The Amazing Race Asia had been the first international version of The Amazing Race and after some time, China got its own version. It started out slow but started finding a good rhythm around episode 4 when the teams developed into full characters more and they found a good task balace, unfortunately the momentum it gained would quickly crash after episode 6. First one of the more popular teams of the season took a FaceHeel Turn quickly rivaling the spot of most hated team of the season. Second came the infamous Ass Pull on leg 9 when they had 3 back to back non-elimination legs. Finally with two of the more likable teams making up the final eliminations, left only one team to root for. The finale was where it all came to a head though. Despite first place switching several times, they had a horrendous mid leg equalizer that cancelled out the favorite team's lead. That combined with the rather generic memory task and a terrible winner left the finale, the season, and the new spin-off on a sour note.
Rachel Chen & Charlie Gale
Starting out tied as the strongest team tied with Rick & Josh, they started out as a dynamic duo who despite having some mild arguments, quickly became the big personalities of the season. They seemed to be tied with Rick & Josh for the best chance at winning and as the fan favorites of the season. Once Sean & Amy were eliminated, they lost that fan favorite status taking their spot as the villains of the season. After that, they argued over everything, Rachel whined whenever they weren't in first sometimes even when they were, and were nearly eliminated. Despite falling behind early in the final leg, a mid-leg equalizer their memory of their travel destinations propelled them to victory.
- The Bad Guy Wins
- Born Lucky: Sean & Amy even called them out on this. They tended to get done the luck based tasks very quickly. Towards the end they started fighting a lot more but still salvaged great finishes. On Leg 9, they were saved by the first ever third consecutive non-elimination leg. Then, they got a really hard Speed Bump and would've been eliminated had it not been for Molly & Sarah's penalty. In the last leg, despite spending half of the finale in last, a mid-leg equalizer helped them catch up and they were able to find the fastest route to the Finish Line and win.
- Butt-Monkey: Charlie having to put up with Rachel's constant whining and criticism
- Epic Fail: They fell so behind on leg 9 that the kids went home from school making them do the harder Detour
- FaceHeel Turn: Rachel never liked placing lower than first, but for the first half of the race she was tolerant of it and used that as motivation to do better. From Leg 7 on, we saw a much different side to her. She became extremely bossy to Charlie and whined to him about everything. If they weren't in first, Rachel would get even more upset.
- Failed a Spot Check: At the Leg 9 Roadblock, she took a cart of shorter bamboo instead of the 10 kilograms of longer bamboo they were supposed to carry
- Also, in the last leg, like Deepak & Naresh they lost some time at the car finding and starting task because they turned on the windshield wipers of one the correct cars instead of the ignition and left thinking it was the wrong car. Unlike them, after trying a few more cars, they went back and were able to turn the car on
- Hair-Trigger Temper: Rachel especially after leg 6
- Hypocrite: Rachel accused Charlie of being relentlessly nasty to her but if anything it was the other way around
- Jerkass: Rachel in the second half of the season
- Jerkass Has a Point: On Leg 7, Rachel kept berating Charlie for accidentally passing areas without thoroughly checking them. While she was rude about it, that has hurt teams placements in the past
- Just Friends: Subverted as they're flirtatious friends
- Lady Swears-a-Lot: Rachel after she Took a Level in Jerkass
- The Load: Rachel spent most of the second half of the race whining and arguing with Charlie
- Mood-Swinger: Rachel would go from calm to freaking out at the drop of a hat.
- Never My Fault: Rachel blamed Charlie for everything
- One Head Taller
- Rage Quit: Rachel threatened this at the Leg 9 Roadblock after she did the Roadblock incorrectly
- Reality Show Genre Blindness: Charlie helped Rachel in the Roadblock leg 2 giving them a penalty
- Second Place Is for Losers: Rachel's attitude (most prominent in the second half)
- Serious Business: To Rachel, first place was everything on the race
- Spotlight-Stealing Squad: Them and Rick & Josh spent got most of the camera time of the season.
- A Taste of Their Own Medicine: On Leg 7, Rachel was bugging Charlie on the metal detector Detour to check every space he missed the second he passed it. He returned the favor by doing the same to her, except he just did it to annoy her
- Teeth-Clenched Teamwork: Towards the second half they fought frequently
- Tempting Fate: A rare positive example. During the brick Roadblock, Rachel said she wouldn't get it right this time, and she did.
Richard "Rick" Liston & Joshua "Josh" Ogilvie
Best mates originally from Australia. They tied Rachel & Charlie as strongest team of the season. They stayed consistent throughout the race winning 5 legs. And despite almost being eliminated on 2 legs they still tied for best average of the season. They started out in 2nd place in the finale and were able to finish the driving task in first place, but trouble at the ticket machine caused them to miss the metro by seconds and left them on the metro with Deepak & Naresh and Rachel & Charlie. They were neck and neck with Charlie & Rachel towards the end until Charlie & Rachel found faster transportation and salvaged a 2nd place finish.
- Accidental Truth: While on the bus in Leg 10, one of them joked once Karen see where they sleep on the bus, she'll want to go back to Shanghai. When Karen sees the beds, she repeats nearly exactly what they said except that she would own up to it for the sake of Lisa.
- Chekhov's Skill:
- Subverted in the first leg Rick & Josh were the only team that couldn't figure out how to use a ticket dispenser and had to find someone to help them. Later in the final leg when they had a large lead, not understanding the ticket dispenser caused them to miss a train and allowed the other teams to catch up.
- Subverted, despite Rick working for a wine producer in Australia, they were the last team done the wine task in the finale
- Cool Down Hug: Rick gave one to Rachel after she got upset at the Leg 9 Roadblock
- Iconic Item: Their football, which they lost on leg 6
- I Was Beaten by a Girl: Josh was not happy about being beaten by 2 girls on the eating Roadblock
- Lovable Jock: Their politeness with the locals and good-natured attitudes towards the other teams secured their spots as fan favorites of the season
- No Sense of Direction: Fell victim to this in Zhaoqing and nearly got eliminated because of this
- Reality Show Genre Blindness: Failed to take notes before finale and never figured out SNAFU machines
- Spotlight-Stealing Squad: With Rachel & Charlie they got more camera time than all the other teams combined
- Terrible Artist: Josh said this about Rick
- Unskilled, but Strong: They excelled in physical tasks only to do less than great in mental ones
- Why Isn't It Attacking?: On Leg 8 they were fully expecting to be U-Turned and were shocked they weren't
Deepak Noutiyal & Naresh Ludhani
Cricket fanatics from India. They seemed to not have much of a chance at first and their performance on the first leg only seemed to prove this theory, but as the race progressed they got better. While not good enough to look like favorites to win, they did okay. Their cutthroat and antisocial attitude made them come off as villains to some teams especially Karen & Lisa. In the finale they had been in first place and stayed their for half the leg until Rick & Josh caught up to them at the driving task. They had a chance to catch up thanks to a mid-leg equalizer. This was all ruined thanks in the final task when they didn't remember the locations they went to dooming them to 3rd.
- Bilingual Bonus: They spoke Hindi at times
- Born Lucky: On leg 1, they were almost last from struggling on the puzzle, but were saved because Paul & Francis struggled more. They had a tendency to fall to the back rather quickly. On Leg 5, despite Bonnie & Mel passing them on the Detour (which was right before the Pit Stop), they beat them after their taxi took them to the wrong entrance. 2 legs later they almost came in last, but were spared because Karen & Lisa struggled more than them. Then, they came in last on a non-elimination leg. Next leg, they would've been last had Rachel & Charlie not gotten completely lost and they got a relatively easy Speed Bump. They made it to the Final 3 after Rick & Josh got lost and Karen & Lisa struggled at the Detour.
- Competition Freak: After being U-Turned they talked about how they wouldn't do that because they like the thought of having more competition and even said U-Turning them meant they weren't seeing the point of it being a competition
- Dreadful Musician: Their singing in their Speed Bump was off key at best
- Failed a Spot Check: In the last leg, they lost some time at the car finding and starting task because they turned on the windshield wipers of one the correct cars instead of the ignition and left thinking it was the wrong car
- Overshadowed by Awesome: They had potential of being the villains with their cutthroat nature and relationship with other teams, however Amy's and soon after Rachel's loud and rude behavior made them more as secondary villains.
- No Sympathy: When Karen & Lisa got upset their cab driver nearly caused an accident, they just mocked them.
- Read The Freaking Clue
- In leg 2 driving a golf cart instead of walking to the pit stop caused them a 15 minute penalty
- Leg 5, part of their reason they got rejected several times in the drawing task was because they failed to color it
- Reality Show Genre Blindness: Failed to take notes before finale.
- Sitcom Arch-Nemesis: To Karen & Lisa, more prevalent towards the end
- Tempting Fate: On Leg 7, they started getting ecstatic when they found what they were supposed to find for the Detour, but when they went to hand it in, it wasn't the compass they were required to find.
Karen Spencer & Lisa Chiang
Momshells. They were clearly unprepared for the race and had a tendency to be upset about things out of their comfort zone. They started the race at risk for elimination, but starting at leg 4 they began doing better. When it came to the final 4 they seemed to have a good chance at making it to the final 3 when Rick & Josh got hopelessly lost. Unfortunately, Rick & Josh passed them in the Detour and eliminating them in the penultimate leg. They seemed to be a favorite of Allan as he thanked them for being on the show shortly after being eliminated.
- Call-Back: Karen referenced the tofu eating Roadblock from Asia 3 in leg 2
- Character Development: They did adjust better to being out of their comfort zones later in the race. While Karen went through a little development, but Lisa's was more obvious. After their elimination she admitted this experience taught her to make sure her kids are resourceful and know how to do things for themselves.
- Felony Misdemeanor: They were horrified at where they had to sleep in the train
- Honor Before Reason: Quite a few times
- In Leg 1, they get into a taxi, but once Paul & Francis tell them they stopped it, they give it to them
- On Leg 2, they told everyone an easy way to complete the Roadblock and after they finished, they even helped the only team behind them.
- Hypocrite: Got called this by Deepak & Naresh after they complained their cab driver nearly got them killed
- Lovable Alpha Bitch: Despite getting upset when even remotely dirty and willingness to use both the Yield and U-Turn, they were actually very nice to the other racers even helping out other teams when doing so wouldn't benefit them.
- Reality Show Genre Blindness: Despite being in second to last place, they helped Paul & Francis with the Roadblock.
- Sitcom Arch-Nemesis: To Deepak & Naresh, more prevalent towards the end
Molly Fitzpatrick & Sarah Edson
Best friends and ultramarathoners from the UK. While early on they were stuck in the shadows of Rick & Josh, Sean & Amy, and Rachel & Charlie, they started shining around Leg 5 pulling off 5 back to back top 3 finished. However, they were often hindered by Sarah's lack of self confidence often resulting in times where Molly had to motivate her. On the 10th leg, they started off 1st, but struggled on the golfing task in which they chose to take a 4 hour penalty after falling into last place. Before their penalty was over, all other teams had checked in and got the first field elimination of the series.
- Action Girl: They were a very strong team who were able to pull off several high finishes even a first place finish
- Crippling Overspecialization: Being ultramarathoners they could pull of long distance runs, but unfortunately they had limited upper body strength resulting in their field elimination
- The Load: Sarah often whined when she and Molly fell behind
- Overshadowed by Awesome: To Rick & Josh and Rachel & Charlie
- Passionate Sports Girls
- Why Did It Have to Be Snakes?: For Sarah, water and for Molly, heights
Sean Slaughter & Amy Bromstead
They were this season's young and fit dating couple. Amy was incredibly rude and obnoxious to everyone solidifying her status as villain of the season. They seemed like early favorites to win with their constant high finishes, until episode 6 when despite doing well, they left their bags too far back and had to go retrieve them allowing all other teams to catch up and eliminating them in a surprisingly low 6th place.
- Always Second Best
- Chekhov's Hobby: Amy was said to be a good cook, which helped in the fish Roadblock on Leg 5.
- Competition Freak: Amy
- Control Freak: Amy
- Double Standard: Abuse, Female on Male: Averted, as many racers felt bad for Sean having to put up with Amy's attitude.
- I Meant to Do That: Sean's excuse for coming in second so much.
- It's All About Me: The judge in the drawing task told Amy she came off as this.
- Jerkass: Amy
- Masochism Tango
- Tempting Fate: Sean talked about finally winning a leg the episode they got eliminated
Bonnie Wisnewski & Melanie "Mel" Plumi
Expat Wives. They seemed like early favorites to go. Their placements were nothing to brag about, but relatively impressive given the fact they seemed like they were one of the first 3 teams to go. They had struggled with the drawing task in Leg 5, but had reached a Hope Spot when they passed Deepak & Naresh in the Detour, but their fate was ultimately sealed when their taxi took them to the wrong entrance for the Pit Stop. Despite their short time on the show, their kind hearts and playful sense of humor made them popular with fans
- Chekhov's Boomerang: On leg 3 there was a task where you might have to drink a beverage, and Bonnie said she swore off that beverage in the 80's
- Failed a Spot Check: They walked right passed the clue box at the shuttle sign ups
- Spotlight-Stealing Squad: Despite their placements they received a lot of camera time
- Tempting Fate: Mel promised they'd improve their placements after Leg 4, and were eliminated on Leg 5.
Janis Vaisla & Aleksandra Kurusova
Reality TV Veterans from Latvia. They stayed in the middle of the pack for the first 3 legs until leg 4 when Karen & Lisa Yielded them to save themselves from elimination. They had already been in last after Janis got them lost on the way to the Detour and spent a lot of time arguing, and despite doing great in the Roadblock, they were unable to catch up and were eliminated
- Big Eater: Janis at the rice eating Roadblock
- Death In The Limelight: They got a good amount of screen time on Leg 4, the leg of their elimination
- Groin Attack: Janis accidentally shot his dummy in the area at the arrow Detour on Leg 2
- Intergenerational Friendship: There is a 16 year difference between each other
- Insufferable Genius/Know-Nothing Know-It-All: Subverted, Aleksandra claims she is always right, 80% of the time
- Mustache Vandalism: Drew devil horns and tail on Karen & Lisa's "Courtesy Of" sticker after being Yielded
- Out of Focus: Until their last leg
Hector Valenzuela & Miguel Villaneuva
Amigos originally from Mexico. They became friends when Miguel helped Hector escape from a Chinese boarding school. They were doomed from the start having their best finish as 8th place. They fell behind on the second leg enough to be doomed to elimination in the third despite fighting for last with Janis & Aleksandra and Karen & Lisa.
- Honor Before Reason: After the comb task on Leg 3, they helped the only team behind them
- Tastes Like Chicken: Miguel said this about the turtle on leg 1.
- Out of Focus: They only received like 1 scene of camera time and that was their elimination
- Reality Show Genre Blindness: They seemed to think it was a good idea to help the only team behind them when they were at risk for elimination
Paul Lebeneiyo & Francis Merinyi
Masaii Warriors from Kenya. They started off the race to a good lead, until several incidents left them falling behind. First being stuck on the last shuttle after not being able to find the sign up, next was trouble with taxis, finally, they got stuck on the 100-piece puzzle. They were ultimately saved by a non-elimination leg. Next leg, they missed the first equalizer and despite a Speed Bump, made the second one. After struggling with the Detour and flower pot counting task, they were ultimately beat out by Hector & Miguel and eliminated.
- Graceful Loser: Possibly the only team ever to actually be happy about being eliminated
- We Hardly Knew Ye