Wednesday 23 October 2019

James Cracknell reveals most disappointing thing about early Strictly exit

The Olympic rower dismissed claims that he was upset behind the scenes after being booted from the dancefloor.

James Cracknell reveals most disappointing thing about early Strictly exit (Guy Levy/BBC)
James Cracknell reveals most disappointing thing about early Strictly exit (Guy Levy/BBC)

By Lucy Mapstone, PA Deputy Entertainment Editor

James Cracknell has said that he is disappointed that his children will not be able to see him rehearse for Strictly Come Dancing due to his early exit.

The Olympic rower was the first celebrity to leave the show and, responding to claims that he was upset behind the scenes following his elimination, he said he knew it was coming and that he is not a “bad loser”, adding that his main upset was on behalf of his children.

Cracknell, 47, told ITV’s Lorraine: “I could see someone getting annoyed if they were top of the leaderboard and then got voted off, whereas going into it being the bottom of the leader board you are pretty sure you are going to be in the mix at the bottom.

The only really disappointing thing was (my children) were going to come to rehearsals this week, and so they don’t get to James Cracknell

“(I was) not surprised and I can cope with being a bad dancer, that’s not a surprise.

“But right through everything, I did in sport as well, being a bad loser is something I never have been.”

Cracknell, who was partnered with Luba Mushtuk and performed a jive on Saturday, added: “Also, as much as I think rowing is very good, my kids aren’t that into it. But they are into this.

“For them to see me, they knew I would be very bad anyway.

“The only really disappointing thing was they were going to come to rehearsals this week, and so they don’t get to.

“They were looking forward to meeting Luba.”

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James Cracknell and Luba Mushtuk were the first to leave Strictly Come Dancing (Guy Levy/BBC)

He said he did not regret going on the show, saying that it was fun.

“One of the reasons, I did it, there are actually probably two reasons, a lot of the things I’ve done I know I’m going to be OK at, sporting and endurance, but I knew I was going to be bad at it,” he said.

“But I think there’s a block that people have, I know I especially do, of being afraid to look stupid.

“That’s a big hurdle to get over… the fear of putting yourself out there. I knew I wouldn’t be the best dancer in the world, I now have proof at least.

“But putting yourself in that position is actually quite a good thing to do in life.”

Cracknell was in the bottom two in Saturday’s episode against ex-footballer David James, but the judges decided it was the rower’s time to leave the dancefloor.

Strictly Come Dancing continues on BBC One.

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