The Amazing Race Season 34 couple Derek Xiao and Claire Rehfuss met while competing on Big Brother 23 in the summer of 2021 and began a relationship in the Jury House. Following their exit, he met her sisters and joked about how “nervous” it made him.
Derek Xiao joked he was ‘more nervous’ meeting Julie Chen than Claire Rehfuss’ sisters
In October 2021, shortly after Big Brother 23 concluded, houseguests Claire Rehfuss and Derek Xiao announced they had started dating.
They revealed their “jurymance” in an exclusive interview with Us Weekly that shocked much of the BB fandom as they shipped Hannah Chaddha and Derek.
However, others saw sparks between the couple while they lived in the house. After their exit, the pair remained together in New York. They also attended a wedding together where he met her siblings.
“Derek thought Big Brother was hard, but he wasn’t ready for Big Sisters,” she captioned the Instagram photo featuring her family and boyfriend. The Challenge star joked back in the comments, “more nervous than meeting Julie Chen,” the longstanding host of BB.
Claire and Derek were allies during ‘Big Brother 23’
The New York-based startup founder and Claire aligned quickly during Big Brother 23 as they made up The Firefighters, alongside Travis Long and Kyland Young, wanting to “put out fires” that then-Head of Household Brandon “Frenchie” French started.
It didn’t last long as Travis left the competition first. Still, Claire and Derek were involved in several more alliances together throughout the season, including a fake one named the Mafia, the short-lived Royal Flush, and the Detectives, until his backdoor in Week 7.
Even though the two were close allies, their relationship didn’t materialize into a romance until they were both in the jury house as Claire joined him two weeks later.
When they announced they began dating, she admitted to making the first move, noticing how naturally their relationship progressed as they hung out off-camera. Derek noted he purposefully didn’t “explore” anything with the New York-based artificial intelligence architect as Christian Birkenberger and Alyssa Lopez’s showmance made them an easy target.
Many fans thought they saw sparks before Claire and Derek announced their relationship
After Sarah Beth Steagall backdoored Derek, it became evident to him that he would exit the house that week. During one of his last nights in the house, the two talked outside on the hammock.
He asked for her real story, as they knew other houseguests were hiding their true identities, and she revealed that she actually lived in the wealthy Upper East Side neighborhood of New York City as opposed to Estoria, as she told everyone.
Even though she downplayed it by claiming she resided in a “s***ty” apartment, the houseguest kept it a secret so the other houseguests wouldn’t assume she was rich, placing a target on her back. Claire also shared that she worked in machine learning, not quality assurance.
He initially jokingly wrestled with her in shock before admitting her career would have painted her as a threat in his mind. As they both share a profession in the tech industry, Derek noted the two would probably remain in touch after the show concluded. Several fans uploaded the conversation to Twitter, adamant that they saw sparks between the pair. The Amazing Race airs Wednesdays on CBS.