A man and a woman ice fishing.

Amazing Race Canada: Express Passes and stolen cabs in Yellowknife

I was really hoping that the grandfather/grandson team of Gilles and Sean would fare better. I’m sure they did too. Alas, one of the biggest challenges on The Amazing Race Canada is how difficult it is to come from behind. You not only need luck and skill on your side but you have to rely on other teams to screw up massively.

The Top 7 teams—how are we almost halfway through the season already?—jetted to Yellowknife, NWT, with Dave and Irina in the lead. (Yellowknife is one of the countless places I visited while writing about Canadian television for TV Guide Canada, and it holds a special place in my heart thanks to the show Ice Pilots.) Dave and Irina were planning on using their Express Pass wisely … and perhaps seeing some penguins too. (Um, wrong part of the world. I’m beginning to think Dave and Irina are putting on an act.) Aarthy and Thinesh were in second place with an Express Pass to use too, as were Anthony and James. With a trio of passes in play, this Leg promised to be entertaining. And who could forget Trish and Amy’s One Way courtesy of Lauren and Joanne? There could be drama too!

The Somba K’E Civic Plaza was the teams’ first clue location and directed them to Rotary Park. (Thanks to the show producers for letting viewers know it was -21 Celsius when the Leg was filmed.) With taxis at a premium, landing one was a huge get; Sarah and Sam did just that. While some teams stayed close to the airport waiting for a cab, Trish and Amy walked along the road and scooped one, and a spot in sixth place. At the Plaza, Dave and Irina made a mistake, allowing their driver to leave. That dropped them back into fifth place. They promptly negotiated a double fare and scooped Trish and Amy’s cab, cementing their villain status.

At Great Slake Lake, teams rode snowmobiles to the scene of ice fishing, where they had to drill holes in the ice and bait a morsel using traditional Dene First Nations equipment. Sarah and Sam completed the wet, slushy task first—sadly, teams were not required to hang around for a bite—and departed, with Meaghan and Marie, Anthony and James, Dave and Irina and Aarthy and Thinesh in pursuit. Lauren and Joanne were left alone on the frozen lake and then without a taxi.

Two people ice fish.In the Road Block, teams headed into downtown Yellowknife to the NWT Diamond Centre to identify the six out of seven diamonds marked with a maple leaf and marking number and then arrange them from heaviest to lightest weight. Sam, Marie, James, Dave, Trish and Thinesh all chose to do the challenge, giving Amy and Aarthy the chance to discuss cab theft. It’s really hard to cheer for Dave and Irina, but I guess it doesn’t matter if you like them or not because they are killing it in tests. Dave was the first to correctly identify and classify the diamonds, followed by Sam, Thinesh, Lauren and Marie. James neglected to find the maple leaf on the diamonds so had no idea what he was doing incorrectly. It was only after Trish finished identifying the diamonds that James and Anthony deployed their Express Pass.

Back on Great Slave Lake, the team member who didn’t identify the diamonds dove into the water swam under the ice to sang their next clue. Dave and Irina used their Express Pass to skip this one (I would have too), but Sarah had to face her dual fears of the cold and the water and had to do it. By the time she was suited up, Sarah was crying, and I felt badly for her. She blasted through the test and almost leapt out the other side with the Route Info in her icy hand. For some reason, Aarthy chose to dive rather than use the Express Pass. All power to her for facing her fear (“It’s so cold!” “Yeah, it’s meant to be.” “What if I open my mouth accidentally?” “Don’t do that.”), and dove in. Joanne didn’t even grab the rope—she is a competitive swimmer—and zipped from hole to hole. She was followed by Meaghan. Trish and Amy, once again, finished a task only to discover their cab had left, putting them in last place.

Two people ice fish.The Leg’s next location was the Air Tindi Float Base where teams worked to locate 10 different rescue sites accessible by plane. Dave and Irina struggled with the task and began to bicker. Ultimately, they took a two-hour penalty, hoping the remaining teams would have issues too. Sam and Sarah had done their homework—by stopping at a store to Google “longitude and latitude,” but still had problems. Thinesh and Aarty, meanwhile, blew through it using their “Grade 3 geography.” Sam and Sarah left in their cab in search of someone who could explain what they needed to accomplish. They found it at Aurora Geosciences. Aarty and Thinesh, meanwhile, located the 10 rescue spots and hopped into a plane to the Pit Stop. Meaghan and Marie, Sarah and Sam and Lauren and Joanne.

In what I think was an Amazing Race Canada first, Sam and Sarah didn’t have enough money to pay for their cab. With no other option, they headed back to Aurora Geosciences and asked for a $90 loan. In true Canadian North fashion, they were given the money.

The Leg’s Pit Stop was located at the Dene First Nation Community Dettah, a float plane ride away. Dave and Irina checked in first, but had to wait two hours. Because of that, Aarthy and Thinesh landed in first, scoring a trip to Dublin.

For keen-eyed Amazing Race Canada fans, it’s just a matter of time until a non-Elimination Leg will come up. Luckily for last-place finishers Trish and Amy, it came this week and they were saved to race again. They pair will have to suffer through an extra challenge.

Here’s how the teams finished this Leg of the Race:

  1. Aarthy and Thinesh
  2. Meaghan and Marie
  3. Dave and Irina
  4. Sarah and Sam
  5. Lauren and Joanne
  6. Anthony and James
  7. Trish and Amy (non-Elimination Leg)

The Amazing Race Canada airs Tuesdays at 9 p.m. ET/PT on CTV.

Images courtesy of Bell Media.

Facebooktwitterredditlinkedinmail

2 thoughts on “Amazing Race Canada: Express Passes and stolen cabs in Yellowknife”

  1. Cab drama, money drama, EPs, penalty, and a good task mix (physical diving, detailed diamonds and mental maps). A little of everything.

    Trish and Amy twice ditched by a cab (poor planing on production’s part to leave people stranded outside after the dive) and two cabs stolen by Dave and irina. That plus the Express Pass Princess and Penalty make them the villains for sure, sorta rare for the Canadian Race.

    Leg design was a bit wonky, why have them leave Slave Lake only to go back?

    Multiple Express Passes gone in the same episode. This is the 2nd or 3rd season in a row this has happened. Teams just seem too eager to use them. At least 1 is still in play.

    Still no season of TAR Canada without at least one penalty.

    Lucky for Sarah and Sam about the geoscience building and the money thing, the latter of which reminded me of older TAR US.

    Strong episode even with the non-elim.

  2. This episode was good tv. With Jet & Dave gone so early (still sad!!) the entertainment factor was sorely lacking in the next couple of episodes that followed. Love them or hate them, Dave & Irina provide another reason to watch TARC besides just the race, which can be boring some episodes by itself. The underwater dive looked like fun? OK not really (I can’t swim) but it was a refreshing idea. The staff at the geoscience building rocked!!

    Rooting for the Moms and the Twins and the Athletes and the Edmonton Married Couple. Stay real and Go Teams Go!!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.