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Leg 21.02 – “This is not worth me burning my face off.”
It is afternoon in Kaohsiung and teams begin the 2nd Leg of the Race learning that they will now be flying to Seoul, South Korea! First, teams must take a train back to Taipei where they will secure their own tickets to Seoul via a travel agency. Teams are allowed to book tickets out of and into any airport that is available.
Teams will end up on one of three flights. The first flight is on T’Way Air departing from Taipei Songshan Airport and arriving at Seoul Gimpo at 5:25pm. The other two flights depart from Taiwan Taoyuan International Airport and will fly to Seoul Incheon: China Airlines arriving at 7:45pm and Cathay Pacific arriving at 8:15pm.
Upon arrival in Seoul, teams must make their way to Dongdaemun Design Plaza.
Here, at least one team member must rappel down the side of the DDP in order to claim the brand-new Interchange! With an Interchange, a team will have the ability to switch Road Block performers in the middle of the task once during the Race. (The Interchange can also be used on Double Road Blocks.) The three teams who can rappel the fastest will win an extra Interchange, for a total of two. Both team members can choose to rappel and the quicker time between the two can be accepted.
This is also the first Trigger Point of the Race. If exactly five teams have both team members do the rappel, the U-Turn or Yield will be activated on the next Leg.
After rappelling, or if they choose not to, teams must now hop on a train to Gwangju.
Upon arrival in Gwangju, teams must make their way to May 18 Memorial Park. Here, teams will honor those who lost their lives during the 1980 Gwangju Uprising by learning about Korea’s fight for democracy before being given their next clue.
That clue directs teams to AutoLand Gwangju, one of Kia’s manufacturing hubs, where they will find the Detour: Proving or Producing.
In Proving, teams will drive a Kia-produced military vehicle on the proving grounds while ensuring that everything is okay according to a checklist.
In Producing, teams will head into the factory where they must help at various points of the production line including placing necessary parts in the right place and finishing off the placing of a car’s emblems.
After completing the Detour, teams must choose a set of keys to brand new 2021 Kia Sportages and then find the matching SUV in the sea of fresh new cars using only the VIN number attached to the keys.
Teams must now drive themselves to J Restaurant in Dong-gu, Gwangju.
Here, teams must prepare Gwangju kimchi by chopping up the vegetables and then properly mixing the paste with the cabbage leaves. They will then transport a fermenting jar up the hill and then place the prepared kimchi inside of it. Once done, they will each eat one bowl of Gwangju kimchi to receive the next clue.
That clue directs teams to the Gwangju Traditional Culture Center where they will find the first Road Block of the Race: Who is feeling plucky?
For this Road Block, teams must learn how to play the 12-string gayageum. When they have properly performed the short piece, they will receive the next clue.
Teams must now make their way to Samgeori Farm in Damyang where they will find a Double Road Block! Fan the Flames or Over the Flames.
Teams will first need to carry and move a large iron grill together to set-up.
The team member who will Fan the Flames must chop and prepare enough wood to light the fire under the large pans.
The team member who will be Over the Flames will use those flames and large pan to cook dakdoritang, or spicy chicken stew. When the food is ready to eat, the teams will be given the next clue.
And that clue points teams to Juknokwon. Teams must walk through the bamboo forest to find this pavilion, the Pit Stop for this Leg of the Race.
The first team to check-in here will win P200,000 courtesy of Shell V-Power Nitro+.
The last team to check-in here WILL be eliminated.
A nice, full Leg in Korea! I think this can be a very competitive Leg. It’s all just teams needing to get through the tasks well.
First up, I think it’s always interesting to have teams arrive at different airports. Even more here, they will be departing from different airports. Obviously, there’s only certain cities where you can do such a thing that it won’t become a logistical nightmare. But Taipei and Seoul are definitely two cities where it is possible.
The Dongdaemun Design Plaza task is sort of a Switchback to TARPHDME14. But since teams will arrive in Seoul in the evening, the DDP is a great location to have all lit up at night. It’s also a good spot for an adrenaline, stunt type of task as well.
Now, the big development this Leg is of course the Interchange. Honestly, it was born out of the fact that this season’s “cast” includes Racers like Annabelle Rama and Rey Ongpauco who might not have the easiest of times with certain tasks at their age. Not trying to belittle them or anything. It would be amazing to see them rock all the tasks. But you know they’re certainly not the most fit Racers on the season.
But I think an Interchange could be another interesting tool that teams must be able to use strategically. I decided to give every team one (again, just because of our older Racers). But in the future, it can be something won like an Express Pass so it’s more valuable. Being able to change Road Blocks participants is a big deal. But we also need to make sure the Road Blocks are actually challenging so much that an Interchange would be a huge advantage.
Next, I’ve always been interested in the Gwangju Uprising. Such a significant event in Korea’s history. So I thought it would only be respectful to make note of that on this first Gwangju visit on TARPHDME.
Always want to give our wonderful sponsor Kia some good exposure. And lucky for us, there’s a plant in Gwangju. The proving ground task is somewhat of a Switchback to a task in the Mojave Desert from TARPHDME11. But seeing Kia produces military vehicles here, I thought that would be a fun change. Having teams doing things at a proving grounds is an easy task to have.
Meanwhile, the producing side of the Detour is obviously something you can only do at a manufacturing plant. And if I remember correctly, TAR Canada did such a task too.
The car-finding task is from TAR China’s visit to their own car sponsor. It’s just an extra challenge to fill out the Leg.
In TARPHDME’s second visit to Korea, there was also a kimichi task, but it did not involve the large fermentation jars. So we can finally do that here. I’ve wanted to do a rural Korea Leg for a while as well, which would include some homestyle tasks like this. But with only Google scouting, it’s been tough to design a Leg lol
Learning traditional instruments is always an easy task to include in a Leg as well. And this could be the most challenging task of the Leg.
Finally, featuring local food is also a quick task to include. And after seeing this video, I thought it would be fun to have here on this Leg.
Overall, a very full Leg. I think it has great potential. And a visit to South Korea is always a good time.