Amazing Race's Carol and Brandy: Caite "Very Clearly Had a Problem with Us As Lesbians"
The Amazing Race
Caite Upton and Brent Horne seemed to have it out for Carol Rosenfeld, 47, and Brandy Snow, 40, from the beginning of The Amazing Race this season — which was news to the couple. "We both had separate conversations with her and Caite talked about [her infamous answer at Miss Teen USA 2007] and how she overcame it. I remember specifically saying, 'Good for you,' so to find out how much she hated us was a complete shock," Carol tells TVGuide.com. The models' self-described hatred culminated in them U-Turning Carol and Brandy in Sunday's episode, leading to their anger-filled elimination. Get the duo's take on the so-called "feud," why they think Caite in particular was after them, and if they would've used the U-Turn on the models.
TVGuide.com: What was your first thought when you saw that you were U-Turned by Brent and Caite?
Brandy: Just shock. In a common-sense world, strategy dictates, you know, "take the stronger team out." They didn't do that. I had no idea how personal it was. We never really had any negative interactions with Caite or Brent. We didn't seek out a friendship with them, but we also didn't have an opportunity to race alongside them except in Malaysia when they passed us on the stairs. When they did that, you didn't see us pissed. I actually told Caite that she did a kick-ass job. Just like how I said to Mike, "You're a rock star." We both were very complimentary and supportive of the other racers. To watch the name-calling and hatred unfold has been an emotional rollercoaster. It's also surprising because you don't know it's happening until you watch it. You know, them calling us "the mean lesbians."
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TVGuide.com: They hardly ever referred to you by your names.
Brandy: Yeah, it's like, "I have a name!"
Carol: I don't want to go to the point where I say she's homophobic because that's a pretty severe indictment of somebody. I don't know. People will have to be the judge of that, but you watch it and you don't know this is going on, and you like to think that in this day and age, people of a much younger generation would be a little more open-minded. It is what it is. She was clearly obsessed with beating and eliminating us. I think she very clearly had a problem with us as lesbians, not with us as individuals because she never individually indicts one of us as having done anything specifically wrong to them.
TVGuide.com: She seemed to be hung up on your tiara comment in the first episode and said you guys were always mean to her. Did you make other comments or jokes about her that we didn't see?
Carol: No. The whole joke is, "Is she racing with her sash and tiara?" That's not even mean! I don't think it is at all a personal attack or a value statement about it. We made the same joke about the cowboys: "It's amazing the cowboys raced in their magic hats." I think it would've been hysterical had she shown up in a sash and tiara. That would be props to her. ... She liked to use the word "haters" about people who latched on to the YouTube sensation. You kind of wonder if "hater" maybe applies back the way she spoke about us. And having gone through that, you think maybe she would've been more sensitive to that.
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TVGuide.com: So you had no inkling at all that they would U-Turn you?
Carol: We had no idea. Our goal was to fly under the radar. ... As I look back, I think she maybe thought Brandy was stealing her spotlight. She said on the show she would like to be the only girl left. Brandy's a beautiful woman and she's a former model. This is what Caite aspires to be. I don't think she expected a woman to be on there who was every bit as attractive as she was. I'm not blaming Brandy, but you know, if anyone is to blame, it's me for making a joke Day 1. I'm a joker! You saw it on the zipline. Brandy was like, "Why are you going faster?" "Because I'm fatter than you are!" ... I make jokes about myself before I do about anyone else. If you don't have a sense of humor about yourself, I don't know how you get through life. If you choose to put yourself out there, you better have a sense of humor.
TVGuide.com: The cops "trained" Brent and Caite to U-Turn you in an effort to avoid being U-Turned themselves. What do you think about that?
Brandy: While I don't like the way the cops played the game, they get props for being smart. Two weeks ago, watching them stand on the mat and calling us out, I was heartbroken because we were friends with them. Talk about feeling blindsided. This was on the tail of having a very private and personal conversation with Michael about his wife, his daughter, his anger-management issues, so that shocked us. Maybe I was just naïve in not realizing the level of gamesmanship.
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TVGuide.com: A lot of fans think you would've U-Turned Brent and Caite if you had gotten there first. Would you have?
Carol: No! We would've U-turned the cowboys. There's a clip online from the Malaysia leg where Phil asked us, "Who would you like to see leave?" We said, "We wouldn't really want to see anybody go." We were like, "Let everybody do their best and the chips will fall where they may." We knew the U-Turn was part of the game. Our strategy then was that the cowboys appeared to be the strongest team and then the second strongest team was Mike and Louie. They've each won the most legs.
Brandy: The cowboys set a record in Malaysia. No one had ever before gone from last to first with a Speed Bump. They're strong competitors, they're smart competitors, and we were focused on the race, not the racers. We would not have made it personal — not that we had a reason to make it personal with any team.
TVGuide.com: From your point of view, there was no feud between you and Brent and Caite at all?
Brandy: Right. What we find fascinating in the way this has been skewed, that there is a feud. There was no feud. You have to have two parties participating for there to be a feud. We were the object of her hatred and derision. There wasn't a feud until [Sunday's] episode where it exploded! I don't like being attacked. I don't like being blindsided and that's exactly what happened when they U-Turned us. Seriously, we're in the Seychelles and I'm bonding with Caite over a kitty! It was very stunning for it to happen. We had no clue they would U-Turn us or that they hated us like that. Now America's starting to believe there is a feud.
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TVGuide.com: You were angry after getting U-Turned. Do you think your anger affected your performance afterward?
Carol: No. The fact of the matter is, while we were toast, we caught up to Louie and Mike, and Jet and Cord at the Roadblock. I'm also amazed because ... Louie and Mike were the ones running around like chickens with their heads cut off. They couldn't do the drums, they tried to do the Fast Forward, they went to the ice cream. We were still in the running. We always knew from a physical standpoint that we weren't going to outrun anyone. It would take three of my strides to match one of Brent's. So for us, it was to stay in it. We didn't hope mistakes on our other people. We'll do our best and that's all we can do.
TVGuide.com: What are you up to now?
Carol: Yeah, work. I recently had a death in the family ... so dealing with that and trying to ignore all this hoopla. Being called a "mean lesbian" versus losing a parent, you know, [the former is] not going to affect me the rest of my life. Now we're going to be the fierce lesbians!