Chief Secretary of the Tobago House of Assembly Ancil Dennis said the popular American TV show The Amazing Race, which featured Trinidad and several historical areas in Tobago, has boosted the spirits and pride of all Tobagonians.
The Amazing Race is an adventure, reality game show in which teams of two compete against each other around the world.
Episode 32 was shot in TT earlier this year – before covid19 restrictions – and was aired on Wednesday night on CBS TV.
The 40-minute episode featured Carnival in Trinidad in the first ten minutes. The race also started in Trinidad and ended with goat racing in Tobago. The episode featured Tobago's Pigeon Point Heritage Park and jetty, along with the Buccoo Recreational Facility, the Nylon Pool and pan.
Contacted for a comment, Dennis, who is also responsible for tourism on the island, said, "I was reminded of how remarkable and blessed Tobago was while watching the premiere of Season 32 of the Emmy Award-winning reality show.
"I was indeed heartened that the majority of the episode was filmed in 'Destination Tobago.' Many aspects of our innate and natural beauty were displayed last night: our warmth, friendliness and of course some of our most renowned sites and attractions.
"Additionally, I was reliably informed that during the airing of the episode over 100,000 hits were recorded of persons all over the world searching for information on the island of Tobago – Pigeon Point, Tobago resorts, Buccoo Reef, amongst others. This means that the show has piqued the interest of potentially new visitors in Destination Tobago and hopefully evoked some nostalgia in those who would have visited before."
He said considering the effects of the global pandemic on all sectors of the economy, the episode was "quite timely and will without a doubt boost the spirits and pride of all Tobagonians.
He is hopeful that this featuring beauty of the island will lead to an increase in international arrivals when travel restrictions are lifted.
The race's first course was finding clues left in the Nylon Pool. This clue then led competitors to another part of the Pigeon Point beach, where members of the Redemption Sound Setters steelband.
Competitors were given a very short piece of melody to learn, memorise and play in time with the band to move to the next obstacle course. This part of the race was described as the most challenging task by the teams, probably because "some of them have never seen or touched a pan before," band manager Winston Gordon told Newsday on Thursday.
On the band being chosen for the show, he said, "This feature on an international platform has a significant benefit, not for the band particularly, but for the steelband fraternity. It took us to the world. The tune played by the teams is a version of a TT piece of music."
He said the band was excited to work with the teams and be a part of the show.