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The Amazing Race 17, Sept. 26 – Those are Big Frickin' Rocks!


Gary and Mallory, father and daughter, from Kentucky. She’s the reigning Miss Kentucky. When she wants something, she’ll do anything to get it. He says she was the boy he wanted to have, and he taught her how to hunt and fish. Sounding like she’s giving a pageant speech, she says the Race is an opportunity to show that hard work and being a good person gets you far. He doesn’t want his pot belly and gray hair to fool anyone about his ability, and she adds in, “Or the blonde.”

Andie and Jenna, biological mother and daughter, recently reunited. That could be an interesting relationship to watch when things go wrong. When Andie was 21, she had an unplanned pregnancy and decided it was in her best interest to put her up for adoption. Just recently they got to meet, but have always wondered about each other and wanted to talk and get to know each other. Jenna hopes after the Race they’ll be fulfilled.

Phil Keoghan welcomes everyone and tells them it’s going to be one of the most grueling races ever. He explains the usual rules and tells them there is a new element this season. The first team at the pit stop gets a prize, but if they check in first during this first leg, they’ll receive the most important prize they’ve ever given away. It’s the Express Pass. It can be used any time before or during a challenge they don’t want to complete. They just hand over the pass, get the next clue and move on. It could mean the difference between staying in the race and going home.

Additionally, of the two flights scheduled for this first leg of the race, the first one to take off only has room for three teams and is scheduled to arrive thirty minutes earlier. Their first clue is waiting on top of their luggage, and when he says go, they’ll race to their bags, get their cue and hop in waiting cars to head to the airport.

“The world is waiting for you. Good luck. Travel safe. Go!”

Heading to the luggage, Ron doesn’t look like an actor, but a sprinter. The first clue has the teams flying to London where they’ll get rental cars and head to Stonehenge. Surprisingly, Brook and Claire make it out of there in first place. Mallory finds the smart cars are her size. Chad is excited to be going to London, as is Nick, as he wants to win the “million buckarooskis.”

Brook and Claire stop and ask bicyclists how to get to the airport, and getting the info, fist bump. Ron tells Tony to get his compass out, as neither of them are familiar with the Boston area. He thinks this will be one of their strongest suits. Chad is glad Stephanie is driving, as he can sit back and relax. She says she’s seen Stonehenge before, and he wonders if that means she’s seen it on TV, and he’d be right. Thomas went to Notre Dame, and Jill is a hair stylist. He thinks his education will give them certain advantages. She wants to show him you don’t have to be a college grad to finish the Amazing Race. Andie and Jenna have never been in a car together, and she’s been told she’s too aggressive, but is trying to tone it down. They live in different states, so it’s only the third time they’ve been together physically.

Uh-oh. Connor and Jonathan ask for directions and find out they’re on the wrong side of the city. Jonathan hopes to make it out of America, while I wonder why he didn’t sing his question about directions. Brook is wondering where to turn for parking as she goes right past it, but Ron and Tony hit it right and know they’re either in first or second place. Stephanie’s handkerchief smells bad, and she makes Chad smell it. They reach the pre-flight parking and know there’s only one team in front of them by the cars that are parked there. Jill and Thomas, Katie and Rachel arrive as well. Gary and Mallory, Brook and Claire arrive next, followed by Nat and Kat, who miss the shuttle with the others.

Ron and Tony are looking for the ticket counter with the flag and find it quickly. They get the tickets for the first leg and are already looking forward to the Express Pass. Chad and Stephanie are the next team inside the airpot, but can’t find the flag. She says they need to wait in the line, but they aren’t where the flag is. Jill and Thomas arrive at the right counter and are the second team on the faster flight. Katie and Rachel run into the airport as Chad and Stephanie find out they’re in the wrong spot. It’s Chad and Stephanie who get to the right ticket counter first and get the third set of tickets for the flight.

Katie and Rachel just miss it and now have to head to Virgin Atlantic from American to get the tickets. Gary and Mallory knew right off the bat to head to Virgin Atlantic and are the first to get tickets for this flight, as the other teams all come streaming in. They all do a little meet and greet.

The only team that isn’t there is the one already being nicknamed “Team Glee,” Connor and Jonathan, who everyone thinks looks like Harry Potter. They’re high-fiving and singing about being in last place as they drive around. Over at American, they’re meeting each other as well. Tony thinks they others are surprised he and Ron are dong well, since they have a big fat guy on the team.


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