The Amazing Race Wiki

Alison Irwin and Donny Patrick are a Dating team on The Amazing Race 5.

Despite their bickering and arguing, they finished 1st on the first leg. However, their ever increasing arguing, along with their decision to take a slower bus instead of a cab to the Roadblock in the next leg, sharply dropped them to last place, causing them to be eliminated in 10th place.


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Alison & Donny are from Pennsylvania and have been dating on and off for three years. The two of them met as students at an athletic convention at the University of Pittsburgh, and then ran into each other at a bar a few weeks later. As Alison puts it, "He's been hooked ever since." Alison was runner-up on the CBS summer reality series, BIG BROTHER 4, where her relationship with Donny was often discussed, although he was not in the house with her.

Alison says that although she and Donny have hurt each other in the past, she loves him with all her heart and wouldn't ever want to hurt him again. She describes him as much calmer than herself, and she loves to be the center of attention, while he likes to just watch from the sidelines.

Donny is the first person in his family to graduate from college. He describes himself and Alison as "both good looking, outgoing and extremely competitive." He says his most exciting moment in his life was scoring a touchdown in front of 30,000 people.

Alison & Donny describe themselves as "the greatest example of new age young adults. We give 110% to everything we do and don't accept not getting our way." They are excited about competing in THE AMAZING RACE 5, as Alison says, "to see if we should really try to work out our differences from BIG BROTHER. The $1 million is secondary."[1] 

When and where did you meet?
Alison: Donny and I were both at a University of Pittsburgh Athletic Convention. When he was introduced, I thought he was absolutely gorgeous, so I remembered his name. About two weeks later, I sought him out and introduced myself. We hit it off immediately, but he was a little too persistent, so I didn't talk to him for a year. The following year, I was walking my dog in my new neighborhood at school, and Donny was sitting on the front stoop of his house, which was two doors down from mine. We exchanged phone numbers, and have basically been together ever since.
If you could describe your relationship in one phrase or sentence, what would it be?
Alison: Only the strongest survive. Donny and I didn't have the best relationship ever, but now we are better, stronger and more in love than ever.
Have you ever traveled together before? If so, what were the best and worst aspects of traveling together?
Alison: We went to Canada and to Mississippi to see his relatives.
Why did you decide to team up for THE AMAZING RACE?
Alison: Donny's the strongest, quickest guy I know, and I wouldn't want to be away from him again on another reality show. We figured reality TV tried to rip us apart; the least they could do is throw us together.
As you begin the Race, how do you think this experience will affect your relationship?
Alison: We decided that we are going in as a couple, and we are leaving as a couple. We also try to tell ourselves that we need to push each other and take all the mushy, lovey-dovey stuff out and just COMPETE together.
What strengths and weaknesses do you bring to the Team?
Alison: I'm soooo impatient, but I'm quick, and I'm usually on top of the game.
What strengths and weaknesses does your teammate bring to the Team?

Alison: Donny is the strongest person I know. If he can put up with me, he can put up with the world. He does tend to jump the gun and not think things through. And sometimes he's a little lazy, but I love him for it![2]

The Amazing Race 5[]

Race History[]

Alison & Donny's Race History
Episode Leg Destination(s) Detour Choice
Placement Notes
1 1 United States → Uruguay Zips / Chips No Roadblock 1 of 11
2 2 Uruguay → Argentina Perro / Tango Donny 10 of 10
Average 5.50
     The team finished in first place
     The team finished in last place and was eliminated from the race
     The team finished in last place in a non-elimination leg
     The team that won The Amazing Race
     The team that crossed the Finish Line second
     The team that crossed the Finish Line third
The team used the Fast Forward pass
> The team used the Yield
< Recipient of the Yield


  • The pair broke up shortly after being eliminated. Their toxic relationship continued in the post-game interviews.[3]
  • In the Summer of 2006, Alison was later chosen by production for Big Brother: All-Stars. She was the first person evicted, finishing in 14th Place.
  • Alison has since married and had a daughter.[4]


  • Bertram van Munster initially "balked" at the decision to cast Alison & Donny.[5]
  • Alison was the first contestant to have previously competed on a past reality show.
    • They are the first team who had previously appeared on another reality show. Alison competed on Big Brother 4 and finished as the Runner-Up. Donny himself appeared on brief segments to talk about Alison and her cheating.
  • Alison & Donny are the first team to be eliminated in Argentina.
  • The only team to win a leg in season 5 and not be in the final three.
  • Alison & Donny are the second team to win the first leg, but be eliminated in the following leg after Amanda & Chris.

External links[]


  • Ethan Alter at TV Guide Online (07/16/2004): "Amazing Races Exes Get Evil"
  • Shelly Anderson at Pittsburgh Post-Gazette (06/08/2006): "Ex-Pitt WR deals with reality"
  • (2004): "After the Race"


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