Cowboys win The Amazing Race Australia

Brendon & Jackson win 10 reality series after a marathon 24 episodes, pocketing $250,000.

NSW “Cowboys,” Brendon Crawley and Jackson Dening, have won The Amazing Race Australia and the $250,000 cash prize to boot.

They hit the finish mat atop Mt. Kosciuszko just ahead of the Gold Coast Girls, Ashleigh and Amanda, and The Super Sikhs, Jaskirat and Anurag.

It wrapped a super-sized race across 4 states and two territories, filmed late last year, after travel restrictions prevented an international race by producers Eureka.

The final episode saw teams leave Sydney, head to Canberra and finally Mount Kosciuszko. The final leg involved riding a flight board at Lake Burleigh Griffin, assembling Aboriginal Flag and the Australian National Flag on the lawns of Parliament House, climbing out of a chopper rope ladder in Thredbo, a slip-and-slide challenge, and matching Indigenous mobs on a puzzle map of Australia.

The final challenge up Mount Kosciuszko tested teams in a gruelling foot race to host Beau Ryan. Despite 8 individual wins by the Gold Coast Girls, it was the Cowboys who took line honours, as predicted by online betting agencies.

10’s series has drawn mixed results amid an unusual climate. While television was hit by production shutdowns (and border restrictions), Eureka pulled off a feat with diverse casting and numerous race-worthy challenges. But viewers were frustrated by the length of the season which involved too many non-elimination legs, plus two ‘stowaway’ teams introduced mid series, after others had been culled. There were also concerns around teams starting races largely from a group position, presumably another adjustment by COVID.

Ratings also lost some ground over a long 24 episode run (twice the length of 2019 season), but bettered Seven’s season of Holey Moley (also by Eureka) and the failed Ultimate Tag.

“It was a very challenging series to make but it’s been phenomenal to be able to show Australia off. I think probably the audience are used to seeing something that they perceive to be a bit more exotic and chaotic,” Beverley McGarvey, Chief Content Officer & EVP, ViacomCBS Australia & NZ recently told TV Tonight.

“We are thrilled with this season’s performance. We’re really glad that we got to make an Australian series, because the situation forced us to do it. We might not have otherwise considered it.

“But I think in the future, we’d like to get it out of Australia.”

23 Responses

  1. A clarification. The series did not finish at the top of Mt Kosciusko. It finished at the highest chairlift point in Australia where the Thredbo Community Bell is. The summit of Mt Kosciusko is actually 3 km further on.

  2. That was a nail biting finish. I felt sorry for the Sikhs getting lost at that crucial time. I was actually hoping they would come from behind & overtake both teams & win it. I was rooting for the cowboys from the beginning but they lost me last week when they u-turned Chris & Aleisha. It was vindictive & nasty & not strategic.

  3. We loved the season! Perfect final three and was happy for any of those to win. Yes, some things were annoying – all mentioned previously- but I’ll take all of them over having no season.

  4. Sure, this was a challenging season to get right. Ten made a decision to elongate the season in a climate of diminishing options and there are definitely ways this could have been done better but I reckon Eureka should be given credit for delivering such as massive, complex show in extraordinary times. Was it my favourite Amazing Race ever? Nope. But I’m glad I stayed with it.

    1. We live in a diverse nation, and David is obviously passionate about diversity on television, as are many readers, including myself. This blog remains free for all to be entertained and informed. I am grateful for that, and so should you be.

      1. Agree with Gaz completely. When the turgid likes of MAFS etc are a whitewash of blandness, The Amazing Race (in all its incarnations) has intentionally mixed it all up giving visibility to many more different types of people with every season. Getting to know a team of humble Sikhs or a gay aboriginal lad or a lady with one arm who trounced challenges better than people with two can only enrich the televisual landscape. Unless you prefer whitewashed casting, of course.

  5. Congratulations to the Cowboys. Well deserved. And I really enjoyed this season of The Amazing Race and I like the Sabotages and Salvages and I didn’t mind the Stowaways either. I hope next season will be in Australia and hopefully in states they didn’t get to this season (WA and Victoria).

  6. How to fix show for next year:
    1) No additional teams added mid race,
    2) Start each leg as they do everywhere else in world: I.e. if they finish 3 hours ahead of next team, then they start next leg 3 hours ahead, make all travel part of the leg including flights.
    3) reduce number of non- elimination legs. If necessary have legs run over 2 episodes.
    4) don’t have tasks that specifically favour one team – the number of dance and singing tasks at end was ridiculous

    1. I haven’t seen any international versions of TAR for years but having followed the Aussie one, I just assumed that that awesome “if they finish 3 hours ahead of next team, then they start next leg 3 hours ahead” thing had been abolished on all versions. I loved that rule in the US version… so I’m annoyed but not at all surprised to read that that’s not the case and that the Aussie version just goes off and abandons it.

  7. I understand the season being drawn out, wasn’t a real fan of it, but 10 didn’t really have a choice.

    But the cowboys surprised me, thought they would’ve been one of the first eliminated. So I was surprised they made the top 3, let alone winning it. Well done too Brendan and Jackson. Well deserved winners.

    1. Honest question… Why didn’t they have a choice?

      Is it the right things for a network to do, adding filler to a series because they can’t think of anything to commission?

      I think they had plenty of choice, but took the easy way out, which really tested fans of the series.

      1. During the worst of COVID very little was being made, and production began to trepidatiously lift, but also the risk it could be shut down at a moment’s notice. I think it’s reasonable to give all networks some context. 10 was very nimble in making Junior MasterChef even as Melbourne went into the longest lockdown in the country. But you can’t just make up shows in no time, so the “easy way out” is not very easy at all.

        1. Thanks David… as you mentioned JMC was put together last minute really, just to fill content. So I think 10 did well with TAR, but obviously copped so much flak for it. Considering all other filming for everything else grounded to a halt, so as I said above 10 really had no choice.

  8. I enjoyed an Australian-only season? Season 6 coming in late 2021 or early 2022? I’d love to see a route consisting of Australia, NZ, Fiji, New Caledonia, Tonga, Samoa, Singapore, etc…

  9. For me, the finale last night was a case of me just having to watch it to finish off my commitment to the season… there really wasn’t any excitement or enthusiasm from me regarding it. The season was just too long, so that excitement and enthusiasm was slowly drained throughout the run. I was actually making a cake as I watched it in the background. It was all just a little bit underwhelming tbh.
    I did find it interesting that there wasn’t any hint of a next season… don’t we usually get contestants telling us to sign up as we go to an ad break with info on how to do so for next season? Perhaps there’s an all-stars season in the works… already? I hope not.. yawn.

Leave a Reply