Amazing Race's Dave and Connor: It Was a Lousy Way to Leave
David and Connor
Dave and Connor were running — or hobbling — on borrowed time on The Amazing Race after Dave tore his Achilles' tendon on Leg 2. The father-and-son cancer survivors/cyclists finally decided to throw in the towel on Sunday — but not before winning two legs. "We didn't expect to do as well as we did, but it was just time," Dave tells TVGuide.com. "I needed surgery and we wouldn't have lasted much longer." But could they have gone another leg? And what was their one selfish act? Find out below.
Amazing Race's Jessica and John: We didn't over-think using the Express Pass
Why did you decide to withdraw now? Was it just your doctor's advice or were you hurting?
Dave: Yeah, it was mostly my orthopedic surgeon. We actually got word in Bali that ideally there was a seven-day window to have surgery, but no more than 14. We were right in that timeframe and it just felt like that was the time. It was more important than going on to another leg. We kind of decided the morning we were leaving for Vietnam that we would quit. We decided to go to Vietnam because selfishly we were anxious to see Vietnam! [Laughs] We wanted to go out on the mat and that was the only way we could do it.
So there was no rule that you had to fly to Vietnam? You just wanted to go there.
Connor: Nope, no rule at all. Luckily, we were able to do that.
Are you sure you couldn't have run another leg? You were cruising on those crutches, Dave.
Dave: [Laughs] I was probably faster on the crutches than I was on two legs. I don't know. It's close. We were having fun, but unfortunately, we took my boot off one night in an airport and my leg really looked bad. Then we got in contact with a doctor who gave us that timeframe. They had seen the test results from Tahiti and said I really needed to have surgery. I didn't want to jeopardize the rest of my life.
How close were you to quitting after the second leg?
Dave: We saw a doctor in Bora Bora and he confirmed that a tendon was torn. He called it a hemotoma, but it turned out to be a torn calf muscle. We were heartbroken. I'm a big boob anyway, but I just bawled my eyes out lying on a table on the beach, thinking it was all over. We stayed that night in Bora Bora, got to Tahiti the next morning, got the sonogram done that confirmed the calf muscle was torn and the Achilles' was torn. Our translator there actually said that I didn't need surgery and then came back later and said, "Oh, I'm sorry, I misunderstood. The doctor said you have to have surgery and you should go home to do it." But they put me in the boot and the boot was great. I felt fine in the boot, so we figured, "Hey, let's keep going."
Was that a quick decision or did you discuss it a lot?
Dave: We had discussions all the time. At that point, we had an Express Pass and we said, "Why not finish the leg and try to win the leg and then we'll make the decision?" We were lucky enough to win the leg and Phil tells us that we're still racing! [Laughs] What do you do? You keep racing! We didn't see that as a way to leave in the middle of a double-leg. We didn't think it could go on much longer. It had already been a few days, so we said, "Heck, let's just keep doing and see what we can do."
TV scorecard: What's renewed? What's canceled?
Jessica and John were hesitant to keep their word to the deal and give you the Express Pass. Do you think they would've given it to you if you weren't injured?
Connor: It didn't hurt that we were hurt. I think they saw that as a great opportunity. They knew that we wouldn't last long and it made them look good. It would've made them look terrible if they didn't give it to us. I think they were kind of forced to in a way.
What do you think about them not using theirs last week?
Connor: Oh, man! I don't even know what to say about that. [Laughs] Watching it, it was just like, "C'mon! Pull the Express Pass! Pull the Express Pass!"
Dave: Especially when he saw Chuck down at the surfboards. You'd think he'd say, "Hey, I'm just gonna use this." It's really crazy because you prepare so well for the Race and think you're going to read your clues word for word. We made so many stupid mistakes. But you get out there and your adrenaline's going so fast and you forget everything.
Connor, some fans are upset that you peeked at Winnie's surfboard last week after rejecting her deal to show you her board if you let her win the leg. What was your reasoning behind rejecting her offer?
Connor: Second place doesn't do us any good in our situation. If we were healthy, that's a different story. We wanted to win the leg. If I had said yes, I wasn't going to jump in front of her, but I figured we still had a chance to get first if she was having trouble [finding Phil] and if I could find the board before she found Phil. Then I looked up and when she had her surfboard out in front of me, I looked at it. I don't think that's any different than when you're doing tasks next to each other and look at each other's work. ... Once I saw it, I was like, "Yes, that's it! That's the priest." ... If I hadn't seen her, I probably would've recognized it eventually.
Dave: Unfortunately, we made two trips to see [the priest] because we forgot our snorkeling gear. ... We were surprised Winnie didn't follow Connor to the Pit Stop.
Me too. Why didn't she?
Connor: I don't know. She took off and went in a totally different direction. Then I saw Phil and booked it up to him. I lucked out.
Dave, did you exacerbate your injury by running those two legs?
Dave: Not at all. The boot was really solid and I didn't feel like I was doing any damage. It was really the correspondence with the orthopedic surgeon who gave us the timeframe that said now's the time we should pull out.
Connor: It was a bummer, but it was fun. We made the most of it: two first places and great prizes. We showed people that you can win on one leg.
Why did you tell Pam and Winnie, and Max and Katie that you were pulling out?
Connor: We just figured we're leaving and we'll let these two teams know since we were all there.
Dave: They elected not to tell anyone else that we were gone, which was smart of them. We kind of hoped that someone would U-Turn us and waste their U-Turn.
Amazing Race's Idries and Jamil: It was hard getting over our fear of water
Did you know that you had the highest average placement at that point?
Connor: We did. We were in the top three. We should've had three wins, but the Achilles' took it down to two. We were right up there. You never know what's going to happen, but we felt like we had a good shot. It's definitely heartbreaking.
You're a shoo-in for the next Unfinished Business. You have a legitimate case to be on.
Connor: If they do one, let's hope so!
Dave: Please let someone else know that. [Laughs] We would love to go back. It was such a lousy way to leave.
How's your leg now, Dave?
Dave: It's coming. It's a long recovery. They say a year, but I was lucky that my orthopedic surgeon was aggressive on my therapy and I was able to get back on my bike with a boot on in a couple of weeks. I'm a lot slower and I won't be able to run for a couple more months, but I'm back being active. I rode 50 miles on Saturday and 30 miles this morning. I'm continuing physical therapy on the Achilles'. Right now, it's more the calf muscle than the Achilles'.
So you can be back on the Race in a year.
Dave: I can be racing in two more months. If I can run, I can race!