This is it, the last two teams for Season 2 of The Amazing Race Canada, unless the big reveal at noon today is a twelfth team. It could happen, but I think they've hit their quota for celebrities this season. They've now surpassed the number of women this season with these four men, but it's still fairly balanced and I look forward to seeing how it all plays out.
First up we have another celebrity racer with Rex Harrington (51) and his fiancé Bob Hope (47), no not that one. Rex is the artist in residence at the National Ballet of Canada and an Officer of the Order of Canada and lives on their farm in Ashburn, Ontario with his fiancé Bob who is a dental consultant. They probably hope to dance their way to the final mat, and Bob's analytical mind should help to keep Rex's creativity in check. Of course, with Rex being afraid of rodents and Bob not so keen on confined spaces, whaddaya want to bet there'll be a task through a tunnel filled with rats. Their motto is "Have fun, laugh hard, play harder." As the oldest racers this season, though still younger than Wayne and Gord, I look forward to watching these two run.
Another day, another three teams are announced. Are you excited yet? We certainly are and we hope you enjoy reading our reviews. This set includes twin brothers from Montreal, a couple of Vancouver bartenders, and another married couple. There's still more women than men this season so there's no gender inequality, but I wonder how that will affect the tasks. Only a few more weeks until we find out. In the meantime let's meet the next three teams.
Let's start off with identical twin brothers Pierre and Michel Forget (42) from Terrebonne, Quebec where they run the family's meat packing plant. I can guarantee you that I'm going to forget which one is which when it comes to reporting on these two, except when Michel encounters spiders and screams like a girl. Both brothers were competitive skiers but Michel stepped back to allow Pierre to follow his dream, become a member of the Canadian Freestyle Ski Association team and win a world cup title in 94. That was 20 years ago and they've both stayed competitive and consider the Amazing Race the ultimate challenge. Their mottos are "Go big or go home," "Be fast and effective." and "Losing is not an option." Not the most original of choices but I look forward to their good cop/bad cop/Fred & Barney attitude.
I had considered waiting until all the team information was announced and then just have one really long post but then decided it would be better to keep everyone updated as quickly as possible and in the same fashion as the producers. To that end I now present the next three teams. The short and sweet of it is a happily married couple, an athletic mother and son, and a pair of globetrotting siblings. It's all in the family for this post.
Let's get started with the sweethearts from Halifax, Jennifer (40) and Shawn King (41) . Jennifer is a Holistic Nutrition Practitioner who apparently gets "hangry" (hungry and angry) and everything needs to stop until she eats, which could prove to be their biggest challenge . . . while Shawn is a Partner/Chief Creative in an ad agency. Being a graphic designer and illustrator myself I already like this guy on paper but we'll see how he actually comes across on screen. They've been married for 15 years and have known each other most of their lives so they should be able to read each other well during the race. Shawn may want to stack up on granola bars though for when Jen gets "hangry" as well as some snake repellant for his fear of snakes. Not usually an issue during the race, but it has come up in the original series. They're both concerned that their age may be a factor, but I don't think that should be a problem. They're motto is "Get 'er done." Not exactly original, but whatever works to get 'er done.
Next up we have the mother and son team of Cormac (19) and Nicole Foster (39) from Winnipeg, the hometown of Season One champions Tim Hague & Tim Hague Jr. Cormac is still a student but has all the youthful energy he'll need for the race while Nicole is a Director of Resident Services which should give her a lead in decision making, assuming her son listens to her. Cormac gets a little upset when they are often mistaken as brother and sister, but if that's his only beef he should be fine. There are worse things to be mistaken for. His fear of drowning on the other hand could put their race in jeopardy if there are any open water tasks, and you know her fear of heights is going to be an issue eventually during the race. They have one heck of a motto, "No matter what, we finish what we start! We will run to the mat every time!" I like it, let's hope they can stick to it.
Our last team for today are the actual brother and sister team of Sukhi (32) and Jinder Atwal (26) from Terrace. British Columbia. They're a globetrotting team of entrepreneurs who have worked well together but we can all look forward to the usual sibling rivalry because there always is some. Sukhi's fear of fast cars and taxis seems a bit counter productive during a race, but what's up with a grown man being afraid of spiders? I guess that depends on how big the spider is and where it's going. Their motto is "We will do whatever it takes! We are here to win! We got this!" Yeah, it's a bit long winded but they got it.
So, six teams down, five more to go. A nice spread across the country on these teams and they should do well against the first three teams but I'm looking forward to see who else is running this Amazing Race across Canada and hopefully beyond. With four premier sponsors for this season, (Air Canada, Chevrolet Canada, Dairy Queen® Canada, and Scotiabank) the teams should have enough corporate backing to get out of Dodge and do a little more travel beyond our borders, but there is still so much left to see and do right inside Canada that they may not. Either way, Wayne and I will be here to review each leg of the race and let you know how we feel each team is running. We're also looking forward to a few special guests during our posts and other surprises to come in the months ahead.
See you tomorrow with another team update.
. . . and just for the record, so are Gord and Wayne (not that we actually ever left). It's been a long wait for one of the most anticipated second seasons in Canadian reality television and Wayne and I are here to give you our never to be humble opinions on every episode and every team. Granted, the race itself does't air until Tuesday, July 8th at 9:00pm, but to get everyone excited the producers have generously been releasing information on the eleven teams. That's right, they've increased the number of teams from 9 in Season One to 11 in Season Two. More teams, more drama and that usually makes for entertaining television.
The first three teams to be announced include a pair of Olympians, a couple of lovebirds from Montreal, and some bubbly best friends. Sounds like a good mix so let's meet the first three teams.
From Canada's National Women's Hockey Team we have Natalie Spooner (23) who played forward and Meaghan Mikkelson (29) who played defence (with a broken hand in Sochi, which has since been repaired). We already know they're highly competitive and that they work well together as a team so that will make them the team to keep an eye on for the others. Hailing from Scarborough, Ontario and Calgary, Alberta respectively they should have a wide range of cross Canada knowledge. Meaghan's fear of bugs could be a problem, but why would anyone be afraid of feet? I do like their mottos though, "One clue at a time" & "Unity in adversity." Let's see how that works for them during the race.
The next team to introduce are the lovebirds, Alain Chanoine (32) and Audrey Tousignant-Maurice (31) from St-Hubert, Quebec. Alain is an actor and stunt performer, which may come in handy during some tasks, while Audrey is a real estate broker which probably isn't going to be quite as handy but they look to be in pretty good shape, speak at least two languages and will likely give the olympians a run for their money. However, lovebirds tend to argue, especially when one of them is stubborn and the other loses their cool (you figure out which one does which) and the pressures of the race will definitely test their relationship. Neither one admits to any fears but Audrey doesn't like to eat stuff that's chewy, so I guess Alain gets the whale blubber task. Their motto isn't quite as likeable, "We are the "A" team, In it to win it." Everyone's in it to win it, otherwise they wouldn't bother to try, but I'll reserve judgement for now as they could very well be the "A" team.
Our next team are the bubbly best friends Shahla Kara (29) and Nabeela Barday (29) from Markham, Ontario. Shahla is an occupational therapist which could be an asset (and I know Wayne has a sweet spot for OTs) but Nabeela's management experience may be more useful when it comes to delegating tasks. Not sure what's up with Shahla's fear of wooden objects in her mouth but Nabeela's fear of small spaces could be more of a potential problem during the race. Both women were raised in traditional Muslim-Canadian homes and have strong religious beliefs that they're not willing to compromise so that may also work against them. I love their drive and attitude, but I'm not so keen on their motto "Brownies for the win." I guess it's fine if they want to call themselves "Brownies" but I find it a bit derogatory and if somebody else called them that there'd likely be a problem. On the other hand, it's their motto.
So there we have a quick look at the first three teams for Season Two. Once again the producers seem to have selected a bulk of the teams from the Ontario/Quebec area, but these are just the first three and hopefully there will be a little more representation from outside the politically correct core. Then again, maybe that's just me being bitter they didn't select Gord and Wayne to run in Season Two, but if they had, who would write our blog posts? Be back shortly with another update on the next three teams.
Gordon L Gale
Gordon L Gale is a Freelance Illustrator, a Graphic Designer, a Dad and (according to his children) an Ogre.