|The Amazing Race 8|
The Amazing Race: Family Edition logo
|Presented by||Phil Keoghan|
|No. of teams||10|
|Winners||Nick, Alex, Megan and|
|No. of legs||11|
|Distance traveled||11,000 mi (18,000 km)|
|No. of episodes||11|
|Original release||September 27 -|
December 13, 2005
|Filming dates||July 7, 2005 - July 31, 2005|
The Amazing Race 8 (also known as The Amazing Race: Family Edition) was the eighth installment of the American reality television show The Amazing Race. Previous installments of The Amazing Race featured pairs of adults with a pre-existing relationship but The Amazing Race 8 featured ten families of four and allowed the participation of minors as young as eight years old. Filming ran from July 7, 2005 to July 31, 2005. The show premiered on Tuesday, September 27, 2005, and concluded on Tuesday, December 13, 2005.
Siblings Nick, Alex, Megan, and Tommy Linz were the winners of this season. This is the last of four consecutive seasons in which the winning teams consisted of at least one man and one woman. At 19 and 21 years of age respectively, Tommy and Megan became the youngest male and female to win the US series (Starr Spangler of Season 13 later equaled Megan's record).
A DVD set of this season was released on October 23, 2012, via Amazon.com's CreateSpace program.
The eighth season of The Amazing Race spanned 11,000 miles (18,000 km), the shortest route of the series. This Race placed less emphasis on international travel as numerous legs were contained within the continental United States, and all Race locations were inside North America. Panama and Costa Rica were countries included in the race for the first time. Filming took place between July 7, 2005 and July 31, 2005.
Route markers were colored yellow and white with black lining, similar to the yellow and white route markers of Season one (and in contrast to the yellow and red markers used in all other seasons). As with The Amazing Race 7, the winners of this season were revealed in an online betting scandal before the airing of the final episode.
For this Race, the supplied credit card covered not only airfare but also gasoline. Previously, gasoline had to be purchased with the supplied cash. The rule change was made necessary by the fact that most of the transportation takes place in automobiles rather than airplanes.
The limits on individual Roadblock attempts, found in Season six and seven, were lifted for this season. Furthermore, some Roadblocks in this edition required the participation of two team members. Also, for the first time since Season five, a mid-race leg (specifically, Leg 4) was aired as not having a Roadblock.
During Leg 1, Renee Rogers fell at the Starting Line and suffered a concussion. The Rogers Family did not realize the severity of the injury until they had gone to a hospital after being eliminated from the Race during the next leg.
During Leg 6, at Poás Volcano, the clue envelope appeared to contain Fast Forward instructions; however, this was not mentioned or described, since either no team took advantage or plans for the task fell through. The Fast Forward in Leg 5 was introduced as the only one in the Race as the show was televised. An online source claims that the task was simply not used, and all references were excised in editing.
In March 2005, host Phil Keoghan toured several cities in the United States (Cleveland, Detroit, Chicago, St. Louis, Kansas City, Denver, Albuquerque, Phoenix, and Los Angeles) to scout contestants for the race. Final casting interviews took place in Las Vegas.
The full list of families that participated the Race (with their relationships) follow, in alphabetical order:
Linda Weaver's husband, Roy, a track safety worker, was killed in an accident when he was run over by a race car at Daytona International Speedway in 2004. She reluctantly participated in two challenges directly related to racing. One was a go-kart race in Arizona, and the other involved traveling around Talladega Superspeedway on a party bike.
Billy and Carissa Gaghan wrote introductions for My Ox is Broken, a book about The Amazing Race.
This is one of the three seasons (among the first ten) that was not represented in The Amazing Race: All-Stars.
The following teams participated in the Race, each listed along with their placements in each leg and relationships as identified by the program. Note that this table is not necessarily reflective of all content broadcast on television, owing to the inclusion or exclusion of some data. Placements are listed in finishing order:
|Family||Relationship||Position (by leg)||Roadblocks|
|Bransen Family||Dad and Daughters||7th||6th||1st||1st||3rd||3rd||5th||4th||2nd||1st||1st||1st||2nd|
|Weaver Family||Widow and Kids||3rd||1st||5th||5th||2nd||5th<||2nd||3rd||4th<||2nd||3rd||3rd||3rd|
|Paolo Family||Dad, Mom and Kids||6th||8th||6th||2nd||1st?||1st>||4th||5th|
|Gaghan Family||Dad, Mom and Kids||2nd||7th||7th||6th||5th||6th|
|Aiello Family||Father and Sons-in-Law||8th||5th||8th|
|Rogers Family||Dad, Mom and Kids||4th||9th|
|Black Family||Dad, Mom and Kids||10th|
Episode titles are often taken from quotes made by the racers.
Individual prizes were awarded to the first family to complete each leg, with trips provided by Travelocity. The prizes were:
Airdate: September 27, 2005
The first Detour of the Race was a choice between Build It or Buggy It. In Build It, teams needed to use a set of provided materials to construct a functioning scale model of a watermill. Once assembled, they then used two buckets of water to power the mill and prove their work to receive their next clue. In Buggy It, two members from each team had to pull a traditional Amish buggy along a 1.5-mile (2.4 km) course while the other two rode inside to receive their next clue after completing the course.
Airdate: October 4, 2005
For this Roadblock, one team member had to search for one of ten spies among 50 people carrying an identical briefcase around the Tidal Basin. To identify the spy, he or she had to whisper a code phrase, "The sky is blue", but only a spy would respond with the countersign phrase, "The sea is green", and the spy swapped briefcases with the tem member, where they would fine their next clue upon opening the briefcase. This task would be featured in Season 22 as a Switchback.
The Detour at Welbourne Manor was a choice between Heat of the Battle and Heat of the Night. In Heat of the Battle, teams took part in a full-scale American Civil War reenactment and had to use stretchers to transport five wounded soldiers off the battlefield to a surgical tent, where they received the next clue. In Heat of the Night, teams had to take a barrel of oil and a keg of kerosene to a workstation, where they had to fill 20 oil lamps. Once done, they must light all of the lamps and take them to the quartermaster to receive the next clue.
Airdate: October 11, 2005
For this Detour, teams had to choose between Forrest Gump or Muddy Waters. In Forrest Gump, teams had to drive 7 miles (11 km) to Wando Shrimp Co. in Mount Pleasant, and hop onto a shrimp boat. They then had to use their hands to de-head 200 pounds (91 kg) of shrimp to receive their next clue. In Muddy Waters, teams had to drive 37 miles (60 km) to Ridgeville and find the Ridgeville Mud Run. Once there, teams drove a 4x4 SUV one lap through a mud obstacle course, including a 400-foot (120 m) gully filled with mud, to receive their next clue. If they got stuck, they would have to wait to be towed out and restart the course.
Airdate: October 18, 2005
There was a Roadblock on this leg that required one team member to climb to the top of the World's Largest Office Chair to receive their next clue; however, this was aired as a miscellaneous task.
The Detour was a choice between Work or Play. In Work, teams first had to don flannel clothing then use a two-person handsaw to cut four slices off a log, 12 inches (300 mm) in diameter, to receive their next clue from a lumberjack. In Play, teams had to don traditional New Orleans clothing, then make their way by canoe to a riverboat where they played a game of blackjack against a professional dealer. To win a round, the hand of each team member must have a combined total of more than the dealer's hand after the dealer stays at 17, or go bust (go over 21). When the team won three rounds, the dealer would give them their clue.
Airdate: October 25, 2005
For the only aired Fast Forward on the Race, one team had to find a crane at the Pacific side of Panama Canal, on Pier 14 in Balboa. Once there, the family must split into pairs to perform a tandem bungee jump, 140 feet (43 m) above sea level. Once all members completed the drop, they would win the Fast Forward award.
The Detour was a choice between Rhythm or Coos. In Rhythm, teams traveled to Casco Viejo (English: Old Quarter) to collect four musical instruments: a saxophone (from Teatro Nacional de Panamá), a trumpet (from Escuela Simón Bolívar), a conga drum (from Casa Góngora) and a trombone (from Instituto Nacional de Cultura). Once they retrieved all the instruments, they had to deliver them by foot to Take Five Jazz and Wine where the band leader would hand them their next clue. In Coos, teams traveled to El Parque Metropolitan, where they had to use binoculars to search the rainforest canopy for wooden replicas of five local bird species from a provided bird identification card. Once a bird was found, they had to circle the correct species on the card. When they had five correct circles, they presented the card to the bird expert to get their next clue. However, if they circled the wrong birds, they would have to repeat the task.
For this Roadblock, one team member to had to play baseball against a local little-league champion inside Estadio Juan Demóstenes Arosemena. If they got a base hit or home run, the umpire would give them their next clue. But if a player failed after three pitches, they would have to go back to the end of the line to try again.
Airdate: November 1, 2005
In this Roadblock, one team member had to search through an 800-pound (360 kg) pile of coffee beans to find the one red bean that they had to give to the plantation manager for their next clue.
The Detour was a choice between Relic or Ripe. In Relic, teams traveled to a nearby rainforest within Manuel Antonio National Park, where they had to search for four Mayan relics on six road bridges. Once they delivered each of these relics to an archaeologist, they would receive the next clue. In Ripe, teams traveled to the Frutas Selectas del Tropico banana plantation, where they had to gather 15 bushels of bananas and load them onto hanging tracks. Teams then had to use a local pulling-system to haul the fruit to the distribution center. Once delivered, the foreman would give them their next clue.
There was an unaired Fast Forward during this leg, as teams were seen holding a Fast Forward at Poás Volcano National Park. However, this Fast Forward was unaired, and further details are unknown.
Airdate: November 8, 2005
The Detour was a choice between Brush or Barrel. In Brush, teams had to travel 10 miles (16 km) to Taller Eloy Alfaro in Sarchí. Once there, they must choose two partially painted cartwheels, and use the provided pattern to fill-in the missing section. When they finished decorating the wheel and the artist approved their work, they would receive their clue. In Barrel, teams traveled 10 miles (16 km) to a Sugarcane factory called Ingenio La Argentina, where they had to load a tractor with one tonne (0.98 long tons; 1.1 short tons) of harvested sugarcane, then transport it 6 miles (9.7 km) to the rum factory Fabrica Nacional de Licores. Once the sugarcane was delivered, they had to search a warehouse to find a marked barrel-rack hidden among dozens of rum barrels to receive their next clue.
In this leg's Roadblock, one team member had to drive a racing go-kart at Bondurant SuperKart School for 50 laps of the race track. Once they successfully completed all the laps, they received their next clue.
Airdate: November 8, 2005
In this leg's Roadblock, teams traveled to Fighter Combat International at Phoenix-Mesa Gateway Airport. One team member had to fly in a fighter plane and, following the pilot's direction, perform a 360-degree loop. Once the loop was completed, they would land and get their next clue.
The Detour was a choice between Bearing or Bailing. For both Detours options, the teams traveled by motorized raft to Horseshoe Bend along the Colorado River. In Bearing, teams had to choose one of five color-coded card with unique compass bearing. They then followed the bearing to the next card and repeated the process until they obtained four cards. Once teams had all four cards, they could exchange them for the next clue. In Bailing, teams had to use their hands and provided tools to bail water out of a submerged boat until it was light enough to carry. Once the boat had been carried ashore and across a line in the sand, teams would receive their next clue.
Airdate: November 22, 2005
The Detour was a choice between Ride Down or Drop Down. In Ride Down, teams had to choose bikes and ride a 6-mile (9.7 km) course down the mountain, then to Bull Canyon to retrieve their next clue. In Drop Down, teams completed a two-stage rappel, totalling 270 feet (82 m), to reach Bull Canyon and their next clue.
For the Roadblock, one team member was required to put on skis and descend a 60-foot (18 m) ski-jump training ramp into an Olympic pool to get their next clue.
Airdate: November 29, 2005
The Detour, at the Heber Valley Railway, was a choice between Spike It or Steam It. In Spike It, teams used historic materials and tools to complete a 20-foot (6.1 m) section of railway track. In Steam It, teams used buckets to fill the tender of a steam locomotive with nearly 400 pounds (180 kg) of coal. In both Detours, teams would need to get their work approved by a railway engineer before receiving their next clue.
The first Roadblock required two team members mounted horses and took six cattle from a holding pen, herding them a quarter-mile (400 m) into a corral. Once completed, the cowboy would give them their next clue.
Airdate: December 6, 2005
At the second Detour, teams had a choice between Pioneer Spirit or Native Tradition. In Pioneer Spirit, teams had to attach four wheels to a covered wagon, hook up a team of horses, and drive along a quarter-mile (400 m) course. In Native Tradition, teams had to use traditional materials and tools to build a teepee.
In the second Roadblock, two team members chose a colored flag and attached it to a Buick Lucerne golf cart. They then drove to the Red Lodge Mountain golf course and searched for balls the same color as their flag. Once the task was completed, the golf pro would give them their next clue.
Airdate: December 13, 2005
The first Detour of the double-leg was a choice between Slide It or Roll It. In Slide It, teams traveled to Glenfinnan Rink at McGill University to participate in the sport of curling. Each team member glided a granite stone 120 feet (37 m) down the ice to the house target. Once a team member got a stone into the house or touched the house with a total of 4 targets, they would receive their next clue. In Roll It, teams traveled to Morgan Arboretum and had to use lumberjack tools to roll four wooden logs along the 100-foot (30 m) course in order to receive their next clue from the lumberjack.
In the leg's first Roadblock, teams traveled to La Porte J at Trapezium, where one team member had to successfully complete a flying trapeze maneuver known as a "catch" in order to receive their clue.
The final Detour of the Race was a choice between Ship or Shoe. In Ship, teams sailed across Toronto Harbour from Queens Quay to the schooner Kajama. One team member climbed 100 feet (30 m) to the top of the mast to retrieve a nautical flag. Once they retrieved the flag, the captain would hand them their next clue. In Shoe, teams traveled to Bata Shoe Museum, where they would choose a pair of shoes; when they found a woman wearing a matching shoe among 100 women standing in the museum, they would receive their next clue.
For the final Roadblock of the Race, one team member had to assemble a 71 piece giant jigsaw puzzle map of Central and North America (excluding the Caribbean). Once the puzzle was completed, teams were allowed to go to the Finish Line.
Fans, critics, and racers were lukewarm over the format changes implemented in this edition of The Amazing Race. The main issues were the lack of international travel and watered-down challenges tailored to families. The expanded cast also made it more difficult to develop individual story lines. Entertainment Weekly commented that "Half the fun of The Amazing Race has always been watching the inter- and intra-couple bickering that goes with being chronically late and lost in a foreign land. Seeing parents yell at their children in exotic New Jersey? Not so fun".USA Today shared similar opinions, adding that "the idea of being trapped in the back seat for a forced cross-country family drive comes closer to a nightmare relived than a dream come true." Racers were also disappointed that they did not have a chance to travel to more exotic locations, in one episode Marion Paolo commented "Why are we going to Phoenix, Arizona for? I want to go to New Zealand!" - a statement that also summed up the general opinion of the season.
In hindsight, the production team has admitted that the concept of a Family Edition "looked good on paper" but failed in execution, since child racers limited foreign travel for that season. Creators Bertram Van Munster and Jonathan Littman doubt that the family format will be revived in the future.
|1||"Go Mommy Go We Can Beat Them"||2.62||#5|
|2||"How Do We Know We Arent Going to Get Shot?"||2.34||#4|
|3||"I Dont Kiss, I Make Out"||2.30||#4|
|4||"Think Like An Office Chair"||2.65||#5|
|5||"Were Getting Out of the Country, Girls"||2.14||#5|
|6||"Im Sick of Doing Stuff I Can't Do"||2.14||#5|
|7||"You Look Ridiculous"||2.12||#8|
|8||"Hows That Face Feel"||2.20||#7|
|9||"Dont Talk To Me Like I Was An Animal Or Something"||1.97||#9|
|10||"The Family Christmas Card"||2.25||#5|
|11||"25 Days 50 Cities And More Than 600 Consecutive Hours Together as a Family"||2.66||#1|