This week on The Amazing Race, Pamela Chien and Winnie Sung were eliminated from competition after struggling with two challenges in Africa.
Although Pam and Winnie made use of U-Turn earlier in The Amazing Race to get ahead of the other teams, the two best friends from Los Angeles struggled with the last two roadblocks to fall behind the pack. When the second leg in Africa called for a choice between “brains” and “braun”, Pam and Winnie went back and forth on both tasks and eventually put themselves out of contention.
The day after this week’s Amazing Race, The Deadbolt caught up with Pam and Winnie for an exclusive chat about what went wrong, using the U-Turn, and how the gained an edge over the competition after the first leg in Bora Bora.
THE DEADBOLT: How long did it take you to finish both tasks?
PAMELA CHIEN: To finish both tasks, over an hour.
WINNIE SUNG: About two and a half hours.
THE DEADBOLT: So, what was the secret to getting the donkeys to move?
WINNIE: Nothing. Just being patient and waiting.
THE DEADBOLT: Looking back, do you think you would’ve been able to redo the “Brains” task one more time and still be in the race?
WINNIE: No. By the time we finished the task on the first try, we were already last. We were already done at that point.
PAMELA: The horse challenge took much longer to do.
THE DEADBOLT: How awkward was it to run the race with Meaghan and Joey after the U-Turn?
WINNIE: It wasn’t really. I think they understood and knew it was part of the game. I mean, they were okay with it. Meaghan was a little upset but everyone got along pretty well.
PAMELA: At least we exercised our right to U-Turn before we were eliminated.
WINNIE: When we watched the previous seasons and nobody would use the U-Turn, we were like, “Come on! Use the U-Turn!”
PAMELA: We didn’t want to be that team who said, “We choose not to use the U-Turn.”
WINNIE: Initially we wanted to U-Turn the hockey brothers because they were the strongest team, but everyone was in agreement to U-Turn Joey and Meaghan. We didn’t want to get U-Turned, so we were like, “Okay, as long as it’s not us.”
THE DEADBOLT: Since you were first going to Africa, how much confidence did that give you in terms of really getting ahead of the others?
WINNIE: We weren’t really first going into Africa, we were last.
PAMELA: We were first place, but we encountered some bad luck with our baggage. We were last on that flight.
WINNIE: We were used to coming from behind.
PAMELA: We never felt that sense of confidence because we knew the whole race is anyone’s game at any point. We never got that feeling like it was our game or that we should be in the front all of the time.
WINNIE: We were literally running and racing against professional athletes. It’s a miracle that we’re still alive.
THE DEADBOLT: How did you feel about Connor getting the surfboard task right after he looked at yours?
WINNIE: I was shocked, because I didn’t know he did that until we watched the episode on Sunday. But it was a strategic move and everyone decides how they want to play the game going into it.
PAMELA: They owe us money. [laughs]
WINNIE: Yeah, they owe us money from that $5000. [laughs]
PAMELA: We should get royalties.
THE DEADBOLT: Back in Bora Bora, how could you tell that Idries and Jamil weren’t delivery men? What gave them away?
PAMELA: They were really smart.
WINNIE: We were super scared of them. We were like, “Oh, no! They’re going to be trouble.” Going into the race, we knew they were really scared of water. We knew that Bora Bora may be trouble because there’d be a lot of water challenges.
PAMELA: They were really, really smart and very well spoken, so it was obvious they were more than delivery drivers.
THE DEADBOLT: How surprised were you both that they were still behind you in Bora Bora?
WINNIE: I was hoping they were still behind us. When Pam was doing the stilts, I was counting the number of stilts at the finish line and there was still one missing. So, I thought they were still behind us but you never know. When we got to the mat, we were just so excited and happy not to be eliminated at that point.
THE DEADBOLT: How was the race different than what you expected before you started?
PAMELA: I think the thing that was hard to anticipate was the stress and the pressure from everyone being so frantic.
WINNIE: And we were so hungry. I didn’t think we were going to be that hungry. We were so hungry the entire time.
PAMELA: We were also relieved to find that the bathroom situation was up to par for us. So, we weren’t bothered at all by that.
WINNIE: There were a couple of “iffy” moments in Africa but it worked out well.
How do you feel about Pam and Winnie leaving The Amazing Race?