Congratulations to Shane Haw and Andrew Thoday (“the Cops”) who last night made it across the line first on Fraser Island in Queensland to be crowned winners of The Amazing Race Australia season two. The team beat out the “Alphas” of Paul & Steve and the twins Michelle & Jo to win $250,000 to share between them.

This second series of The Amazing Race Australia has struggled to find as solid an audience as season one did in 2011, partially due to it shuffling around the the schedule (starting on Wednesday night late and then moving to Monday, then being rested for the Olympic period). This difficulty belies the quality of the show as it reinvigorated the brand with slight additions to the Amazing Race rule book and good challenges in the various locations visited.

Without question the quality of the casting engaged with audiences. From Cougar Sarah and her toy-boy James, to the cheerleading twin sisters, to the self-described alpha males that audiences loved to hate the mix of teams and cultures reflected in the people involved proved you don’t have to fit a specific mould to make it on reality television – you just need to be the good talent the show is looking for. It also again reflected the diversity of Australian landscape, something the producers should be applauded for.

Casting is already open for season three of The Amazing Race Australia, with fans encouraged to apply.