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Maud

Warning – Reading on may contain spoilers if you have not yet solved the murder.

Two pieces of evidence don’t seem to sync up with Maud’s testimony. First is the note that was discovered in Maud’s notebook. Assume Maud wrote the note. This means she knew someone had a secret. Since the note refers to half the (prize) money, she must have given the note to a contestant still in the race. She would have written it after she had been eliminated so this would be either Justin or Mike.

The second piece of evidence is Maud’s boarding pass. According to Rule 5, contestants were flown home once they were eliminated in a challenge. After being eliminated in Cairo, Maud would have been flown home to Las Vegas. However, her boarding pass says she flew in from Louisiana, the location of the last challenge!

Together, these two pieces of evidence suggest that Maud is the saboteur. When you put the rest of the murder case together, you know she is.

As the saboteur, during each race Maud sabotaged one of the other contestants to help guarantee her own victory. However, it is during the camel race that her sabotage attempt failed. Knocked out of the race after being thrown by her camel, Maud decided she could still gain something for herself by making a deal with either Mike or Justin to guarantee them the win. Given that Justin’s hydrofoil propeller was sabotaged, it was Mike she gave the note to.

There’s also Mike’s secret. During the Cairo race, Maud sabotaged Mike’s saddle because, as the one who kept coming in first, he was the greatest threat. However, despite his saddle being sabotaged, he still comes in first place. And that’s when Maud figures out his secret.

With the note, Maud let Mike know she knew his secret and that she would guarantee him the win for half the money. Implied is her threat to expose his secret if he fails to share the winnings with her. Her plan would have worked except Mike got into a fight and was blew the race, making it possible for Justin to win.

Why Maud would be disqualified:
As the saboteur, Maud has most definitely ‘taken action that hinders other contestants competing in a challenge.’ According to Rule 6, Maud would be disqualified for cheating.

Would Contestant Be Disqualified? Yes