Recap: The Amazing Race 15, Episode 7 – “My dress is falling!”

Episode 15.07 – This is Not My Finest Hour!
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They aren’t wasting any time this week.  The teams depart the Pit Stop with their next destination, Amsterdam, The Netherlands.  The only flight out is at midnight, so all the teams are bunched up at the airport for the rest of the day.  While the teams wait, they have some fun, eating McDonalds, and the brothers reveal to the other teams that they are gay.  Brian & Ericka dance around, Maria & Tiffany shed a little tear that their crushes are gay, but still think they are two of the nicest guys.

The teams arrive in Amsterdam and they must drive themselves to Afsluitdijk, a 19-mile causeway that connects North Holland and Friesland, and find the Lely Monument for their next clue.

The teams find the marked cars at the airport and are off, but Brian has trouble starting the car.  The other teams get a head start on the couple.  They have to get someone (and their kid) to help get the car started.

The teams arrive at the monument with Brian & Ericka nowhere to be seen.  The clue tells the teams to now make their way to the city of Groningen and find Martinitoren, the highest building in the city, for their next clue.

The teams arrive at the church and find the Road Block.  In this Road Block, teams must climb up the Martinitoren’s tower and count all the bells of the carillon on the two floors.  When they give the correct answer, 62, to the carillonneur, they will receive their next clue. 
Meghan and Sam head into the tower and decide to work together.  Matt follows them up to the top with Flight Time right behind when suddenly, the bells begin ringing as they count.  The carillonneur has begun playing, making a relatively easy task a little more distracting.

All the teams are there as Brian & Ericka catch up.  Ericka does the Road Block but isn’t sure what she’s supposed to be doing.

Matt manages to finish first and heads down.  Teams must now head to the village of Vierhuizen De Marne and find the windmill which is where they’ll find their next clue.  Gary & Matt head out and ask for directions as Sam and Meghan finish.  As they head down, Tiffany is running up the stairs and Sam tells her the answer saying it was a smart move because they are a team he can beat.  They head off with their partners and get a taxi to lead them to the village as they pass the father and son still getting directions. 

Flight Time finishes leaving Ericka up in the tower.  She goes to the carillon player but she gives him 43 instead of 62.  Not correct. 

Meanwhile, the other teams are arriving in the town.  Sam & Dan get to the clue first and find the Detour.  In this Detour, teams have to choose between Farmer’s Game or Farmer’s Dance.  For both Detours, teams must wear traditional Dutch costumes, a male and a female, and each ride a bicycle to their Detour choice. 
In Farmer’s Game, teams must strip down to their farmer’s underwear and swim across a creek.  Then using clog-shaped clubs, play three holes of farmer’s golf and taking turns, must finish each hole in 8 or less strokes before getting their next clue.  If they don’t finish the hole in 8 strokes, they must start over.
In Farmer’s Dance teams head to a country festival.  Outside, one team member must ring the bell on top of a High Striker.  Then inside, they will learn a Dutch folk dance which they will perform in front of a crowd.  If their instructor approves, they will each be awarded salted herring and onions which they must eat before getting their next clue. 

Sam & Dan, Meghan & Cheyne, and Gary & Matt dress up, Dan and Gary getting the female costume and they hop on their bikes.
Meghan reminds Cheyne (repeatedly) that she sucks at golf, but he says they’ll be fine.  They with Sam & Dan strip down and head to the field with the game.  The couple has trouble at the start, but the brothers breeze through.

Meanwhile, Ericka is still struggling with the Road Block.  She goes to the carillonneur several times but with wrong answers.  She goes down to Brian and they take a moment to calm down as Ericka begins feeling frustrated.  

Gary & Matt get started learning the dance, but Matt realizes something.  He shows his dad the clue, telling them they have to eat the fish, and he hates fish.  They switch Detours on the spot and leave, the locals laugh and continue their dancing.  As Meghan & Cheyne put their costumes back on, Gary & Matt take theirs off and jump in the water for the golf.  

Maria & Tiffany are on their bikes having fun, but that is until they get to the High Striker.  They can’t get the puck up to ring the bell, Maria having a lot more trouble than Tiffany.  They switch Detours and meet up with Gary & Matt at the golfing.On the other side of the Detour, their buddies Sam & Dan finish and head for the Pit Stop.  On their bikes, teams will ride through town to Zoutkamp Harbor and find Phil and the Mat.  They officially check in first and win a sand buggy.

Brian & Ericka arrive at the Detour and leave the windmill but do not take any bikes.  They jog a ways… a long ways in their clogs until Brian realizes they were supposed to take bikes.  They continue on. 
Meanwhile, Maria & Tiffany are struggling with golf, badly… so they swim back and do the other Detour.  They make their 31st… 32nd… 43rd… 50th attempts at the High Striker.  They stop to take a moment and hug it out.  They are emotional.  Flight Time and Big Easy go dance and they have a fun time with it.  They finish the dance and down the herring, though not easy, they get the Pit Stop clue.  They check in 3rd.

Gary & Matt finish the Detour and head to the Pit Stop 4th.

That leaves two teams struggling to stay safe from elimination.  Frustration is starting to get to Brian & Ericka as they walk in the heavy clogs, Ericka pointing out she was stairstepping for 2 hours at the Road Block.  Maria & Tiffany meanwhile are now on their 72nd attempt and Tiffany almost makes it to the top, but it just isn’t enough.  They switch back to the golf again.  They feel weaker, but are not giving up.  They are making strides.

Brian & Ericka start learning the dance and they are slowly, but surely getting their spirits up.  Ericka says seeing Brian dancing made her fall in love with him again.  They finish the dance and it’s on to the herring.  They tell Ericka to hold it up high and drop it in her mouth, she smiles and eats it and they finish the Detour.  They remember they need bikes so they ask a man if they could borrow two of his bikes.  They take them to the Pit Stop.

They get to the Mat, relived to finally be finished.  They are shocked when Phil tells them they are the 5th team to arrive, but then he gives them the news that they have incurred a 30 minute penalty for not taking the bikes to the Detour.  They go sit and wait it out as Maria & Tiffany are still trying to get their first hole.  They are frustrated but soldier on.

The winds pick up, the poker players fight their fatigue and frustration.  But back at the Mat, Phil calls Brian & Ericka over and officially checks them in as Team #5.  

Maria & Tiffany are still at the golf and Phil arrives out on the race course (which is never a good sign).  They don’t want to give up, but they just don’t see themselves finishing the task in the weather (it’s really looking like a storm is arriving).  Maria & Tiffany are then officially the 7th team eliminated from the Race.  

What a tough leg, probably the toughest of the season so far. 
The tasks were very intricate each with different facets to them.  The Road Block was easy as long as you had presence of mind. 

And the Detour was very interesting.  Again, always awesome to have teams interact with the locals and not only that, dress like them and really get into their culture. 

Kudos to Maria & Tiffany for continuing to fight and funny coincidence with the previews for next week showing the Race going back to definitely one of the most unforgettable Road Blocks ever; the hay bales Road Block that did in Lena & Kristy in TAR6.  They didn’t give up until Phil comes to the field to eliminate them.  Almost the same with Maria & Tiffany. 

And Brian & Ericka, just a tough leg for them.  Started off rough and just stayed that way until they got their spirits up with the dancing only to have their spirits dashed when Phil gives them the penalty… then relief again when they are told they are safe.

Next week should be exciting, especially with the Road Block and then this interesting and mysterious “Switchback” that’s been talked about and previewed as well.

Leg Seven Itinerary
Dolphin Bay Beach
Palm Jumeirah, Dubai

Amsterdam, The Netherlands

Lely Monument on The Afsluitdijk

Windmill at Groningen

Groningen City, Groningen

Vierhuizen (De Marne), Groningen

Zoutkamp Harbor, De Marne
Groningen Province

Leg 7 Departure Times
Dolphin Bay Beach
Palm Jumeirah, Dubai
Meghan & Cheyne 1:13pm
Meria & TIffany 3:09pm
Sam & Dan 3:10pm
Brian & Ericka 3:25pm
Gary & Matt 3:34pm
Flight Time & Big Easy 4:20pm

Who Did the Detour?
In order of completion




Road Block Count

In order of completion; Italics indicate who did this week’s Road Block
Who’s got strong legs and keen eyes?
3 Gary Matt 4
4 Sam Dan 3
3 Meghan Cheyne 3
2 Maria Tiffany 4
4 Herbert Nathaniel 3
4 Brian Ericka 3
1 Mika Canaan 5
3 Lance Keri 2
2 Zev Justin 2
1 Marcy Ronald 2
1 Garrett Jessica 1
0 Eric Lisa 0

Leg 7 Order of Finish
1st Sam & Dan
2nd Meghan & Cheyne
3rd Flight Time & Big Easy
4th Gary & Matt
5th Brian & Ericka*
Philiminated Maria & Tiffany

* Incurred a 30 minute penalty

My Team Rankings for Leg 7
Sam & Dan Sam & Dan – Another strong team.  They have the physical aspect and the mental aspects of the Race down.  They’ve gotten over their short tempers and that could be enough to get them to the final leg.  Now without Maria & Tiffany, they have to work alone (though they did work with Meghan & Cheyne a little this leg) which actually could benefit them more.
Herbert & Nathaniel Herbert & Nathaniel – Having fun… one of the most important things to remember to do on the Race.  It’ll definitely help get you through even the toughest Road Blocks or Detours.  Flight Time and Big Easy always remember to have fun and enjoy (well, except for last week I guess) and they’ve done well for themselves so far. 
Gary & Matt Gary & Matt – A good leg for them, but a little bit of a  bump with that Detour switching just because of the fish.  They’re a sleeper team for sure and have a good shot to make final 3 if they keep up their good teamwork.
Brian & Ericka Brian & Ericka –  Also a rough leg for them.  Rough from the get go, Ericka’s performance at the Road Block knocked them down in morale a little going into the Detour, which may have caused that oversight with the bikes.  But once their spirits are up, they can Race well and hard.  They escaped elimination thanks to Maria & Tiffany’s worse luck, but next week they need to pick themselves up and Ericka will need to keep her frustration down to a minimum, and judging from her carefree herring snack, she can overcome rough patches easily. 
Maria & Tiffany Maria & Tiffany – A tough break for them this leg.  They couldn’t muster up the strength to finish the Detour (or really, they didn’t have the male strength to breeze past the high striker or the golf like the other teams did), but they didn’t give up.  Much kudos to them for that.  Their Race overall though has been very sporadic with last week their only good leg.  Before that escaped most weeks on luck and luck ran out for them this week.  They started out sketchy with the lame lie to cover up their pokah pokah pokah, but they sort of picked themselves up afterwards (with the help of Sam & Dan of course).
Meghan & Cheyne Meghan & Cheyne –  Meghan’s frantic-ness continues this week.  If I were Cheyne I’d tell her to stop nagging, but it hasn’t seem to have hurt them yet.  They continue to do well also and are the team to beat.
Quotes from Episode 15.07
Sam: “What’s the town called, Dan?”
Dan: “Martinitoren.”
Sam: “Martini, like the drink?”

Gary: “My dress is falling!”

Carillonneur: “You’re laughing?”
Ericka: “Might as well, I already cried.  You just didn’t see that part.”

Phil: “You guys like dressing up like this?”
Sam: “We’re not that kind of gay guys.”

Episode Caps

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