Dec. 10, 2012 at 11:10 AM ET
It all came down to this. "The Amazing Race" two-hour special finale Sunday night ended by crowning the pair that was named season 21's $1 million winner, but there were plenty of hurdles Lexi and Trey, James and Jaymes, and Josh and Brent had to face before getting to that point.
The 11th leg of the race kicked off with the four teams having to travel by train from Barcelona to Loire Valley, France, and a slight conspiracy. Everyone was trying to formulate a plan to get Josh and Brent (aka the Beekman Boys) out of the race. However, they weren't too discreet about it.
With that idea in the back of their heads, the Beekman Boys made sure to let the others know what was up. While in France, each pair had to grab eight crates, throw them in their car and head to Chateau de Villandry to find a stone dog that contained their next clue. And even with an injured ankle, Josh was still a strong competitor (his French helped, too).
Each team had to find da Vinci's final resting place, Chateau D'Amboise, but first, the twins had to complete a Speed Bump challenge which required them to lace a woman into an 18th century corset. Wasn't too bad.
At the chateau, the duos came across a Detour, with the choices being Chow or Plow. And yes, the choices are pretty much what they sound like. If they chose Chow, they'd have to make a meal for a pack of hungry hunting hounds, whereas Plow, required them to use a traditional plow that was attached to a horse in a field.
Once each team finished their Chow or Plow, they headed to La Cave des Roches next, where they reached a Road Block that had one member searching for distinct types of mushrooms in a dark maze of tunnels. Yeah, not very fun and extra hard. Regardless, the contestants finished their task with James and Jaymes in the lead (which won them each a Ford Escape), Trey and Lexi in second, and whaddaya know, Josh and Brent in third!
Sorry, Natalie and Nadiya, time to say goodbye.
As the race got closer to the end and that much more intense, the remaining three teams flew to New York City to go to Coney Island where they had to find a clue on a Houdini poster.Trey and Lexi were able to see it first and go to the Brooklyn Navy Yard, with Josh and Brent behind them.
This is where it got even more interesting. At the navy yard, one member from each team had to perform a Road Block, which had them hanging from a crane 15 stories up in a straightjacket (!), and they had escape in order to move on with the race. Do you see the Houdini connection here? Good.
Surprisingly, Trey got out quick, keeping him and Lexi in the lead and heading to Lombardi's Pizzeria, where the teams had to memorize three orders and deliver 10 pizzas in order to get their next clue from the owner. Trey and Lexi maintain the lead, while Josh and Brent give James and Jaymes a chance to catch up because they delivered the wrong pizzas.
After playing the role of pizza delivery boy, the teams were off to the United Nations where one member from each twosome had to identify "hello" in the nine different languages they heard at the pit stops throughout the race. Ooooh.
And this, ladies and gentleman, is where Josh flourished. The Beekman Boy finished first, with James behind him and Lexi in third as the teams were finally racing to the finish line at Gotham Hall!
The first pair to cross and win $1 million were -- drum roll, please -- Josh and Brent! Can you believe it?! James and Jaymes came in second and Trey and Lexi came in third.
"We never, ever thought we would hear you say those words to us," Brent said to the cameras after host Phil Keoghan crowned them the winners.
Josh continued, "We were underdogs, and what I hope this proves to people -- whether they're a minority or they're out of work or they're losing their house or whatever -- if they just keep going and keep working as hard as they can, people will help, and at some point you will win."
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