Clap Where are we? No, seriously: where are we? Somewhere we've never been before? Excellent. And -- how do you pronounce it? Don't ask the teams...
Slap Double bunch point: airport and waiting for the temple to open at the other end.
Clap Having something to do while waiting for the temple to open, creating what might have been the only moment this season when we didn't have teams openly hating each other.
Slap So we're heading for $6.00/gallon gas and you thought this would be a good time to show us a country with so much oil, people take baths in it for supposed spa treatment benefits. Yeah, that's gonna foster some great international relations.
Clap Playing off Typical Male Phobias. 'We have to clean off a guy? Eeuuwwww!' That is, if men could be bothered with a hearty 'Eeuuwww.' This arguably kept some teams away from the faster Detour branch.
No hand movement As noted by PepeLePew on the ECST, the race 'leaves' on the target apple during the search task Detour branch (and any task like that is generally a Slap all by itself) were easier to spot in a car loaded with something other than red. On the one hand, it rewards intelligent Racers with a split-second advantage. On the other, it's a search task. And who wants to bet every target apple was in the approximate same spot within the car?
Slap Poorly-designed Roadblock. Making someone confront fears is one thing and using a design that allowed multiple players to go at once helped, but unless someone had a gigantic phobic reaction, no one was going to take long enough to lose any time -- and in that gear, there wasn't a Racer who could swim fast enough to gain any.
Slap You want multiple teams going after the Fast Forward. You do not want the team(s) that fail(s) to automatically be in last place and stay there for the rest of the leg. There should be a chance to come back from a missed attempt, or else we're back to one team running for it and everyone else saying 'Well, we didn't run first. Next?' Oh, and while we're here: helmets.
Slap The first-place prize was too much. I know Ford's a major sponsor this season and you want to keep them happy, but that's the sort of giveaway you save for the next-to-last leg or just add to the million. For a midcourse handout, it's overwhelming.