This wasn’t the most amazing leg of the Amazing Race Canada season 4 but nonetheless it was still a highly entertaining episode with loads to get into. The positioning of the teams changed drastically throughout the leg, making it a very confusing one to watch at times. My one main qualm with this episode is that it always felt “go, go, go” and like we were just going through the motions. We didn’t really see any of the beauty of Kingston as a destination to go to and the tasks didn’t necessarily highlight what Kingston has to offer. The other sort of unexciting thing about this episode was the inevitable last place finish of the team that was eliminated. However, it was still a very enjoyable episode with some very interesting talking points. Let’s get right into the episode!
Leg 7 of the Amazing Race Canada 4 began with a brief recap and continuation of the teams’ trip from Hamilton to Kingston. Joel and Ashley couldn’t even make a train that day and had to wait until 6:40 am in the morning the following day to catch up to the other teams. This could have been deadly for their race, but luckily all the teams were forced to wait until 9:30 am that morning for their next clue. Steph and Kristen presumably arrived sometime late in the first day after being the only team to catch the first train to Kingston and were pretty bummed out that their lead might be snatched away. The other noteworthy thing about the prelude to the tasks was Frankie’s accidental spill to Jillian and Emmett that Steph and Kristen gave them the express pass. This set up the potential for the dating couple to be prime u-turn targets as if they weren’t already. Once 9:30 arrived, the challenges begin.
The first task of the day was a puzzle task. Teams had to look at licence plates of various Chevrolet cars, find which set of numbers matched their lock code and then unlock an ipad to unlock their car. This task really served very little purpose at all, except for the fact that it sent Julie and Lowell far down the pack to which they were never able to recover from. Rita and Yvette were the first one’s to complete the slightly pointless task, followed by Frankie and Amy, and then Joel and Ashley. The teams then made their way to the next task and for one of the first times this season, it was a detour early on in a leg, a choice between Higher Education and High Seas. Higher Education involved playing bubble soccer and trying to connect a couple of passes and then score a goal. Meanwhile, High Seas made racers had to “rig the seaworthy vessel” (whatever that means) and then steer themselves in the boat to their next clue. The soccer challenge was clearly going to take less time, and in fact probably not much time at all, but Steph and Kristen were still contemplating using their express pass in order to get to the U-turn board first as they made their way to the challenge. Jillian and Emmett were first to arrive at Higher Education and in their first attempt we saw another classic Jillian freak out as Emmett kicked the ball slightly too far ahead of Jillian. In actual fact, the soccer challenge had several hilarious moments including Emmett getting bulldozed over by the Queen’s University goalkeeper and Ashley being completely unable to control her bubble.
Although the sailing challenge wasn’t quite as exciting it still provided some very comical moments as well, most notably Rita and Yvette having more boat trouble for the second time in this race. As the teams continued to attempt both sides of the detour, Julie and Lowell were still well behind the other teams and were clearly going to need a miracle to catch up.
Julie and Lowell’s Bad Day
Although they haven’t ever been one of the top teams in the race, Julie and Lowell have been a solid middle of the pack team and unfortunately the race just caught up to them and nothing went their way in leg 7. The task early on where teams had to unlock a car by entering a number into a padlock seemingly took them far longer than all of the other teams and from that moment on, they were dead and buried in the race. The unfortunate thing about what went wrong for them in this leg, was that Lowell’s visual impairment really started to hinder them in the race. Lowell had a very difficult time seeing the ball at Higher Education especially with the added impairment of being wrapped inside of a bubble. This forced them to have to switch detours at pretty much the same time that Steph and Kristen had already completed the third task. Despite Lowell falling into Lake Huron they had a very limited amount of difficulty with the sailing, but after that Lowell’s vision continued to be a problem for him in the race as he walked right by the clue in the jail cell (pictured above) several times before Julie discovered it. Although Lowell was fantastic in completing the final roadblock in record speed, they were always too far behind to catch up to the other teams and were sadly eliminated from the race. Julie and Lowell have been extremely fun in the race. They are probably two of the kindest people to ever participate in the Amazing Race Canada and they always kept a positive outlook on the race even when they were struggling. They will definitely be one of Canada’s favourite and most memorable teams this season if not all four seasons combined.
An Unproductive U-Turn
I thought that the u-turn board would go to waste in leg 7 from no teams using it, but the exact opposite happened and it was still a bit of a waste! Steph and Kristen were the first one’s to arrive at the U-turn board after completing the bubble soccer in no time at all. Surprisingly they decided to use the u-turn board and force Jillian and Emmett to complete the other side of the detour. If Jillian and Emmett had gotten to that U-turn board they would have absolutely u-turned Steph and Kristen as well so it was probably the correct choice, however Jillian and Emmett arriving at the u-turn board second on top of what happened next, rendered this u-turn pointless. First off, due to Jillian and Emmett being u-turned and arriving at the board second, they now obviously had to u-turn another team to ensure the u-turn wouldn’t knock them out of the race and of course, they decided to u-turn their other “biggest competition” Joel and Ashley. It’s important to note quickly how positive and gracious Jillian and Emmett were about the situation compared to Joel and Ashley who were actually kind of rude (well rude for Canadians). Jillian and Emmett quickly understood that it was part of the race and that they would have done the same thing so they moved on, powered through the second detour and completed it before any other team, including the teams that had been there when they were at the soccer challenge. This meant that all the u-turn board accomplished was giving Steph and Kristen an even bigger lead.
I’m much more in favour of u-turns towards the beginning of legs like this one, but it didn’t necessarily make for amazing, exciting television. When detours are at the end of legs, they always result in good teams getting screwed and not being able to recover, which leads to memorable moments and fantastic TV. If this detour had been at the end of the leg and the roadblock had come first, Jillian and Emmett might have been eliminated because of how much Emmett struggled later on at the roadblock. However, due to it being so early on in the leg all the teams had time to recover.
Another Dominant Leg For Steph and Kristen
Steph and Kristen had another amazing leg in Episode 7 of the Amazing Race Canada and are showing no signs of slowing down. The dating couple are looking more and more like Natalie and Meaghan every single leg but this time, they may actually win the race. For the past three legs, Steph and Kristen have gotten out in front of all the other teams straight away and then throughout the leg only increased their lead to end up winning well ahead of the other teams. After u-turning Jillian and Emmett they ran away with the leg. They finished the “find a clue in a jail cell” task easily and then after that only had to replicate Sir John A. McDonald’s speech in order to secure a first place finish. Kristen nailed the challenge on her second attempt and they finished the leg with ease without ever even having to use their express pass.
A team has never not used an express pass and not been eliminated with it in their pocket. Steph and Kristen haven’t ever needed to use the express pass. They’ve been first for three legs in a row and second in the two legs before that. This stat just shows how dominant this team truly is and the fact that they finished what was probably a half an hour at least ahead of the other teams without even having to use their express pass was amazing. With Anne & Tanya, Rita & Yvette and Steph and Kristen’s comments towards the end of episodes, the edit is clearly taking us in the direction of an all female-female team win and although Rita and Yvette definitely are contendors and it may be rather early, Steph and Kristen may be the first ever female winners of the Amazing Race Canada.
So You Think You Can Be Prime Minister?
The final task of the day, after a find a clue inside of a creepy jail cell task, was to replicate a speech that had been performed by our very first ever prime minister, Sir John A. McDonald. At this point in the leg, Steph and Kristen had still not used their express and decided to get the full experience of the race and not use the free pass. They were so far ahead of the other teams and no other team had even arrived at the roadblock for the entire time that they were there so there really wasn’t ever any point in using it. Kristen performed the roadblock for the dating couple and got it on her second attempt in order to solidifying their dominant first place finish. Jillian and Emmett arrived at the roadblock next and could have gotten out of there before any other team arrived just like Steph and Kristen, but Emmett really struggled with the task and eventually every other team (except for Julie and Lowell) caught up to them. Emmett continuously fumbled the word “inaugurated” as Rita and Yvette meanwhile elevated themselves to second place after completing the task on their first attempt. Amy then completed the task on her second attempt allowing them to finish the task in third place. Unfortunately for them, they got lost on their way to the pit stop and as a result Joel and Ashley and Jillian and Emmett leap-frogged them in the finish order.
The Final Result – Leg 7
It was a sad day as Julie and Lowell were eliminated, but another first place finish for Steph and Kristen gives hope for the first all female team to win the Amazing Race Canada, something that didn’t happen until Season 17 of the US version.
6th Julie and Lowell – Eliminated
5th Frankie and Amy
4th Jillian and Emmett
3rd Joel and Ashley
2nd Rita and Yvette
1st Steph and Kristen (trip to Rome, Italy)
Next Time On The Amazing Race Canada…..
The teams head to Havana Cuba, and Steph nearly loses a finger! That was the gist of Jon Montgomery’s introduction to leg 9 but travelling outside of Canada and the entertainment that looks to come in Cuba brings promise for this to be another fantastic leg. Oh and there’s a face-off! I love face-offs! They are just one more unique and special thing about the Amazing Race Canada that only our version of the race does! Steph may find herself in a difficult situation at the detour next leg with some kind of meat grinder but don’t worry they were probably in first place when it happened and that sort of thing is never as serious as it looks from the previews. Anyway, here are my predictions for leg 8….
5th Frankie and Amy – Eliminated
4th Joel and Ashley
3rd Rita and Yvette
2nd Steph and Kristen
1st Jillian and Emmett
With only ten teams it’s possible we could have another non-elimination leg despite just having one in leg 6, but I feel the more likely scenario is to have one at the final four rather than the final five. Steph’s blunder next leg probably won’t put them out of the race but it may be enough to give Jillian and Emmett their first win since leg 2. In the end I predict Frankie and Amy will be the next one’s to go, which will be pretty sad to see as they have also been a lot of fun. Will I be horribly wrong? Make sure to tune in and check back next week to find out! See you then!