Married Survivor contestants Rob Mariano and Amber Brkich couldn’t outpace another husband-and-wife team: Houston couple Uchenna and Joyce Agu, who won the $1 million prize on Tuesday’s seventh season finale of CBS’s The Amazing Race.
“It’s so amazing, if I can use that word,” Joyce, 44, declared at the season finale party. She and Uchenna, 40, will collect their check on Wednesday’s CBS Early Show.
Uchenna, an energy broker whose former employer was Enron, and Joyce, a sales manager who once worked for WorldCom, plan to use their winnings for “bills, bills, bills” and to take their family traveling. The Agus have no children but say they are at work on in vitro fertilization or adoption.
As for what transpired on TV: In a race that was often more desperate than amazing – penniless, they had to beg for cab fare to cross the finish line – the two lugged boats in London, balanced water jugs on their heads in Africa and weighed complete strangers in Turkey.
“It was all about honor,” said Uchenna, who by Wednesday afternoon will have plenty of moolah but as the race wound down simply couldn’t pay off the taximeter. “That cab driver was going to get his money.”
But then, the couple was used to going the distance. While racing through Jodhpur, India, Joyce agreed to shave her head as part of a fast-forward challenge that would permit the couple to zoom to end of the leg. Uchenna cites that bold “sacrifice” as a pivotal turning point in the endurance test.
“Once you shave it off, you have nothing to hide behind,” said Joyce. “People can actually see your soul. It’s so bizarre. I’m glad I did it.”
Much of the Amazing Race was dominated by the recently wed Mariano, 29, and Brkich, 26, who ended up placing second. Dating couple Ron Young, 28, from Villa Rica, Ga., and Kelly McCorkle, 26, from Greenville, S.C., came in third.