Tag Archives: Amazing Race Canada

Interview: Amazing Race Canada winners give tips to wannabe Racers

Gino and Jesse Montani won this season of The Amazing Race Canada, and the next step in their journey has begun. A day after they captured $250,000, two Chevy trucks, flights from Air Canada, gas from Petro Canada and the title, the brothers from Hamilton, Ont., were still in awe of what they’d accomplished.

They took some time out from a busy day of interviews to look back on the season and give some valuable tips to anyone plotting to audition for Season 4.

What’s it been like to sit and watch the show back and relive all of those moments?
Gino Montani: It’s been a cool experience. You remember back to running the Race and you hope they don’t put something in, because there is so much footage to edit. Sometimes you don’t even realize you said something.

Jesse: Yeah, like, ‘Wait, my laugh sounds like that?!’ Oh, I need to change up my laugh.

Has it been hard to keep the secret from your family every week?
Gino: It was so tough. You don’t want to keep anything from the most important people to you, especially something like this. But, at the same time, to see their faces at the end of the Race and seeing their reaction, was priceless.

What was your game plan going in? Sure, you has some squabbles, but overall you were a very strong team.
Gino: Everyone is labelled with a first impression, and we knew we would be labelled as the jocks. We’re physical, and it’s the way we look. That’s fine. But there is much more to us and the other teams didn’t know that. We were strategizing the whole time. One thing we wanted to make sure we did was to take that extra second during challenges. You can’t just come into this and be reckless. You have to think about what you’re doing. So we took an extra second, or minute, to figure out a game plan at each challenge rather than waste time doing it three, four or five times. And it worked … but in the finale, it worked against us. We were taking too much time in the map challenge with the measuring string.

Jesse: We wanted to do it just once and Nick and Matt did it so fast. I wonder how fast we would have done it if we had just done it they way they did?

“We ran the Race to finish first. But other teams were racing just not to finish last, and that’s a huge difference.”

Let’s talk about Nick and Matt. You guys were back and forth all season, battling it out. They pushed you, and you pushed them. In the long run, it made for a compelling season.

Jesse: They are great competitors and they pushed us. I think the outcome would have been the same but I’m still not sure because they pushed us to exceed even our capabilities.

Gino: We ran the Race to finish first. We figured that if we won some Legs and some trips then at least we’d had the experience. But other teams were racing just not to finish last, and that’s a huge difference.

Was there a time or a Leg where you guys said to one another, ‘I think we might actually win this?’
Jesse: We knew each other’s strengths and that we could physically do it. There was that Leg in Chile where we came in second-last that was a wake-up call. We realized that we really needed to push from them on.

What are some tips you’d give people who are auditioning for Season 4?
Jesse: For the audition tape, just be yourself. Don’t go jumping out of planes and doing crazy things. Sit in front of the camera and talk about yourself and who you are.

Gino: They don’t want to know if you can jump out of a plane. Don’t put your dog in there, that’s not who you are.

Jesse: And for the Race, build a relationship with your taxi driver in case you run into a situation where somebody might steal your taxi. We finished that challenge and ran out to Nick and Matt’s taxi and the driver didn’t really care for them, so he had no problem taking us. He offered to take us and we weren’t going to turn that down. A relationship with a taxi driver can really help you because they want you to win.

Gino: I think you need to figure out who you are as a team. Are you in it for the experience or are you in it to win? If you’re in it to win, you have to simplify things and break it down. It’s overwhelming if you look at the whole Race. You have to split it up into Legs and each task. You can’t let outside factors get in.

Will you try out for Season 4 of The Amazing Race? If so, let us know what sets you apart from other potential Racers in the comments below.



Review: And The Amazing Race Canada winners are …

After 48,500 km, Season 3 of The Amazing Race Canada crowned its winners as Gino and Jesse Montani captured a year of travel for two in business class anywhere Air Canada flies, two Chevy Colorados, gas for life from Petro Canada, $250,000 and winners of The Amazing Race Canada.

“Here’s to you, Canada. Cheers!” was an orgy of Canadiana in Vancouver, from riding a bike along a metal beam on BCE Place to visiting the Squamish Lil’Wat Cultural Centre for a map challenge and a ski matching test in Whistler.

And it was anything but and easy Leg for the final three teams. I honestly thought Brent and Sean’s luck had finally run out when Brent took 20 tries to wobble his way across the beam in downtown Vancouver. Jesse and Matt conquered the Road Block in their first tries, giving their squads an early lead. Those leads were cut down thanks to Brent and Sean’s tenacity … and a major blunder by Jesse and Gino. The brothers from Hamilton were so stressed out the wrestlers successfully finished the map challenge ahead of them they neglected to completely eras their whiteboard … Brent and Sean merely had to write the final answer on their board and they’d completed the task. Racing tip: worry about what you’re doing and not the other teams.

A somewhat simple task at the Bearfoot Bistro—removing the tops from champagne bottles using a sabre and champagne flute—was nonetheless a symbolic one: these teams had battled hard through 12 Legs and were celebrating ever-so-briefly with a quaff of bubbly.

The editing made it look as though Jesse and Gino were mere minutes arriving on the mat in front of Jon Montgomery ahead of Matt and Nick on the 12th hole at the Nicklaus North Golf Course. Either way, the siblings were first and the wrestlers, who had placed in the Top 3 during nine Legs had to settle for second place.

“We never doubted each other,” Jesse told Montgomery. “This is the most beautiful country in the world. You don’t need to travel anywhere else.”

Overall, I’ve been impressed with Season 3 of The Amazing Race. A series of incredibly hard challenges forced some teams to sit out and take time penalties but for the most part they gamely soldiered on. I’ve never been a fan of the Race leaving Canada, but I’m OK they keep the continent jumping to a minimum and begin and end in the greatest country on the planet.

Here’s how the final three finished:

  1. Jesse and Gino (winners)
  2. Matt and Nick
  3. Brent and Sean

Notes and quotes

  • “Brent and I are from the east coast and prefer our mussels with garlic butter.” — Sean
  • How great was that callback to Monty’s gold medal Winter Olympics win by handing him a pitcher of beer?

What have you thought of this season of The Amazing Race Canada? Will you audition for Season 4?


Review: Amazing Race Canada reveals its finalists

After a week away from The Amazing Race Canada—I was off on my own adventures in Parry Sound and Sudbury, Ont.—I checked back in just in time as the final three teams were set up for next week’s season finale. (As an aside, I was disappointed Dujean and Leilani became bitter with each other last week and were eliminated while airing their dirty laundry.)

So, after a gruelling Leg in Edmonton jam-packed with drama and stolen cabs, Brent and Sean, Matt and Nick and Gino and Jesse will battle it out for the trucks, money and title in next Wednesday’s last episode. Eliminated on the mat at the Muttart Conservatory were Simi and Ope, who never gave up hope despite the fact they suffered from having two cabs stolen from under them.

I get that it’s a race, but I wasn’t impressed that Gino and Jesse stole that first cab from Nick and Matt at the Edmonton Waste Management Centre. That move forced the wrestlers to play dirty pool and grabbed Simi and Ope’s ride, something they clearly didn’t feel good about doing. Gino and Jesse made it a twofer when they then absconded with Simi and Ope’s cab after the curling Face Off. Again, I understand The Amazing Race Canada is a competition and calls for desperate times, but I was disappointed. I guess I’m just a sucker for fair play and the world just isn’t a fair place sometimes.

Still, kudos to the father-daughter team for ending the Race with their heads up and thanks to Ope for the inspirational words about this country.

“It’s amazin’!” he said tearfully in front of Jon Montgomery.

Speaking of amazin’, how about Brent and Sean? The brothers have emerged as perhaps the most unlikely of frontrunners after beating out their more physical competitors to land in first place for the week. They conquered garbage, curling, shopping for snacks and acting to emerge as bona fide contenders for the title. They also showed sportsmanship; after taking someone’s cab at Fort Edmonton Park they ordered a replacement.

Here’s how the teams finished this Leg:

  1. Brent and Sean
  2. Nick and Matt
  3. Gino and Jesse
  4. Simi and Ope (eliminated)

Notes and quotes

  • That newlywed couple were in on the joke, right? They knew their big day would be interrupted by finalists, I’m sure.
  • “Shopping. I mean, this is our task.” — Sean
  • Nick and Matt may be tough guys, but jumper cables are NOT a snack.

The Amazing Race Canada season finale airs next Wednesday at 9 p.m. ET/PT on CTV followed by After the Race.


Review: Amazing Race Canada grapples in Delhi

Never give up, because you don’t know what will happen. It’s a mantra that’s repeated during The Amazing Race and it continues to be true. Look no further than Simi and Ope and Brent and Sean; the former team managed an impressive fourth place finish while the latter were saved from exiting the Race because it was a non-elimination Leg.

Fans knew there was one more non-elimination in the cards and I’d hoped it was this week in Delhi, especially after the east coast brothers fell into last place and stayed there all episode long. “Take Your Clue and Gooooo!” saw the remaining five pairs jet to Delhi and immediately traumatized as they transported live catfish from one end of the fish market to the other. (Can you imagine how everyone smelled by the end of that challenge? Woo.) Nick and Matt, determined to place first this week, got off to a “hot start” and whizzed through the fish and on to Turban Twist. Matt struggled a bit turning out three different turban styles on a trio of very patient men, followed in succession by Gino, Ope, Dujean and, eventually, Sean.

As for the Detour? It was a no-brainer, as Nick and Matt selected Slam It’s wrestling moves as the test for them. The editing made it look like the pro wrestlers got done a bare few minutes before Gino and Jesse, but that may not have been the case. What I do know is that Gino and Jesse’s tenaciousness went a long way to pushing Matt and Nick to a level that has eluded them to this point. They became so frustrated with having the Hamilton, Ont., siblings constantly within reach they shifted into another gear and finished the Leg in first place. Ope’s bad back, meanwhile, meant he and Simi had to drop out of Slam It and opt for Spice It, competing with Sean and Brent to grind 100 grams of hot peppers in the least amount of time.

We know what happened next.

Here’s how the teams placed at the end of this Leg:

  1. Nick and Matt
  2. Gino and Jesse
  3. Simi and Ope
  4. Dujean and Leilani
  5. Brent and Sean (non-elimination)

Notes and quotes

  • Eighteen million people call Delhi home. That’s just staggering.
  • I’m not sure who I felt more badly for, the competitors of those catfish.
  • I’m not sure who I felt more badly for, Sean for throwing up down the side of the tuck-tuk or the driver who had to clean the barf off the side of his tuk-tuk.
  • CTV needs to put together a photo gallery of Matt’s “bar shirts” STAT.
  • I’m always appreciative of the cultural information The Amazing Race provides. Learning Humayun’s Tomb was the inspiration for the design of the Taj Mahal was fascinating.

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


Review: Amazing Race Canada sweats in Kolkata

Mission Interrupted indeed. I’m going to miss Brian’s pithy quips, his eye-rolling and, mostly recently, his attempt at Jedi mind-tricking Kolkata’s sculpture vendor. The police officers were the latest team to be eliminated from The Amazing Race Canada on Wednesday night.

During the last few weeks, tough challenges hampered the teams; this week it was the intense heat and crowded streets of Kolkata, India, that challenged everyone perhaps more mentally than physically. Gino and Jesse bitched at each other, Ope became frustrated with Simi and Brian was downright surly to Cynthia; all were the result of humidity and frayed nerves in packed neighbourhoods.

Brothers Sean and Brent—who enjoyed a season-best first-place finish and business-class seats to India—literally crashed back down to earth during the Roll Detour involving yoga. Poor Brent went head-first into the stone paving, injuring himself and bringing tears. This is the lowest we’ve seen the spunky pair, and admit I felt badly for them. Luckily, they turned things around and live to Race another day. Gino and Jesse tumbled down the standings thanks to having a hard time finding the shops to visit during the Tuck Detour and lost precious moments. I’m so used to seeing the pride of Hamilton in first or second it was a shock for them to be so close to elimination.

The Leg’s bright spot? Dujean and Leilani, who used their dance background to full effect during the yoga challenge and landed in front of Jon Montgomery on top of the world.

Here’s how the teams finished this Leg:

  1. Dujean and Leilani
  2. Nick and Matt
  3. Brent and Sean
  4. Simi and Ope
  5. Gino and Jesse
  6. Brian and Cynthia (eliminated)

Notes and quotes

  • Those business class seats sure looked comfy.
  • “Paramount Drinks and Syrups.”
  • “Can you airborne shuffle it?”
  • Sulking never won a Leg of the Race, Brian.

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