Team Long Island comes to "The Amazing Race" this Sunday (CBS/2 at 8 p.m.).
Danny Horal, 27, a nightclub promoter -- you can find him most Friday nights at GLO in Westbury -- was raised in Sayville and now lives in Holbrook. Joey Lasalla, 29 -- you will get to know him by his nickname, "Fitness," or, if you prefer, "the Solution" -- grew up in Atlantic Beach and now lives in Queens.
We spoke by phone a couple days ago. Here's an edited version of our chat:
Tell me a bit about your lives.
Joey: I kind of lived on the beach. I was a surfer kid growing up. ... I went to Northeastern Boston] and graduated with a bachelor of arts in communications, [then] lived all over and came back to Long Island, moved out to Manhattan, did the whole city life, got tired of it and moved to Whitestone. I used to be a personal trainer but wanted to do a little entrepreneurial shift [and] launched a whole line of fitness supplements and products.
Danny: Born in Southside Hospital in Bay Shore and grew up in Sayville with three brothers and a sister, all packed in the same house, then moved to Holbrook -- I just moved back home with my parents.
I went to Mercy High out in Riverhead, where, in 2003, we won the first and only state baseball championship.
I've been doing nightclub promotions since high school. I was always the popular kid playing sports and realized I could turn this into a business -- when I was at St. Francis I studied advertising and marketing. I book the DJs, which gives people a reason to come out to clubs.
I get the sense that you two are "Amazing Race's" answer to "Jersey Shore." True?
Joey: We get that a lot, even from our friends, and yeah, we were doing the "Jersey Shore" thing even before that show was on TV, although we're into gym, tanning and dry-cleaning.
Danny: We really don't want to be compared to those guys. ... When we went off to film , we disappeared, and a lot of people thought we were filming "Jersey Shore." But when they found out we were doing ['Race'], they realized we can do a whole lot more than just fist-pump -- that we could actually think and race around the world.
How did you guys meet?
Joey: It's kind of stereotypical. We had been down at the [Jersey]shore, at clubs, and there was kind of a dance battle going on -- where you try and show each other up. We became friends ever since.
Danny: I just want to be clear, we weren't waltzing around the club.
Are LI 'Race' guys amazing?
MY SAY This Sunday, the 20th edition of one of TV's best reality competitions features balloons, clowns, empanadas, sky diving and Argentina. Seasoning this perennial stress monster of a show are two unadulterated Long Island accents. Danny and Joey appear to be ideal reality-competition contestants -- pumped and pretty much ready for anything that host Phil Keoghan throws at them (except cars with stick shifts, but that's another story). Will they last ... even past Sunday? That'd be giving far too much away. Let's just say they keep this race interesting -- very interesting.