The 11 teams that will compete on the forthcoming 26th season of The Amazing Race have just been announced by CBS and all are going as dating duos. The 11 teams are made up of six couples who are already dating, and five others who will meet for the first time at the starting line. CBS has referred to this season as "the most extreme blind date ever."
The couples traveling around the world include New Kids on the Block member Jonathan Knight and his partner Harley Rodriguez and Olympic medalists Aly Dudek and Steven Langton. Dudek won bronze at the 2010 Vancouver Olympics in short track speed skating and Langton won two bronze medals at the 2014 Sochi Olympics in bobsledding.
Among the competitors being set up on blind dates are a Navy physician and a registered nurse and two lawyers. Bertram van Munster, co-creator and executive producer of the Amazing Race says of the pairings and the new season;
"Usually we have people who know each other really well. In this particular case we have five blind dates and six regular dates. Going on a blind date to a restaurant is one thing, but going on a blind date around the world is like rolling the dice in a big way."
As part of the new twist, the teams will have the opportunity to win a new "date night" reward, wherein one couple will take part in a romantic activity such as a night at a hot springs resort in Nagano, Japan, or star-gazing at the Bavarian Public Observatory in Munich, Germany.