The Amazing Race Season 19: Introductions

By Daron Aldridge

September 25, 2011

None of these people have ever been in my kitchen. As far as I know.

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Welcome back to the once-again Emmy-winning The Amazing Race. Following last season’s Unfinished Business, which finished quite satisfyingly with LaKisha & Jen victorious, we are presented with a fresh crop of teams that bring no preconceptions. Okay…well…one team does, but I’ll get to that shortly.

Since we have nothing to base their Race acumen on at this point, it’s a complete crapshoot assigning power rankings on anything other than guesswork on how they answer the official CBS questionnaire. So, I will look to how teams performed historically and let those patterns decide my rankings. I am choosing this route because maybe there is something to picking the types of relationships that perform best.

First, after 17 seasons of two-person teams (and one woeful Family Edition season, which I will exclude), the data is in and here’s how it looked for first place finishes:

  • Six of the them have been “Dating/Engaged”

  • Five of them have been “Friends”

  • Four of them have been “Siblings”

  • Only two have been “Married”

You may notice that the one team dynamic underrepresented in the winner’s circle is “Parent/Child.” Even the aforementioned (and not included) Family Edition could not give us a parent/child(ren) winning team.


Drilling down a bit more, the second place teams look like this:

  • Five were “Dating/Engaged”

  • Four were “Siblings”

  • Three of them have been “Friends” and another three were “Separated”

  • One team was “Married” and one was a “Parent/Child” team

Now it’s time for my semi-educated, unscientific prediction of how the 19th season of The Amazing Race.

Bill & Cathi (Married) - As two retired educators (Bill, a high school teacher; and Cathi, a high school principal), this is one team that should appreciate the notion that if you don’t learn from history, you are doomed to repeat it. And the history is that married couples, especially older ones, don’t fare too well on the race. You have to go all the way back to season three’s Ian & Teri to find one that made it to the top two. Bill may just be being flippant about his lack of valuable skills on the race but my first impression is not a strong one. Cathi may have been better suited with another partner. She has to have some sense of stamina and toughness having worked as a high school principal in today’s world. I am going with them as the first one eliminated.

Jeremy & Sandy (Dating) - One’s a real estate broker and the other’s a nurse practitioner for a cosmetic surgeon. Neither of these occupations and the limited information they gave screams “Amazing Race standouts.” They could easily be one of the several forgettable teams that disappears early. This one quote from Jeremy is basis for such a harsh conclusion: “We don’t have any experience working together under pressure.” As least he has self-awareness, but that doesn’t guarantee success in Phil Keoghan’s world. Not all dating teams can make it to the end and they don’t appear to be one of them. Let’s give ‘em two legs of racing and a tenth place finish.

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