Chippendales emcee goes racing
They’ve taken their bow ties and cuffs off onstage, now they’re taking them on the road around the world. Best friends Jaymes Vaughan and James Davis are the hunky duo currently featured in the 21st season of Amazing Race. Vaughan, host and singer in Chippendales at Rio, had the time of his life competing against 10 other teams. Kiko Miyasato caught up with him to learn more about the journey.
Q: Why did you sign up for Amazing Race?
A: I found out that my dad has cancer, and so it was one of those things that hit me hard and didn’t feel real. And James was like, “Dude, we should definitely do the show and give the winnings to your dad.” And at that point I was like, “Yes!” I thought, here’s an opportunity to compete against 10 other teams and at the end of it come back with a million dollars. And James was like, “I just want to get my mom a car.” Once we decided the money was for our families there was no hesitation.
Q: What were the biggest difficulties?
A: We’ve traveled with Chippendales before, and we knew what it was like to be in a country where you don’t speak the language or you don’t know your way around. But there’s a difference between finishing your show and finding somewhere to eat, and getting clear to the other side of the country to follow a clue. Another thing is James and I are both 6 foot 4 inches. I think we were scary to some people.
Q: Did you need to step outside of your comfort zone?
A: I think the Amazing Race is completely about stepping outside your comfort zone. It’s about putting you in situations you wouldn’t normally be in. … Things that you think are the simplest tasks are the hardest. … It tests you to see how you are in a stressful situation, how you would treat other people. It shows your true colors.
Q: Did you discover anything about James during the race and vice versa?
A: We knew James had a short temper; we knew I had a controlling personality. But we’ve known that about each other for so long that we were able to use it to our advantage. You angry? Run faster. You want to control a situation? Fine, have a solution. But ultimately there was nothing that surprised us about one another; we know each other that well.
Q: Back at Chippendales, what’s new?
A: Our 2013 calendar just got done shooting. Shooting a calendar used to be a task, sometimes torture, because you had to watch your weight, make sure you got the right picture, etc., but after doing Amazing Race it was so simple. Trying to balance on a raft while staring up at a camera, not falling off and attempting to somehow look remotely sexy, well, that wasn’t a challenge at all.