Exclusive: Josh Kilmer-Purcell and Brent Ridge discuss their 'The Amazing Race' victory (Part 1)
By Elizabeth Kwiatkowski, 12/10/2012
Josh Kilmer-Purcell and Brent Ridge were crowned the champions of The Amazing Race's 21st season during Sunday night's two-hour finale broadcast of the CBS reality competition.
The "Goat Farmers and Life Partners" team was the first team to cross the 21st season of The Amazing Race's finish line in New York, NY, claiming the $1 million grand prize. "Chippendales Dancers and Best Friends" Jaymes Vaughan and James Davis finished second, while "Dating Couple" Trey Wier and Alexis "Lexi" Beerman finished the Race in third place.
"Twin Sisters" Natalie Anderson and Nadiya Anderson finished the Race in fourth place, as they had been eliminated just shy of making it to the Final 3. They had arrived at the eleventh leg's Pit Stop in Loire Valley, France, in last place.
In an exclusive interview on Monday, Josh and Brent talked to Reality TV World about their The Amazing Race victory and overall experience.
Below is the first half of Josh and Brent's interview. Check back with Reality TV World soon for the concluding portion. Also, our interviews with Trey and Lexi, Natalie and Nadiya, and Jaymes and James will be published this week.
Reality TV World: Congratulations on your big win you two!
Josh Kilmer-Purcell: Oh thank you and thanks so much for talking to us.
Reality TV World: What do you guys plan to do with the money? Is Josh going to be able to quit his job and live full-time on the farm as well, or have you already done that?
Josh Kilmer-Purcell: Well, I guess I already did it on last night's show. (Laughs)
Brent Ridge: Yeah, I mean, Josh as of January, Josh will move to the farm full-time -- which will be amazing. Because for the past five years, we've been living apart during the week and trying to grow our business to the point that it could support both of us and support the running of the farm.
Josh Kilmer-Purcell: This is really going to allow us to invest full-time into our community and building our community.
Reality TV World: Getting into the final Pit Stop, how far ahead of Jaymes and James do you think you arrived when you wonThe Amazing Race, and then how far behind Jaymes and James do you think Trey and Lexi finally arrived?
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Josh Kilmer-Purcell: When we were at the mat, I don't know if we had a true sense of time, but I mean, if I were going to guess, I would say it was probably around 20 minutes -- if that. It was very, very close, and Trey and Lexi came shortly after the "Chippendales." It was very close. Until we walked through that door, it was anyone's game.
Brent Ridge: We never counted our chickens before they hatched.
Reality TV World: You guys obviously struggled with that Lombardi's Pizzeria task. Brent memorized the addresses and Josh, it seemed like you had to figure out which pizzas were going where. Josh, would you mind talking about that a little bit? Where did the confusion come in and how long did it take you guys to correct the two mistakes?
Josh Kilmer-Purcell: I totally own that mistake. Some of the pizza pies looked similar to some of the other varieties, and I made a mistake with a couple of the pizzas. Lucky for us, that was one time when we had the hometown advantage come into play, and we knew the streets. So it didn't take us very long to find the addresses at all. So once we corrected our mistake, we were able to get back and get it over with.
Reality TV World: How confident were you leaving the final flag Roadblock task that you were going to win? Did you really think another team could've caught up to you or were you just trying to not get too excited at that point?
Josh Kilmer-Purcell: Oh no, we were totally excited, but you know, here's the hometown disadvantage -- we know how cabs are in New York. So we knew that we could've had a non-aggressive driver or the "Chippendales" -- we didn't know who was behind us.
We knew that the teams behind us could've just found a better less-busy street to get there, so we were not confident until we burst through those [Gotham Hall] doors.
Brent Ridge: Even though we knew where Gotham Hall was, we checked on two different maps so that we could show the cab driver exactly where we wanted to go. We were not taking any chances at that point.
Reality TV World: Josh, how long did it actually take you to complete the final flag Roadblock task? At one point, the show flashed an edit which said you guys had been going at it for two-and-a-half hours.
Josh Kilmer-Purcell: Yeah, I'm sure it was at least an hour after that. We had no concept of time at that point. The one thing I do remember is them pulling out these big lights because it was getting dark. And by the time we left, it was almost pitch black.
Reality TV World: How much studying had you two done before that final leg or throughout the Race in general, because had you really anticipated there being a final memory challenge since there wasn't one last season of The Amazing Race?
Brent Ridge: Yeah, I mean, we absolutely -- just like every other team on the Race -- we had a notebook. And after every leg of the Race, we sat down and wrote every little detail that we could remember about that leg of the Race in the notebook, because we did anticipate a memory challenge. Unfortunately, we didn't anticipate that one -- nobody did, actually.
Reality TV World: You guys obviously didn't win a leg all season until the one that really counted. Looking back on your whole journey, you were clearly capable of winning, so why do you think you kept falling short? And then did you go into the final leg with a different strategy or motivation -- or did you make some adjustments -- than prior legs?
Brent Ridge: Well, I think our strategy going into the Race was, having watched 20 other seasons of the Race, was not to beat ourselves. Because most of it comes down to luck. One team could be beating another team, but then one team could be beating itself. And so, for the first part of the Race, that's really what we were focusing on -- just controlling our own emotion and staying focused and just doing the best that we could.
And for the first part of the Race, we were really kind of "middle of the pack," and it wasn't until we had that delay -- that missed connection in Frankfurt -- where we just really got so far behind. That was probably, going into Moscow, that was probably our most demoralizing moment in the Race.
And I think that, coming off of the second leg of the Race when the challenges were more cerebral and we made up so much time, I think we started kind of picking up speed at that point and realized that maybe we're not going to -- well we knew going into the Race we weren't going to be the strongest team, the most physically-strong team, but we did have strengths and we were going to be able to use them to outplay the other teams.
Reality TV World: When you guys were at Coney Island, the editing made it look like Trey and Lexi discovered their clue on "The Amazing Houdini" sign before you and were trying to conceal the fact they had found it as to not give it away. But then it looked like you guys found it a matter of minutes afterwards. Could you talk about how that unfolded? Did you see Trey and Lexi focusing on the sign and that's what gave away the clue or did you subsequently find it on your own?
Josh Kilmer-Purcell: We totally found it on our own. When we walked by the sign, we didn't even realize until we saw last night's episode that they were concealing it from us. I don't remember that.
Brent Ridge: Yeah, because I don't think that they -- I don't even remember seeing them [there].
Josh Kilmer-Purcell: I think I remember them running away. (Laughs)
Brent Ridge: Yeah.
Reality TV World: When Natalie and Nadiya were eliminated at the Race's eleventh Pit Stop, they told The Amazing Race host Phil Keoghan you guys had tricks up your sleeves. What do you think they meant by that? Do you think they were referring to the time you had been talking strategy with them in attempt to confuse them at the "Chow" Detour task or was it something else?
Brent Ridge: I think that they thought Josh had been faking his ankle injury, and I think they thought we were being deceptive in some way. But Josh's ankle really was hurt. It was incredibly swollen, but when we were there in the heat of the moment running through that big chateau, I think the adrenaline just kicked in and Josh just ran through the pain. I think that's what they were referring to.
Reality TV World: When you guys found out the other three teams in the Final 4 were in an alliance together, you called it "demoralizing" and seemed pretty aggravated. Could you talk about what was going through your minds when you discovered that? Were you upset because they had kind of made you guys the outcasts or did you actually take it as a compliment that the teams wanted you gone?
Brent Ridge: Well, we didn't think that they saw us as a threat. But I think for us, you know, we ran the Race trying to be as cordial and as nice to all the other teams. And at least to our faces throughout the whole Race, they seemed to reciprocate that.
So I think when we first heard of the alliance -- even though at this point, we understand with all the heat of the battle and we don't take anything personally -- I think at that point, when we realized, "Oh, you've been nice to these people and you've helped these people out and then all this time they're conspiring against you?" I think that was probably the most hurtful to us. But again...
Josh Kilmer-Purcell: And at first it was demoralizing of course, but then it was immediately motivating. Like you said, to suddenly realize that they want us out, meant that we would try harder not to get out. So, it was actually a pretty good gift they gave us.
Reality TV World: So looking back on how Trey and Lexi, Natalie and Nadiya, and Jaymes and James had indirectly conspired against you guys by forming an alliance but directly conspired against Abbie Ginsberg and Ryan Danz by actively trying to take them out of the game with any chance they were given, do you think The Amazing Race should be more of an individual team game?
Josh Kilmer-Purcell: No, it's a great -- alliances are always helpful. But in The Amazing Race, it's different than a lot of the other reality TV programs. An alliance could help you temporarily in the heat of the moment, but there's no such thing as a long-term alliance strategy. In the Race, nothing like that has ever played out.
Above is the first half of Josh and Brent's interview. Check back with Reality TV World soon for the concluding portion. Also, our interviews with Trey and Lexi, Natalie and Nadiya, and Jaymes and James will be published this week.