Statistically Come Dancing: how are Strictly’s celebrities faring so far?

Using a few simple stats Bryce Millard and Elkie Symes predict how well Susanna Reid, Ben Cohen and co will do in the run up to the Strictly 2013 final

If you’re like us and a Strictly fan who is stuck to the sofa at the weekend like Velcro until December – you can’t help but occasionally ask yourself why. Is it just the splash of glamour or the fine dancing? Beyond these and many other things, it’s the unfolding weekly drama of who improves and who doesn’t – how each of our favourites rises to the devilish Foxtrot or flounders at the forge of Latin passion!


We used some simple stats to split the celebs over the 11 series into different groups based on their first week scores – the (Ricky) Whittles, who are great movers, the (Natalie) Cassidys, who have bags of potential, and the (Ann) Widdecombes, who are – ouch! – dance dis-ah-sters. Turns out that the Whittles are only three times more likely to win than the others. These are good odds for the Widdies and Cassidys – and it goes to show the importance of what happens outside of the judges’ scores – the journey

So how are the celebs’ journeys going?

The biggest improvement so far is among the boys – Ashley (a Cassidy), Patrick (a Whittle) and Ben (a Widdie) have all improved since the first week. Perhaps the most exciting improvement is Ben. Despite being a Widdie, he bestrode the Salsa this week to end up joint third on the leaderboard!

Among the girls, Natalie, Sophie and Abby (all Whittles) have all improved on their scores in the first week. However a sloppy Samba from Susanna saw her close to her first-week score. However, Abbey, Natalie and Susanna are all Whittles, which means they don’t have as much room to improve, but a long way to fall.

So, bottom line, if the journeying Widdies and Cassidys can keep getting better and better, face Latin and ballroom alike with a deeply tanned smile; and, it turns out that the Whittles have nothing more to show us outside of great dancing and big hair, then this season like every other one promises to be a good journey for all of us!

In the end it’s not how you start in Strictly – it’s how you finish! “Cha-cha-cha,” says the Hare. “I’ll take a slow Waltz…” says the Tortoise “…into the final, thank you!”

Strictly Come Dancing continues tonight at 6:30pm on BBC1.