Name: Hoskote Venkatesh
Hometown: Laguna Niguel, Calif.
Connection to your teammate: Father
Current occupation: ER Doctor
Describe what you do: I take care of acute medical, surgical and traumatic emergencies. I’m also involved in the teaching of medical residents.
3 words to describe you: Decisive, resourceful and reliable.
Favorite hobbies: Traveling, acting (Shakespearean Theater) and hiking (Naina is training with me to trek up Mt. Kilimanjaro). What is the accomplishment you are most proud of? I’m most proud of my children, who have grown up to be well-educated, cultured, confident young people. Most importantly, they are good, honest citizens who I would love to have as my friends if they were not my children.
What famous person reminds you of yourself? Hugh Grant – suave, sophisticated and debonair.
What famous person reminds you of your teammate? Mila Kunis – cute, vivacious, talented and fun-loving.
What scares you most about traveling? Nothing about traveling really scares me. I do realize, however, that one must be careful and I take sensible precautions for health and safety. The thrill of traveling is in venturing into and exploring unfamiliar places.
What excites you most about traveling? Traveling excites me because it allows me to venture into and explore unfamiliar places and cultures. I gain new perspectives into people, places and things.
Biggest challenge you and your teammate will face on The Race together: As an ER physician, I am accustomed to making final decisions which must be implemented immediately without questions. Given that temperament, I am not always receptive to others’ thoughts and ideas. It is my hope to change that by being more open to Naina’s thoughts and ideas, which admittedly are sometimes better than mine!
Pet peeve about your teammate: She buys too many clothes, which I think she doesn’t wear. (Although, she says she does!)
What country and place would you most like to visit and why? I would love to visit China. A country previously closed to the West is now opening its doors. I would love to learn about and explore its rich culture, tradition and people.
What do you hope to accomplish by running The Race (other than winning one million bucks)? Both of us are headstrong and highly opinionated. The Race will help us, if not force us, to learn how to compromise and work with one another as we strive towards a mutual goal of winning the Race.
Name: Naina Venkatesh
Hometown: Laguna Niguel
Connection to your teammate: Daughter
Current occupation: Fitness Instructor
Describe what you do: I get to inspire and empower people to invest time in themselves and their relationships by altering the way they perceive their physical health. I strive to help others lead a well-balanced life filled with energy, commitment and enthusiasm.
3 words to describe you: Resilient, opinionated and adventurous.
Favorite hobbies: Dancing, water sports and cooking.
What is the accomplishment you are most proud of? Graduating from USC with honors.
What famous person reminds you of yourself? Anne Hathaway – beautiful personality. She loves to laugh, talented and fit.
What famous person reminds you of your teammate? Dr. Rey, a.k.a. Dr. 90210 – not only do they physically resemble each other but the combination of intelligence and sophistication is identical.
What scares you most about traveling? What scares me the most is falling sick or being kidnapped.
What excites you most about traveling? Being able to immerse myself completely in a new environment, absorbing the sights, sounds and history around me. And through this process, hopefully discovering more of who I am and what I stand for.
Biggest challenge you and your teammate will face on The Race together: Most of the time we both think that we are right. Being able to quickly resolve an issue without raising our voices or being unwilling to relent is something I hope this race allows us to work on. We are in unfamiliar territory during the Race so my wish is that we work out any kinks by compromising quickly and doing what’s best within the circumstance we find ourselves in.
Pet peeve about your teammate: I don’t know if it’s deliberate or not, but I think my dad chooses to have selective hearing. Most times when I am talking to him I’ll have to repeat questions several times before he sometimes will acknowledge that he is listening to me. And then while I am still talking to him, he’ll walk away stating that his mind is elsewhere. It can be frustrating!
What country and place would you most like to visit and why? I would love to go to Kenya and go on an African Safari or visit Egypt to experience the rich and ancient cultural history first hand.
What do you hope to accomplish by running The Race (other than winning one million bucks)? I come from a big family, so I have never been able to travel alone with my dad. I see this as an opportunity for adventure and exploration; where I get my dad all to myself and we are able to discover how we could improve upon our relationship as father/daughter but at the same time stay true to who we are as individuals.