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Exclusive: Lucas Bocanegra and Brittany Austin talk 'The Amazing Race' (Part 2)


By Elizabeth Kwiatkowski, 02/21/2018 

Lucas Bocanegra and Brittany Austin were eliminated from The Amazing Race due to a missing passport during the latest episode on CBS.

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The "Newly-Engaged Couple and Lifeguards" became the seventh team ousted from the around-the-world competition after arriving in the Kingdom of Bahrain -- a Middle Eastern country never before visited on The Amazing Race -- in last place.

The Amazing Race host Phil Keoghan did not force the pair to complete any of the leg's tasks since they were so far behind. By the time the couple managed to obtain a temporary passport and travel to Bahrain, they were hours behind the other teams.

Lucas felt he had let down his family, friends and Brittany, but his new fiancee said she couldn't have asked for a better partner in the Race.

During a recent exclusive interview with Reality TV World, Lucas and Brittany talked about their time on The Amazing Race. Below is the concluding portion of what they had to say.

Reality TV World: When you U-Turned Jessica Graf and Cody Nickson, you insisted the move wasn't personal, but viewers did watch some drama play out between you guys. So could you confirm that was the case today, that U-Turning Big Brother was strictly based on strategy?

Lucas Bocanegra: Well to that point, they had beaten us in every single leg of the Race, so as far as my history goes of knowing the Race, 80 percent of people who do well in the Race are couples -- not guy-guy teams or girl-girl teams -- so knowing that in the back of my mind, I knew the couples would be the ones that we would somehow have to get in front of.

At this point, Yale [Henry Zhang and Evan Lynyak] did poorly in Prague, so we could probably beat them physically. Cody was probably the strongest person physically and matched up pretty well against me.

So strategically speaking and them doing very well on that specific first part in Zimbabwe, they beat us with their tent and they beat us to the beginning part of that map on the "Partner Swap." So they were a very strong team.

Now, yes, there were other issues that happened, but at the end of the day, we never thought of U-Turning the skiers [Kristi Leskinen and Jen Hudak], because from my experience with the show, you never U-Turn a team that has the chance to come back.

And I thought the skiers would have a definitely chance to come back, and we were friendly with them! What would be the point of U-Turning somebody that we'd be able to race, and then you have something negative -- another team against you?

So we were under the impression that Big Brother would be U-Turned and that they weren't going to be able to recover from it, but you can see why we U-Turned them. They were a very strong team and they came back from it!

Reality TV World: From a strategy standpoint, it was surprising Alex Rossi and Conor Daly chose to U-Turn Henry and Evan. So do you think Alex and Conor's reasoning was the same as yours, that the guys were friends with Kristi and Jen and maybe believed Henry and Evan wouldn't recover from getting U-Turned?

Lucas Bocanegra: Yes! From the beginning part of the Race, you did have a top tier group of teams, and that included the skiers, Yale, Indy [Alex and Conor], and Big Brother. And they were pulling away from the rest. Besides that Prague leg, they were doing very well.

We were kind of the team that did well sometimes and then would go back and kind of [mess up] and race on our own. But those were the strongest teams at that point, and they probably figured we would end up screwing up somehow. (Laughs)

Brittany Austin: I also think it has to do with if you're in a situation where another team maybe could help you -- because it doesn't affect them -- I think that was more likely to be the skiers for Indy and Big Brother. Yale was obviously running their own race.

So if you're in a situation later on in the Race and there's a little help thrown your way, it's not going to come from Yale. It's most likely going to come from somebody you get along well, and I think that also had to do with it.

Reality TV World: Evan made a comment in last night's episode that she felt the other teams underestimated Henry and herself, and that they would definitely be underestimated in the Final 4. But do you really think that was the case?

Lucas Bocanegra: I can't speak for the other teams, but I did underestimate the physical part. I knew we could take them physically. Mentally, they're very smart and they knew what they were doing. They knew how to speak different languages and they knew the basis of the game.

And I wish I was a little more educated and knowledgeable about that. I was a big fan of The Amazing Race, but I didn't know a lot of the little things and details that she did.

Brittany Austin: She did her research!

Lucas Bocanegra: For example, she brought up blocking somebody on a U-Turn. She was very knowledgeable about the game and the show, and they were probably a little bit underestimated in that aspect. 

Brittany Austin: I didn't underestimate them at all. I felt they were a strong team from the get-go. And I thought that even when they were failing, for example, in Belgium.

I mean, she was just on point, and I would've been an emotional mess! But, like, in Saint-Tropez, she just kept it all together and kept pushing through, and I think that that gave her a lot more [of an advantage] than, say, being on the top for the whole time would have.

Reality TV World: Congratulations on your engagement! Lucas, did you tell any friends or family that you were bringing the diamond ring with you on the Race?

Lucas Bocanegra: I only told my mother and her father when I asked permission to marry his daughter, and that was basically it. No one knew until we came back and the program aired. We are really psyched.

Reality TV World: Brittany, did you have any suspicion at all going into the Race that Lucas might propose to you at some point?

Brittany Austin: I mean, it's been nine years. You don't live nine years with a partner without having spoken about marriage, so we were coming to a point in our lives when I knew that was going to be the next step.

But I didn't know it could happen on the Race! And Lucas is very shy at PDA (laughs), which is definitely something that threw me off. But he made a huge gesture in going against what his comfort is in doing that to prove his point to me.

Reality TV World: How is the wedding planning going? Any date or location set in stone? And will any Racers from this season be invited?

Brittany Austin: We'll definitely have it -- a lot of my family is living in Cancun, Mexico, and we'll definitely have a huge wedding for sure with a lot of yummy Mexican food! And I will definitely have a few of the Racers. Maybe the violinists [Trevor Wadleigh and Chris Marchant] can [serenade] me down the aisle with their music. (Laughs)

To read the first half of Reality TV World's exclusive The Amazing Race interview with Lucas and Brittany, click here.



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