After 10 countries, 21 cities and more than 29,000 miles, one team was named the winner of “The Amazing Race” Season 30 in Wednesday’s two-hour finale. At the start of this final leg four teams were still in the hunt for the $1 million prize: “Big Brother” lovebirds Jessica Graf & Cody Nickson, X-Games athletes Kristi Leskinen & Jen Hudak, Indy car drivers Alex Rossi & Conor Daly and dating debators Henry Zhang & Evan Lynyak. Which team joined the “Amazing Race” winners list and who came up short?
Below, check out our minute-by-minute “The Amazing Race” recap of the Season 30 finale, titled “It’s Just a Million Dollars, No Pressure,” to find out what happened Wednesday, February 21. Then be sure to sound off in the comments section about your favorite and least favorite teams and what you think of this season’s million dollar champions. Keep refreshing/reloading this page as we’ll be updating live.
8:59 p.m. – “Previously, on ‘The Amazing Race’!” In last week’s 9th and 10th episodes Lucas and Brittany (Team Ocean Rescue) were eliminated in the first hour after losing their passport. Then in the second hour Henry and Evan came in last place, but they were saved because it happened to be a non-elimination leg. Tonight’s Season 30 finale finds the remaining teams traveling to Hong Kong and then San Francisco, where the finish line awaits.
9:15 p.m. – The final four teams are leaving Thailand for Hong Kong. Once there, they must find a photographer’s kiosk for their next clue. Team Extreme had some bad luck with a taxi and is off to a rough start. Meanwhile, Team IndyCar were the first to arrive, followed by Team Big Brother. Team Yale were forced to complete their Speed Bump: illuminating and hanging 40 Chinese lanterns. Team Extreme finally arrived and caught up to the competition. Team Yale has one advantage: a beast of a taxi driver who appears to want to spend his entire night driving them around.
9:20 p.m. – At the Detour, teams have two options. One is to wrangle a basket full of 50 “hairy crabs” in typhoon-like conditions. The second option is to take a food order in Cantonese at a restaurant and then relay that message to their partner in the kitchen. When the diner gets their correct order, the task is complete. Teams IndyCar, Big Brother and Team Extreme headed for the crabs! Apparently the crabs were vicious and Team IndyCar decided to bounce for the other Detour, not willing to risk their fingers for the win.
9:30 p.m. – Team Yale is headed to the restaurant challenge as well, which could prove beneficial because Henry speaks Mandarin and is familiar with Cantonese. Henry and Conor are now both taking orders in Cantonese and Conor is furious because he doesn’t understand anything. Back on the boat, things aren’t much better while Jessica loses morale but Cody is in cyborg mode and continues to push forward. Miraculously, Team Yale fought through a speed bump to finish the Detour in first place!
9:35 p.m. – Team Yale was the first to reach the Road Block. In “Rage Art,” teams use a bat to break old electronics until they find two clues. This looks so fun! Team IndyCar arrived soon after but Yale continued their hot streak and were the first to get their next clue. Team Big Brother finally arrived and Cody went maniacal on those used electronics. Team Extreme arrived in last place.
9:45 p.m. – Team Extreme and Team Big Brother are upset because they are competing for third place and feel terrible their best friends in the race could be eliminated next. Meanwhile, the other teams are decoding street signs in order to figure out a combination to a locked safe that contains their clue to the next Pit Stop. Both teams seem totally confused as they walk through the chaotic city. Finally, both Big Brother and Team Extreme are headed to the decoding challenge as well. Not surprisingly, Team Yale was the first to figure out their combination and are headed to the Pit Stop. The last team to arrive WILL be eliminated.
9:50 p.m. – Kristi and Jen were the last to arrive at the challenge, but seem to understand it better than Team IndyCar or Big Brother. They decide not to help them because it is a do or die situation. But eventually Cody and Jessica figure it out on their own and head towards the Pit Stop. It looks like either the IndyCar drivers or Team Extreme will come up short.
10:00 p.m. – Henry and Evan (Team Yale) were the first team to finish this leg. They become just the third team in history to complete a Speed Bump and win the leg. All of this after the other three teams continually downplayed them as the worst team remaining. Cody and Jessica arrived next, but all of the excitement was lost when they realized either the IndyCar Drivers or Team Extreme would be eliminated. Kristi and Jen were, indeed, the third team to arrive. They were shocked to learn they weren’t last. Alex and Conor have been eliminated from the race.
10:15 p.m. – The final three teams have reached San Francisco, where they will complete the race for $1 million. They’re searching for a statue at AT&T Park that holds their next clue. Cody and Jessica reached it first, where they learned they would have to search through hundreds of baseballs (floating in a cove) to find the ones with correct numbers. While running, Cody suffered an ankle twist. Now, all of the teams are in kayaks looking for their balls. Team Extreme was the only team smart enough to figure out which numbers they were searching for before they hopped in their boat. Team Extreme finished first, followed by Team Big Brother and Team Yale.
10:20 p.m. – At the Road Block, teams must pull themselves up 200 feet before free-falling into a pitch black abyss. Rad!!! Cody, Kristi and Evan will be the three competing in this task. Cody was the first to reach the top of the climb, but Kristi nearly caught him. They then plunged into the creepiest looking bungee jump I’ve ever seen.
10:30 p.m. – Cody and Jessica are headed to the next destination, followed closely by Kristi and Jen. Henry and Evan are at least 10 minutes behind. For their next challenge, teams have to make 102 perfect fortune cookies. Did you know fortune cookies were invented in San Francisco? I didn’t! Anyways, Team Big Brother and Team Extreme are dead even. Wow! This is nail-biter. Kristi looks like she’s been making fortune cookies her whole life. Team Extreme were the first to complete the task and took the lead! Jessica is terrible at this competition but Cody is miraculously holding his composure. Finally, they finish but can’t find a taxi. Drama! Now Team Yale has passed Big Brother as well.
10:45 p.m. – Cody and Jessica finally found a taxi and are headed to the USS Hornet in third place. Kristi and Jen were the first to get their next clue. This is the final task! Teams must build a plane, after searching the Hornet for 12 parts spread out over 1,000 compartments. It is the season’s most excruciating test of physical endurance and mental strength. All of the teams are searching for parts, but who will be able to most quickly assemble the plane? It took over an hour for Team Big Brother and Team Extreme to find the parts! Now Jen and Jessica have to assemble the plane themselves because Kristi and Cody completed the last task. Finally, Team Yale shows up with Henry ready to assemble. Can he pass up the women for the win?
10:59 p.m. – All of the teams were frustrated after failing to properly assemble their planes multiple times. Putting even more pressure on them was the finish line just mere feet away. Finally, after nearly two and a half hours of attempts, the pieces finally came together for Jessica! After pushing her plane to it’s proper destination, Cody and Jessica won “The Amazing Race”! Quite a redemption from their “Big Brother” debacle. Cody was the workhorse but Jessica was the foundation for his strength. Next, Henry completed the task, giving Team Yale second place. A tearful Jen and Kristi placed third. Props to Jessica for pulling that off, I thought for sure she would crumble. Congrats to Jess and Cody, the Season 30 champs!
Here are the answers to Gold Derby’s contest questions for “The Amazing Race” Season 30 Finale:
Who will win ‘The Amazing Race’? Jessica Graf & Cody Nickson (Team Big Brother)
Who will place 2nd? Henry Zhang & Evan Lynyak (Team Yale)
Who will place 3rd? Kristi Leskinen & Jen Hudak (Team Extreme)
Who will place 4th? Alex Rossi and Conor Daly (Team IndyCar)
Be sure to make your predictions so that the contestants can see how they’re faring in our racetrack odds. You can keep changing your predictions until just before the next episode airs every Wednesday on CBS. You’ll compete to win a spot on our leaderboard and eternal bragging rights. See our contest rules and sound off with other fans in our reality TV forum. Read more Gold Derby entertainment news.