The teams, locked in compartments on The Ghan, have to figure out a puzzle to unlock a safe that will release them and determine their order of departure tomorrow.
Once teams arrive in Coober Pedy, Beau has a big announcement for them. There’s another Stowaway team joining the Race: bodybuilders Stan & Wayne. They will have to earn their spot in the Race by departing in last.
After the surprise, teams must choose a car and open the first clue revealing the Detour: Above or Below. In Above, teams must carry 100 bucketloads of opal mullock and load it into a sifter. In Below, teams will be lowered in an opal mine. Inside, they must navigate through the maze of tunnels to find an opal. They must then find their own way out through a secret passageway to an underground motel.
Choosing Above are MJ & Chelsea, Jordan & Violeta, Jaskirat & Anurag, Brendon & Jackson and Stan & Wayne. Choosing Below are Amanda & Ashleigh, Chris & Aleisha, Skye-Blue & Jake, Dwes & Katherine, and Holly & Dolor.
MJ & Chelsea and Jordan & Violeta are first to finish the Detour and can now drive to Saint Elijah’s Underground Church. There, teams will have two minutes to maneuver four mirrors to bounce a laser to light to an opal.
The Below Detourists all take a far longer time to complete the task than the Above Detourists. Though Holly & Dolor initially don’t think the underground hotel they stumble upon is the way out, pushing them to last.
At the church, MJ & Chelsea fail their first two mirror attempts. But Jaskirat & Anurag, Chris & Aleisha and Amanda & Ashleigh pass on their first attempts. They open the next clue revealing the Road Block: Who’s good at sign language?
For this Road Block, teams must paint a letter on the large Coober Pedy welcome sign in Race colors in the order they arrive.
Aleisha is first to start the painting because originally first place Jaskirat & Anurag drive to the wrong Coober Pedy sign. Aleisha finishes before any other team arrives.
Chris & Aleisha open the next clue telling teams to make their way to Coober Pedy Golf Course. Here, one team member must hit a golf ball into the hole that will be held up by their teammate. It’s a very windy day, so teams will have an extra challenge in completing this task.
Back at the Coober Pedy sign, 9th place Dwes begins painting the last letter “Y” instead of the “D”. Katherine manages to clue him in to his mistake. Dolor has less work to do now that Dwes has already done 1/3 of the letter for him.
Meanwhile, Chris & Aleisha get a hole in one and can now make their way to the Pit Stop at Crocodile Harry’s Underground Nest. They finally get their first win and claim $5000 each. Ashleigh & Amanda take 2nd and Jaskirat & Anurag take 3rd.
Brendon & Jackson and MJ & Chelsea finish as Team #4 and Team #5, respectively. Stan & Wayne & Jordan & Violeta are 6th and 7th. Skye-Blue & Jake take 8th.
It comes down to Dwes & Katherine and Holly & Dolor. And Holly is able to catch Dwes’ ball, which is allowed by the rules. Katherine catches a ball soon after.
It’s a Race to the Mat now. But Holly & Dolor step on the Mat in 9th. That means the cousins Dwes & Katherine are last and eliminated.
Welp, what is there to say when there’s another Stowaway team. I expect one every other Leg now, to be honest. And I would definitely love to be the Stowaway Team on the Penultimate Leg. Much easier chance to win AU$250,000! No need to Race 38 Legs like other teams, yeah?
Stan & Wayne having to “earn” their spot in the Race by departing in last is absurdly funny. Yeah, such a difficult hurdle to overcome.
But now that I think about it, TARAu could’ve basically filmed two seasons back to back like TAR Israel does. Instead of this super long season with Stowaways and nonsensical Non-Elimination Leg rules, they could’ve filmed two back-to-back seasons with two sets of teams. Would’ve been much better.
So, there’s really no meaning to where teams finish a Leg since departure times for the next Leg will always be determined by random raffle. Just avoid being last, regardless of what time you arrive. It doesn’t matter anyway.
Anyway, the Detour was a good choice of two tasks related to the opal mine. A luck task and a physical task. But the extra challenge of the darkness in the mines and the maze of tunnels seemed to make the Above Detour be the better choice. Especially when it looked like teams didn’t even need to fill their buckets full of mullock anyway.
Apparently, TARAu has been editing out countless numbers of tasks from the episodes so far. And some of the deleted tasks have seemed more interesting than the ones that actually made the episode, to be honest. Despite the placement changes. There have been inexplicable placement changes in previous episodes, after all. Most likely because of the deleted tasks.
The church mirror task feels like one of the tasks that would’ve been deleted in another episode. It was actually an interesting task. Different from the usual TAR staples. But also a little tedious since only one team could do it at a time. The two-minute time limit helps out a little bit.
The painting task was alright. Very simple. I would actually have made the mirror task a Road Block instead. Would have made it more challenging to have one person do it alone. And if this were a one-hour episode like some of the episodes have been, they’d probably have eliminated the painting task.
The golfing task is one of those random tasks they need to fill out a Leg. It was alright.
Overall, another solid Leg and episode. And unlike the other solid Legs and episodes, nothing odd to nitpick about. That’s a big plus!
My Subjective Team Rankings
A well-deserved win for Chris & Aleisha this Leg. They’ve definitely stepped it up a lot these last few Legs and are putting themselves in a great position moving forward. I am looking forward to seeing them continue the momentum.
Jaskirat & Anurag have definitely come back down to Earth after their commanding start. But even when down, they’ve managed to continued to do well and show they can overcome even the biggest hurdles. They had some bad navigation luck this Leg. But they pulled it out, as they have done many times so far.
Happy to see Holly & Dolor survive. The Race needs absolutely needs them to stay in. But they need to step it up. I know they have it in them though.
Stowaway status aside, Stan & Wayne seem like a fun team. I appreciate all the “looks can be deceiving” teams. And they definitely smash the intimidating first impression they might make. As with MJ & Chelsea, I like the Stowaway Teams and wish they could’ve been there from the very beginning. Or like I mention above, put them on a completely different Race. They would be teams that might have done well from the very beginning.
A much better Leg for Amanda & Ashleigh since they were focused on their own Race instead of the nonexistent rivalry. They showed what they do best this Leg and again are big contenders still.
Brendon & Jackson, Skye-Blue & Jake, Dwes & Katherine and Jordan & Violeta are all alright. It’s too bad about Dwes & Katherine, but they should be thankful to have gotten essentially eight extra Legs on the Race after getting eliminated in the first Leg.
Skye-Blue: “Get back on the train!”
Dolor: “I like mining, it’s quite fun.”