We’re on to day day two of Relative Race. At the end of day 1 the teams got to meet and spend time with new relatives. In Arlington, Texas, Team Green learns that Marcus’ grandfather was a famous musician. His name is Chuck Higgens and you can check out some of his music here. Apparently music and dancing runs in the family, as we see them still showing off their best dance moves.
Meanwhile in Nashville, Maria’s brother, Adio, presents her with a really cool wood drawing of Maria and her mom side by side. All teams appear refreshed and ready for the challenges of a new day. Hopefully Maria will get to meet the rest of her 10 new brothers and sisters. I can only slightly imagine what its like gaining 10 new siblings. I was overwhelmed just marrying into a family where I would have 10 new brother and sister-in-laws to keep track of.
Traveling from Arlington Texas to Denton Texas, Team Green was given an allotted time of 55 minutes, the shortest of all the contestants. Unfortunately they have a designated driver, which means more opportunity for miscommunication. And there was plenty, when Marcus’ dad missed a crucial turn.
After saying goodbye to Maria’s brother, Team Red traveled from Nashville to Knoxville Tennessee, and were given an allotted time of 2 hours and 38 min. Unfortunately, just like Team Blue, they would face torrential downpours during their journey which threatened to slow them down.
Team Blue’s Demetrius showed us what a serious driving face on their trip from Cartersville Georgia to Knoxville Tennessee. With an allotted time of 2 hours and 44 mins, Team Blue was aiming high for that 1st place finish. Also facing torrential rain, Demetrius tried his best to stay behind semis in the theory that they would push the water out of the way for the car behind them. This has never worked for me, as they usually just splash water back on my car. But more power to you if it worked. And Demetrius was weirdly guarded about his “technique” when pressed by Dan during the video chat at the end of the episode. Dude, it’s just driving in the rain!
Eager to make up for the previous day’s mistakes, twin sisters Kaley and Kristen left Davie, Florida in a hurry, blasting their way up the coast to Fort Pierce, Florida.With an allotted time of 1 hour and 45 minutes, the twins hoped to redeem themselves after a grueling first leg of their journey.
Both Team Red and Team Blue decided to send some much needed love to Team Black after their disappointing first day, telling them to “Hold their heads up!”
Unlike years past, the teams seem to have figured out the city selfie really quick. Which was always comical to watch as inevitably it would be blurry, or someone’s head would be cut off. How quickly we forget how to use the technology of the not too distant past.
The Challenge: Block Party
At their destination cities, the teams were challenged to correctly arrange giant puzzle pieces into a perfect cube in 10 minutes. Picture Tetris on steroids. The contenders needed to bring their “A-game” spatial reasoning, like Homer Simpson did in this episode of the Simpsons.
While most of the teams were separated by quite a distance, both Teams Red and Blue found themselves competing at the same place at the same time. And when Red finished first, Blue just copied their cube. Hey, Dan never said anything about not copying. Team Black appeared to struggle with communication issues, but eventually were able to get the cube together.
Team Black. On the hills of a last place performance, Kaley and Kristen come riding to the front of the pack. In For Pierce Florida they meet their cousin Sandra on their mother’s side. In a turn of events not unheard of in the game, Sandra has been searching for family as well. Kaley and Kristen are the first blood relatives she has ever met, because she was adopted at 7 months old. That’s what I love about this show. It’s not just about connecting the contestants to relatives, but sometimes those relatives have just as big revelations about their own family tree. After a quick visit, the sisters were off to take a driver’s ed test with their new cousin, who just happens to be a driver’s ed Instructor.
Coming in at 43 minutes over their allotted time, Team Red stopped their clock when they meet Elizabeth’s cousin Shea. As if driving and competing wasn’t enough to wear someone out, they are invited to participate in a Zumba class with their new relative. Because who doesn’t love a good workout? Elizabeth’s cousin Shea is a professional Zumba instructor and we get to to see Team Red show off their best Zumba moves. Just like Team Red, Shea also has some holes in her past, and linking up with Elizabeth did a lot to bridge those gaps. Oh, and Elizabeth gets to see a photo of her grandfather for the first time.
Pulling in at a 3rd place finish again, Team Blue was 59 minutes over their time, with only 3 minutes separating them and Team Green. This also is not an uncommon occurrence in the game, many teams in seasons past have finished just minutes of each other. In Knoxville Tennessee, Demetrius meets his cousin Dante on his father’s side. If you remember, Demetrius is trying to find his dad, so any connection to his father’s side is huge.
As with most of these reunions, there is considerable amount of emotion, emotion that Demetrius displays as he falls to his knees with tears streaking down his face. As someone who has a Marine for a father, it’s unusual to see to see such emotion from one, but Demetrius breaks that stereotype multiple times. Similar to other teams’ relatives, Demetrius’ cousin Dante also is missing information on his father’s side. So it was huge for both men to meet their first cousin on their respective father’s side and begin to piece a genealogical line together.
Unfortunately Team Green was the last to arrive and was given their first strike. But the strike paled in comparison to the connection Keith made with his cousin Mike and his grandfather. If you remember back to the first episode, the brothers told of how their mom died four years ago, but both had little to no indication or communication with their birth fathers. While Marcus got to meet his dad before the game even started, Keith unfortunately will have to wait a little while longer.
While talking to his cousin, Keith got to see a photo of his dad, whom he hasn’t spoken to in 15 years. In fact, he told a story about seeing his father several years ago, but his dad didn’t appear to recognize him, or didn’t see him all together. I can’t even began to fathom how hard of a moment that could have been for him. But this show is about relationship building, and Keith’s cousin reached out to his dad, and he told Keith that his dad wants to meet him and hopefully build a relationship. Fingers crossed that we get to see that reunion in upcoming episodes.
If the tear-jerking reunions wasn’t enough to make you feel something for the contestants, I don’t know what will. Even Dan was crying.
If you haven’t caught the first two episodes it’s not too late. You can catch up on the BYUtv app on your streaming device. You can also watch episodes from seasons past.
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