Leo, 31, and Jamal, 30, who raced as cousins from Pasadena, CA, and Houston, TX, claimed third place when they crossed the finish line in Detroit, MI, after racing through ten countries, 18 cities, and across more than 25,000 miles.
Reality TV World: How far behind Tyler and Korey do you think you finally crossed the finish line?
Leo Temory: From what I heard, we did the drums fairly quickly and had gotten there maybe about, I think, five or 10 minutes after they had left. So, we did everything else pretty fast and we caught up, but it was not fast enough!
Reality TV World: I was going to ask if you had a pretty smooth final leg other than that Roadblock task, because viewers didn't see much of you guys racing since Colin and Christie and Tyler and Korey were neck and neck in the front.
Jamal Zadran: Yeah, the Detour, we got that done on our first try. There was like one record we messed up and fixed, but we got through everything pretty quick -- even setting up the drum. But it was just that first Roadblock that put us back.
It's hard to make up time. For us, we were thinking, "Alright, the only chance we have is if there's a big challenge," which we were expecting, you know, a final challenge -- a two or three-hour puzzle type of thing, like we've seen before.
So we were hoping I could do that and come back, but unfortunately, there wasn't one.
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Reality TV World: So it sounds like you had been preparing for a big, final memory task, maybe involving mapping out your route throughout the Race or countries' flags or something?
Jamal Zadran: Yeah, the whole flight from the airport in London, that's what I was doing. I was memorizing every little detail of every leg of the Race -- who the greeter was, what kind of currency we used, which items we had, what was the clothing.
I paid attention to every little detail and was testing and quizzing myself about the countries. Leo was helping to test me as well, but unfortunately, we didn't have any memory challenge at the last leg. So when you overanalyze things, it just bites you in the butt.
Reality TV World: How long did it take you to put the drumset together? Are we talking minutes or hours?
Jamal Zadran: What helped us was that it wasn't just one sample drum kit [we had to look at]. We had three of them now, because we had Tyler and Korey's and Colin and Christie's as well.
So we could see and make sure everything looked the same as ours. So, we did that pretty quick, and the fact we did it pretty quick is like, "Damn, had we gotten that Roadblock done, what would've happened?!" Because there's nothing else that really stumbled us, except that bank vault.
Reality TV World: Leo, how quickly would you say Colin opened his bank vault in first place, and then how long did it take you? And did you ever consider asking the other Racers for help before they left the task?
Leo Temory: We've done this so many times, that there's no point of asking for [help] and lowering yourself, especially in the Final 3. Like, we have respect for them and we have respect for ourselves.
This was the Final 3, so it didn't make sense. Had they helped us, that would be a bad [move] for them, you know? Other teams have done that multiple times and it takes them out of the Race, so helping, it doesn't make sense when it comes down to the wire.
And I think I was there five minutes before anyone else got there, and then I think Colin finished within five minutes and Tyler was a couple of minutes after that.
Reality TV World: So how long did it take you to finish the task?
Leo Temory: Yeah, (laughs) long enough! It was bad... The last knob, I think I kept passing it one more rotation than I should have. Yeah, it's tough. But it was the experience of a lifetime and we got to do it three times.
You know, money comes and money goes, but the experience and the cultures, and to actually complete the Race this time around, was great. I apologized to my cousin, but he's been very supportive and there's no hard feelings. Now we are officially the kings of The Amazing Race!
Reality TV World: Do you think maybe you started that final leg a little over-confident and that hurt you a little bit, or maybe the pressure and stress of being in the finale got to Leo?
Jamal Zadran: I don't think it was any kind of pressure or overconfidence, because had I done that Roadblock challenge, we would have had it done within five minutes. I know how to open those things, you know?
It's just a matter of who did the right Roadblock, and the clues to these Roadblocks and Detours can be tricky. That's what the Race does -- it's like, "Who's good with numbers?"
And so we're thinking it's a big math equation or calculating something, not knowing you only had to memorize four numbers and then open a safe.
For me, my dad was a jeweler growing up and he had multiple safes, so he taught me how to open them up from a young age. And so it's been instilled in my brain to this day.
So the fact there were directions on it too, I was like, "Oh, come on, Leo! I didn't know you had directions on there!" (Laughs)
Leo Temory: (Laughs) The Race intentionally wants the weaker person doing the Roadblock, so they'll always trick you into doing something the other person should do. Whether it's an eating challenge or a hiking challenge, you know?
For instance, this one, they totally got us because we didn't know what it was. But sometimes we chose the Roadblocks greatly! Like the previous one in Dunkirk, I killed that.
I did it so fast that production had to ask me, "Wait, are you sure that you're done?!" And I was like, "Yeah, I'm done. I got this!" It was ridiculously fast.
And then in Dubai, we did the silent disco fast, and when Jamal slung the arrow at the apple. We do good ones and then we do bad ones, but when we line up like that and it's the correct person doing it, you're on to the next one! But a lot of it is luck and a lot of it is taking a risk, taking a gamble.
Jamal Zadran: And unfortunately this time, on this last one, it didn't pay off. But we didn't have the cushion of having another leg to race.