Dancing on Ice‘s Chloe Madeley has topped the judges’ scoreboard for the first time this series as the remaining five celebrity skaters tackled props.
The 23-year-old daughter of Richard Madeley and Judy Finnigan had been gaining on favourites Sam Attwater and Laura Hamilton on the scoreboard in recent weeks – but was beaten to the top spot by Laura at the last minute.
However this week she got her own back, scoring 9.0 from each of the judges for a total of 27 out of 30 – putting Laura, who scored 25.5, into second place.
The panel raved about her routine, which saw her skate with a hula hoop and skip on the ice using a skipping rope.
“I am incredibly proud of you,” Jason Gardiner said, “They were two very tricky props and you worked with them beautifully, well done.”
And Robin Cousins agreed. “Good for you for giving them a go,” he said of the props, which Chloe had admitted she found difficult to use, “and then making them work like that.”
Laura and Sam also fared well, the former delivering an impressive performance with a cane and chair that had a harder edge than some of her recent efforts.
“You had real control over your props tonight, I was waiting for a bit of depth for you and there it was,” Emma Bunton said.
Sam, meanwhile, scored 24.5 and while his routine, featuring a trilby and a microphone, received a largely positive response, he faced Jason’s wrath after dropping his hat midway through the performance.
“There’s no excuse,” he said, “you dropped your prop so we have to take that into consideration.”
However Phillip Schofield promptly hit back – with a sly reference to the judge’s rumoured recent hair transplant – adding, “Hats can cause all sorts of problems with you can’t they Jason?”
Also having problems with his props was Jeff Brazier, who performed with a table and office chairs, and at one point stumbled as he was performing a spin with partner Isabelle Gauthier.
“For every brilliant moment you had there was something that went wrong,” Robin said, while Jason said the pair reminded him of “two toddlers being really pathetic around a table.”
And once again Johnson Beharry VC finished in last place, but with his best score yet – 19.5 – and he won praise from the panel for his seamless use of a straw boater and an umbrella on the ice.
“You handled the props with such finesse and panache, which I was not expecting,” Jason said.
“You absolutely gave an overall performance,” added Robin, “I could see the nerves but it didn’t affect the work with any of the props.”
Sunday’s show also featured live music from five-piece vocal group The Overtones, who performed while the couples skated.