She said yes! The only thing more dramatic than the Hairdressers’ sixth-place finish on the third episode of The Amazing Race 26 was the beautiful moment when, atop a gorgeous mountain in Phuket, Thailand, Matt asked Ashley to marry him.
The picturesque setting for the proposal — lush mountaintop greenery next to sparkling aqua water — was actually a stroke of luck for Matt. He told Us Weekly exclusively that he had decided to propose to his girlfriend of three years before the couple set out on the race, but wanted to wait until the moment was right — and they were in one of the most beautiful places they've ever visited — to actually pop the question.
"Basically, I went with my heart," the New Yorker said. "When we started the Race, we started off a little rocky. We went to Japan and I said to myself, 'The next leg, the next country that we go to that's absolutely beautiful, I'm gonna figure out where and when I want to do it.'"
In preparation for the big moment, Matt had taken the ring he chose — with helpful suggestions hinted at in the months prior by Ashley — and put it in his fanny pack, which he accidentally left at one of the leg's challenges.
"We raced back and I got it and we're racing to the finish line. It just so happened … every single team was at the pit stop when we got there. I'm freaking out now because we're standing on this mountain, looking at everybody," he said.
Interjects Ashley, “he's shaking and he keeps grabbing my hand and I'm like, 'Stop! What are you doing?'"
As we now know, it was the anticipation of what Matt was about to do that was making him nervous. "I'm realizing I'm about to ask her to marry me and there's like 20 cameras on me and my whole body starts shaking. My nerves just won't calm down and it's getting worse and worse," he said.
But the proposal went off without a hitch after Matt, 30, brought Ashley, 28, in front of their fellow racers (and host Phil Keoghan) and promised her three things before dropping down on one knee: To always say "I love you," to always kiss her goodnight, and to always admit when she's right.
Ashley confirmed to Us that, several months into their engagement, Matt has kept those promises. "Thus far he has," she said. "He always did all those things since basically day one when we moved together. He's a very sensitive, loving person."
Watch the proposal — which was perfect aside from one small detail ("As she's crying she says, 'I wanted a manicure before I did this!'" dished Matt) — below!
The Amazing Race airs Fridays at 8 p.m. on CBS.
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