Mar 26, 2010, Ep 6: Champagne Wishes

Amazing Race 16 Secret Scenes, Episode 6:  Champagne Wishes

Jordan wishes that Dan (both pictured) would stop blaming him every time they get lost.  Jordan wishes Jeff would stop being such a sore loser and move on!  Jet wishes that he & Cord could find better maps, while Carol & Brandy wish that they had an all-terrain vehicle.  Who gets their wishes granted, and who gets stuck with caviar dreams?

At the Pit Stop

It’s All in the Details:  Phil calls out Caite on hating on Brent during their performance of both Detours.  She denies she did any such thing but Phil isn’t satisfied so he gets the story from Brent.  Caite interjects that Brent will exaggerate.  Brent begins listing all of Caite’s harping on him that we saw in the episode.  Brent admits that they did have a big problem with the champagne glass tower as they didn’t even start with the right amount of rows at the bottom.  Both thought it looked really pretty though.

Phil estimates that they have strength on their side but wonders about their attention to detail.  Brent & Caite both say that hasn’t been a problem and Phil immediately cuts them off with a big ol’ “C’mon!”  They reluctantly admit that in every single leg of the race so far, they’ve messed up on at least one detail.  Brent understands that they have become their own worst enemy now that they are fighting amongst themselves.  Caite insists if they were given a chance to catch up with everyone else, they’d dominate.  Brent disagrees and is sure that while everyone else would go right, they’d go left.

No Regrets for Detectives:  Phil asks about the aftermath of the detectives using the U-Turn on Joe & Heidi.  Michael tells him that all the teams were ecstatic they did it as Joe had managed to cross every team there.  Louie believes that Steve & Allie, although they were in an alliance with Joe & Heidi, were even happy that Joe & Heidi were U-Turn’d.  Phil is amazed that this is their third straight win.  What’s going on?  Michael admits that when they were in South America, he was overthinking and overstressing about it.  But here in Europe, he’s enjoying it immensely.  My comment on that is Europe is almost always the easiest part of the race!

Lessons Learned:  Jeff & Jordan tell Phil that they have a lot to talk about regarding their relationship.  Jeff realizes that there has to be a 50/50 aspect to their relationship.  He needs to understand that Jordan can’t do everything as well as he can.  Jeff rambles a little more and he even catches himself rambling, finally summarizing that he just needs to be patient with Jordan.  He is impressed with how far Jordan did push herself and he hopes that he didn’t push her too hard.

Phil points out that both Jeff & Jordan refused to give up during the race.  Jeff doesn’t do things that way and Jordan didn’t want to look back on this time and have people think that they were the ones who quit.  Phil asks if they were happy that were on The Amazing Race.  Jordan excitedly tells Phil that the experience was awesome and that she got to see lots of new places, she bungee-jumped, and she got to walk across the wire.  Phil asks if she knows where she is now.  Jordan laughs and tells him Champagne, France.  As for Jeff, he can’t deny that he’s disappointed as he doesn’t like to lose.  Regardless, Jeff enjoyed the competition and just wishes he could see more of the world.

The Lost Guys:  Phil checks out Jet & Cord’s ginormous belt buckles and is astounded that they’re not slowing them down.  Jet tells Phil the problems weren’t with running, they were with driving.  He wishes they had gotten the good compass as apparently Cord has metal in his arm and it makes the compass point incorrectly.  Phil wonders about the metal in Cord’s arm but Cord’s not sharing.  Phil calls them the Tough Guys but Jet corrects him as they are the Lost Guys.

Phil brings up Louie & Michael’s impressive performance over the last few legs.  Jet & Cord hang out with Louie & Michael a lot and endlessly swap bull-riding and detective stories.  Jet finds it interesting how similar their careers are with the sheer amount of adrenaline and danger involved.  That common connections has helped to bond the friendship between the two teams.

Who’s in Charge?:  Phil compliments Carol & Brandy on their highest-yet finish.  Carol tells him it would have been closer if they hadn’t wasted time driving around the vineyard.  Phil asks if they’ve managed to find their roles within the team.  Brandy thinks it depends on the day and who picks up the others’ slack when needed.  They combined their powers to help in navigation as well as the judicious use of a local Best Western, where they got some maps and directions twice during the leg.

Phil asks them about their thoughts on Joe & Heidi’s exit from the race.  Carol admits that Joe’s “confidence” was getting to be a bit much for everyone.  Phil presses her for her true feelings and Carol decides to call it arrogance. Carol tells him about Joe’s claims in the bus from Hamburg that he didn’t view any of the other teams as threats.  She also noticed that Joe chose to do the low crawl even with a bad knee, which Carol is beginning to have suspicions about.  Brandy is relieved they’re gone as she knows that Joe would have done anything to win.

Dan & Jordan’s Lovefest:  Dan & Jordan love the remaining teams, especially now that Joe & Heidi are gone.  Their particular favorites are Carol & Brandy and Louie & Michael, since there is a Rhode Island connection with the latter team.  Jordan hopes that Louie & Michael won again.  They think the cowboys are really nice guys, but they don’t know them that well.  They love Steve as he is hilarious.  On the infamous bus ride from Hamburg, when Joe got up and hobbled dramatically off the bus, Steve said in a great voice, “It’s a miracle, he can walk!”  Phil laughs and says that they’re hilarious as they just keep on talking.  Dan asks if Phil has somewhere he needs to be.

Extra Race Footage

Brent & Caite’s Competition:   While driving, Caite considers the cowboys their main competition as they’re very smart.  She likes the other teams but just doesn’t see them as competition.  Brent considers Louie & Michael the big threat.  Caite likes them a lot and considers them father figures.  Brent thinks that besides those two teams, every other team is one that they can overtake as they move along.  Sure, as long as you read the clues accurately and stop messing up!

Caite’s Leg Up in Language:  As Brent & Caite are stacking up their champagne glasses in the Detour, Brent tells us that Caite’s mom is a nurse practitioner and knows a couple of languages.  Because of that, Caite is experienced in other languages.  He knows a little German and he took Swahili in college.  What?  He admits that isn’t helping him here though.  Caite’s knowledge of French was useful here and Caite thinks the French people have been nicer because of it.  Brent thinks it’s because she has boobs.

Language with Louie:  Louie tries his best French reading skills but he admits he’s butchering it:  Tahteeyenga La Mariqwet.  He laughs and then segues into an Italian accent asking to please excuse as he does not know the French.  Michael calls Louie out as he knows that Louie doesn’t even know Italian!  They begin to debate on how Italian is properly pronounced and Michael finally says if they make it to Italy on the race, then Louie will see.

Family Matters:  Allie is embarrassed as she took a lot of French during her education but it was never her strength.  Steve isn’t too concerned as he plans on playing to strangers’ compassion for a man and his daughter in need of help.  He figures if you kindly introduce yourself and explain your situation it will be better received than just screaming “help” in someone’s face.

Coming Into Focus:  Steve recalls rappelling into the champagne vault and while that experience was cake, looking for the marked champagne bottle was a bit harder.  He sort of expected the markings to be bigger but when he finally put his glasses on, the marked bottle appeared right in front of him.  He’s very happy that he brought those with him as he uses them for reading and they came through for him in this situation.

Steve bets that Allie, with her better vision, could have done it but she may have panicked when she realized it wasn’t going to be easy.  There’s only a five-minute time difference in their panic threshold, but that could have made the difference.  Allie had hoped that this Roadblock was going to be a fun one as she had seemingly taken all the fun ones up to that point.  She’s sorry it turned out otherwise.

Room For Error:  Cord is happy to be off the turnpikes as with all the signs being in French, neither of them can tell the difference between the exits and the rest stops.  On a country road, if you miss your turn, you can just turn around right there.  If you miss a turn on the highway, you may have to drive 30-40 km until you can turn around.  With all the mistakes they’ve been making this leg, the country road feel good.

Soldier Returns Home:  Carol mentions how gorgeous the French countryside is that they’re driving through.  If they weren’t running a race, they’d want to stop and sightsee every little thing.  The last leg had a sad element to it when they were at the battlefield.  It turns out that over twenty thousand people had died there.  Crazily enough, the trenches that were dug for The Amazing Race ended up unearthing a French soldier’s body.  There were dog tags on the body and the soldier’s family was able to be contacted.

With all this history around them as well as the many cemeteries there, Carol understands the need to have respect for the area as opposed to just traipsing around.  All the French natives they’ve talked to have been very nice and just want to chat.  Carol asks Brandy if they know how to say “race” in French, and Brandy figures out from the term “Grand Prix” that “prix” is the French word for race.  Pretty quick thinking there, Brandy!  Brandy has found that the race has re-awakened her wanderlust and now she just wants to go get lost in some country.

Carol & Brandy Hit Bottom:  As they’re driving by the vineyard, Carol & Brandy’s car gets mired in the dirt road.  Inspecting their situation, Brandy thinks they’ve high-centered it and Carol asks if it’s possible to back it up.  They get back in and Brandy successfully backs up the car and gets off the high center part of the road.  Flash forward (wrong show!) to the end of the leg and Carol & Brandy explain that they had gone down that road as it looked like it was more formed than it turned out to be.  They got stuck on the high center of the grass and gravel road, and Carol mentions that there were boulders in the road too. Brandy mocks her for that comment and clarifies that there may have been rocks in the road.  Brandy asks if Carol would like to drive tomorrow and Carol excitedly answers yes.

Jordan on Joan:  Jordan’s description of Joan of Arc, based on what he can remember from his history classes:  A very strong female figure, she was a teenager when she died, she was a martyr, (such as), and while he can’t remember the whole story, he swears that she died on the sea (the Iraq).  Now that he thinks about it, he is remembering something but he’s not even sure it’s about Joan of Arc.  Dan admits he didn’t even know that Joan of Arc was a female.  Really?  Wow.  Jordan thinks that maybe Joan was leading a crusade or something.

After the Race

The Blame Game:    After getting so much grief for his navigation skills, Jordan had had enough and wanted to drive instead.  Frequently you put the smarter member of the team in the back to successfully do the navigating.  Dan contends that the split-second decisions you have to make as the driver are crucial and are more important especially when you’re in an unfamiliar area.  Jordan rolls his eyes at that.  Dan is confident that his record in making key guess-turns speaks for itself.  He was just looking for a little more help from Jordan.

Jordan interrupts and says that basically if something goes wrong, it’s Jordan’s fault.  Dan maintains that he keeps a cooler head when things go wrong than Jordan, who typically gets flustered.  Jordan doesn’t accept this and lays out the case that Dan will always blame Jordan if something goes wrong.  Dan is getting tired of this conversation and doesn’t want to discuss it anymore.  Jordan admits that “Daniel” has made some very good driving decisions along the way.  Dan tells us that when they did get lost in South America, Jordan immediately wanted to take over the driving.   Jordan was getting frustrated at that particular point and couldn’t do the navigating anymore, so he wanted to have the less intensive job of driving.

On Jordan’s point that the driver has a less stressful job, Dan stresses that the driver has to navigate and respond just as much as the navigator does.  Jordan replies that in that case, the blame has to be shared 50/50 when the team gets lost.  Dan is tired of this being a discussion on blame and reminds him it’s just about getting un-lost.  Jordan repeats that he doesn’t want to get blamed for bad navigation if they get lost again.  At this point, Dan asks Jordan to please shut up and to talk a little less.  I wonder what set off this discussion after the race?

A Scary Day:  Jet thinks that the lesson from today is to buy better maps.  Neither of them are stupid and both are comfortable with maps, even if they’re in a foreign language.  With a good map, you can at least ask strangers to draw lines to where you need to go.  Today they were just winging it.  Cord admits that on the last hour of the leg, he began to worry that this was the end of the race for them.  It was very worrying because he just isn’t ready to go yet.

Jordan & Jeff Say Farewell:  The stresses of the race revealed different sides of each other that hadn’t been seen before.  Jeff hopes that Jordan understands his take on winning and losing as he knows that she really doesn’t care about that one way or the other – so that’s the key to winning Big Brother!  Jeff figures they’ll need to work on merging their differing viewpoints but it’s safe to say they won’t be opening a business together anytime soon.  Jordan emphatically agrees.  She’ll have her job, Jeff will have his, then at five o’clock, they’ll meet up for dinner and talk.  But she knows they could never work together.

Jordan learned that Jeff is stubborn, as is she, so that was a point where they clashed.  Both are hard-headed as well.  She understands that Jeff is a motivator, but because he’s so loud, she ends up taking it as that he’s mean.  Jordan knows that he’s not being mean, he’s just trying to motivate you.  So that’s something she also learned about Jeff.  They look at each other for a few moments of awkward silence, then Jeff says, “alright.”

Elimination Station

After last week’s overdose of Joe at the Mexican market, let’s hope he’s turned it down just a bit this time.  Please please please!  As the video begins, the gang is out on the deck having a nice lunch of delicious-looking Mexican food.  Everyone is excited about another team arriving because as Adrian puts it, each new arrival adds a new energy to the house.  Cue the mysterious music as we see Jeff & Jordan’s legs as they enter the house.  When they turn the corner to the patio, everyone cheers as they see them.  Once the hugs are finished, Jeff & Jordan catch everyone up on what happened.

Jeff admits that basically they just got lost too much.  Jordan was certain they were going to be eliminated next as they were so far behind everyone else.  For Jordan, she is okay with losing as once you’ve lost, it’s time to move on to the next challenge.  Jeff can’t buy into that line of thinking.  Jordan explains to the group that neither of them could understand French so even when they got directions, they were still clueless.   When asked who they think will win, Jeff & Jordan bet it will be Louie & Michael.  Of course Joe is not a fan of that sentiment at all.

Jeff tells us that being at Elimination Station is just like being evicted out of the Big Brother house.  It’s hard to have to deal with losing again.  Jordan of course is thrilled to be here and thinks this is now a vacation.  She wishes that Jeff would get over losing as there’s nothing else that they can do about it.  It’s over.  Jeff still sees this as a second failure at getting $500K.

The next day the group takes a boat out to do some snorkeling.  Jeff thinks it’s a big pity party as everyone is a loser here.  On the boat ride out to the snorkeling area, the water was a little rough and Monique & Dana got seasick.  Jeff thought it seemed that everyone was complaining on the boat while he was just trying to enjoy the ride.  He can’t see why people would complain about something like that.  Huh? Obviously he’s never been seasick as he’d know why they were complaining, that’s for sure.

Regardless the group was able to see lots of tropical fish from the boat, as they dropped bread into the water and the fish came right up to the surface.  A few of the group jump in to the water to actually snorkel.  This was Jeff’s first snorkeling adventure so he was excited to see what it was all about.  Heidi is a natural mermaid and Jody surprises Shannon by showing how at ease she was in the water.  Adrian had some issues though as he was not at all comfortable in the water.  Heidi helped calm him down by holding his hand while someone else affixed a second life jacket to him.  Once that was on, Adrian was fine.

Fortunately, we don’t end the video thinking that Jeff is a really sore loser.  After the fun day of snorkeling, he admits that you can’t bring the negative energy of losing with you to such a beautiful place.  You’ve just got to enjoy yourself.

Hobie Barnes works in NYC at 30 Rock (the building, not the show). While not conquering Midtown, he might be found watching DVR’d reality TV, learning the guitar, or getting lost on the subway. He can be reached at


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