Brought to you by the creators of multi-EMMY® Award-winning reality series The Amazing Race, producers Bertram Van Munster and Elise Doganieri introduce RACE TO THE CENTER OF THE EARTH, a new adrenaline-packed global competition series premiering on National Geographic Channel on March 30.
RACE TO THE CENTER OF THE EARTH is an extreme non-elimination competition that pits four teams of three against one another, with each team racing from four remote corners of the planet — South America, Russia, Canada and Southeast Asia. The teams face untamed jungles, frozen arctic, arid deserts, bustling cities, treacherous mountains and vast oceans to reach the final location where all four routes intersect — a buoy holding the grand prize of USD$1 Million. The first team to arrive at the buoy claims it all.
The race is divided into two stages: for Stage One, each team is randomly assigned a different international route, and the contestants must travel a daily course of epic physical challenges within a set time frame. They are given a GPS device containing a number of waypoints indicating the route they must follow. Points given through Stage One will be tracked by the producers and are broken up as follows:
- Arrive at the End of Day Waypoint before the grace period — TWO points
- Arrive at the End of Day Waypoint within the grace period or on pace — ONE point
- Arrive at the End of Day Waypoint after the grace period — ZERO points
- Teams that do not complete the daily course in the allotted time are moved to the final waypoint for safety and lose ONE point.
The team with the most points at the end of Stage One has a starting position advantage at the beginning of Stage Two. In this final stage, teams race head-to-head, with the first team to reach the buoy holding the grand prize named the winner.
The adventurous teams, made up of friends and co-workers, are confident their bond is what will lead them to the finish line. The four teams include Team Russia, a group of colleagues from Anchorage, Alaska, who have known each other for 15 years and have been together through highly intense situations and personal milestones, race through a variety of terrains in Russia; Team North America, a team of co-workers from Denver, Colorado, who consider each other family, trek their way through the Canadian wilderness; Team South America, who boulder their way through daily intense training back home in San Diego, California, trek through the glaciers and more in South America; and Team Southeast Asia from Seattle, Washington, who have bonded over their love of adventure, travel and the outdoors, travel through Southeast Asia.
After six months of rigorous prep work and scouting hundreds of locations covering more than 56,000 kilometres around the globe, a highly experienced team of producers and cinematographers hit the ground running, literally. Cameras follow the contestants, mirroring their actions as they take on various challenges that test their limits of strength, speed and stamina.
Catch the epic seven-part series on National Geographic Channel (Astro: CH 551 HD / Unifi TV: CH 508 HD) on March 30 at 10am, with a primetime repeat at 10pm.
Episode descriptions are as follows:
101 – “Hit The Ground Running”
Four teams across the world compete in the ultimate adventure race for USD$1 million. Teams of co-workers, rock-climbers, cops and teachers are spread out across the world, racing toward the same finish line. As the race begins, teams must work together to win. For one team, a steep challenge on day one will test their mettle.
102 – “Back Breaker”
As the Race to the Center of the Earth heats up, teams are pushed to the limits of both mind and body. In Canada, a snowstorm puts the team in a bind. In Vietnam, one adventurer has to face her fears. In South America, the fabric of the team is tested, and in Russia, the team endures the longest day of the course.
103 – “The Going Gets Tough”
The race continues, and for each team it will take physical and mental strength to endure. In Russia, car troubles jeopardise the team’s lead in the competition. In Canada, relationships are
put to the test. In South America, the team must make a risky decision, while Team Southeast Asia faces their most exhausting challenge yet.
104 – “A Marathon Of Pain”
Race to the Center of the Earth hits the halfway point, the Big Reveal brings new information to the teams. Competition revs up as teams face harrowing challenges while emotions run high. Teams are gunning to steal first place, but do they have what it takes to win the million-dollar prize?
105 – “Down To The Wire”
More than halfway through the Race, even the strongest are pushed to their breaking points. In Canada, the team faces a frozen uphill battle. In Thailand, the team’s weaknesses are exposed. Team Russia ventures into dangerous territory. And Team South America fights against injury and fear.
106 – “The Final Push”
Around the globe, teams push hard toward the end of stage one. In Canada, a horseback ride takes a dangerous turn. In Malaysia, Team Southeast Asia battles a jungle labyrinth. In Russia, an injury plagues the entire team. And in Chile, civil unrest throws an unexpected wrench in Team South America’s journey.
107 – “A Million Bucks Or Bust”
After 13 gruelling days racing in their separate corners around the world, the four teams converge at the final destination for an epic head-to-head battle, where just one will walk away with the million-dollar prize.
RACE TO THE CENTER OF THE EARTH is produced by New Media Collective from a format by Plum Pictures for National Geographic. For New Media Collective, executive producers are Bertram van Munster, Elise Doganieri, Mark Dziak and Doug Vargas. For National Geographic, Bengt Anderson is executive producer and Matt Renner is executive producer and vice president, original programming and production.