The race's relocation to Amsterdam seems like the potential for a fresh start for everyone, but it doesn't quite happen that way. Natalie and Nadiya are the first team to reach the Dutch capital, where they quickly complete a fish-eating Fast Forward and thus win the leg before any other teams have even started the Detour. The Chippendales take a boat ride to a floating pastry stand that gives them not only their next clue but also some tasty treats, and then they break out the cuffs and collars to shill for tips during an organ-grinding Detour. After that, they hop a bus to the outlying town of Ransdorp, where James hops a ditch in a familiar pole-vaulting Roadblock before they check in as team number two. Trey & Lexi, following in their footsteps, remain in third place from start to finish.
But you will not believe the leg Abbie & Ryan have. Starting eight hours behind the team ahead of them, they might still have a chance to catch up while flying to Amsterdam. But they've once again booked a connection through Frankfurt, and it appears that airport has not finished messing with them yet. The first flight they try to board closes early, and the second one has mechanical issues that forces the entire manifest to change planes before taking off. So by the time they actually get to Amsterdam, the formerly last-place Josh & Brent catch up to them despite having started the leg almost three hours later. So the League of Losers from leg seven is reformed as they resolve to run the rest of the leg together again, not that it's clear what that even means.
But it's not going to work this time either, because the three lead teams made a pact to U-Turn Abbie & Ryan right out of the race. According to the agreement, the first team to reach the U-Turn would use it on Abbie & Ryan, and then the team following would "use" it on the team who U-Turned Abbie & Ryan, for no other reason than to prevent Abbie & Ryan from U-Turning anyone else. And that's exactly what happened. Jaymes felt terrible about it, but ultimately decided that his family -- including his cancer-having dad -- are more important than Ryan and Abbie. Whom the other two teams hate anyway, so Trey & Lexi were more than happy to carry out their part of the plan.
So on top of everything else, Abbie & Ryan find themselves screwed by the last team they expected to be screwed by. They sadly go back and do the organ-grinding Detour -- after already having completed the other Detour with the goat farmers, in which they arranged actors and themselves in a live recreation of Rembrandt's The Night Watch -- while the goat farmers go on ahead. Josh experiences some painful twinges from his Stockholm syndrome (which is odd, because he and Brent transferred in Oslo) and then an ankle injury while running across the field to the ditch-vaulting Roadblock, but he and Brent make it to the mat in fourth place. As a near-final insult, Ryan is the only racer unable to successfully vault the ditch on the first try. And as the final insult, when he and Abbie finally make it to the mat, in last place, after sunset, and find out that they're Philiminated and will be doubling a prize of bupkes, he's standing there in wet pants. It's almost enough to make you feel bad for him. Almost.
Once again we're in Moscow, and in the two weeks we've been here, Phil has managed to scrape up the following interesting fact to recite over shots of the city's distinctive architecture: "Moscow is Russia's capital." Well, that was certainly worth waiting for. But fortunately he adds that it also has "a population of over ten million people, and more billionaires than any other city on earth." Okay, that I didn't know. How high is rent in Moscow, anyway?
"And on the outskirts of the city, Sokolniky Park, the start of the ninth leg in a race around the world." Phil tells us this last bit while standing in front of a couple snuggling on a park bench with their backs to him, as though looking at Phil wouldn't improve anybody's romantic mood. "Jaymes & James won the last leg of the race," Phil says, which still sounds weird, "and will depart first, at 7:32 PM." Their clue contains -- nay, consists of -- a red, white, and blue tricolor flag with horizontal stripes, which Phil says they'll need to use to "figure out that their next destination is the capital of the Netherlands: Amsterdam." Kind of surprising that they're getting an actual clue as a clue rather than the usual flat-out direction. After landing, they'll take a train to the Central Train Station to find the next clue box, which is standing on the broad cobblestone plaza outside the large building.
Jaymes & James head off to go find a computer. "I don't know where we're going, but we're coming!" Jaymes says. In a somber interview, James explains that people back home are relying on them. Fortunately, they seem to have somehow gotten their hands on an iPad at a hotel's front desk, which is telling them they're going to Holland. The interview continues as Jaymes reminds us that his dad is both battling cancer and working 50-60 hours a week, and he wants to be able to tell his dad not to worry about the latter. That does seem like one job too many. I'm sure Jaymes would rather be able to tell his dad not to worry about the former, but even a half-million dollars can only do so much.
Trey & Lexi are starting their leg at 7:49 PM, not all that far behind. Trey interviews that they've enjoyed hanging out with the Chippendales the past couple of legs. "Same with Natalie and Nadiya." They go right to a cab, and as they're climbing in, Trey asks the hotel bellman, "What country is this?" Examining the flag, the guy tells them it's France, which I'm writing off as an understandable mistake because I made a similar one. Actually I first thought it was the new Russian flag, which is white, blue and red rather than red, white and blue, but going to the Russian capital from Moscow would be a damn short flight. "Oh, my God, we're going to Paris, holy cow!" Lexi says excitedly. Let's hope they figure it out before they get their tickets. And of course I actually mean the opposite of that, because I want to see what happens. But then they get to the airport, and soon encounter the Chippendales in the concourse. "Where do y'all think we're going?" Jaymes asks them. "Paris!" Lexi chirps, and seems a little disappointed to learn they're going to the Netherlands instead. "Thank God y'all saw us," Jaymes says. Except I feel the opposite.