part?
Brooke Adams: No, because we never really worried about -- we worried about ourselves the majority of the Race, right Rob? We didn't say, "Oh my gosh, this team! Oh my God that team!"
Everyone thought I wanted to get rid of the cyclists [Kym Perfetto and Alli Forsythe] because they were a strong team, but I just wanted to get rid of a team. It was nothing personal. We just wanted to play our race ourselves. I mean, I don't think I really paid any attention to them.
Reality TV World: How do you think Misti and Jim avoided being a huge target throughout the season? They obviously had "The Save" advantage for a while and won so many legs, but it seemed like no one ever went after them.
Brooke Adams: Because you can't. They had "The Save." There was no point. How can you go after them? They had "The Save."
Reality TV World: Well, I was wondering why no one wanted to flush "The Save" out so it wouldn't be in play anymore, therefore weakening the dentists' chances of getting far. But I guess your thought process is it's better to eliminate another team entirely if you can.
Brooke Adams: That's what we were trying to do. We thought it would've been better to try to get rid of somebody who doesn't have that and hopefully [Misti and Jim] would have to use it on their own somewhere down [the line] instead of making enemies so early on, you know?
Because that's another thing you get scared of, like, "Man, I really don't want to piss anybody off because we're still early on in the game," as far as, like, when we were in Morocco with the U-Turn board. So it was just like, "Let's try to get rid of somebody else that's already going to have to go and then hopefully they'll have to burn that "Save."
And I mean, they pretty much had immunity the entire race. I don't know why for "The Save," they didn't have to get rid of it [when they finished last] in Copenhagen. That was another thing. I wished they showed us all together in the hotel when we found out they weren't eliminated.
Everybody was so, so furious that one, they were saved, and two, they didn't have to get rid of that "Save" pass. I think that's a little ridiculous to a "Save" pass and not use it at that point. I get it. It's a non-elimination round, but if you have that, you should have to use it.
Reality TV World: What did you think of "The Save" twist in general? Do you think it'll be good for the show to utilize it again or do you think the Express Pass is enough and it's kind of pointless?
Brooke Adams: That's what I think! I think it was completely pointless in my opinion, especially if you're not having to use it. And, you know, here's the deal. If there was no "Save," look at how Jim was in the beginning of the Race and look how flustered he got towards the end when he had no "Save." He would not have been so calm.
I think the Race would've been so totally, incredibly different if he didn't have that "Save." When he got flustered, he got flustered. And it was awful to see at the end of the Race that he was so comfortable, because they knew they had a "Save" if at any point they had to use it.
Check back with Reality TV World soon for the concluding portion of Brooke and Robbie's exclusive interview and for more interviews with the Final 4 teams.