What team won before?
Also yes people should be helping each other in a race let alone the AMAZING race.
Just as alliances help people on Survivor or BB these alliances, brief one offs like on this leg or even longer ones, work the same on TAR.
It is how you race smart as opposed to being loners that get yourself lost or not cooperating when you can so that when you are in trouble people won't cooperate with you. Not helping when it doesn't hurt you is really dumb racing. Especially with u-turns etc these days.
illdoc, FYI TAR1 was filmed in March of 2001. So you nailed it.
Also Phil didn't greet the other teams on TAR1 because production didn't think they could get him to the mat in time each leg what with his stand-ups in front of RB and Detours spots. When they thought they could then he did as in the very next season which was when they switched the colors to red/yellow as well.
TAR1 has this great, raw feeling to it because no one could build on experiences before them, They all had to figure out the race on the fly. Thus Rob & Brennen blew their one FF in the Race in Leg 1 which no one would ever do again that early when in the lead. They thought it would help build up a lead where no one would ever catch them, lol.
And FFs in every leg but the Finale helped make the classic years great. You can only use it once. The longer you can go without going for a FF it becomes like an ace in the hole later with fewer teams left. But sometimes you just had to go for it if trailing badly or losing site of other teams and you become worried if you are last or not. And two teams going at the same time could bring about really bad results for the team not getting it.
The FF was really the crown jewel idea/task on TAR and I still mourn it's loss in every leg. It helped save underdog teams and leveled the playing field more making stronger teams have to scramble to stay in. It gave another path to the mat so it was easier to edit in a surprise as to who survives and who is eliminated when a trailing team was using it. It was nothing but 100% positive. More strategy, more scenery, more teams having a chance, better editing.
They said they stopped using it because of production cost which is pure bullshit. You don't need some elaborate FF. Eating a meat pie at an Aussie diner with only your own camera crew filming it worked just fine. Jumping in a swimming pool or climbing a snowy hill won't bust your budget. You don't have to stage these elaborate FFs they got into later in the Race. Just keep it simple.
Like this last leg they could have sent Racers to the cliff monastery right off. Put bread in the basket and the monk sends the gnome back to you. The FF could have been serving the drinks though maybe more of them or some other complication thrown in. No extra production cost at all.
Sorry but if I don't get my Ode to the Beloved Late FF Every Leg in each season I go nuts. Now a moment of silence to mourn it's loss.