The Amazing Race 8

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The Amazing Race 8
Amazing Race Eighth Season Family Edition Region 1 DVD.png
Region 1 DVD cover
Presented byPhil Keoghan
No. of teams10
WinnersNick, Alex, Megan and Tommy Linz
No. of legs11
Distance traveled11,000 mi (18,000 km)
Country of originUnited States
No. of episodes11
Original networkCBS
Original releaseSeptember 27 (2005-09-27) –
December 13, 2005 (2005-12-13)
Additional information
Filming datesJuly 7 (2005-07-07)[1] –
July 31, 2005 (2005-07-31)
Season chronology
← Previous
Season 7
Next →
Season 9
List of episodes

The Amazing Race 8 (also known as The Amazing Race: Family Edition) is the eighth installment of the American reality television show The Amazing Race. As opposed to other installments of the series, which featured pairs of adults with a pre-existing relationship, this season 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. At 19 and 21 years of age respectively, Tommy and Megan became the youngest male and female to win the American series of The Amazing Race (Starr Spangler of Season 13 later equaled Megan's record).


Development and filming[edit]

The Starting Line of The Amazing Race: Family Edition was at Empire–Fulton Ferry State Park close to the Brooklyn Bridge in New York City.

The eighth season of The Amazing Race spanned 11,000 miles (18,000 km), the shortest route of the series.[citation needed] This season placed much less emphasis on international travel as numerous legs were contained within the continental United States, and all locations were inside North America with Panama and Costa Rica visited for the first time. Filming took place between July 7, 2005 and July 31, 2005.[1][2]

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 just before the finale aired.[3]

For this season, the supplied credit card covered not only airfare but also gasoline, which otherwise had to be purchased with the supplied cash. The rule change was made necessary by the fact that most of the transportation took place in automobiles rather than airplanes.

The limits on individual Roadblock attempts, introduced in season six, did not apply 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-season 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 Amazing Race during the next leg.[4]

Kevin O'Connor and Drew Feinberg from Season 1 made a cameo appearance during the first leg handing out clues to teams in New York City at a hot dog stand.

This season featured a visit to New Orleans in Legs 4 and 5, where filming occurred about a month before the Hurricane Katrina struck the region. The episodes aired after the hurricane had devastated the region. A special message was inserted at the beginning of the episodes featuring Louisiana, including one spoken by Keoghan himself, dedicating them to the victims and to those helping the recovery. The Schroeder family, from New Orleans, had befriended the Rogers family from Shreveport in the northern part of the state during the Race. As Katrina neared landfall, the Rogers offered the Schroeders safety at their home. Katrina wiped out the Schroders' home and most of their possessions, and after staying with the Rogers for about two weeks, they were able to get more permanent housing in Baton Rouge, and most of the other teams from this Race chipped in to help the family out.[5]

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 season as the show was televised. An online source claims that the task was simply not used, and all references were excised in editing.[6]

According to an interview with Wally Bransen on RFF Radio, producers originally planned a leg in Belize but had to cancel it due to Hurricane Emily and gave teams an extra day off in Costa Rica after Leg 6.[7]


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 show. Final casting interviews took place in Las Vegas.

The full list of families that participated the season (with their relationships) follow, in alphabetical order:

  • Aiello – Tony, Kevin, Matt, and David; father- and sons-in-law
  • Black – Reggie, Kim, Kenneth, and Austin; father, mother, and sons
  • Bransen – Walter "Wally", Elizabeth "Beth", Lauren, and Lindsay; father and daughters
  • Gaghan – Bill, Tammy, Billy, and Carissa; father, mother, son, and daughter
  • Godlewski – Michelle, Sharon, Christine, and Tricia; sisters
  • Linz – Nick, Alex, Megan, and Tommy; brothers and sister
  • Paolo – Tony, Marion, DJ, and Brian; father, mother, and sons
  • Rogers – Denny, Renee, Brittney, and Brock; father, mother, daughter, and son
  • Schroeder – Mark, Char, Stassi, and Hunter; father, step-mother, daughter, and son
  • Weaver – Linda, Rebecca, Rachel, and Rolly; widowed mother, daughters, and son

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.[8]

Renee Rogers died on November 24, 2013, after a long battle with pancreatic cancer, at the age of 51.[9]

Future appearances[edit]

No team from this season has competed on a subsequent returnee season.

Stassi Schroeder later appeared in the Oxygen reality series Queen Bees and finished in 7th place.[10] Schroeder later appeared on the Bravo reality series Vanderpump Rules as a part of that cast for eight seasons.[11] In 2011, Brian and Marion Paolo appeared on the HGTV reality show House Hunters.[12]


The following teams participated in the season, 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
1 2 3 41 5 6ƒ2 7 8 9 103 114
Linz Family Siblings 9th 2nd 2nd 3rd 4th 2nd 3rd 2nd 1st> 3rd 2nd 2nd 1st Nick 5, Alex 4, Megan 2, Tommy 4
Bransen Family Dad and Daughters 7th 6th 1st 1st 3rd 3rd 5th 4th 2nd 1st 1st 1st 2nd Wally 4, Beth 5, Lauren 4, Lindsay 2
Weaver Family Widow and Kids 3rd 1st 5th 5th 2nd 5th< 2nd 3rd 4th< 2nd 3rd 3rd 3rd Linda 2, Rebecca 35, Rachel 2, Rolly 7
Godlewski Family Sisters 1st 3rd 4th 4th 6th 4th 1st 1st 3rd 4th 4th Michelle 4, Sharon 5, Christine 2, Tricia 2
Paolo Family Dad, Mom and Kids 6th 8th 6th 2nd 1stƒ 1st> 4th 5th Tony 1, Marion 1, DJ 3, Brian 2
Gaghan Family Dad, Mom and Kids 2nd 7th 7th 6th 5th 6th Bill 2, Tammy 2, Billy 1, Carissa 1
Schroeder Family Dad, Step-Mom and Kids 5th 4th 3rd 7th Mark 2, Char 0, Stassi 1, Hunter 1
Aiello Family Father and Sons-in-Law 8th 5th 8th Tony 0, Kevin 0, Matt 1, David 2
Rogers Family Dad, Mom and Kids 4th 9th Denny 0, Renee 0, Brittney 1, Brock 0
Black Family Dad, Mom and Kids 10th Reggie 0, Kim 0, Kenneth 0, Austin 0
  • A red team placement indicates that the team was eliminated.
  • An underlined blue team placement indicates that the team was the last to arrive at a Pit Stop in a non-elimination leg. The teams were forced to relinquish all of their money and belongings (except for passports and the clothes on their back) for the remainder of the season. In addition, they were not allotted money for the next leg.
  • A green ƒ indicates that the team won a Fast Forward. If placed next to a leg number, this indicates that the Fast Forward was available for that leg but not used.
  • A yellow > indicates that the team chose to use the Yield; < indicates the team who received it.
  • Italicized results indicate the position of the team at the midpoint of a double-length leg.
  1. ^ An additional task in Leg 4 was presented to teams as a Roadblock but was aired as a miscellaneous task. This task is included in the Roadblock tally because every team was shown having a particular member performing it.
  2. ^ The Fast Forward in Leg 6 was unaired.
  3. ^ Leg 10 is a double-length leg. It featured a Virtual Pit Stop, and had two Detours and two Roadblocks shown over two episodes.
  4. ^ Leg 11 is also a double-length leg, but combined with two Detours and two Roadblocks shown over two hour finale episode. The placements listed are based on the flight times found during the Montreal Olympic Stadium task.
  5. ^ The Weaver Family was not shown performing the Roadblock on air, as the Linz and Bransen Families had already crossed the Finish Line. A post-show interview with the family revealed that Rebecca performed the Roadblock. This is included in the Roadblock count.

Episode title quotes[edit]

Episode titles are often taken from quotes made by the racers.[13]

  1. "Go, Mommy, Go! We Can Beat Them!" – Billy Gaghan
  2. "How Do We Know We Aren't Going to Get Shot?" – Carissa Gaghan
  3. "I Don't Kiss I Make Out" – Stassi Schroeder
  4. "Think Like an Office Chair" – Rachel Weaver
  5. "We're Getting Out of the Country, Girls" – Tommy Linz
  6. "I'm Sick of Doing Stuff I Can't Do" – Linda Weaver
  7. "You Look Ridiculous" – Phil Keoghan[a]
  8. "How's That Face Feel?" – Megan Linz
  9. "Don't Talk To Me Like I Was An Animal Or Something" – Christine Godlewski
  10. "The Family Christmas Card" – Wally Bransen
  11. "25 Days, 50 Cities, And More Than 600 Consecutive Hours Together as a Family" – Phil Keoghan


Individual prizes were awarded to the first family to complete each leg, with trips provided by Travelocity. The prizes were:

Race summary[edit]

Route map
Destinations Legenda lotnisko.svg Air travel   Legenda kolej.svg Rail travel   BSicon BOOT.svg Water travel   Bus-logo.svg Bus travel
Maki-heliport-15.svg Helicopter travel   Maki-bicycle-15.svg Bicycle travel   Maki-aerialway-15.svg Gondola travel
Route Markers Detour icon.svg Detour   Roadblock icon.svg Roadblock   Fast Forward icon.svg Fast Forward   Yield icon.svg Yield   TAR-pitstop-icon.png Pit Stop
Icons placed after a location indicate the clue was picked up at this location,
while icons placed before a location indicate that the clue was picked up at a prior location.

Leg 1 (New York → New Jersey → Pennsylvania)[edit]

In the Amish community within Pennsylvania, one of the Detour choices was a buggy course.

Airdate: September 27, 2005

This season's first Detour was a choice between Build It or Buggy It. In Build It, teams had to use a set of provided materials to construct a functioning scale model of a watermill then use two buckets of water to power the mill and 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.

Additional tasks
  • From Empire–Fulton Ferry State Park, teams had to drive a GMC Yukon XL to Eastern Mountain Sports in SoHo. They then had to pick up camping gear (four sleeping bags, four camping mats, four headlamps and one tent) and obtain their next clue from the store cashier.
  • On 91st Street between Park and Lexington, teams had to find a "frank", where Kevin & Drew from the first season posing as hot dog vendors would hand out the next clue.
  • At Washington Crossing Historic Park in Pennsylvania, teams had to recreate George Washington's crossing of the Delaware River by choosing a rowboat to cross the Delaware River into Washington Crossing State Park in New Jersey. Once across, they had to retrieve a 13-star flag, then row back to the Pennsylvania shore and observe a flag-folding ceremony before receiving their next clue.
  • At Belmont Plateau in Fairmount Park, teams had to pitch a tent as quickly as possible. Once an Eagle Scout approved the tent's assembly, teams would be given a departure time when they would leave the following morning at 10:00 a.m., 10:30 a.m., or 11:00 a.m.
  • After the Detour, teams were instructed to find the Pit Stop at the Rohrer Family Farm in Lancaster by looking for the blue silos along Blue Rock Road.

Leg 2 (Pennsylvania → Washington, D.C. → Virginia)[edit]

The Detour on this leg featured tasks about the American Civil War (the pictured reenactment is in Saltville, Virginia)

Airdate: October 4, 2005

In this season's first 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 team member, where they would find their next clue upon opening the briefcase. This task was later revisited on Season 22 as a Switchback.

This leg's Detour at an American Civil War reenactment was a choice between Heat of the Battle or Heat of the Night. In Heat of the Battle, teams had to use stretchers to transport five wounded soldiers off the battlefield to a surgical tent. In Heat of the Night, teams had to roll a barrel of oil to a workstation, where they had to fill 20 oil lamps. Once done, they had to take the lamps to the quartermaster and light all of them.

Additional tasks
  • At Haines Shoe House, one team member had to climb to the top of the giant shoe to get their next clue.
  • At the Capitol Reflecting Pool, teams had to find a limousine parked on 3rd Street where an unseen contact would give them a briefcase, which they had take to the Tidal Basin.
  • After completing the Detour, teams would be given a Civil War regimental flag that they had to bring to the nearby Pit Stop.

Leg 3 (Virginia → South Carolina → Alabama)[edit]

Once in Huntsville, Alabama, teams visited the U.S. Space & Rocket Center for space-related tasks.

Airdate: October 11, 2005

This leg's Detour was a choice 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.

In this season's first special Roadblock, two team members had to ride in a centrifuge and endure a gravitational pull of 3.2g to receive their next clue.

Additional tasks
  • Upon arrival in Charleston, teams had to choose a GMC Yukon XL and drive themselves to The Battery to find their next clue at the gazebo.
  • After the Detour, teams were instructed to go to the Charleston Visitor Center to sign-up for one of two charter buses to a mystery destination. The first bus departed at 3:00 p.m. and the second bus two hours later. These buses transported the teams to Huntsville.
  • After the Roadblock, teams walked almost one mile (1.6 km) to the nearby Rocket Park. There, teams had to enter the space mission, search for a computer, and login to their AOL account to receive a video clue from Phil, instructing them to travel by foot to the Pit Stop at Space Shuttle Pathfinder.

Leg 4 (Alabama → Mississippi → Louisiana)[edit]

Teams ended the leg at the historic Preservation Hall in the French Quarter of New Orleans after crossing three Southern states.

Airdate: October 18, 2005

In this leg's Roadblock, which was aired as a miscellaneous task, one team member to climb to the top of the World's Largest Office Chair to retrieve their next clue.

This leg's Detour was a choice between Work or Play. In Work, teams first had to don flannel clothing then use a two-man saw to cut four slices off a log, 12 inches (30 cm) in diameter, to receive their next clue from a sawyer. In Play, teams had to don traditional New Orleans clothing, make their way by canoe to a riverboat, where they had to play a game of blackjack against a professional dealer. To win a round, the hand of each team member needed to have a combined total of more than the dealer's hand without going over 21 after the dealer stays with a hand of at least 17 or goes bust (goes over 21). When the team won three rounds, the dealer would give them their clue.

Additional tasks
  • At the International Motorsports Hall of Fame, teams had to search the indoor museum to find their next clue, which sent them to the Talladega Superspeedway, where teams had to choose a party bike to complete one 2.6-mile (4.2 km) lap around the track to receive their next clue.
  • After finishing their lap, teams had to find "Southern Colonel" in Hattiesburg, Mississippi, which they had to figure out was a mobile home dealership. Upon arrival, teams had to search through 37 mobile homes for one of three departure times for the next morning: 7:20 a.m., 7:40 a.m., or 8:00 a.m. They then had an overnight rest in the mobile home and would find their next clue on their car the next morning.
  • At the BP gas station in Richland, team had to find a clerk named Les with their next clue, which instructed teams to drive to the "Pelican State", which they had figure out was Louisiana, to find their next clue at Fairview-Riverside State Park in Madisonville.
  • After the Detour, teams had to drive themselves across the nation's longest bridge on Lake Pontchartrain to the state's largest city of New Orleans, where they had to park their car on Esplanade Avenue and search for the Pit Stop, Preservation Hall, in the French Quarter.

Leg 5 (Louisiana → Panama)[edit]

The Pit Stop for this leg was located at the Miraflores Locks of the Panama Canal.

Airdate: October 25, 2005

For this season's only aired Fast Forward, one team had to find a crane at the Pacific side of Panama Canal, on Pier 14 in Balboa. Once there, the family had to split into pairs and perform a tandem bungee jump 140 feet (43 m) above sea level to win the Fast Forward award.

This leg's Detour was a choice between Rhythm or Coos. In Rhythm, teams traveled to Casco Viejo 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 had to present 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.

In this leg's 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.

Additional task
  • At the Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute in Gamboa, teams would board a boat to Barro Colorado Island and had to search for a scientist named Ricardo Diaz, who would give them their next clue. After finding Ricardo Diaz, teams had to return to Gamboa by boat and find a red devil bus, known locally as a diablo rojo, their means of transportation for the rest of the leg.

Leg 6 (Panama → Costa Rica)[edit]

Poás Volcano National Park in Costa Rica was visited in this leg.

Airdate: November 1, 2005

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.

In this leg's 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.

This leg's 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 pulley-system to haul the fruit to the distribution center to receive their next clue from the foreman.

Additional tasks
  • At Terminal Nacional de Transporte, teams had to pull a departure time on one of two charter buses to San José, Costa Rica, leaving thirty minutes apart at 11:30 a.m. and 12:00 p.m.
  • Once in San José, teams had to choose a marked Toyota HiAce at Parqueo Publico Adrian and drive themselves to Poás Volcano National Park to find their next clue.
  • At the Roca Loca Surf Shop, teams had to find a man named Javier to receive their next clue.

Leg 7 (Costa Rica → Arizona)[edit]

At La Iglesia de Metal in Grecia, teams found the Detour clue.

Airdate: November 8, 2005

This leg's 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 six 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, with a brief pit stop after the 25th lap, to receive their next clue.

Additional task
  • At the start of the leg, teams traveled by foot to Playa Maracas, where one team member had to swim to a buoy to get their next clue.

Leg 8 (Arizona)[edit]

In Page, Arizona, teams visited Glen Canyon Dam to find the Detour clue. Beside the dam, the Colorado River is shown (foreground).

Airdate: November 8, 2005

In this leg's Roadblock, one team member had to fly in a fighter plane and, following the pilot's direction, perform a 360-degree loop to receive their next clue.

This leg's 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.

Additional tasks
  • At Glen Canyon Dam, teams had to choose a guide that would take them to their next clue atop the dam.
  • After the Detour, teams were directed to Antelope Point where they would head down a path to Lake Powell and race on motorboats to their Pit Stop, a marked houseboat.

Leg 9 (Arizona → Utah)[edit]

While in Utah, teams encountered a Roadblock involving a pool ski jump at the Utah Olympic Park.

Airdate: November 22, 2005

This leg's 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.

In this leg's Roadblock, one team member had to put on skis and descend a 60-foot (18 m) ski-jump training ramp into an Olympic pool to receive their next clue.

Additional tasks
  • At John Ford's Point, two team members from each family to take a helicopter to Elephant Butte, where they could retrieve the next clue from the summit. The helicopter could take two families at a time.
  • After the Detour, teams were instructed to travel to Green River, and find Green River State Park for an overnight rest. Teams received departure times 15 minutes apart, determined by the order of their arrival.
  • The next day, teams found their clues on marked GMC Yukon vehicles, directing them to Heber City to find Bart the Bear, who had the next clue in his mouth.

Leg 10 (Utah → Wyoming → Montana)[edit]

At Yellowstone National Park, teams had to wait for the eruption of Old Faithful before receiving their next clue.

Airdate: November 29, 2005

This leg's first Detour 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.

In this leg's first Roadblock, two team members had to mount horses and herd six cattle a quarter-mile (400 m) from a holding pen into a corral to receive their next clue from a cowboy.

Additional tasks
  • At Park City High School, teams chose a pilot and helped to inflate a hot air balloon. They then flew across the Utah countryside. After landing, teams would receive their next clue.
  • After the Detour, teams had to travel to the Tree of Utah at Bonneville Salt Flats and search the grounds for their next clue.
  • At Bear Lake Rendezvous Beach in Garden City, teams had to spend the night. They received departure times 15 minutes apart, depending on their arrival order.
  • After completing the Roadblock, the clue stated "I'm old, I'm faithful". Teams had to figure out that the next location was Old Faithful at Yellowstone National Park. Teams had to wait for the geyser to erupt before a fireman gave them their next clue.
One side of the Detour involved teams building a teepee.

Airdate: December 6, 2005

This leg's second Detour was 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 this leg's 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.

Additional tasks
  • At Turtle Ranch, teams had to find a marked SUV that would take them to their next clue.
  • After completing the Detour, teams were given the clue "Do you know the hotel named after Buffalo Bill's daughter?" The teams had to figure out that refers to Irma, and went to the Irma Hotel. Upon entering the hotel, teams had to dress in period clothing and take a picture with a Buffalo Bill impersonator. Once the photo developed, he would give them their next clue.
  • At Red Lodge Mountain Golf Course, teams had to find the "Tenth Tee" to retrieve their next clue.

Leg 11 (Montana → Canada → New York)[edit]

Teams spent the double-length leg in Canada by visiting the Montreal Biosphere, which hosted Expo 67 (top), and continued on to the CN Tower, the [then] tallest freestanding tower in the world, in Toronto (bottom).

Airdate: December 13, 2005

This leg's first Detour 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 to receive their next clue from the lumberjack.

In this leg's first Roadblock, one team member had to successfully complete a flying trapeze maneuver known as a "catch" to receive their clue.

This season's final Detour was a choice between Ship or Shoe. In Ship, teams had to sail across Toronto Harbour from Queens Quay to the schooner Kajama, where one team member had to climb 100 feet (30 m) to the top of the mast to retrieve a nautical flag that they could exchange with the captain for their next clue. In Shoe, teams traveled to Bata Shoe Museum, where they had to choose a pair of shoes and search among 100 women for the one woman who fit the shoes to receive their next clue.

In this season's final Roadblock, 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.

Additional tasks
  • At the Square-Victoria Metro Station, teams had to enter the Underground City and search the passageways to find the basement of the Centre CDP building to find their next clue.
  • After the Detour, teams were told to head to "American Pavilion" in which Montreal hosted Expo 67. They had to figure out that the next destination was Montreal Biosphere. Once there, teams had to climb to the 5th floor and get the next clue.
  • At Parc Olympique, teams had to drive a golf cart to the Stade Olympique and find the one door large enough to drive through. Once inside the stadium, teams would find their next clue on centerfield.
  • At Stade Olympique, teams had to search through 56,000 stadium seats for tickets to one of three charter flights to a mystery destination, Toronto, departing the following morning at 5:45 a.m., 5:50 a.m., and 5:55 a.m.
  • Once in Toronto, teams had to find a clue on a marked GMC Yukon XL and then drive to the CN Tower. Once there, teams had to take an elevator to the observation deck at 1,122 feet (342 m) and use binoculars to look for their next clue at Polson Pier.
  • At Whirlpool Jet Boat Tours on the Canadian side of Niagara Gorge, teams had to choose a jet boat from the boat ramp and take a ride up the gorge to a buoy with their next clue.
Additional note
  • Teams were provided tickets for a flight from Billings to Montreal but were under no obligation to use them.
Final Amazing Challenge
  • After the season ended, CBS hosted the "Final Amazing Challenge" on the official website where the second and third place teams, Bransen and Weaver families, respectively, would compete for a GMC Yukon XL. Using the completed map from the final Roadblock, teams ran out to clue boxes to retrieve cutouts, each representing tasks they performed on the race, and placed them on the associated part of the map. This was repeated for twelve cutouts; the first family to complete the task would win the challenge.


Critical response[edit]

Fans, critics, and racers were negative 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, and the expanded cast also made it more difficult to develop individual story lines. Dalton Ross of 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".[14] Robert Bianco of 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."[15] Linda Holmes of Television Without Pity called the decision to have 40 contestants "baffling" and was disappointed with the tasks and locations on this season.[16] Scott Pierce of Deseret News wrote "this 'Family Edition' of 'Amazing Race' is by far my least favorite. None of the families really seemed worth rooting for and the competition has been watered down to something less than scintillating to accommodate the family element."[17] In 2016, this season was ranked last out of the first 27 seasons by the Rob Has a Podcast Amazing Race correspondents.[18] Conversely in 2021, Val Barone of TheThings ranked the Family Edition as the show's 10th best season.[19] Racers were also disappointed that they did not have a chance to travel to more exotic locations; in one episode Marion Paolo commented "What 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. Producers Bertram van Munster and Jonathan Littman doubt that the family format will be revived in the future.[20]


Canadian ratings[edit]

Order Episode Viewers (millions) Rank
1 "Go, Mommy, Go! We Can Beat Them!" 2.62 #5[21]
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 "How's 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


  1. ^ This double-length episode corresponds with legs 7 and 8. The second half's title quote is "I Don't Roll with the Punches, I Punch" from Tommy Linz.


  1. ^ a b Andy Dehnart (July 8, 2005). "Amazing Race filmed yesterday in New Jersey". reality blurred. Retrieved December 19, 2019.
  2. ^ Andy Dehnart (July 28, 2005). "Rumor suggests "softened," North America-contained Amazing Race 8 may get "canned"". reality blurred. Retrieved December 19, 2019.
  3. ^ "'The Amazing Race Family Edition' winners leaked via online betting?". Reality TV World. September 25, 2005. Retrieved December 19, 2019.
  4. ^ "Rogerses Over and Out of the Race". TV Guide. 2005-10-10. Retrieved 2012-05-18.
  5. ^ Thomas, Rochell (October 25, 2005). "Family's Race Was Calm Before the Storm". TV Guide. Retrieved March 9, 2020.
  6. ^ "TAR Timeline: When, Where, What, and How - TWoP Forums - Page 74.733333333333". Archived from the original on 2012-07-17. Retrieved 2013-01-20.
  7. ^ "Reality TV Podcast #30 - Interview with Wally Bransen". RFF Radio. December 20, 2005. Archived from the original on October 24, 2006. Retrieved January 22, 2021.
  8. ^ " – My Ox is Broken!". Retrieved September 22, 2006.
  9. ^ "Rhonda Reneé Rogers Obituary". The Times. 2013-11-26. Retrieved 2013-11-27.
  10. ^ Hesse, Monica (2008-07-11). "Queen Bees: Do You Catch More Eyes With Honey?". Washington Post. Retrieved 2010-05-08.
  11. ^ Kate Aurthur; Elizabeth Wagmeister (June 9, 2020). "'Vanderpump Rules' Fires Stassi Schroeder and Kristen Doute For Racist Actions". Washington Post. Retrieved June 16, 2020.
  12. ^ "FYoung Homebuyer in St. Louis". HGTV. Retrieved September 26, 2020.
  13. ^ "The Amazing Race Episode Listings". The Futon Critic. Retrieved October 8, 2020.
  14. ^ Ross, Dalton (October 14, 2005). "What's wrong with The Amazing Race?". Entertainment Weekly. Retrieved October 14, 2005.
  15. ^ Bianco, Robert (October 25, 2005). "Amazing Race is not family friendly". USA Today. Retrieved October 25, 2005.
  16. ^ Linda Holmes (November 18, 2005). "CANADA, DRY". Television Without Pity. Retrieved March 15, 2021.
  17. ^ Pierce, Scott (November 29, 2005). "It's 'Amazing': They hate Utah". Deseret News. Retrieved March 25, 2021.
  18. ^ Mike Bloom; Jessica Liese; Dan Heaton (February 5, 2016). "Amazing Race | Ranking the Season". Rob Has a Podcast (Podcast). Event occurs at 7:02. Retrieved March 15, 2021.
  19. ^ Barone, Val (June 5, 2021). "The Top 10 Best 'Amazing Race' Seasons Ranked". TheThings. Retrieved June 12, 2021.
  20. ^ "Amazing Race 10 Teams Announced". Retrieved July 15, 2006.
  21. ^ "Top Programs – Total Canada (English): September 26 – October 2, 2005" (PDF).[dead link]

External links[edit]