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Bravotv.com: Let’s talk quickly about the Quickfire. The chefs are presented with Modernist Cuisine. It seemed like everyone might immediately think of molecular gastronomy. What do you consider modernist cuisine?
Gail Simmons: Well it is molecular gastronomy, but the term molecular gastronomy isn’t really a term that people who actually practice it use anymore. Modernist cuisine is the umbrella term for using modern science and technology to make cooking more efficient and advanced. Modernist cuisine means many, many things. What Ty-lor did certainly employed modernist techniques. He used a chemical compound to convert olive oil into powder, which when it hits your mouth turns back into olive oil. That’s very much a modernist technique that plays on texture and how we perceive certain ingredients. It was very much what modernist cuisine is about -- exploring, pushing the boundaries of our traditional notions of how to cook, and employing more modern methods to make cooking better and new. Now the problem is that people get wrapped up in “molecular gastronomy” and they think it’s all about tricks and gimmicks, when in fact that’s the opposite of what people like Nathan Myhrvold will tell you. The purpose of employing these scientific techniques is not to trick you but to enhance the genre, to enhance the way we cook. There always needs to be a purpose behind it – either because it makes cooking more flavorful, more efficient, or so we can understand it better. That is also why some of the other dishes didn’t work. They relied too heavily on tricks, with no purpose to enhancing the dish.
Bravotv.com: I felt bad for Chris Jones.
GS: He did OK. He made an interesting dish, but I think also it’s good to be humbled by what you do. Even if you are an expert. He has a healthy ego, and he does what he does well, but you can’t take for granted that there are people who know more about it than you. Or that just because it’s what you do there isn't still room to learn. He was in the top. He just didn’t win because I think he got a little over-zealous and carried away. At the end of the day, again, the trick to winning any challenge, especially one like this is --- did you use the technique in a purposeful way – to enhance the experience of eating and cooking? And I think Ty-lor did. He gave us a really beautiful pairing of flavors in a very untraditional way that could only have been created through the use of this technique. I think it was the smarter dish. It didn’t need all the bells and whistles.
"it could have happened to anybody," except it happened to the person who is most likely the least physically fit person there.
i'm more ed than i am ty-lor; i played a lot of sports, i got injured and i wanted to keep playing even if it was medically serious. i have a hard time sympathizing with somebody who isn't physically fit overheating and tapping out of an incredibly difficult challenge leaving the other two to carry the weight.
even disagreeing with ed doesn't mean that his behavior was so bizarre: he's cranky, tired, stressed, and ty-lor has immunity. the last point is likely of chief significance, as if they are the bottom team ty-lor is teflon and the judges would most likely give sarah a N/A. leaving ed holding the bag.
I've got to agree, Gail - where is all of Ed's hate coming from? I had heat exhaustion as a child and it is scary -- even though it's super hot outside, you start shivering with cold chills -- it's not something you can prevent (I don't think) so for Ed to say Sarah "should have worked through it" is crazy. Apparently, if you listen to the comments after Sarah comes back, her blood pressure and heart rate were high enough for the medics to call the ambulance for her...not good. And, love (not) the little baby Ed tantrum throwing pans and things around during set-up...great, Ed, very mature. (Not to mention freezing Sarah out when she came back. Classy.) But, so glad Sarah's OK, now just have to wait for "Darth Ed" to get voted off...seriously, do these people (i.e. Heather, Ed) NOT know they are on camera spewing their venom for all eternity?
I think it was irresponsible of the producers to have let this elimination challenge continue as it did. And then you don't understand why Ed "was so hard on Sarah"? Ridiculousness.
I agree with Gail 100%. Edward was very hard on Sarah. The way he treated her when she came back to try to help, he all but pushed her out of the way. Karma is watching. See what happened to the last one that kept bulling people. She went home 2 weeks ago.
Ed may not have been so harsh has his team mate had been more humble when she returned. She appeared somewhat bossy.
Your headline was a little over the top..Edward wasn't that tough on Sara...he was annoyed. You have to remember they didn't sleep all night and people get cranky. There was no need for you to point out his small complaint.
I'm not willing to give Edward a pass by saying he's competitive and wants to win. To paraphrase my comment on Tom's blog, contrast Edward's petulant whining with Steeler's Coach Mike Tomlin's decision this week about benching Ryan Clark due to health concerns with Denver's high altitude-low oxygen stadium. Clark nearly died the last time he played in Denver due to sickle-cell complications. Even though docs cleared Clark to play this weekend, Tomlin told Clark that he wouldn't let his own son risk his life, even for a playoff game, and he won't let Clark do it either. Is Mike Tomlin competitive? Heck yes. And it's a playoff game. But life takes precedence. Competitiveness doesn't excuse Edward's attitude.
I get where Ed's hate was coming from, my friend/teammate got heat stroke when we were training for nat'ls and she showed a lot more fortitude/toughness than Sarah did. But I don't think it was necessary to express it at that time. Despite the frustrations/stress Ed was feeling, it adds nothing for team unity. Better just to grin and bear it, as Ed was telling Sarah to do.
You, like many others, have made the mistake of assuming that overweight equals physically unfit. I too am overweight but work out 4-5 hours a week, and I leave a lot of my skinny friends eating dust. Heat prostration is nothing to mess around with and it really could happen to anyone. Some guys I know really need to grow up.
Sarah somehow returned just in time to play the brave little soldier, standing ready to serve the judges despite her problems. Unfortunately for Ed and Ty-lor, she then decided she was too ill to continue, and announced that she didn't feel guilty. Maybe Ed's dish would not have seemed steamed instead of barbequed if she had sucked it up. I'd have been frustrated too if I had stayed up all night preparing a dish and then have a situation, over which I had no control, totally compromise all my hard work. Sarah is pretty much Heather in sheep's clothing. Ask Keith whether he thinks she's a team player. Corn tortilla anyone?
What about the blue team's Brussells sprouts? Undercooked. Not really mentioned in the decision. That team won but their food certainly wasn't perfect.
As for Ed, his attitude was atrocious, passive aggressive, talking behind Sarah's back, excluding her. She probably shouldn't have come back at all. Contrast his and Tylor's responses. Night and day.
Ed panicked and blamed it all on Sarah (and her accent lol). He's going to'work on through it' right out the door soon enough and good riddance.
I think what Ed was most angry about was that Sarah came back just in time to serve the judges, tried to change the service routine Ed and Ty-Lor had worked out, smiled at the judges and served her chicken, and then felt ill again and left. And afterwards she complained that she didn't feel supported by her team.
you'll have to ask the Producers this one Gail since I am sure it was edited to make it worst than it really was.
I'll give Ed a bit of a pass. Dude was over-heated as well. His partner goes home. His other partner has immunity. He's awake that long. Logic goes out the window at that point and raw emotion takes over.
If you didn't spend this past summer in Texas or Oklahoma you may not understand what it was like. It's easy to blame the fat girl if you didn't know fit healthy young people who got sick from the heat this summer doing normal activities. She could not have roughed it out, heat stroke doesn't work that way. What I didn't understand is why she didn't have a wet bandana tied around her face at the pit. A wet bandana on her neck. She has forgotten her Texas survival skills up in Chicago. And I was disappointed in Ed's behavior.
I have to wonder what would have happened if Ed answered "no" when Tom asked if he and Ty-Lor were OK with working shorthanded. There should have been some means of providing them another pair of hands and keeping the competition even. While Ed's comments may have been uncalled-for, I thought he had every right to be upset over being asked to compete with a disadvantage.
you know, it would be great if given the conditions of such a challenge, knowing that such high temperatures/long hours could possibly cause illness in one of the cheftestants, that part of the "support" would be extra pair of hands to help serve the food - not cook the food.
i can see tom's point about ed making a poor decision about pre-cutting the meat, knowing that the quality of the brisket would be compromised. i think he wrongly blamed that on sarah, but the long hours and stress got to the better of him. i can't blame him- i felt for him, especially at his frustration when she left the table because she was feeling hot again. however, i am a little surprised that the producers didn't plan for that because it does seem rather unfair for a team to be put in a situation where they are down two hands.
I dont agree with Tylor winning the quickfire all he did was a peice of watermelon with pepper and some powder on it. Chris Jones should have won. Sarah should have stayed in it or not come back until she was feeling well enough to finish but helping for a few minutes then resting again would piss me off too.
It's pretty clear to me why Ed was so hard on Sarah...think that ultimately the issue ended up being less that she left with heat stroke, and more how she came back. She burst in and immediately only asked questions about her particular dish, then tried to change the serving set-up that had obviously been working for them. If I'd just been working my rear off serving hundreds of people, and somebody suddenly shows up and tries to totally take over and unilaterally rearrange my situation, I'd be royally peeved, too. Now, could he have been nicer to her, and at least asked her how she was feeling like Ty did? Absolutely. But seeing as how they were the ones who'd been on the scene and knew the 'lay of the land,' it would have also worked out a lot better if she'd come in and instead of trying to take immediate command just said, "Wow, that sucked, sorry I had to leave...where can I jump in/what can I do that would be the most help?" And then we won't even get into what a miraculous coincidence it was that she managed to soldier through serving the judges, and then had to go rest up right after... (And yes, I've been out in the south in the summer and had heat stroke, so I know it's a bad situation...but I also know that if I go stick my head under some cold running water and sit down for awhile, it helps me recover faster. And somehow I think her teammates would have felt that her sitting down on the scene for a half hour or so was a much smaller price to pay than how it actually went down. Hope she actually utilized the provided facilities and gave that a shot first and it was just edited out, instead of just going straight to medics/ambulances.)
Ed might of been a little hard on Sarah, but he had valid points to his statements. The fact she came back just in time to pick the best pieces of the chicken to save herself was ironic, just as Ed Said. I understand Sarah was getting heat exhaustion, but she just needed to cool down and could of been there to help cut and serve if she really wanted to.
I don't think the problem is so much as Sarah being out due to illness but more so the fact of how little regard she shows for her team knowing that they gave her a pass and had to work twice as hard because she was ill.
The whole idea of a team challenge is to function well as a... well... umm... team! Working with others should bring out the best in team members. It's an opportunity to compliment your own skills and ideas with ones that you normally would not have used resulting in a collection of holistically superior outcomes.
However, Sarah does not work well in teams and particularly in this episode displays her self-interest by only working on her own dishes opposed to helping pick up the slack that her absence created in the first place. IN ESSENCE, "it's necessary for everyone to help Sarah but it was not necessary for her to help her team when they need her". This was evident when Sarah eventually returned during service but only concentrated on her own food (i.e. she served her dishes to the judges and then left again) and also couldn't embrace the system her team was using (resulting in her detracting from the overall productivity of her team).
I suppose that this side of Sarah could be an isolated incident but there have been other instances of her selfishness in other episodes as well. I think that the worst was in episode 4(?) where she threw Keith under the bus at judges table. I realize this is a competition and it's important to make decisions that advance your position but I think there are different ways of doing this and they are highly dependent on your own values. Is it necessary to point out the faults of others and detract from your peers to advance oneself? I think perhaps great chefs need not act in such a reprehensible manner but instead elevate themselves through their superior performance, and in the case this is not possible, discussion to make evident they are aware of what mistake(s) they have made and how their ideas could have been executed to produce a successful dish.
It just seems to me that Sarah spends more time detracting from others opposed to showcasing her own talent and brilliance (or lack thereof). All the chefs on "Top Chef" evidently are amazing in their own right so why cut others down when that time could be better spent elevating oneself.
Perhaps another take on this idea is that Sarah is all talk and cannot back up her bold claims (i.e. fake). I think in this episode what really frustrated Ed was how Sarah makes comments which cannot be directly validated but have a sense of falseness (and in Ed's case are proven to be somewhat false based on Sarah's actions). For instance, Sarah asserts she wanted to be there for her team and wants to compete but when she did have the opportunity to do so (after she returned from receiving medical treatment) she didn't follow-up with her "good intentions". Then at judges table she claims "I wish I could have been there to support my team" but she did have that opportunity to do so after she came back but instead worked on her own dishes selfishly and left saying she felt ill. This is frustrating because at this point no one can say for certain how Sarah actually felt, except Sarah, but of course she would claim her recurrence of illness was real.
Either way, it would be nice to see Sarah take some responsibility and start acting in a way she (and viewers) can be proud of.
I don't doubt that Sarah was ill as the medics took her to the hospital but I do think how she "acted" when she returned was suspect to suspicion.
THAT OUT OF THE WAY
What I really wanted to say in my other post but forgot was how hilarious was Grayson in this episode? I mean Charlie Sheen has some good phrases like "Tiger Blood" and "Winning" but he's got nothing on Grayon's "It's like sex in your mouth" and "My favorite thing about camping is the Bullfrog song" [add in singing and faces]. Watching Grayson be herself just makes my day, something about her behavior is really honest and genuine, and quite refreshing. I wonder how the fan favorite team standings will be affected ***[SPOILER ALERT]*** now that Chris C. has been eliminated. His personality (and looks) no longer get a stage to be presented on where as Grayson has at least one more week. However, considering how the point differential is about 2 million points I wonder is one (or several more weeks) without Chris will allow Grayson to take the lead.
SUPPORT TEAM GRAYSON --> It's like cooking in you pants =)
If you truly want these chefs to show you their best work, why do you make them cook under such extreme circumstances. That was ridiculous!
Where's Ed hate coming from? Well, as bbg points out, ty-lor had immunity, sarah with her absence could escape blame and Ed held accountable for the team's weaknesses. Anyone remember Jamie in season 8? The disappearance of a teammate hurts those left behind to pick up their slack. Plus, Sarah actually stated she didn't feel guilty for taking her extended break. NO mention of leaving her teammates in the lurch! Folks, she's not a team player. Remember her shoving Keith under the bus? (I'm sure Ed did.) Her playing the innocent wounded critter act is pretty gross while turning all of it on Ed is pretty gross. Ed's anger was a excessive, but it's pretty clear where the anger is coming from.
Personally, I had no sympathy for Sarah as she got carted off to the hospital 100% lucid and conversational sitting on the gurney. A couple of hours in an air conditioned trailer should have been enough not a full blown trip to the hospital. I'm as disgusted with her as I was with Jamie last season.
Ed should have told Tom, "no, I'm not OK with that" when he was told that Sarah would be leaving. He was being asked to compete on a team with a disadvantage, and his remaining teammate had immunity! It's not Sarah's fault, and Ed should have demanded help from another chef--any of the eliminates chefs would have been an improvement over nobody. Instead, he OK'd being put in the worst position imaginable and then got upset about it.
I am glad Gail felt bad about what they did the chefs in this challenge. I feel this was way over the top. Horrible heat, serving 300 people, cooking all night. Just wrong. I did not know I was watching top banquet chef! That is what this feels like this season. I want to see the individual chefs show us their stuff. Why so many team and mass feeding challenges? Because everything is bigger in Texas? Shish. TC is missing the point of their own show. I am team Ed and I totally get how he felt. Tired, overheated and then one man down. I would of been really annoyed as well.
Yeah - I don't get why people think that coming back in the middle of a 300 person service, trying to change things around to make it easier for you to focus on your dish, disrupting the flow your teammates have struggled to build - as "helping". If she hadn't had to sit out again soon thereafter it would have been more understandable - but you still shouldn't go into a working kitchen and try to change the system midservice (and then act like you're the victim for not getting your way!). I agreed the Ed was harsh, he admitted that he didn't know what was going on, but claimed he would have tried to push through it. Obviously, he didn't know how serious it was (and probably has never suffered from heat exhaustion himself) - hating on him for his ignorance is pretty weak. If the medics had told him - "Holy vow, this could easily kill her, we've got to get her out of here now!" and he had remained negative, that would change things. Lastly, let's not forget the Sarah came to the team with a chip on her shoulder because Ed had the audacity to discuss the changing environment as the cheftestant pool dwindles and mention that he'd shared a recipe with Heather. This wasn't talking behind her back! He was discussing the facts, not saying he should have won and that Heather was no talent, just saying that at some point maybe things won't be so chummy and wondering if that time had already arrived. For Sarah to take umbrage at this really spoiled their team dynamic out of the gate, IMHO...
I thought it was pretty clear from watching the episode why Ed was miffed. No one communicated to Sarah's team why she was taken away by ambulance. Then, she reappears, only momentarily, to serve her dish to the judges, then disappears just as quickly. From Ed's perspective, anyone can easily see how he might feel in a cut-throat competition like Top Chef.
I think that if Grayson (or any other kind contestant) was on Ed's team, and got heat exhaustion, he would have been much more understanding. Heather and Sarah are like twin mean bossy girls. Their attitudes are like freight trains ready to run anybody over to get to the prize. I blame top chef for not throwing in another pair of hands to do the grunt work at least. Sarah should not have been allowed to return just to rile up the system that the boys had gotten comfortable with, and to serve up her chicken. She didn't complete the challenge...she should have been eliminated, even though heat exhaustion was not her fault. I think they kept her to avoid a lawsuit from her. Tom should have offered an extra set of hands, or given the whole team a pass.
I agree with another comment on the board...what is up with the banquets? The birthday party, the cattlemen's banquet, serving 300 at a bbq? Those are not chef challenges. Those are school lunch lady contests.
A few points of observation: 1) Sarah presumably got to sleep a few hours in an air conditioned hospital. Ed did not. When we're weighing their respective actions, that ought to be factored in. 2) Sarah appeared to show up solely for a brief time around the presentation of food to the judges, made a big stink about serving HER food the right way, and did not appear to help in preparing or serving any of the other food dishes, before leaving again (because, she claimed, her symptoms were coming back). 3) At judges' table, Sarah did not appear to thank her teammates for stepping up in her absence or even mention her absence. 4) Sarah stated that she felt no guilt about missing out. During the brief period of her return, she did not appear to make any attempts to apologize for her absence or even to acknowledge her teammates' efforts in her absence.
Yeah, you're right Gail. There's clearly no reason for Ed to be pissed in this scenario.
Also, I'd point out that Ty-Lor clearly rolls his eyes at judges table when Heather 2.0 says that she didn't feel supported by her teammates. Those of you defending Sarah are completely missing the point. There's no problem with Sarah leaving, the problem is how she acted when she came back briefly, and at judges table. A little more gratitude to your teammates for stepping up is in order, heat stroke or not. Acting like a royal itch instead is apparently the MO for the Chicago Bulls Heather and Sarah.
In retrospect, I'm sure we can all see the mistakes that were made here. These chefs are in a tough competition, so they're acting upon raw emotions under exhausting circumstances. I can't remember, but I don't think Ty-lor or Ed threw Sarah under the bus during Judge's table. I'm looking forward to Restaurant Wars. Hate that it's boys against girls. Are we in middle school? Really wish they would have put Nyesha back on this episode. I think the girls team could have benefited from her being there.
well going back to last week, the reason ed was so rude about sarah having to leave due to the heat problem is that Ed is ignorant of certain medical conditions. She had a real medical condition and he is not intelligent in that subject. I offended me. when she did return I feel her desire to help was genuine and real.
Well, Sarah wasn't trying to sabotage anyone. However, Sarah has shown multiple times that she only cares about herself, if her team goes down and she's okay, she has no problem with it. She is the worst type of person! This is not was a top chef should represent.
OK. Disclaimer: I'm from Louisville, and have really enjoyed following Ed on Top Chef this season, and I'm really rooting for him.
With that said, I'd really like to know when the contestants film their narrative comments for each show-- during? after the episode? after the entire season?
At the very beginning, I didn't understand the hostility between Ed and Sarah. The group discussion was: "At this point in the competition, can one afford to share recipes?" Ed contributed saying he didn't think so, his recipe had helped Heather twice get through, he can't afford to help someone out like that. Sarah was instantly NASTY about that. No idea why....makes more sense if they filmed their comments after the entire episode, or even season...
Was Ed a bit dramatic re Sarah's health issues? Maybe. Would I act the same way? Absolutely.
It's not like Sarah was the only hot/overheated person. They probably ALL were. Sarah appears to be the least in shape person left, and her body couldn't tolerate what the others could. So, if I was Ed, yeah, I'd be pretty disappointed. She left them in a pretty bad place, and ultimately is the reason why Ed received so much criticism for his brisket (needing to cut the meat early).
So, imagine yourself disappointed your teammate couldn't pull through (if you've ever played any team sports, I would think you can emphathize), you know your dish is suffering because of it..... and then....VOILA! She's back JUST IN TIME to plate her dish for the Judges. And then...SURPRISE....she's not feeling very good again and needs to rest.
That's pretty suspcious and would definitely piss me off. Especially her attitude. Just like in the Restaurant Wars, she has a really confrontational/unapologetic way of saying things to people that inevitably anger them (Even Grayson couldn't help herself).
She never expressed any decent remorse to Ed, instead she just kept whining and was super defensive "I have no guilty feelings"....Defensive much? I'd say she knew that people should be mad at her.
I think Ed was tired, hot and put in between a rock and a hard place. And then enters an entirely UNKIND Sarah. I thought he handled it great.
A viewer named WIncredulous said "I've got to agree, Gail - where is all of Ed's hate coming from? I had heat exhaustion as a child and it is scary". Heat exhaustion to a child is very different to an adult. Yes, heat exhaustion is extremely dangerous and scary. And yes, it is bad to an adult as well. However, adult bodies behave differently than a child's: it is much more torrent to harsh conditions. I lived in Washington State all my life and in the middle of the semi-legendary heat in Summer of 2004, I moved to Dallas, TX working my tail off outside, from 7am to 8pm, carrying heavy materials, Monday to Saturday, to earn my college tuition. It was hard, let me tell you, and I had a heat stroke. Was it dangerous? Yes. Was it hard on me (physically and mentally exhausting)? Absoultely! As a pre-med, did I know what I need to do? Of course! I HUMBLY ASKED my coworkers if I could take a break in AN AIR-CONDITIONED room. I made sure I drank a lot of water with just a touch of sault and sugar to keep myself from sweating off minerals. After an hour of break, I RETURNED, THANKED EVERYONE for "covering" my spot. My co-workers didn't have to do my work and they didn't. They continued on their work. But the sheer fact that I was out of my spot was enough to apologize. After I'm back, I continued to drank cold (but not ice-cold: we don't want to shock the body) water to control the body heat.
Now let's look at Sarah. I don't remember seeing her drinking water in effort to control her body temperature - she didn't take care of herself to stay in the competition. Granted, it may be just off camera. Next, when she has an heat exhaustion, she DIDN'T explain to her TEAMMATES! It's common sense to tell people such as co-workers what's going on, let alone teammates, especially knowing that they need to work more than twice as much to cover for her! Third, when she comes back THE NEXT DAY (NOT just a couple of hours, but a DAY), she immediately asks about her chicken. She does not ask how the food is in general or how her teammates are doing; she only focused on her chicken! And plates just in time for - who else - judges and then have another break! HELLO!!!! What's more obnoxious is that she didnt' express gratitude and had a nerve to say "I don't feel sorry" (or something along the line). WOW!
Am I the only one who remembers that she threw Keith under the bus in Ep.4, was really bitchy - as Malibu Chris points out - in Ep. 5? Note: Keith to Sarah: "You love driving bus, hitting people!" Malibu Chris: "There's something about Sarah that rubs me the wrong way. I'm already seeing the bitchy side of her" (It may not be word-for-word but it's in the same line and I got pretty good memory :) )
There is some thing so phoney about Sarah's hand over her mouth"I am so surprised" move. Get real Sarah, you weren't even born when Patti La Belle was hitting her high notes. Well, hush my mouth they didn't like your meatballs. Zen Chris and Grayson whooped you in the quickfire. Ok now, you may now put on your surprised act. PS I would never make this comment if you weren't a bully.
You wonder why Ed has so much anger towards Sarah? Well I think it's just that Ed doesn't like Sarah all that much, as I would venture a guess that most watching feel similarly. She is a beyond a horrid bully especially when teamed up with Lindsay and/or Heather. I have been watching Top Chef since the very first season and my favorites come and go each year as there is usually always one horror, but this season is surprisingly the worst yet encompassing the brittle and bossy natures of this trio.
I have not been a fan of this season for a number of reasons; I found Texas cooking to be boring, the trio of female bullies has really soured me on the competition this season and the challenges are truly horrific AND might I add dangerous. Sure Sarah could have and shoudl have drunk more water and prepared herself better for this rough completion, but the challenges themselves have gotten dangerous and out of line, It is as though you guys truly care more about the drama and have forgotten there are actual people behind those chef whites.
I will most likely watch your next season, but this year has truly left a very bitter flavor in my virtual mouth.
I am a commoner and therefore do not have a database of stylists to search. Gail: What dress were you wearing at the Pee Wee challenge judges table? I know, I should be focused on the food. But its my boyfriends show, I get distracted by the clothes.
Love the comments! Sara is incredibily unprofessional as a chef and petty as a person. She should have been eliminated outright for not completing the challenge with her team. Showing back up just to present her dish to the judges doesn't cut it. Her teammates had to take on work that she should have completed. Sara should NOT be still in this competition.