Miss Philippines tried to apologise to crying Miss Colombia over Miss Universe shambles
Following the Miss Universe debacle the winner explains how she tried to apologise to her vanquished rival.
The woman who was wrongly named Miss Universe for a matter of minutes was inconsolable back stage as other contestants tried to comfort her, it has emerged.
Ariadna Gutierrez Arevalo, 21, who was competing as Miss Colombia, had erroneously been named the winner by host Steve Harvey before he corrected the mistake and she had to pass the crown to Pia Alonzo Wurtzbach, 26, Miss Philippines, live on stage in Las Vegas.
Miss Wurtzbach said she had wanted to apologise to her friend and fellow contestant for the debacle afterwards but could not because the other woman was so upset.
Miss Wurtzbach said she tried to approach Miss Arevalo backstage but the Colombian was crying and surrounded by a crowd of contestants.
She told Entertainment Tonight: "She was crying and then there was a crowd around her, the girls who were comforting her.
"I was actually very close to her already but I decided that maybe it was bad timing to do it now, to apologise to her for what happened. So maybe I’ll do that in the future.”
Describing her own reaction to the embarrassing mistake Miss Wurtzbach said: "I was confused. I wasn’t sure what was going on. I didn’t expect that to happen at all. I had to ask many times did I really win, am I really Miss Universe? Are you going to take the crown from me now? And they said no, no, you’re really the winner."
Miss Gutierrez had been fitted for a sash, given flowers and a crown had been placed on her head.
She was applauded for nearly two minutes before Mr Harvey made his way back on stage and corrected the mistake.
He explained that he had misread the card giving the name of the winner. "It is my mistake. I feel terrible," he said.
The pageant was watched by 6.2 million people in the United States.
Until recently it was owned by Donald Trump but NBC severed ties with the mogul and Republican presidential candidate after he made controversial comments about immigration.
Mr Trump said: "Very sad what happened last night at the Miss Universe pageant. I sold it six months ago for a record price. This would never have happened (if I still owned it)."
He added: "I'll tell you what I think I'd do. I think I'd make them co-winners. It'd be very cool. I would recommend that they go have a beautiful ceremony, which is good for the brand and good for Miss Universe, and do a co-winner."