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Amazing Race’s 23rd season saw 11 teams starting from an old-western movie ranch in Southern California. Five teams of friends, two teams of couples, one team of cousins, one father/daughter team, a team of exes, and a team of baseball wives learned that if they won the first leg, they would not only win an Express Pass for themselves, but a second, which they must present to another team of their choice before the end of the fifth leg, a twist which was first introduced last season, allowing teams to form alliances early on.
Teams started by racing to LAX to board flights to Iquique, Chile. There was a limited number of seats on the first flight, which arrived two and a half hours before the second. Teams on the first flight included Leo and Jamal, Chester and Ephraim, Rowan and Shane, Tim and Marie, Ally and Ashley, Nicky and Kim and Nicole and Travis. Following behind them were Brandon and Adam, Jason and Amy, Hoskote and Naina, and Tim and Danny.
Once arriving in Chile, teams encountered a roadblock, where one team member had to jump off a cliff and paraglide while the other followed them along the road before they would receive their next clue. Here, Nicky was forced to confront a fear of heights, thinking of her son in order to get through it. Jamal and Ashley both made mistakes in letting their taxis go, and a possible tension began between Jamal and Marie after she took the taxi he had ordered for himself.
After beating the roadblock, teams had to make their way to Muelle Prat, where they would search for their next clue. There, they encountered another roadblock: they had to row heavy boats among ships to collect a total of five fish from any of three specific boats with only a small number of fish on them. They then had to deliver the fish before receiving their next clue. Whoever did not follow on the ground during the first roadblock had to complete this one.
They then had to go by foot to the Pit Stop, the Municipal Theater of Iquique.
First to the mat were Nicole and Travis, the married doctors from Atlanta, Ga. but they accrued a 30-minute penalty for taking a taxi there. They were then knocked down to second place when Tim and Marie, the exes from Morristown, N.J. came in first, winning the coveted Express Passes. In third were Rowan and Shane, the theater performers from Charlotte, N.C. Following closely behind were Chester and Ephraim, the friends and football players from Houston, Texas, and Nicky and Kim, the baseball wives from the Midwest in fourth and fifth. Finishing in sixth were Ally and Ashley, the L.A. Kings Ice Crew Girls from Long Beach, Calif.
At the second roadblock, Leo and Jamal, the cousins from Southern Calif., read the clue incorrectly, and had to start over because Jamal was rowing instead of Leo, who had actually gone paragliding. This mistake landed them in seventh place.
Of the teams who arrived in Chile later, Jason and Amy, the dating couple from New England, arrived in eighth and Tim and Danny, the best friends from Cordell, Okla., were ninth.
After Hoskote and Naina, the father/daughter team from Laguna Niguel, Calif. made the same mistake as Leo and Jamal at the second roadblock, they finished behind Brandon and Adam, the childhood friends from Chico, Calif. As a result, they were the first team eliminated.
Photo Courtesy of CBS