Herb "Flight Time" Lang, Nate "Big Easy" Lofton
The third time around the world was not the charm for Flight Time and Big Easy. The Harlem Globetrotters got the boot on Sunday's Amazing Race All-Stars after having navigation trouble and switching Detours twice — but you can sort of blame one stubborn donkey for that. "It wouldn't move!" Big Easy tells TVGuide.com. "What can you do? At that point, we had to switch." They didn't have much luck at the donkey-building Detour though, unaware that they had to put a cart on top of it to get the green light, before they went back to the donkey-riding. How much time did they lose? Find out below. Plus: Get their thoughts on last week's wild finish.
How far behind were you? It was dark when you got to the mat.
Flight Time: We were at least an hour and a half, possibly two hours, behind. We knew we were last. ... To me, watching it, it felt like we would get a non-elimination even though I knew that we wouldn't get a non-elimination. [Laughs] I was still nervous. That's when you know it's a good [episode].
It went wrong for you from the start. You got lost driving, but you did see other teams when you got to the Detours.
Flight Time: We had a little bit of trouble getting to the Detours, but like you said, we got there in time to see some teams at one point. If we had gotten a chance to catch up with the pack, I'm sure we would've, like the other teams, gotten help and figured out that you had to put that crate on the donkey, which would've turned things around. But the way it worked out, it was the way it was meant to be. We're happy with the way we ran and we're happy with the way we went out.
Did you consider working with anyone from the start, like the Afghanimals, since you left just a minute after them?
Big Easy: We're never against working with anybody, but we never seek it out from the beginning. People work with each other when they benefit from it and it's usually at challenges. It didn't really benefit us to work with anybody at that time, like just driving. We got along with everyone and would help other people out, but we didn't think about it then.
It looked like if you had stuck with riding the donkeys the first time, you would've had a chance.
Big Easy: Yeah, we think so too. But the first time, as you saw, the donkey didn't want to move! .... We got there and they had two donkeys. We couldn't change donkeys if we wanted to. When we went back later, there were four donkeys to choose from. Now we had a chance to get a better donkey, but the first time, it was tough luck. It could've happened to anyone.
Where were the other ones? Eating lunch?
Big Easy: I don't know! [Laughs] They were in Rome hanging out, I guess.
I was afraid you were going to break the donkey and that's why it wasn't moving.
Big Easy: No, it wasn't that at all. I thought it was my weight at first too. I was like, "What if it collapses under me?" But we switched donkeys [between the two of us] and it didn't move for Flight either. It was just a stubborn donkey, that's it! It's the donkey's fault! [Laughs]
Flight Time: We weren't there very long. We were probably there for 10 or 15 minutes before we realized the donkey wasn't going to move no matter who was on it, so we went to try to build the donkey. We were there for a few hours, like two hours, before we went back to the other one. We stared at the donkey, we talked to the donkey. It didn't talk back! [Laughs] We figured at this point, the other donkeys will be rested and as soon as we got back, we had the fastest donkeys in Italy.
They came back from their afternoon nap. Did you read the clue again for the build-a-donkey? You've had some clue issues between this week and last week at the Spanish Steps.
Flight Time: We did. The only people that figured out the crate on the donkey were Dave and Connor. They told the girls and the Afghanimals. Who knows if they would've figured it out by themselves.
Big Easy: We read the clue again. We knew what we were doing. We just didn't think of the crate as a part. I think we read the clue completely. The only team that figured it out helped everyone else out. I think they were lucky to have been together at that time to get the help. The cowboys had the Express Pass. Brenchel finished the donkeys quickly. We just were in an unfortunate position.
Were you worried at all about getting U-Turned?
Big Easy: I wasn't.
Filght Time: Me either. We had no plans to U-Turn anyone, but if it came to a situation where it was us and another team behind us, yeah, we would've had to U-Turn somebody, like we did with the cowboys last time. But we never go into a U-Turn or a Double U-Turn with the intention of U-Turning anyone.
What did you think of the drama with Brenchel U-Turning Dave and Connor, and Dave being so mad at them?
Big Easy: Personally, we wouldn't have U-Turned anyone if were in Brenchel's position. There were five teams behind them, but they did what they felt they had to do. They wanted first place. If you see a team right behind you, you do what you need to do to give yourself an advantage if that's how you want to race. I understand why they did it and it's part of the game. I don't see what the drama is about.
Last week's finish was crazy. Did you have any idea you were one of the last three teams before Phil told you the placements?
Big Easy: We never knew. We were just running for the mat. You're not going to walk and you want to beat the team you're in front of. We don't think any team can beat us running. Good thing we did run, otherwise it would've been a sore sight to see if Jessica passed us. She ran her butt off!
Flight Time: She came out of nowhere! The only team we saw at the Spanish Steps when we got there were the cowboys, so we had no idea where the other teams were. When the Afghanimals showed up, we had no idea we were ahead of them. Our taxi took us out to the same place John and Jessica's did, which is like 45 minutes outside the city. We figured at least the country girls were behind us, but obviously they weren't. When the Afghanimals helped us, none of us thought we'd be eliminated. When you're with a group and you think there's a team behind you, there's nothing wrong with helping. You want to know you're safe. Unfortunately, we had no idea we were the last three teams.
Your approach to that Roadblock cracked me up because you didn't even bother counting the Steps since you knew you could ask civilians. Of course, you didn't know you had to add the year.
Flight Time: Yeah, and I don't know anything about Roman numerals. You had people there with their iPhones out and reading the clue and we still couldn't figure it out. It was definitely a lot harder than it looks on television, as with anything. It's easy to say, "1924" and look it up at home or say, "Put the cart on the donkey." That's what I notice from being a fan of the show. It's easy to sit down on the couch and say do this and do that.
You didn't do as well this season as you did the previous two, when you placed fourth and second. This was your fourth consecutive sixth place finish. Is that disappointing? Why do you think that was?
Big Easy: We approached it the same way. We race how we race, but this season, some of the stuff that usually went well for us just didn't. We would get bad taxis, bad directions. Some drivers didn't have any clue where they were going. It was just luck of the draw. We had just as much fun on this one.
It seemed like you had more fun. Or you at least danced more.
Big Easy: We had a good time! We enjoyed it. We had fun. We were coming from Australia with the Globetrotters, so we were a little tired coming in. I enjoy watching it this season too.
Would you do it a fourth time?
Flight Time: I think our time might be up! [Laughs]
Big Easy: I think we'll answer that when and if we're asked [to go on] again.
Flight Time: After the second time, we said, "No way, no how!" And as soon as they asked us for this, we were like, "Yeah! Sure, we'll do it!" It's hard to say no.
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