The Amazing Race comes to an end in the Windy City

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The final three teams — Brooke & Scott, Tara & Joey and London & Logan — enjoyed a premium flight for the last leg of the race, flying halfway around the world from South Korea to Chicago where speed and attention to detail will make the difference in who wins and who loses.

After a season of ups and downs, mostly downs, Brooke & Scott finished the last leg in first place for the first time and made it out of the airport, to a taxi and to their first destination leading the pack. Their first stop on the final leg was the Chicagoland Speedway where one team member had to change a tire and the other had to complete a run on the track. Of course it was timed, with the tire change at 40 seconds and the drive at 48 seconds.

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Now we know how easily Brooke gets frustrated and this time was no different as she had trouble with the lug nut removal and lifting the tire off the car. It took her a few tries and Scott remained remarkably calm during the whole ordeal, gently reassuring her that she could do it. Luckily they were ahead of the second team to arrive, and as Tara & Joey reached the pit area Brooke finally found her mojo and got that tire changed. Joey had an easier time of it but Scott was already on the track making his first run … which he overshot by 10 seconds. The second run was over by one second, but he came in under the allotted time on the third run. Tara also started making her runs while London & Logan finally found their way to the Speedway.

With Brooke & Scott taking an early lead, this was now their race to lose. The question was could Scott keep Brooke from having a complete meltdown? She came close to giving up during the tire change and now the pair was about to face a lot of running around town looking for landmarks. But first they had to find the clue in a subway station, and while they were looking Tara & Joey arrived.

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Brooke saved the day by seeing the man with the marked hard hat and they got a clue which consisted of three riddles with the answer being a specific landmark where they were to get a postcard which was a piece of a puzzle. Tara & Joey also got their clue and both teams were using the knowledge of locals, and their cell phones, to help determine where they had to go. But Brooke & Scott took the time to get all three locations before taking off.

Each location was within a few blocks of the other but it involved running, and Brooke was on the verge of having yet another meltdown. Again, Scott talked to her in a calm and reassuring manner, boosting her with the “this is for a million dollars” pep talk each time she wanted to stop, knowing that Tara & Joey were right on their tails. London & Logan were also not far behind but it seems like they just got the address of their first location before heading out.

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Brooke & Scott sailed through the challenge and putting the postcards together saw that they had to go to the top of City Hall, where there was a roof garden and a beekeeper, to get their next clue. Tara & Joey missed one key part of a riddle, the height of a building, and went to the wrong location for their third postcard but made it to City Hall with London & Logan close behind. At this point it seemed like it was going to be a race for second place with Brooke & Scott so far ahead. But you never know what can happen when getting to the Pit Stop requires a cab ride. Teams have more trouble with cabs in the US than they do anywhere else.

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The teams’ next challenge was to find Wrigleyville Dogs, take ten Chicago hot dogs to Cubs fans sitting in rooftop bleachers across from Wrigley Field. Brooke & Scott easily accomplished the task and were rewarded with two tickets to Wrigley Field. There they had to complete the final challenge: using the iconic manual scoreboard, one team member had to place numbers next to the Pit Stop city representing where they placed at that finish. The other team member had to sit in the press booth and direct the teammate via one-way radio on where to place the numbers. Brooke nearly made a fatal mistake when she started spewing out numbers in the order of the cities, but when she looked closer at the board the cities were in alphabetical order, not arrival order which made things a little more difficult. But they before Tara & Joey arrived at the ballpark.

Upon completing the task and learning they had made no mistakes, Brooke & Scott headed to home plate to meet the umpire who gave them their next clue. Using numbers in the clue, the pair had to find a section in the stadium where they would find their next clue. Of course it had to be in the upper 500s, and it was a large section, requiring them to go up and down every row of seats until they found the clue. They did, near the back row of course, and were directed to make their way to Milton Lee Olive Park to meet Phil at the Pit Stop. Brooke & Scott were out of the ballpark before Tara & Joey had finished their scoreboard and London & Logan hadn’t even arrived yet.

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And with little suspense — because Brooke & Scott actually found a competent cab driver — they became the winners of Season 29 of The Amazing Race. What may have actually helped them was the fact that they checked their backpacks at the airport so all they had to carry was their fanny packs. The other two teams had to log around everything which may have slowed them down a bit as they always had to take time to load and unload them from the cabs. Tara & Joey finished in second place and London & Logan were a distant third. We don’t even know if they actually completed the last challenge or if they were just told to go since the sun was beginning to set. Congratulations to Brooke & Scott for overcoming their differences and winning The Amazing Race. It was a good finish and thankfully not the last, so we’ll see you here again next year for season 30!

What did you think of the finale? Did the right team win? Tell us in the comments below!

 

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