Amazing Race's Laurence and Zac: The U-Turn and Getting Lost "Pushed Us Over the Edge"
Laurence and Zac Sunderland
The Amazing Race's Laurence and Zac Sunderland survived Zac's two left feet at the Roadblock and a U-Turn, and were seemingly on their way to the Pit Stop when they got hopelessly lost for two hours. "They had some weird signs in Copenhagen and we ended up getting lost," Zac, who at 17 was the youngest person to sail solo around the world in 2009, tells TVGuide.com. "We took some wrong turns, got some bad advice and it kind of did us in in the end." Find out why traffic was so bad, why they had no luck with the locals and the scoop on Laurence's old rock band.
Amazing Race's Justin and Jennifer: It was a "huge mistake" not biking back
When did you notice you were going the wrong way?
Zac: Like two or three times. It was just very hard to turn around.
Laurence: Almost a day before we arrived in Denmark, they had a deluge of rain and some of the freeways were closed. It made it very difficult traffic-wise, aside from getting lost.
Zac: Yeah, one of the main freeways we were on was actually shut down, like a six-lane road just completely shut down and grinded to a halt from flooding. A bunch of places downtown were still bailing out the water.
How long did it take for you to get on the right track?
Zac: We were always making progress toward the general area of Copenhagen we were supposed to be going to. It was a pretty unknown area. We probably asked like 40 people and each time we got a different answer. It took us a lot longer than normal.
Laurence: What I thought was also interesting in Copenhagen was that not a lot of people were willing to help when you asked. Some of them walked the other way or rolled up the window of their car. It was just interesting that in other countries that we had been to, people were just all too willing to help, but in Copenhagen, it was the opposite. Not just our team, but I think other teams experienced difficulties working with the locals too, like [Marcus and Amani]. I think they were camera-shy or something.
Do you know how far behind Jeremy and Sandy you were?
Zac: We don't really know. Well, when we actually left [the Detour], I think they were right behind us. Somewhere along on the road they overtook us while we got lost.
When you got lost, what was your mindset? Did you think you were last or did you think other teams may be in the same predicament?
Laurence: We had a good idea we were last or second to last, but we didn't know until we parked out car and counted the cars that were there. Then it was like, "Oh, OK. We're the last car here." [Laughs] There's a lot of luck involved in this. We gave it our best shot.
Amazing Race's Liz and Marie: Our cabbie ripped us off
You started the leg off so well, getting the earlier flight. You got to the castle first and then dancing slowed you down.
Zac: Yeah, dancing took me way too long. That was not one of my prouder moments! But it was cool to go in the old castle. It took us a while to find that too, but we were one of the first teams to find it. It was an obscure clue. It wasn't painted with yellow and red like the clues were in the previous seasons. You had to do a lot of digging yourself and we found a guy to show us where the castle was, but we lost a couple places there.
Could you tell from the initial clue that the Roadblock involved dancing?
Zac: We literally drove our rental car into the main square of the castle. I'm not sure if we were supposed to do that. But we picked up the clue and I forget what it actually said, but it said something about medieval merriment, and you only have a few minutes to decide, so I took it because my dad had done the last two Roadblocks and I wanted to get in there and do one. And it turned out to be dancing! It took awhile, but we still weren't in last place when we left.
How surprised were you that Bill and Cathi U-Turned you?
Laurence: I still have a dartboard in my room with their picture on it! [Laughs] I'm kidding!
Strategically for the whole race, for them and Ernie and Cindy, the snowboarders would've been the better target since they've won so many legs, but do you understand why they picked you?
Zac: We thought about that a little while after we were eliminated. "Oh, they should've done this. They should've done that." But in the heat of the moment, you're going to do what you think is right. They were probably shocked they were U-Turned and then you have a few seconds with that board to figure out what teams are right behind you. I don't think they thought we were going to be completely kicked off, just that we'll be bumped back a little bit. But the U-Turn combined with getting lost pushed us over the edge.
Amazing Race's Kaylani and Lisa: We're shocked Marcus forgot the answer
You wasted your U-Turn last leg on Marcus and Amani. What happened there?
Zac: We weren't actually sure they had found the U-Turn yet. We thought they and Jeremy and Sandy were both behind us, but it turned out it was Jeremy and Sandy, and Justin and Jennifer.
You've made a lot of little mistakes each leg. Do you think they all added up in the end?
Zac: Yeah, a couple things didn't come together. But I think everyone makes mistakes. Everything is so in the moment that you have to go with it 100 percent and see where it takes you. You can't waste too much time making sure everything's perfect. It's a race and you have to keep going.
I love that you were eliminated next to a ship.
Zac: Yeah! [Laughs] I didn't know what the place was, but it was cool to see it was a ship. We didn't get to on it, but I heard the other teams had some fun there.
Laurence, what's this about you being in a rock band back in the day?
Laurence: How did you hear that? [Laughs] Yeah, before I came to America, I was the frontman of a rock 'n' roll band called Xyphoid. I enjoyed it immensely. I still play a little bit for my kids. I don't need my ego fed as much in this day and age! We had a lot of fun. ... It was an Australian band, and right when Irving Azoff and all the big guys in Hollywood were calling us, our visas were running out and I met this beautiful, wonderful lady who is now my wife and the mother of all my children. I ended up going back to England and coming out here and becoming a citizen of the country.
What are you up to now?
Zac: I'm out in Long Beach right now, getting some stuff together for another adventure, got some new management on board [for] another sailing adventure.
Laurence: I started a company called WorldWind Productions and we produced a documentary called Wild Eyes: The Abby Sunderland Story and Intrepid: The Zac Sunderland Story. I also run the Sunderland Yacht Management and Shipwright Co. and I'm chasing the six kids who are still at home. We're keeping pretty busy here!