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The Amazing Race 15: Exclusive Interview with Sam and Dan McMillen

Posted on 12/08/2009 by Gina in The Amazing Race and Cast Interviews

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Amazing Race contestants Sam and Dan McMillen


by Gina Scarpa

On the season finale of The Amazing Race, teams headed to Vegas, where they headed to a wedding chapel, repelled face first down a hotel, joined the cast of Cirque du Soleil, counted a million dollars in poker chips, and visited Wayne Newton’s house.  At the poker chip challenge, Sam and Dan McMillen were in first place but Megan Rickey and Cheyne Whitney were able to come from behind, finish first, and arrive at the finish line about 8-10 minutes ahead of the brothers.  Today, the runners up spoke to RealityWanted in an exclusive interview about their experiences on the show, their fighting, and how they feel about being pegged as the villains.

Q. Gina, RealityWanted: Who came up with the idea to try out for The Amazing Race?
A. Dan: I think it was me.  I’ve watched it since I was in 7th grade.  I turned 21 and we got it goin’.  It was a long process.  I told Sam that our story would be pretty cool. 
A. Sam: Completely coincidentally, Star from 2 seasons ago was a friend of mine in college.  When Dan said let’s apply, I said, “Hell yeah!” 

Q. Gina, RealityWanted:
You didn’t reveal right off the bat that you’re both gay and I can understand why.  Did you have a plan about coming out to the other racers or did it just sort of unfold naturally?
A. Sam: Honestly, we were expecting it to be something that would unfold naturally.  When we did start coming out, we recognize that the best time to come out is when it feels natural.  We told the girls in Vietnam.  We wanted to wait until the finish line to reveal it to everyone else but we ended up telling them in the airport in Dubai.

Q. Gina, RealityWanted: You had some competitive moments, from stealing Brian and Ericka’s taxi to a few run-ins with the Globetrotters.  Do you think that the racers this season were too nice?
A. Dan: Exactly!  I was so surprised that we were looked at as the villains.  
A. Sam: After the race, and everything was said and done, Dan and I had no idea that we were going to be painted as the villains.  It just goes to show you how nice everyone was when those things make us the villain.

Q. Gina, RealityWanted: It seems like you got close to all of the other racers this season and were genuinely friends.
A. Dan: Actually, 8 of us have matching tattoos!
A. Sam: We have a permanent bond with them whether we like it or not!

Q. Gina, RealityWanted:
What, do you think, was your strongest leg?
A. Dan: Definitely Amsterdam!  That was our first place finish.  It was a smooth race for us.
A. Sam: I think Dubai was also a good leg, when we did the gold counting.  They edited it to make us look like idiots.

Q. Gina, RealityWanted: The stress of the race certainly took its toll on you as the race went on and you started fighting more.  Did you underestimate how much it would affect you guys?
A. Sam: Absolutely!  I have probably yelled at someone once in my life before the race.  I had no idea I had that kind of explosion in me.  In that sense, it goes to show how real and genuine the stress of the race is.

Q. Gina, RealityWanted: For a minute there, I thought you caught a break when Meghan and Cheyne went to the wrong casino.  What happened with the poker chips that cost you the race?
A. Sam: He knew how to stack them and make sure they were even.  We were too cautious and I take the blame for that.  I wanted to be careful because I didn’t think there was any way they were going
A. Dan: I think it was the fact that Sam and I have never played poker in our lives.  We were counting chip by chip.  Cheyne has played before and was comfortable with counting. 

Q. Gina, RealityWanted: How long after Meghan and Cheyne crossed the finish line did you arrive?
A. Sam: About 8-10 minutes.

Q. Gina, RealityWanted:
Now that you’ve watched the show, do you feel like America got an accurate picture of who you two are?
A. Sam: I think they accentuated a few things more heavily then they actually existed.  We didn’t really fight as much as they showed and we didn’t any more than any other team.  Well, maybe a little bit.  I think for the most part, we’re very pleased with how it turned out and how we were edited.

Q. Gina, RealityWanted:
Do you have any plans to travel more?
A. Sam: I’m gonna travel all spring and apply to med school in the summer.
A. Dan: I’m graduating in May then going to Africa in May and June.  When I get back, I’ll get a job.

(Image courtesy of CBS)

The Amazing Race 15: Finale Recap
The Amazing Race 15: Exclusive Interview with Winners Meghan Rickey and Cheyne Whitney

Follow Gina at twitter.com/ginascarpa

For more Amazing Race links, visit SirLinksALot.net


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