What Did You Think of ‘The Amazing Race’ Season 34 Premiere Change? (POLL)

THE AMAZING RACE Season 34 premiere
Spoiler Alert
Kit Karzen/CBS

The Amazing Race

Many Firsts But Don’t Be Last

Season 34 • Episode 1

[Warning: The following contains MAJOR spoilers for The Amazing Race Season 34 premiere, “Many Firsts But Don’t Be Last.”]

When you’re 30+ seasons into a show, you’ve got to change things up from time to time. A big new change was revealed in The Amazing Race Season 34 premiere on September 21 on CBS, and it raises the stakes of the fast-paced competition series to new heights.

In The Amazing Race Season 34, there will be no non-elimination rounds. If you’re last, you’re cut, and you can’t be saved. The show announced this change ahead of the season premiere, but the contestants had no clue. The paired players learned of this shocking update from host Phil Keoghan outside of Nymphenburg Palace in Munich, Germany, marking another first — the series has always started the seasons somewhere in the United States. Throughout their adventures, the cast will trek through Jordan, Austria, Italy, France, Spain, and Iceland before arriving at the Nashville finish line.

Players hardly had any time to process the non-elimination bombshell before it was off to the (many) races. The first leg of the race required players to drive themselves to three different places before finding Phil at the first Pit Stop. This task went off relatively without a hitch for the teams.

The next challenge was more physically demanding, requiring contestants to roll a beer keg (when in Germany) through obstacles in one minute. They couldn’t move forward until they successfully got through all the obstacles in that short timeframe. Military brothers Michael and Marcus made quick work of that, nailing it on the second attempt, but others struggled more. Timing is everything in this game, so multiple failed challenge attempts could snowball into eliminations.

Up next, the pairs had to saw a log to unlock a clue. The teams deployed different strategies for this. Where some exerted a lot of physical energy, others took a less intense, more careful approach of letting the saw do what it’s made to do. Preserving energy was a good move, as the last challenge required players to chisel through a large block of ice.

THE AMAZING RACE Season 34 premiere

Kit Karzen/CBS

Big Brother alums Derek and Claire (who have been dating since meeting on the show) were the first couple to unlock all three clues, which reveal the next Pit Stop location: Friedensengal, Munich’s Angel of Peace monument. Derek and Claire came in first place, winning them $2,500 each. Newlyweds Glenda and Lumumba placed second, and former Rams cheerleaders Quinton and Mattie placed third. Engaged couple Aastha and Nina came in last, making them the first pair eliminated from The Amazing Race Season 34.

The Amazing Race will have a 90-minute episode on September 28, starting at 9:30/8:30c on CBS. After that, it will return to its 10/9c slot.

Let us know your thoughts on The Amazing Race taking a page from Survivor‘s book by cutting a staple of the show in the poll, below.

The Amazing Race, Wednesdays, 10/9c, CBS