The razor sharp Mark & Bill made a careless and critical mistake early that cost them dearly on the mat when a time penalty pushed the devastated comic book geeks out of the race. Meanwhile, a rivalry heated up between Nick & Starr and Kelly & Christy and showed no signs of stopping.
During the Pit Stop, sparks flew as Christy accused Starr of pushing her sports bra over the ledge of a window. A stunned Starr denied the accusation, adding, "How does that get us ahead in anything?" However, Christy was skeptical and warned, "If she wants to play dirty she's gonna get something else."
LIVING THE HIGH LIFE
Departing in first place at 12:51am, separated couple Ken & Tina opened their clue instructing them to fly 1,200 miles to La Paz, Bolivia. Standing at 12,000-feet above sea level, La Paz could leave teams breathless-literally. When they landed, they had to make their way to the statue of Simon Bolivar in time for the morning newspaper and scour the classified ads for their next clue.
When they landed in La Paz, siblings Nick & Starr and best friends Mark & Bill immediately noticed the change in altitude. Nick said, "It's a lot harder to breathe than I thought it would be." About himself and his teammate, Bill noted, "Neither of us is in the best of shape. Now it's about endurance at altitude and we're not really sure how that's going to work out."
Soon, all nine teams gathered at the statue of Simon Bolivar where they slept through the night on the hard concrete. The next morning, before the newspaper arrived, Nick offered an olive branch to Starr's rivals, Kelly & Christy, in an effort to repair the strained relationship. Nick said, "I just wanted to open a discourse. I felt a little bit of a cold shoulder from you guys-It's not fun to hate each other on the race for no reason whatsoever." After Christy insisted that Starr pushed the sports bra off the ledge, Nick respected her belief but said he didn't think that his sister did that. Kelly ended the conversation by adding, "We don't really care if people don't like us."
As the teams waited on the busy sidewalk during morning rush hour, a truck pulled up and dropped off a large stack of the daily newspaper. Instantly the teams swarmed the pile, snatched a copy for themselves, and began scouring the classified ads for anything that resembled a clue. Frat boys Andrew & Dan had the sharpest eyes and spotted the clue first, which instructed them to travel to the Narvaez Hat Shop near Plaza Murillo and buy a traditional Cholita hat.
BIKES OR BANDS
Andrew & Dan naturally thought that a taxi would be faster than walking, but they soon realized that traffic in La Paz didn't do them any favors. The frat boys reached Plaza Murillo at the same time as newly dating couple Terence & Sarah, who walked from the Simon Bolivar statue. Both teams entered the Narvaez Hat shop, bought a hat, and opened their clue to find a Detour choice of Musical March or Bumpy Ride. In Musical March, teams had to make their way on foot to two plazas several blocks apart where they needed to collect musicians and form a band. Then they had to make their way to Plaza Abaroa and exchange the band members for their next clue. In Bumpy Ride, teams made their way on foot to Mercado de las Brujas where they had to ride a locally crafted bicycle in a harrowing, bone rattling trip down cobblestone streets to Plaza Abaroa.
For both sides of the Detour, teams received the warning that a U-turn would be coming up ahead at the end of the task. Teams could use the power of a U-turn to slow down another team by forcing them to backtrack and perform the other side of the Detour in addition to the one that they had already completed.
CARELESS CLUE READ
As frat boys Andrew & Dan walked off to collect band members, newly dating couple Terence & Sarah disregarded the clue by getting a taxi to take them to the square instead of traveling by foot. Moments later, best friends and comic book geeks Mark & Bill also took a taxi to Mercado de las Brujas completely oblivious to their mistake and the potential penalty that they could be facing. However, unlike the comic book geeks, Terence & Sarah reread the clue in the taxi and noticed they were supposed to travel on foot. They returned to Plaza Murillo in order to correctly follow the clue and walk to Mercado de las Brujas instead.
HOLD ON TIGHT
The illegal taxi ride helped Mark & Bill in the short run as they arrived first to Mercado de las Brujas where they found large wooden bikes with primitive steering and no cushion for comfort. After putting on a feathered helmet and gloves for protection as well as fashion, the duo's hands shook as they began to ride the rickety bikes over the cobblestone streets. They gripped their handlebars tightly as they continued through the course that culminated with a harrowing ride through a tunnel before reaching Plaza Abaroa. Because they held a comfortable lead, best friends Mark & Bill decided not to use the U-turn and opened their next clue instructing them to travel by taxi eight miles to Los Titanes del Ring.
As other teams began the treacherous bike ride down the steep hills of La Paz at alarming speeds, frat boys Andrew & Dan marched at a much slower pace through the streets of the city. Dan became frustrated that he couldn't persuade the band members to walk faster, but he mostly complained rather than encourage the musicians. Meanwhile, southern belles Marisa & Brooke broke out in huge grins as their band played, clapping and guiding the musicians. This encouragement made the southern belle's band walk faster than the sour faced Andrew & Dan who they passed before reaching Plaza Abaroa.
With all of the drama that occurred at the Pit Stop, divorcees Kelly & Christy were worried that their rivals Nick & Starr would U-turn them. However, the siblings were not a threat as they fell into last place with mother and son Toni & Dallas when the two teams couldn't find the hat shop. During the Detour, Christy proved particularly ungraceful on the bicycle and she demonstrated her lack of coordination by wiping out on a sidewalk and skidding into a building wall headfirst. While she only suffered mild bumps and bruises, Christy & Kelly slowly lost the lead they had built over Nick & Starr.
TIME TO U-TURN?
Eventually, the siblings Nick & Starr overtook the divorcees and passed them on their bikes with the U-turn in their sights. Arriving at Plaza Abaroa along with long distance dating couple Ty & Aja, Nick & Starr propositioned the couple to U-turn Kelly & Christy instead of them. Ultimately, the siblings arrived at the U-turn before Ty & Aja and opted not to use it after some deliberation whether to push Kelly & Christy further behind. In their taxi afterward, Ty & Aja expressed some irritation at Nick & Starr's suggestion for them to U-turn Kelly & Christy. Ty said, "They don't have the guts to do it. They're probably planning on using it later and they wanted us to be stupid."
With Mark & Bill's taxi stopping for gas, separated couple Ken & Tina arrived at Los Titanes del Ring in first place where they found a Road Block. In it, one team member had to hand the hat they bought to a woman known as a fighting cholita and don a colorful wrestling costume. In a private ring outside of the arena, their cholita would teach them a wrestling routine made up of six moves. When they felt ready to complete the routine, they would return to the main arena with their cholita for the performance. If they messed up, they would have to train again and fight until they got it right.
After Ken got over the initial shock of having to fight a woman, he donned a bright orange costume complete with gold cape and learned the moves as the cholita tossed him from side to side. When Ken felt he was ready to perform, he ran into the arena soaking in the loud cheers of the crowd including wife, Tina. Ken looked like a professional wrestler as he body slammed and slingshot before capping the routine with a pin to earn the next clue. Opening it, Ken and Tina discovered they were headed to the Pit Stop at el Mirador del Monticulo, a hillside park overlooking the city.
While Ken made the routine look easy, it proved more difficult for other racers. Mark's feet got tangled in the ropes as he fumbled reentering the ring forcing him to return to the practice area. Southern belle Marisa also missed a crucial move allowing Dallas who arrived at the Roadblock in fourth to climb up to second place when he completed the routine flawlessly as his mother cheered him on.
Showing up at the arena in last place, Christy waited ringside while Kelly learned the moves in the practice area. Waiting for Ty to wrestle, Aja walked up to Christy and told her that Starr asked them to U-turn Kelly & Christy. An upset Christy thanked Aja for telling her this.
The altitude and physicality of the task took its toll on Mark who failed to complete the routine a second time and needed oxygen in order to continue. Now having fallen down to seventh place ahead of only Terence & Sarah and Kelly & Christy, Mark took one more shot at the routine and finally earned his clue. In the taxi, he quipped, "I am a luchadore."
RACE TO PHIL
Arriving at the Pit Stop in first place, separated couple Ken & Tina received the good news from Phil that they had won a trip for two from Travelocity to Cabo San Lucas, Mexico. On their success, Ken remarked, "We definitely feel like we're on a positive roll in our relationship is becoming, for me anyway, much more enjoyable."
A wild cab race through the congested streets of La Paz caused anxiety as elimination loomed large. Terence & Sarah left the arena in second to last place, ahead of only Kelly & Christy, but with the help of a great driver, they arrived at the Pit Stop in third place, just ahead of southern belles Marisa & Brooke.
After Ty & Aja, Nick & Starr, and Andrew & Dan nabbed fifth, sixth, and seventh place respectively, best friends Mark & Bill landed on the mat in eighth place knowing they would be receiving a penalty for taking a taxi during the Detour. Phil informed them they needed to wait 30 minutes before he could check them in. A nervous Mark took a seat, saying, "I don't want to be out."
In the taxi ride to the Pit Stop, Christy told Kelly the piece of information from Aja that Starr wanted Aja to U-turn them. An irritated Kelly responded, "That's why I don't like her. I'm gonna confront her." A glum Christy reminded her, "We have to not be eliminated. I sure hope we're not." Kelly joked, "If we're going home, I will scream obscenities out to Starr before I leave."
With time still ticking on the penalty clock, divorcees Kelly & Christy stepped onto the mat expecting to be eliminated. The pair stood in shock when Phil informed them of Mark & Bill's penalty that now put Kelly & Christy in eighth place. After Phil eliminated a devastated Mark & Bill, Mark commented, "We came into this thinking we can't compete physically. We know that, but we can compete mentally and you would think that we would read the clue and read it better." Bill added, "THE AMAZING RACE is the hardest game I've ever played and running THE AMAZING RACE with Mark has been just a wonderful experience."
1303 ROUTE MARKERS
Road Block: A Road Block is a task that only one person can perform. In this Road Block, that team member had to hand the hat they bought to a woman known as a fighting cholita and don a colorful wrestling costume. In a private ring outside of the arena, their cholita would teach them a wrestling made up of six moves. When they felt ready to perform the routine, they would return to the main arena with their cholita for the performance. If they messed up, they would have to train again and fight until they got it right.
Performed Road Block: MARK, SARAH, NICK, KEN, DALLAS, DAN, TY, KELLY, MARISA
Detour: A Detour is a choice between two tasks, each with its pros and cons. In this Detour, teams had to choose between Musical March or Bumpy Ride. In Musical March, teams had to make their way on foot to two plazas several blocks apart where they needed to collect musicians and form a band. Then they had to make their way to Plaza Abaroa and exchange the band members for their next clue. In Bumpy Ride, teams made their way on foot to Mercado de las Brujas where they had to ride a locally crafted bicycle in a harrowing, bone rattling trip down cobblestone streets to Plaza Abaroa.
Musical March: MARISA/BROOKE, ANDREW/DAN
Bumpy Ride: MARK/BILL, TERENCE/SARAH, KELLY/CHRISTY, TONI/DALLAS, NICK/STARR, KEN/TINA, TY/AJA
U-turn: No one used the U-turn
Order of Finish:1. Ken & Tina