Many of you TAR fans, in Canada and other places, are aware that the US version of TAR has an Elimination Station, a place were eliminated teams go and wait while the race is being run. Yes, when teams say things about going home after being eliminated, they don't actually go home. Most times, these eliminations stations are in nice warm places so the eliminated teams have a decent time. And there are activities. In some seasons, Elimination Station was a web series showing how teams interacted with each other after being tossed out. For the most part, Elimination Station was boring. Although I really enjoyed Phil's Diary, which was a video blog of his behind-the-scenes activity during a few seasons. Wish they would bring that back.
But not all eliminated teams go to Elimination Station. Although I've never really confirmed this, some teams continue on the race, doing some of the tasks as decoys in order to prevent too much spoilage of the race and who's left as they race to their final destination. As a side note, I really don't like spoilers on any show. I know some people want to know what happens before it does happen but for me, it takes the drama out of any show. So while I knew there are info out there about Amazing Race Canada before it was run, I ignored it.
Anyway, the other day, I asked Holly and Brett about the Canadian version of Elimination Station. I thought it might be that resort in Kelowna, where the first pitstop was. Nothing like hangout in the Okanagan in May, especially at a wine resort. I also asked if there was a use of decoys. And since they are very nice people (yes, really because they helped raise over $20K for the Montreal Children's Hospital), they filled me in on some bits.
It seems there was no central Elimination Station; eliminated teams were in various spots in Canada while the race was run but not allowed to go home or contact friends and family. The only team that was actually "sent" anywhere was Holly and Brett. After being eliminated in Iqaluit, they went directly to Miami for five days, the amount of time it took for the race to complete. Brett also admitted they did some drinking during the Miami trip as a way to deal with the stress of the race and being eliminated. Heck, Gord and I would have done the same, we do love our beer and chicken wings (among other things that go with beer). But we would also have worked a bit on our graphic novel.
When the race was wrapping up in Toronto, all the teams were brought into Hogtown. And two teams, Holly and Brett, and Jet and Dave, the last two teams eliminated, did act as decoys, but on the day before the final leg. It seems Jet and Dave flew directly from NFLD to Toronto after being eliminated. Tough, man. Both teams did at least the flag and flower task (and may have done other things but I didn't get all the info), a task that all teams were somewhat prepared for. Every team figured flags would have been involved in the final task, Brett said, and had studied the flags in advance. The flowers were figured out by only three teams during the race.
Jet and Dave took two hours each on the task and got none of the flowers correct. Brett worked on the flowers for about 25 minutes and got only five right. Holly finished the task in 18 minutes. Too bad they didn't film that. I recall Brett saying earlier, either on FB or their blog, that they also did a dry run to the finish line on the same day which I think would have been difficult to do, especially since these teams were recently eliminated.
All in all, the entire Amazing Race Canada took 21 days from start to finish. All the teams were also sequestered for a week before the race for what Brett called "daily training and media related activities." Not sure what exactly that entailed but probably they were given info on the rules, training on how to deal with being on camera all the time, told not to hum any tunes that they didn't have the rights for, stuff like that. You gotta be careful about that kind of stuff on these shows; getting rights approval for a song some contestant accidentally hums takes a lot of time. And adds to the budget.
That's about it, so let's prepare for next week's US version. Teams stay in Chile for this. Plus Gord will probably do a recap of Survivor: Blood vs Water and post it sometime on Oct. 3.