Leg 20.11 – “You can’t worry about your hips! This is ‘The Amazing Race’!”
The final five teams begin the 11th Leg of the Race by flying from Havana, Cuba to Cancun, Mexico!
Arriving in Cancun at 9:35pm, teams must make their way to Xoximilco. They must search these floating parties for someone who will give them their next clue. But before they receive it, teams will enjoy a little bit of the party.
Later in the early morning, teams will take a bus to the city of Merida.
Upon arrival in Merida, teams must make their way to Plaza Grande.
Here, teams will pamper these beautiful horses before they will accompany them on a route around the area. Teams will use a provided Samsung Galaxy S20 to take photos of six unique letters matching the welcoming “MERIDA” sign in the plaza. Once they have all six letters on their phones, they will receive the next clue.
That clue reveals the Detour: Marquesitas or Jarana.
In Marquesitas, teams must set up a cart and then make a traditional Yucatecan dessert, marquesitas. They must sell enough of different varieties in order to receive the next clue and a pair of their choosing to enjoy themselves.
In Jarana, teams must learn and perform a traditional Yucatan dance, the Jarana. When they’ve performed to the satisfaction of the locals, they will receive the next clue.
Teams must now find Casa Montes Molina where they will find the Road Block: Who can take the heat?
Chilies are part of Mexican cuisine and its national identity. For this Road Block, teams must taste ten different chili peppers from the area and around Mexico and correctly place them in the order they relate to the Scoville scale. When correct, teams will receive the next clue.
Teams must eat the whole pepper before making a guess. And if they fail an attempt, they will have to eat the whole chilies again.
Teams must now make their way to the Yokdzonot Cenote.
Here, teams will dive into one of these stunning natural wonders to retrieve an ancient relic piece of jewelry which is attached to their next clue.
Teams must now head to the Ik Kil Cenote where they must dive six meters into the water to find the matching half of their relic in order to receive the next clue.
That clue tells teams to take the unified relic to the Plaza of a Thousand Columns at the historic Chichen Itza to exchange for the next clue.
That clue points teams to the majestic El Castillo.
And that clue reveals teams will be taking part in a traditional Maya ballgame.
Heading to the Great Ball Court, teams must bounce a rubber ball against the wall of the court to each other at least 20 times, using only their hips. Then, both team members must bounce the two balls each through the stone hoop. Teams can do either task in any order they choose.
When teams complete both, they can head to the Pit Stop: El Caracol, the Observatory.
The first team to check-in here will win P200,000 courtesy of Shell V-Power Nitro+.
And the last team to check-in WILL be eliminated!
This was a last-minute replacement Leg, but I think it worked out pretty well! Perfect location between Cuba and our Leg 12.
First up, logistics required a nice evening location where teams can wait a few hours. Xoximilco can represent the stereotypical idea of Cancun, but instead just a simple Route Marker and a rest period for teams.
I think Merida could host a Leg on its own. It’s a beautiful and fascinating place. Our first task here has teams searching the area in a task that I believe is inspired by Pekin Express‘s visit to the Philippines. It’s a Samsung opportunity of course. But it’s also a good task to get teams a little bit apart at the start.
The Detour should be a good balance. It’s a good pair of tasks to highlight Yucatan culture and everyday life.
The Road Block was something I had on the reserve list for a number of different locations. But it fit perfectly here. It’s a fun task that should get teams frustrated and, literally, heated.
We obviously would like to feature the cenotes. I wasn’t sure what kinds of tasks we could do at the cenotes, but however we can feature them would be great.
Chichen Itza is definitely a highlight and we want to maximize our time at this stunning location. There’s a lot of running around and I’m not really sure how sprawling the area is for teams to be exhausted and lost enough to matter in the Race.
TARPHDME featured this Maya Ballgame once before as a Duel Duel, but with its different, Mesoamerican rules. Here, it’s more of a skills task where teams have to bounce and shoot. Our hope would be to have the task be so difficult that teams will have meltdowns here at the end of the leg. And they literally might melt if we were here on a hot Summer day.
Overall, I think this is a great, full Leg in stunning locations.