Two B.C. RCMP officers made it all the way to the final three in the Amazing Race Canada Heroes edition, finishing second overall during the finale broadcast on Tuesday night (Sept. 11).
Courtney Callens, a property crime investigator with the Langley detachment and her brother Taylor Callens, who is an RCMP officer in the Williams Lake detachment, had been leading the race for most of the 11 broadcast episodes, but were edged at the finish line by rivals Courtney Berglind and Adam Kovacs, first responders who are engaged to be married.
The third team was Dylan and Kwame, who are friends and coaches.
At the end, Courtney Callens called Taylor “an amazing teammate, an amazing partner … the best brother”
“It would have been nice to bring home the number one, but I wouldn’t trade any of it for anything,” she said.
“Spending time together, it’s been so nice.”
Taylor said he was “never prouder of my sister … watching Courtney having kind of low expectations, and then dominating it, for a brother, it was awesome.
“I think the memories that we shared throughout all the legs, it’s kind of our prize,” he said.
“It’s what we won.”
On the last day of the race in Calgary and Banff, the brother and sister were clear favourites, with solid performances at challenges that included memorizing air traffic control chatter and “skijoring” down a hill through a freezing cold pond of slushy water.
That produced a spectacular faceplant and flip by Taylor that merited an instant replay on the show.
The Callens fell behind at the very end, however, during a memory recall challenge that required teams to find knick-knacks from 10 souvenir shops in Banff that represented the various legs through Canada, Indonesia and Mexico and placing them in the correct order.
First responders Adam and Courtney finished the memeory challenge first and outran Courtney and Taylor to the final stop to win the title, vehicles, a trip for two around the world, and $250,000.
The Callens did not come away empty-handed, however, thanks to five first place finishes during the race that won them prizes of trips to different destinations around the world.
The B.C. RCMP posted congratulations on Twitter to #TeamMountie, saying “you made us proud.”
Season six of the weekly competitive series began Tuesday, July 3 on CTV and CTV GO with the B.C. officers going up against nine other teams from around the country, including advocates, coaches, elite athletes, first responders, mentors, navy sailors, retired air force pilots, and volunteers
The siblings credit their training with helping them handle the challenges of the race.
The intense 26-week RCMP training program is both physically and academically demanding, with rookie officers devoting 785 hours to learn everything from police defensive tactics, to handling the Force-issued semi-automatic 9 mm pistol and the 12 gauge pump action shotgun and driving tactics.