The Amazing Race Season 30: Episode 8 Recap Part 2

By Kim Hollis and David Mumpower

February 21, 2018

Ha ha! Non-elimination!

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And now we’re on to the second hour of The Amazing Race, which is annoying because we pretty much know that this is going to be a non-elimination leg. Prove us wrong, Keoghan.

Teams are headed 3,000 miles to the distant destination of Chiang Mai, Thailand. When they arrive, they will get into a vehicle called the Santao, which will transport them around this ancient city known as the Rose of the North. Their first stop will be Royal Park Rajapruek, where they will search for their next clue amongst an elaborate garden with elephant sculptures. Actually, what they need to do is find a garland and then present it to a woman who will give them their clue.

As you’ll know from the previous episode, Alex & Conor are leaving first. Conor tells us that they are in the pole position, and then continues on to mansplain the definition of “pole position.” Thanks, Conor! We had no idea!

For his part, Alex says that there are only four teams left and that they’ll have to race at their highest level. Except they won’t. This is a non-elimination leg and none of this matters.

Prove us wrong, Keoghan.

Naturally, since they’re going 3,000 miles, all the teams will be bunched together again. That doesn’t stop the racecar drivers, Team Extreme, and Big Brother from stressing about whether Evan & Henry might have gotten on a better flight. These three teams have bonded and want to be in the final three together. There’s no room for smarty pantses from Yale.

Once in Thailand, teams quickly learn that it is difficult to communicate with their Santao drivers because there is a barrier between driver and passenger. Alex & Conor try to tell their driver to hurry, but even if the guy could hear them, they’re speaking in Spanish.

All four teams are at the elephant garden at about the same time, but Alex & Conor are first to get their clue, which gets them started on a Detour. For “Size It,” they’ll have to help take care of elephants at the Patara Elephant Sanctuary by measuring height and weight. “Seize It” would send them to a muddy rice paddy to catch 20 bullfrogs. The elephant challenge seems much easier. Let’s see which way they go.

Jessica & Cody struggle to find a lady to give them a clue, but we don’t believe they’re too far behind. They’re all struggling to find their detour locations, anyway, and without being able to communicate with their drivers it’s that much harder.

Alex & Conor have chosen to catch bullfrogs, and they wisely watch the kids as they catch them. Cody & Jessica also show up to the frog area, and since Cody is great at everything, they should clear the challenge in short order.

Conor will probably wander around and hope Alex does all the work.

Both Team Extreme and Yale are lost, with Yale actually trying to follow the skiers. Jen & Kristi aren’t having it though, and while they’re all out talking to their drivers, the women tell their driver to hurry up and leave. The skiers have also chosen the frog challenge, though they are REALLY not sure about it once they arrive. They quickly decide to go to the other challenge instead.

Evan & Henry are at the elephant sanctuary, and they are delighted to interact with these majestic animals. They must measure the elephant for healthcare purposes, but before they can do that, they’ll need to “become friends” with the elephant.

Using a tape measure on an elephant is NOT easy, and it’s certainly something we didn’t take into account. The elephant moves around a lot, which makes it difficult to get accurate measurments.

Team Big Brother is doing semi-okay at the bullfrog challenge thanks to the awesomeness of Cody, but Alex isn’t able to catch any frogs initially. And we know Conor isn’t going to do anything. They do acknowledge, “Cody is a badass Marine, man.”


After their first set of measurements, Evan & Henry get a thumbs down from the veterinarian. Kristi & Jen, on the other hand, get it right on the first try. Take that, Yale University! Team Extreme is SUPER excited when they learn they will get to ride their elephant to the next location! This Detour has been fantastic. The elephants are delightful, both adults and babies. And the frog challenge has really brought out the fun side of Alex & Conor, who finally get into a frog-catching groove, though not one to match Cody.

Indeed, Cody gets his 20 and he and Jessica are next instructed to go to the Original Khantoke Restaurant for their clue. Alex & Conor aren’t far behind, though. Still, it took both guys to get the same number of frogs that Cody gathered on his own.

After re-measuring, Evan & Henry are unsure what they did wrong. They swap out numbers but get denied by the veterinarian again. Meanwhile, Kristi & Jen are feeding yummy fruit to their elephant and receiving their next clue.

Third time is a charm for Yale, but that doesn’t stop Team Extreme from gloating that they beat the Ivy League grads at math.

With Cody & Jessica continuing to struggle to communicate with their driver, Alex & Conor are able to get to the clue – and the Road Block – first. The challenge is titled “Thai Something New,” which is… gross. One teammate must eat three scorpions (a delicacy in Thailand) and a frog (aw, come on! We just fell in love with frogs!) while their partner has live scorpions crawling all over them. Just, yuck. This challenge is the kind of thing we’d LOVE to fast forward through.

Conor seems to regret letting Alex be the designated eater on this one. (Where are Eater X and Joey Chestnut when there’s a challenge right in their wheelhouse?!!) But his discomfort at the scorpions isn’t going to be half as hilarious as Jessica’s, because Cody immediately announces he’ll do this Detour, meaning she’ll be the recipient of creeping, crawling scorpions.

Alex finishes and gets his clue, and Conor begs the people to get the scorpions off of him. They now must head to the Pit Stop at Wat Chedi Luang, a Buddhist meditation temple. Cody finishes the frog and Jessica makes noises that aren’t quite human as she bemoans her experience with the scorpions.

Jen & Kristi have arrived at the scorpion dinner. Jen is NOT thrilled to be eating scorpions, and is initially annoyed when Kristi yells, “Eat fast!” Then, she realizes that Kristi’s shirt is crawling with scorpions and understands the urgency of the situation. Jen says that she just started swallowing, because “chewing wasn’t going to get you anywhere.”

Now, all teams are headed to the Pit Stop except for Evan & Henry. Evan will be the designated eater for their team, which means Henry gets to experience the creepy crawlies. Henry doesn’t really mind the scorpions, but Evan can barely swallow them.

At the finish line, Alex & Conor arrive in first place, with Cody & Jessica right behind them. Alex & Conor will win a trip to Curacao, and they have no idea where it is.

For her part, Jessica admits, “I contributed nothing to this leg of the Race.” Hey, she’s still better than Conor.

It’s cute that the editors try to make it seem like it could possibly be close between Team Extreme and Yale, but we all know that Kristi & Jen are the third place team. This means that Evan & Henry are our last place team who will not be eliminated. Phil Keoghan does not prove us wrong. He informs the duo that they’ll continue to Race and will only have to perform a Speed Bump in the next leg.

Next up, the two-hour finale! It’s been a short but fun season!



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