Perhaps it was fate. Not only did Joe McElderry start out as a back up competitor before going on to win The Jump, it turns out he was actually on holiday in Austria, where the winter sports reality show is filmed, when he was called up to replace the injured Henry Conway.
The 2009 X Factor winner admits, “I was on a ski holiday, as I was taking January and February off to get ready for my tour. Then I got a call and they said, ‘Can you be here within two hours?’
“I thought ‘Why not?’– I added an extra ski holiday and added another element.”
This meant McElderry was two months behind the training schedule of the other stars. But it seems to have been a benefit.
“I didn’t have much time to think about it,” McElderry explains. “I was a bit oblivious which I think helped.”
By the time the final came around it was the battle of the reserves, with both McElderry and journalist Donal MacIntyre, almost literally, the only two competitors left standing.
“If you’re hurtling down a mountain – there’s risks,” McElderry explains. “We’re all a bit bruised and exhausted.
“We’ve all done things we’ve never done before. There’s been injuries, but it makes great TV! Hurtle off mountains and hurt yourself – people seem to love it,” the singer jokes.
It’s unclear as yet whether there will be another series of the show but McElderry says he’d “100% encourage others to do it” and says injuries aside all of this year’s group would “100% do it all again.”
Now a three-time reality show winner, with the X Factor, Popstar to Operastar and now The Jump under his belt, what’s next for the reality show king?
“I always think, ‘Am I going to learn something?’. I would love to do something like Strictly Come Dancing. I’m a frustrated dancer.”
Well, we’ll know who to back, won’t we?!