Exclusive: 'The Amazing Race' eliminees Zach King and Rachel King talk (Part 1)
By Elizabeth Kwiatkowski, 04/25/2016
The Amazing Race eliminated "Newlyweds" Zach King and Rachel King during Friday night's broadcast of the CBS reality competition's 28th season.
Zach and Rachel became the sixth team eliminated from the around-the-world competition after they arrived at the Race's ninth Pit Stop at a sailing boat called Phinisi in Bali, Indonesia, in last place.
The team struggled when Rachel opted to take on a Roadblock task that was very physically draining. She was the only girl to attempt the task.
During an exclusive interview with Reality TV World on Monday, Zach and Rachel talked about their The Amazing Race experience. Below is the first half. Check back with us soon for the concluding portion.
Reality TV World: It seemed like you got to the Pit Stop on the sailing boat like a minute or two behind Kurt Gibson and Brodie Smith. Is that accurate?
Zach King: Yeah, we were -- I think what I heard from the first and last place was that there was a 15-minute spread from the first check-in to us. So yeah, the whole day was so tight, and yeah, we were probably just about a minute behind Brodie and Kurt when we got to the boat, which was hard. We rowed our little hearts out.
Reality TV World: So obviously the issue in this leg was the fact Rachel took on the Salt Roadblock task. What was your mindset when deciding that? Did you assume the task would be something else, or were you just switching Roadblock tasks back and forth and it was her turn?
Rachel King: I think it was a little bit of both. I mean, we couldn't see what the Roadblock was because it was around the corner. We were pretty much blind-guessing. And I heard "salt," so in my mind, I think I thought maybe it was cooking or something like that. In addition, we had been doing our best to go back and forth for Roadblocks, and Zach had done the last one or two. So, it was my turn to do it.
Reality TV World: Rachel, you said you wanted to cry during that Roadblock task. How hard was it for you to not give up and hold your tears back?
Rachel King: Yeah, it was rough. It was physically probably one of the hardest things I've ever done just in terms of strength. And it's funny because I always joke with people about how I have no upper-body strength whatsoever, and that's exactly what I needed.
So, yeah. You definitely, in those moments, there's that temptation to sit in the sand and cry and just not do anything. But I knew, honestly, Zach was the biggest reason I kept pushing.
Just seeing him, I knew I didn't want to let him down, and I didn't want to give up. I feel like that's the worst part, and I'm not really a quitter. So, even though it was extremely hard, I knew that just stopping and crying would just be even worse because it wasn't going to help me in any way.
Reality TV World: Zach, what was it like to watch Rachel do that task? It must've been pretty brutal observing her as she struggled like that.
Zach King: It was so heartbreaking to see. When we walked around that corner after we had chosen [her] -- because we didn't know what it was and the clue was very vague -- and at this point, we were switching on and off.
And it was tough because we saw, as I walked around the corner, [Tyler Oakley] drenched in sweat. And then Kurt was there. And I knew these guys were, like, Kurt and Tyler are pretty -- they can lift stuff!
And they workout, and so, it was hard to know that Rachel had to do that. But she stuck through it and I was really proud of her. We just sat down, and I don't know, maybe it was an hour she was doing that in the hot sun, and it was humid. So, I was proud of her.
Reality TV World: Did you end up with a pretty bad sunburn, Rachel?
Zach King: Oh she did! It was bad.
Rachel King: Yeah. It was close to blistering probably. So, I sunburn easily anyway, and we had been out in the sun all day. Yeah, it was pretty bad, the sunburn.
Reality TV World: Zach, could you talk about the Kite Roadblock task you did afterward? Do you think you got it done quickly and it just wasn't fast enough considering Brodie had a huge jump on you time-wise, or did you struggle with it at all?
Zach King: You know, I kind of plowed through it fairly quickly. It was just one of those things you had to do and take your time, making sure you got it right. And I was going as fast as I could looking at the example.
But also, my example -- because we were the last team there -- we were probably a little bit further away from the actual example I had to look at to figure out how to build it. So, I had to keep running back and forth, up and down the beach a little harder than the other teams. But, no, I did it as fast as I could and made up a little bit of time, but not enough.
Reality TV World: Brodie and Kurt have pretty much won half the legs this season, but obviously Kurt has done all the Roadblocks. The times Brodie did them, they used their Express Pass and almost finished in last place. At the time you left the Race, did you predict their streak was going to end? Would you have viewed them as less of a threat if you all had stayed in it?
Zach King: We knew that luckily Kurt had used all his Roadblocks by that point and it, you know, Brodie isn't the best at puzzles and you saw with the kite, like tying the small knots and detail work -- he's more about heavy lifting and the really physical challenges, which he's great at.
So we were thinking, you know, if we had stayed in the Race past this episode, we would have that to help us, where we speed up generally during all the Roadblocks and the Detours. So, we were hoping that if we stayed in it, Brodie [doing Roadblocks] would be to our advantage.
Reality TV World: You two seemed to get along great during the Race, unlike couples who bickered a lot. Were you almost surprised by how well you two worked together? Because the Race is a stressful and hectic experience, it tends to bring out the worst in people.
Rachel King: Yeah, I think we went into the Race just very aware that those situations can bring out the worst in people, so we even, like, before the Race, talked about how we were going to make sure that we work well together, because that will be our biggest downfall, is if we fight.
Most teams, if they fight -- especially for us, like, we knew in real life that when we fight, we don't do things as productive. And so, we were very intentional going into the Race, making sure that wasn't going to be something that hindered us. And it worked well.
We did, I think, work even better than we expected together, which was a good thing. Because we were nervous having been married less than a year and doing the Race, but yeah!
Reality TV World: Did you learn anything new about each other on the Race?
Zach King: What was unique about the experience, I mean, there were probably a lot of little things that I learned through conversation, but you know, my job is so -- I'm always on my computer; I'm always on my phone.
And it was a weird experience. The only reason I was really hesitant about the Race was giving up, like, the month without a phone and a computer and any Internet access. So, Rachel and I really did have, like, 100% us time.
It was time to work on our marriage, talk through -- not only the Race, but we did have a lot of downtime in airports or hotels later after the legs. So, we just got to have a lot of heart to hearts and talks and kind of just very intentional time that we usually don't get in a very concentrated amount.
Check back with Reality TV World soon for the concluding portion of Zach and Rachel's exclusive The Amazing Race interview.