"The Amazing Race" has had twists that sent teams home before leaving Los Angeles, but no Racer has ever gone less distance than William "Bopper" Minton.
Sunday (February 23) night's "Amazing Race: All-Stars" premiere began with a sad twist for Team Kentucky.
Bopper, a fan favorite who cheered for partner Mark through an arduous, health-testing Bollywood challenge in their first season, began experiencing internal pain the night before the Race was set to begin, was diagnosed with an inflamed pancreas and was told he shouldn't Race. Instead, Mark was paired, seemingly out of nowhere, with fellow Kentuckian Mallory, making her third appearance on the show, but her first without father Gary.
That's the narrative as presented by "The Amazing Race" on Sunday.
On Monday morning, I talked with Bopper about his medical condition, how he handled it and how the show handled it. Bopper explained his recent perfect storm of catastrophes and his relief that Mark was able to continue without him. He also noted why Mallory was the closest the show could find to another Bopper.
Click through for the full conversation.