'The Amazing Race 31's first eliminated team Art Velez and JJ Carrell say it was the 'experience of a lifetime'

Art and JJ were the first team to get eliminated from this season of TAR, and here is what the Border Patrol agents had to say

                            'The Amazing Race 31's first eliminated team Art Velez and JJ Carrell say it was the 'experience of a lifetime'

In an unexpected turn of events, Arturo "Art" Velez and John James "JJ" Carrell were eliminated from the season 31 premiere of the 'The Amazing Race' which aired on April 17. The CBS-produced show is witnessing a reality mashup this season, with teams from previous seasons of TAR, 'Survivor' and 'Big Brother' contesting in what Phil Keoghan described as a "fast, furious and feisty" competition for the $1 million cash prize.



With the reality showdown taking off, fans were rooting for their favorite teams and TV shows, divided over which teams from which show would have the upper hand — the Houseguests with their ability to cope with pressure and expect the unexpected, the Castaways with their survival and outdoor skills, or past Racers who already had the experience of being on the unpredictable TAR before.

By the end of the season premiere, it was starting to look like Rupert and Laura would be the ones to get "Philiminated" in the first episode. Rushing to Mount Fiji with their golden tickets, they were welcomed by Art with a cramp in his leg struggling to scale the mountain. 'Survivor' contestants Rupert and Laura made use of this opportunity to make it through to the next leg of the Race, while Art and JJ had to leave the Race, arriving last after a four-hour penalty.

The coworkers and friends from 'The Amazing Race' season 20 have been fan-favorites before, with the 49-year-olds' age factor making them all the more relatable and lovable to most viewers. However, this did prove to be a disadvantage for the Border Patrol agents in the Race, as predicted before the premiere itself.



In a video on Twitter, JJ said that "would do basically everything differently" since they got bumped out in the first episode itself. He added that his favorite part of  TAR was when he was "on the starting line in season 20, watching Phil go through the mechanisms of starting the Race, and hearing the words 'the world is waiting'".

In conversation with MEA WorldWide (MEAWW), JJ was thankful for his journey on the Race. He said that it has been "surreal" and given him "incredible memories to cherish for the rest of my life". "'The Amazing Race' is such an incredible experience and to have been a part of it twice is such a blessing. I will always be thankful for the opportunity to have been, even a small part, of such an amazing piece of Americana," he added.

Art, who did not seem spirited in the video, said that he would not have tried to climb the mountain barefoot if he could do something differently. "I just feel honored and incredibly lucky to be on the Race not once but twice. It has been an experience of a lifetime that has truly changed my world view and made me appreciate cultures and people from all over the world. I have such wonderful memories of watching this with my family years ago, never realizing that I would be part of something so incredible!" he told MEAWW.