Amazing Race's Andie and Jenna: Show Was "Perfect Way to Get to Know Each Other"
The Amazing Race
Bad taxi luck struck again on The Amazing Race — this time eliminating Andie DeKroon, 43, and the daughter she put up for adoption and is getting to know, Jenna Sykes. "It did stink because we all left the airport at the same time. We got in the cab, I had a map and said, 'This is where we're going,'" Jenna, 21, tells TVGuide.com. "He took us in a complete circle the wrong way." It only got worse as two more cab drivers let them astray later in the leg in Accra, Ghana, ending their Race experience, which the duo was using to get to know each other. But why was the show of all things the "perfect way" for them to bond?
TVGuide.com: Did you know you were last when you got to the Pit Stop?
Andie: Yes, Jenna had counted the coffins when we were bringing ours up the stairs. She had the presence of mind to count them and said, "Uh oh." So we kind of knew.
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TVGuide.com: Did you see any teams ahead of you?
Jenna: We only saw one team — Nat and Kat — doing their coffin challenge. We saw them when we first got there. So we actually thought we were in a race with them to get the last spot. We pretty much knew, since no one else was around, that we had to have been the last two teams coming in.
Andie: Then our cab driver who took us all the way to the other side of the city — literally. It had taken so long that we knew we weren't going to make it in time.
Jenna: I heard it was really close between us and Gary and Mallory, like really close.
TVGuide.com: Was it discouraging knowing that you did well on the tasks but fell victim — multiple times — to something that's out of your hands: taxi drivers?
Jenna: Yeah, it was disappointing. I don't know if [our first driver] was lost or if he was trying to get us to stay in the cab longer so we had to pay more, but we ended up getting to the park last. ... I made up some time later [at the Roadblock], but then we got another bad cab driver and it was awful! He took us even more out of the way. At least we can be proud of ourselves for doing the best we could and not doing any mistakes that we would look at and say, "Oh, I wish I did this better."
TVGuide.com: Did you consider changing taxis?
Andie: We did! [Laughs] You don't see that, but we did. He was great. He drove through the middle of traffic to try to get us to the mat, but it was too late. His name was Gideon — I'll never forget him. He was so nice and he really tried.
Jenna: We were doing the same thing as [Nat and Kat's and Connor and Jonathan's cabs]! We were blaring our horn and racing down the middle of traffic as well. He's why we were close to Gary and Mallory.
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TVGuide.com: Do you think not knowing each other very well beforehand helped or hurt you?
Andie: I think in some ways it helped in that we were both trying really hard to be the best that we could be for the other one. With that newness, you want that person to be proud of you. There might've been some disadvantage to not knowing each other's strengths and weaknesses. ... I've read comments from people that said we were nonchalant. We were racing our hearts out. I thought we were very much into in it.
Jenna: We learned a lot about each other. Race-wise, it was fun to see that we handle situations in a similar manner. Our temperaments are very similar — not losing our cool. On a personal level, it was fun to see things that we have in common. I think that's when people's real personalities come out — in those intense situations.
TVGuidee.com: Some fans think the show isn't the proper place for you guys to get to know each other. What do you have to say about that?
Andie: I can see how people might think that, but you have to understand that we had been writing to each other for almost two years. We knew each other, but we just hadn't met. We also knew that we would never in a million years probably have one night together much less three and a half weeks together under normal circumstances. This was a great opportunity to be together that we wouldn't have otherwise.
Jenna: It fit our personalities. We're very adventurous, very daring and brave — not to brag or anything! [Laughs] But that was something we had in common — that adventurous spirit, so it was appropriate for us that we got to see that in each other.
Andie: And this would not be for everybody. I would not recommend that every [birth parent and biological child] do something this intense. It just happened that it was a great fit for us. It was the perfect way to get to know each other.
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TVGuide.com: Who were you rooting for after you got eliminated?
Andie: We didn't get to know the teams very well, obviously, but the good thing is that we loved everybody that we had met and got along with them all. We would've been happy for any of them to win. Probably our No. 1 favorites would be the Princeton guys [Connor and Jonathan] because they stopped and helped us.
TVGuide.com: They called you the Gilmore Girls, which I think was the best nickname.
Andie: [Laughs] Yeah, we liked that. We'll take that!
TVGuide.com: How often do you see each other now?
Jenna: We haven't really seen each other. We e-mail all the time and talk on the phone. We don't live in the same town, so it's hard with our busy schedules to get together. But Andie and I both know that we're always going to be friends and we can always call each other and talk.