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The Amazing Race 25 Silver Anniversay: Leg 2 - Express Pass


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Get Set!

GO!  Misti and Jim depart at 4:21am, flying 4000 miles across the Atlantic to London, England, then travel by taxi to the Tower Bridge for their next clue.  There are 6 teams on the first flight, 4 teams on the 2nd which takes off an hour later..  They have the Save in case they have a bad day.  The ticket counter at the airport is closed, so they have to wait.  Sweethearts depart at 5:40am.  They are petite but pack a punch.  Cyclists depart 5:43am.  They share a cab with the Sweethearts.  Wrestlers depart at 5:44pm followed by Surfers depart 5:52am.  At the airport, teams are bonding.  Foodies arrive, rounding out the 6 teams on the first flight.  Bethany  lost a shoe on the previous leg and Amy wears the same size and offers Bethany a pair of shoes.  It's like Cinderella.


The ticket counter opens and the first 6 teams jockey for best seats on the flight.  The first flight takes off as the second group of 4 teams wait back at the airport: Flights, Survivors, Firefighters and Dating.  The second flight departs.  In London, the first flight lands and teams race out of the airport for a taxi.  Sweethearts are first to the curly King and Queen on the Tower Bridge and receive their next clue - a Detour.  In About Face, teams must participate in a traditional changing of the guard.  After dressing up as British soldiers, team must learn a formal routine from a drill instructor then perfect the moves for the Parade Commander. In Pancake Race, teams must take part in a 500yr old tradition, making a perfect pancake then race around a course continuously flipping their flap jack in 1 minute, 15 seconds. 


Dentists choose About Face as do Sweethearts.  Surfers arrive at the Detour and choose Pancake Race.  Cyclists choose About Face.  The second flight lands and the final 4 teams race to not be last.  Wrestlers reach the Detour and choose About Face, as do Foodies.  Dentists arrive at Somerset House, choose a drill instructor and change into their soldier outfits.  They have to memorize a series of steps and repeat them with precision.  Sweethearts arrive and choose their instructor.  Cyclists are right behind them.  Over in the shadow of the Parliament building, Surfers change into their chef's outfits and watch how to make a perfect pancake.  Back at Somerset, Dentists and Sweethearts begin learning the guards' routine.  Wrestlers arrive and pick a drill instructor. 


Surfers have cooked their pancake and are given the go ahead to race.  Here ye, here ye, when I say go, you may start the race, the wigged official calls out, flip your pancakes and keep up the pace.  If time runs out before you're through, it's back to cooking another few.   They take off, trying not to flip their pancakes out of the frying pan as they race around the lawn.  They complete the loop with 23 seconds to spare and get their next clue.  Teams must now travel by train from Paddington station to Oxford and search the water's edge for their next clue.  Back at the square, Dentists go for their first demonstration but the Parade Master is ruthless in his criticism.  Absolutely disgusting.  Get away!  Cyclists try next and know from the first step they are in for a severe dressing down.


Flights reach the Detour and choose About Face.  Survivors and Dating arrive at the detour and both choose Pancake Race.  Firefighters are next and choose Pancake Race.  Wrestlers practice marching in step and Robbie has to be reminded he has knees that bend.  Dentists make their second attempt and receive the Parade Master's praise and their next clue.  Cyclists go for a second attempt and pass inspection.  Flights arrive at the square and pick an instructor.  Sweethearts realize the 2nd flight has arrived. 


Flights both have a military background and are confident they can learn this routine quickly.  Over at Victoria Gardens, Survivors arrive at Flapjack Field, followed by Firefighters and Dating.  Surfers catch the train to Oxford.  Survivors cook their pancakes to satisfaction and head to the races.  They focus on keeping it in the pan and run just short of time and have to start over.  Cyclists reach Paddington Station and get on the next train to Oxford departing Platform 4.  Firefighters mess up their pancake and have to start over.  Dating passes their pancake test and starts their race.  Back at the square, Sweethearts forgo one more rehearsal and go for the demonstration.  They should have gone for the rehearsal.  Wrestlers take their turn and the Parade Master threatens to rip off their arms and hit them with it if they don't swing them high enough.


Flights take their turn and the Parade Master says you obviously have seen some sort of service but that is not how they about turn around in the Queen's Brigade.  Their spirits are not dampened.  Dating has been studying for The Amazing Race for years.  Firefighters are struggling to make the perfect pancake.  Dating falls well short of time and has to start over.  Sweethearts pass the demonstration and head to Oxford.  Cyclists complete the demonstration and start to give the Parade Master a hug but he warns them off.  Don't you do it, he says, go!  Flights have another go and with a scowl, the Parade Master gives them their clue.  We're officially last, frets Brooke.


Survivors make their second attempt to dash around the race course with their pancakes flipping.  Isabella is rooting for them to fail as Dating cooks fresh pancakes.  Survivors complete the detour.  The Firefighters take it on next but there's a pancake flipping tragedy that sends them back to the outdoor kitchen.  In Oxford, Surfers pass Phil as he's taping an intro.  Teams must go punting - flat bottom boats designed for shallow water.  One team member propels the punt from the flat Cambridge end, while the other stands on the opposite Oxford end waiving a British flag.  Once completing one lap around Magdalen island, the punting master will give them their next clue.


Surfers set off on their voyage.  Dentists at Oxford, followed by Cyclists.  Firefighters and Dating both take their perfect pancakes on the road together for their 2nd race attempt.  Firefighters complete the race in time but had insufficient flipping and failed the task.  Dating has successfully completed the detour.  Back at the square, Wrestlers make their second attempt to please the Parade Master who has to demonstrate the proper way to perform an about turn.  If they can manage that, he says, they might make it off the square.  Survivors and Dating race for the train to Oxford. Flights are also running through the train station along with Cyclists and Foodies.  They are all on the train together. 


Wrestlers are the last team at the square and the Parade Master is frustrated that they are not following his specific instructions.  Get away, he barks.  Back at the garden, Firefighters try flipping their flapjacks more but Scott loses control and it's pancake down.  On their 4th attempt there are no pancake fatalities or ceremonial indiscretions as both Firefighters and Wrestlers complete the Detour and head to Oxford. On the water, teams are fighting the contradictory currents as they navigate their way around the island.  Sweethearts arrive and get their punt.  Surferscomplete the challenge and receive their next clue to go to the Christ Church College where they must tip their bowler to find their next clue (printed inside the bowler). 


Te Jay's only job is to waive the flag and he drops it in the water.  Dentists complete their loop around the island only to find out they were standing at the wrong ends and have to start over.  Cyclists realize they also are on the wrong ends and have to start over.  Wrestlers and Firefighters get on the train to Oxford.  Dating and Survivors reach the water and begin there punting experience, followed by Flights.  Flights end up hitting the side of a short tunnel as they try to get the hang of pushing a shallow boat with a pole.  8 teams are at various points on the water.  There's a traffic jam near the dock and Whitney takes a dive into the brown water after bumping into the Dentists.  Surfers arrive at Christ Church College and pick up a bowler hat and umbrella.   Keith opens his umbrella and sees a clue to the Express Pass - play it safe and go to the pit stop, or find the scholar outside the oldest established pub, The Bear In, in Oxford.  They choose to go for the Express Pass.


Surfers borrow a phone to get directions then race to the pub.  Back on the water, Dentists complete their second lap correctly and head out.  Cyclists complete the challenge right behind them.  Wrestlers and Firefighters arrive at the punt dock.  Whitney tells Keith he's doing great, she's only fallen in once.  She then hits a low hanging branch and falls in a second time.  Sweethearts struggle with the second of water that's upstream and against the current, pushing them backwards.  Firefighters use their strength to push through the current.  They're coming back because that's what Boston people do.


Surfers find The Bear Inn pub and receive the Express Pass.  Bethany says this will be good if she runs into a task she just can't do without her second arm.  They next head to the Pit Stop.  Bethany's bowler falls off her head and picking it up, she sees the clue to the pit stop, Churchill's Birthplace.  They find out it is Blenheim Palace and grab a taxi.  Dentists arrive at the Bowler man and are given their hats and umbrellas.  They see the clue for the Express Pass and assume Surfers have already gone for it and decide to go straight to the Pit Stop.  They tip their bowler and get their clue.  Cyclists arrive and receive their hats, tipping them without looking inside.  The gentleman just looks at them and tips his bowler.  After a leading moment, they finally look inside the hat to get the message. 


Survivors complete the punting challenge.  Dating struggles as does Flights and Foodies.  Nici has to go to the bathroom and chooses to hang her waist over the edge of the boat and release while locals in the boat next to her fall over laughing.  When you gotta go, she says, you gotta go.  Surfers arrive at the Pit Stop and are greeted by Phil and Winston Churchill.  They are the first team to arrive and win a trip to Sweden.  Back in Oxford, Sweethearts complete the challenge, followed by Firefighters.  Foodies pass Dating and complete the challenge.  Dentists arrive at the Pit Stop in 2nd place.  Second place is just the First Loser, Jim says.  Cyclists arrive at the Pit Stop in 3rd place. 


Dating can't get out of the current.  Wrestlers complete the challenge.  Flights make a wrong turn when they can't fight the current.  Dating gets pulled in the wrong direction.  Flights are frustrated they are having so much trouble after how long they have prepared for and tried to get on the show.  They find a way to complete the challenge.  Dating is the last team to complete the challenge.  Survivors reach the Pit Stop in 4th place.  Sweethearts are the 5th team to arrive.  Shelley has a cramp in her leg as Nici is crying her way to the Pit Stop.  I don't care, she says to her mother, run!  Dennis is holding Isabelle's hand as he leads them through the streets.  No matter what happens, they tell each other, I love you.


Firefighters reach the Pit Stop with Wrestlers and Foodies hot on their tail for 6th, 7th and 8th place.  Winston says it's not how strong you are but your determination to not give in.  Nici is dragging her mother along, crying that Dating is right behind them.  Isabelle is crying as she and Dennis are walking along the street, winded and exhausted.  It's OK, he assures her, we did a great job.  Flights arrive at the Christ Church College and get their bowlers and clue.  They see a museum and head inside.  Dating arrives at the college.  Flights are told that birthplace is 10 minutes away.  Dating receives their bowler clue and head off to find the Pit Stop.  Flights grab a taxi, with Dating right behind them. 


Nici is still crying that it's too late.  She wanted it so bad.  In their taxi, Isabelle is also crying but is comforted by her partner's love and support.  Dennis feels like he let her down because the current was stronger than he was.  Shelley tells Nici they are a team as she bawls on mother's shoulder.  That was so scary, Nici says of the punting task.  Isabelle doesn't want to go home yet.  Flights reach the Pit Stop and Philiminator tells them they are still in the race.  The two let out a scream and hug each other tight.  Shelley says they have been talking about doing this for 14 years and didn't want to get eliminated over something stupid like punting a boat.


Dennis and Isabelle are they are unfortunately the last team to arrive and Philiminator tells them they have been eliminated from the race.  They were so careful and prepared, Isabelle says.  I love this girl so much, says Dennis.


Next week on The Amazing Race, it's a dog and pony show and an injury puts the Firefighters race in jeopardy.



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