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"The Amazing Race": Cordell competitors among this season's cast

Melissa Hayer Published: August 28, 2013
Best Friends Tim Wiyninger (left) and Danny Merkey (right) compete in a sprint around the globe for $1 million dollars on the new season of THE AMAZING RACE, premiering at 7 p.m. Sunday, Sept. 29 on the CBS Television Network.  Photo: Cliff Lipson/CBS ©2013 CBS Broadcasting, Inc. All Rights Reserved.
Best Friends Tim Wiyninger (left) and Danny Merkey (right) compete in a sprint around the globe for $1 million dollars on the new season of THE AMAZING RACE, premiering at 7 p.m. Sunday, Sept. 29 on the CBS Television Network. Photo: Cliff Lipson/CBS ©2013 CBS Broadcasting, Inc. All Rights Reserved.

CBS announced today the 11 teams competing for $1 million dollars on the new season of the Emmy Award-winning series “The Amazing Race,” and one team is made up of members with Oklahoma ties – best friends Tim Wiyninger, 26, and Daniel “Danny” Merkey, 25, from Cordell.

“The Amazing Race” premieres at 7 p.m. Sunday, Sept. 29, on CBS.

More information on the show and the new cast, provided by CBS, are as follows:

This season, which marks the 23nd race around the world for the series, will bring back the Double Express Pass twist that was introduced last season, in which the first Team to check in at the first pit stop will earn two “Express Passes” — one to keep for themselves and one that must be given to another Team by the end of the fifth leg of the Race.

As Teams travel through four continents and nine countries, spanning more than 35,000 miles, they will paraglide high above the skies of Iquique, Chile, subject themselves to a bone-chilling plunge in Norway and buckle up for Formula One Racing in Abu Dhabi.

Emmy Award winner Phil Keoghan is host of the series.

This season’s diverse cast includes former NFL teammates, married ER doctors, theater performers, childhood friends, baseball wives, cousins and more.

Following are the 11 teams, listed in no particular order and separated by ******:

Name: Hoskote Venkatesh


Age: 60


Hometown: Laguna Niguel, Calif. 


Current occupation: ER Doctor


 

Name: Naina Venkatesh


Age: 27


Hometown: Laguna Niguel, Calif.


Current occupation: Fitness Instructor  


Connection: Father/Daughter
 
****************************************************

Name: Jason Case


Age: 33


Hometown: Attleboro, Mass.

Current occupation: Owner of a Snowplow Company 


 

Name: Amy Diaz


Age: 29


Hometown: Providence, R.I.


Current occupation: Social Media Manager


Connection: Dating

**************************************************** 

Name: Leo Temory


Age: 26


Hometown: Los Angeles


Current occupation: Entrepreneur/Restaurateur


 

Name: Jamal Zadran


Age: 26


Hometown: Los Angeles

Current occupation: CEO/Owner of Z.I.G.

(Zadran Investment Group)


Connection: Cousins
 

****************************************************

Name: Tim Wiyninger


Age: 26


Hometown: Cordell, Okla.

Current occupation: Oilfield Plant Operator
 
Name: Daniel “Danny” Merkey


Age: 25


Hometown: Cordell, Okla. 


Current occupation: Oil Field Operator 


Connection: Best Friends

****************************************************

Name:   Rowan Joseph


Age: 56


Hometown:  Charlotte, N.C.


Current occupation:  Actor, Producer, Director
and Voiceover Artist

 

Name:  Shane Partlow


Age: 47


Hometown:  Charlotte, N.C.


Current occupation:  Actor/ Producer

Connection: Theater Performers. They call themselves

the “Queens of Bingo.”

**************************************************** 
 

Name: Brandon Squyres

Age: 34


Hometown: Chico, Calif.

Current occupation: Contractor
 

Name: Adam Switzer


Age: 34


Hometown: Chico, Calif.

Current occupation: Eco-friendly farmer 


Connection: Childhood Friends

 

****************************************************

Name: Allison “Ally” Mello

Age: 22


Hometown: Los Angeles


Current occupation: The NHL’s LA Kings Ice Crew Girl


 

Name: Ashley Covert

Age: 25


Hometown: Los Angeles


Current occupation: The NHL’s LA Kings Ice Crew Girl


Connection: LA Kings Ice Crew
 
****************************************************

Name: Nicole Jasper


Age: 39


Hometown: Atlanta, Ga.

Current occupation: ER Physician  
 

Name: Travis Jasper


Age: 43


Hometown: Atlanta, Ga.

Current occupation: ER Physician
 
Connection: Married ER Doctors

 
****************************************************

Name: Nicole “Nicky” Getz


Age: 27


Hometown: Splits time between Kansas City

and Troy, Mich.


Current occupation: Baseball Wife/Training to be a
Pilates Instructor
 
*Married to Chris Getz, who played for
the Chicago White Sox and Kansas City Royals (currently) 


 

Name: Kim DeJesus

Age: 32


Hometown: Chicago


Current occupation: Baseball Wife

*Married to David DeJesus who played for the Kansas City Royals,
Oakland Athletics, Chicago Cubs and Tampa Bay Rays (currently)
 
Connection: Baseball Wives

**************************************************** 

Name:   Timothy Sweeney

Age: 32

Hometown: Morristown, N.J.

Current occupation: Sports Marketing
 

Name: Marie “Reebs” Mazzocchi

Age: 29

Hometown: Morristown, N.J.

Current occupation: Fitness Trainer/Gym Owner
 
Connection: Exes

**************************************************** 

Name: Chester Pitts II


Age: 33


Hometown: Missouri City, Texas


Current occupation: Sports Analyst for “Texans Insider,”

Executive Consultant for ZT Wealth and Altus HMS.
 
*Played for Houston Texans and Seattle Seahawks for
more than 10 years in the NFL
 

Name:  Ephraim Salaam


Age: 36


Hometown: Studio City, Calif.

Current occupation:  Co-host of “Fox Sports Live.”
 
*Played for Denver Broncos, Jacksonville Jaguars, Detroit
Lions, Houston Texans and Atlanta Falcons
for 13 years in the NFL
 
Connection: Former NFL Teammates

“The Amazing Race” sends 11 teams on a trek around the world.  Each Team is comprised of two people who have a pre-existing relationship with one another.  At every destination, each Team competes in a series of challenges — some mental and some physical — and when the tasks have been completed, they learn their next destination.  Teams who are farthest behind will gradually be eliminated as the contest progresses, with the first team to arrive at the final destination winning at least $1 million.

Jerry Bruckheimer, Bertram van Munster, Jonathan Littman, Elise Doganieri and Mark Vertullo are the executive producers for Jerry Bruckheimer Television and Earthview Inc. in association with ABC Studios and Amazing Race Productions. “The Amazing Race” was created by Bertram van Munster and Elise Doganieri.

Follow me on Twitter: @MelissaHayer


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