Hippies Win the Race

After 59,000 miles, 9 countries, and 5 continents, the Hippies edged out the Jocks and the Tokens to win this 9th edition of the Amazing Race. Although like Cartman I hated the Hippies throughout the race, I have to give them props for going from last to first two legs before the end and keeping their lead through the finish. They also beat the Jocks in the paddleboat sprint, which showed that they were not only smart, but a physical threat if need be. Their win is well deserved.

In this episode, teams made their way from Thailand to Tokyo, Japan on the first leg. Surprisingly, Tyler from the Hippies team revealed that he spoke Japanese, who would have thunk it? Well, that didn’t help the Hippies get on the first flight out of Thailand. Ray & Yolanda and the Jocks made it out of Thailand on the first flight, while the Hippies were left behind. So they were bringing up the rear, but had the language advantage.

Immediately after arriving in Tokyo, teams were given their own cars and started driving towards Shibuya Crossing. That’s dangerous. Let me tell you, driving in Japan on the wrong side of the street is not an easy task. It is scary as all hell as a passenger because you tend to forget that you are on the wrong side and freak out every time you make a turn onto a divided highway.

In what had to be the most embarrassing and funniest moment in this race, Ray & Yolanda lost their toll road ticket. At the toll plaza, they couldn’t produce the ticket and cars were losing it with people honking incessantly behind them. It is unclear to me how they could lose a ticket in the car, unless Ray actually threw the ticket out the window. Either way, the look on the toll booth operator’s face was hilarious. The fact that they couldn’t understand Japanese made it all the funnier.

A paddleboat sprint to the Pit Stop ensued between the Hippies and the Jocks and the Hippies prevailed. The Jocks were surprised at the fact that they couldn’t beat the Hippies in this physical task. I wasn’t too surprised though. In the first episode it seemed that the Hippies were the least affected by altitude sickness and managed to sprint to their vehicles faster than all of the other teams.

Ray & Yolanda’s driving troubles were too much to bear and they ended up coming in last place. They lost all of their possessions heading into the final leg leaving Japan. This is especially tough because of the language barrier and the cultural aversion to panhandling. Chances are that they will be unable to make their way out of this situation into first place. Alas, it looked as though the final leg was going to be the Hippies vs. the Jocks.

In the final episode, teams made their way from Japan to Anchorage, Alaska on the second leg. It looked as though Ray & Yolanda would be pretty screwed, but they stopped at a restaurant filled with Japanese businessmen and managed to raise a bunch of money. The businessmen were drunk as hell and told Yolanda that she looked like Janet Jackson, like I said they were drunk.

The Hippies got a hotel clerk to “help” them by not telling the Jocks that there was Internet service at the hotel they were waiting at prior to heading to the airport. The Hippies went online and found a slower set of flights to Alaska than the Jocks who booked their flight over the phone. Sneaky bitches! They eventually recovered from this sneaky play that was a mistake in their part.

Ray & Yolanda were unsure about their directions and were they were going even in Alaska. This had nothing to do with a language barrier as in Japan. They just sucked at driving and directions during the entire race. This basically left them in third place during the entire leg. They would catch up to the Hippies and the Jocks and immediately squander their position immediately as they started driving. As they drove they got further and further behind.

Because of the weather, teams were forced to do the Drill It Detour since they were not allowed to do the Deliver It Detour. The weather delay according to the pilot could be “5 minutes or 5 days,” the decision was easy, start drilling. The Jocks beat the Hippies in the physical Drill It Detour as if to prove a point. You can tell that it was payback for the paddleboat sprint they lost to them in the previous leg.

In the next task teams needed to put on snow shoes to find their next clue. They managed to pass by the snow shoes that were lined up outside not once, not twice, but three times. How lame were they? They didn’t seem too deserving of winning the money at this point. I would like to think that they couldn’t think straight because of the cold. I mean, the cold can mess with your brain.

The Hippies eventually figured it out and completed the task. As did Ray & Yolanda. They all bunched up at the airport again! At the airport on the way to Denver, Colorado, the Hippies asked the Jocks, “Is it the million bucks that’s coming between us?” Eric was like “Yeah!” Idiots. I hate the Hippies.

After landing in Denver, Ray & Yolanda immediately fell behind even though they weren’t driving. I guess bad car karma follows some teams no matter what. It was between the Jocks and the Hippies on the way to the finish line. Although the Jocks got to the final Roadblock before the finish line first, they couldn’t figure out the order of the flags as fast as the Hippies and came in second. Ray & Yolanda were a distant third.

The Jocks were admittedly one of the most competitive teams on the race, maybe not as much as Rob & Amber, but they consistently cam in first place. They just couldn’t do it when it counted most. Teams really need to start keeping a small journal of where they’ve been and each country flag should this final task ever be used again at the end of the race. The Jocks had all the right flags but had a couple of them jumbled up. They were so close man. I would prefer to see a foot sprint to the finish line, but this was pretty good.

It was a good race, and as always, I can’t wait for the next one.

First Leg Summary and Predictions

Roadblock: Who’s ready to coast through their day? A team member had to do three amusement park rides while looking for a man with a message on a sign to get their next clue.

Detour: Maiden or Messenger. In Maiden, teams had to lift and carry a maiden a third of a mile in a Japanese shoulder-mounted hand cart. In Messenger, teams had to deliver two parcels on bicycles to two Shibuya office buildings.

Yield: None.

Fast Forward: None.

Pit Stop: Lake Yamanaka, Japan.

Funniest Moment: Two-Way Tie: 1) Ray & Yolanda losing their toll road ticket and 2) Jeremy calling Tyler an idiot because he was letting Japanese girls fondle his beard at the amusement park.

Smartest Play: Tyler of the Hippies using his Japanese to get them ahead of the other teams.

Dumbest Play: Ray & Yolanda losing their toll road ticket.

Next Team to Be Eliminated: The Hippies, The Tokens.

Pick to Win: The Jocks.

Final Leg Summary

Roadblock: Who remembers most about the places you’ve been? One team member had to go into a field with 285 flags and find one flag for each of the foreign countries that they visited during the race. The flags then had to be placed in the correct order.

Detour: Drill It or Deliver It. In Drill It, teams had to drill ten fishing holes through a lake’s ice sheet and place a cabin above the holes. In Deliver It, teams had direct a plane pilot to deliver medical supplies to a camp that was 75 miles away.

Yield: None.

Fast Forward: None.

Finish Line: Red Rocks Amphitheatre, Morrison, Colorado.

Funniest Moment: A drunken Japanese businessman telling Yolanda she looked like Janet Jackson.

Smartest Play: The Jocks hiding from the Hippies at the airport to get on the first flight to Taipei unnoticed. They were caught by the other teams at the connecting flight to Anchorage, but still a good play.

Dumbest Play: The Hippies walking past the snowshoes three times.


  1. I’m glad that the Hippies won!

    #1 by Meerenai — May 19, 2006 @ 11:36 pm

  2. I gotta give the Hippies props for coming backk from not one, but two last place finishes to win the whole enchilada. They managed to bring it all together in the home stretch and were admittedly a lot less obnoxious in the finale episode.

    #2 by Nugget — May 20, 2006 @ 11:42 am

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