The Chase’s trivia behemoth Mark Labbett – aka The Beast – has admitted that he voted for fellow Chaser Anne Hegerty to take on a Bushtucker Trial just days into her stint on I’m A Celebrity – and is now feeling rather guilty about it.
Hegerty received an outpouring of support after struggling with the Trial Monsterous Monoliths, which saw her locked inside a rocky cage and doused in fish guts, slime and meal worms as she worked to crack a series of padlock codes.
Labett, who stars alongside Hegerty in popular ITV quiz show The Chase, said he had hoped the Trial would contain enough of a mental element to play to Hegerty’s strengths but now regrets his decision to put her up for the challenge.
Speaking exclusively to RadioTimes.com, the 53-year-old explained, “My feeling now, and I might be wrong, it’s better to volunteer for a task that might suit you, than wait for one to come your way.
“I thought there may be a mental element to it as it wasn’t a physical task.
“You were doing combinations and I thought ‘that would suit Anne.’
“Yet I kind of wish I hadn’t. I’m feeling a bit guilty now, I must confess. Though that suited her better than the first trial Emily [Atack] had to do.”
Hegerty has won a legion of new fans by revealing her struggles with Asperger syndrome and showing a softer side compared to that of her persona as frosty quiz queen The Governess.
Ironically, Labbett added that the next Bushtucker Trial, The Scary Rose (which Doctor Who star John Barrowman is taking on), may well have been one that Hegerty could master.
“Anne’s a really good swimmer. But she cant do it for medical reasons,” he said.
Despite her mini-meltdowns in camp, Labbett feels that the public have found their winner with Anne, saying the star should ‘easily’ make it to the top three.
“There’s a strong line up, there’s a lot of good characters in there. There’s a long way to go but she’ll be in there final night,” he said. “My bet is top three.
“With the Asperger’s, Anne is a preparer and she doesn’t like surprises. She has her moments, but 15 minutes or so in a quiet room and she’s all business.”
The Chase is on ITV weekdays at 5pm
I’m a Celebrity…Get Me Out of Here! continues nightly at 9pm on ITV