Recap: The Amazing Race Canada 8, Episode 4 – Feel the Fear and Do it Anyways
Jon announces that Dennis & Durrell, Court & Ali and Catherine & Craig are unable to continue on the Race because of COVID. That is why Cassie & Jahmeek and Jully & Kathy will rejoin the Race.
Teams begin the Leg by finding a GURU-sponsored sign-up board at Fernie City Hall for one of two buses arriving 15 minutes apart in Kananaskis Country at the foothills of the Rocky Mountains.
While waiting for their departure, Brendan & Connor decide to distribute their Express Pass to fellow sibling teams Jesse & Marika and Franca & Nella. Both of whom helped them at the wieners task last Leg. Beverley & Veronica had hoped they’d be a recipient of one of the passes.
Later, the buses will drop teams off at Canoe Meadows by the Kananaskis River. Teams must row their canoes 3km down the whitewater rapids until they find the flag and cluebox. Jully & Kathy and Cassie & Jahmeek, however, must first perform a Speed Bump which involves them inflating the whitewater canoe that they will be using.
Brendan & Connor maintain their lead as they open the next clue revealing the Road Block: Who thinks diamonds are forever? For this Road Block, teams must master the diamond hitch knot on a simulated horse with the help of an ongoing demonstration.
Brendan, Jesse, Beverley, Franca and Cassie get started with the Road Block. Jesse is the first to ask for a check, but he gets the thumbs down. Brendan goes next and he is approved.
After the Road Block, teams must drive a 2022 Chevy Traverse RS to Canmore where they must find the next clue waiting for them at the Trans Canada Trail by Bow River.
Jesse gets the thumbs up next and he and Marika can now drive to their hometown.
Kathy and Tychon arrive at the Road Block last and get started with the task. Jully & Kathy want to Race in honor of their mothers.
Meanwhile, Beverley tries to ask Franca to help her with her first knot. Franca has a bit of trouble herself, but she doesn’t want to help anyway. After a while, Beverley approaches Franca again, suggesting their work together to help each other figure out what’s going wrong. Franca gently brushes her off until she finally gets the knot correct. She and Nella speed off in their Chevy with Franca saying she doesn’t believe Beverley would’ve went back to help her if the positions were switched.
Beverley begins to grow frustrated and Veronica says the decision to quit and take a penalty is all Beverley’s decision. But Beverley does not want to quit and she does finally get it.
Meanwhile, Brendan & Connor are still in the lead as they open the next clue. For this task, teams must choose and solve one of the slide puzzles that pays tribute to the Trans Canada Trail which celebrates its anniversary this year.
The brothers finish the puzzle and head to the Canmore Nordic Centre for the second Road Block: Who’s happy they won’t be tying any knots? The team member who did not perform the first Road Block must complete this one. And for this Road Block, teams will use a three-wheel adaptive eBike to traverse an all-terrain slalom course within 1 minute, 45 seconds.
Connor has no problem getting through the task and he and Brendan can now head to the Biathlon Range at the Nordic Centre for the Pit Stop.
Franca & Nella leave the puzzle just as Beverley & Veronica, Jully & Kathy and Cedric & Tychon arrive. The father and son end up finishing the puzzle first of the three and move up. Jully & Kathy are next, leaving Beverley & Veronica behind.
Brendan & Connor step on the Mat and are welcomed by Paralympic gold medalist Mark Arendz as Jon officially checks them in as Team #1. They win a trip to Buenos Aires. They also get a $1500 gift card from Marshalls.
Jesse & Marika are Team #2 with Franca & Nella in 3rd. Cedric passes on his 3rd attempt and he and Tychon check-in as Team #4.
Jully grows frustrated at the Road Block, but she is motivated by her sister MJ who was born with a disability. That inspiration helps Jully push through until she clocks in at 1:44. Jully & Kathy check-in as Team #5.
Veronica is struggling at the Road Block. Jahmeek arrives and gets started, hoping to get it on his first attempt, but he goes a little too fast and goes off course. That allows Veronica to pass on her 6th attempt and she and Beverley finish their rough day as Team #6.
That means Cassie & Jahmeek are last, but this is a Non-Elimination Leg.
This was a solid episode. Kind of a linear Leg design, but certainly unavoidable at this location. Beautiful location, but limited options of course. It’s absolutely a Leg that would get two Road Blocks and no Detours. Doing TARPHDME has made me see how location really does dictate what a Leg looks like. So I can definitely understand why this Leg would have two Road Blocks and a Non-Elimination. Even with the teams returning.
So, I was actually shocked at the beginning of the episode. I did follow filming spoilers, but I don’t think there was an indication of teams having to drop out due to COVID. Or at least, I didn’t really follow spoilers too closely to have read about it. It’s very interesting. It’s the kind of risk that I expect with a COVID Era TAR. How to deal with teams suddenly getting COVID while on the Race? It’s one of the reasons why I was always weary of filming TAR during COVID. It’s almost like, why go through the trouble? It kind of ruins the experience for the teams to just get yanked off the Race if they get COVID. And it messes with the Race itself with teams coming back and Legs needing to be modified or whatever.
Like, it’s nice to see teams get another chance. But it’s also like there’s a huge asterisk hovering over the season. When as much as we can enjoy TAR, it’s not necessarily an essential service. You know? We can wait a little bit longer. I dunno.
The tasks are exactly what you’d expect from a scenic outdoorsy Leg. Whitewater rapids, a ranch and/or farms, alpine sports. It’s all here. It was very nice though to feature Paralympians and I know TARC has done a good job with that in the past as well.
Overall, a solid episode and solid Leg for what it was. It was actually more interesting to see some brewing tension and rivalries instead. I hope they simmer for a long time! hehe
My Subjective Team Rankings
I still like all the teams so far. The sibling alliance is very interesting though and I can absolutely see them going all the way to the Final Leg together. Though I am still weary of alliances after TAR32 and TARAu5 essentially ruined what alliances could look like on TAR, I don’t really see the sibling teams go to the extremes of the aforementioned seasons. So *crossesfingers*
And because of the alliance fears, I enjoyed seeing Franca brush Beverley off like that. Though for this task, I think helping each other figure out the knot would be okay. Especially compared to what teams were doing last week with the wieners. I honestly would be more annoyed by something like that or the more egregious things like telling other teams the solution to a problem (Starting Line task!) over teams working together on knots.
That said, I almost felt sorry for Beverley & Veronica this week. It was a rough Leg for them. Especially when they had been doing so well so far. But a Leg like this can toughen them up and they can only go up from here.
It’s great to see Jully & Kathy back on the Race. And of course, Cassie & Jahmeek were only eliminated last week. It’s just bittersweet due to the circumstances of course.