In one of the most nail biting finals ever seen on Strictly Come Dancing, sports presenter Chris Hollins was voted Strictly Come Dancing Champion 2009 battling it out in a dramatic grand final against Hollyoaks actor Ricky Whittle.
On winning the competition with his professional partner Ola Jordan, Chris said:
‘I’d just love to thank everyone so much especially you two (Ricky and Natalie) you’ve made it a wonderful final, a very wonderful final. I’d love to thank all our family and friends, our loved ones because without you we wouldn’t have been able to do half the training, and I’d also like to thank all our fellow professionals, they are so generous with their time they are absolutely brilliant! And I’ve got to say last, and definitely not least, little Ola chops – thank you so much for believing in me all the way along, I did test you a little bit, the jive and the quickstep come to mind! Thank you so much you lovely little girl.’
Ola Jordan said of lifting the coveted Glitterball trophy: ‘I just want to say you’ve been the best partner, you’ve been a dream to work with – thank you so much because that experience was fantastic for me.’
Runner up Ricky Whittle said of his Strictly experience:
‘I’ve had an absolutely amazing time; I’ve had the time of my life. I want to thank all of our supporters firstly for getting us here and getting this far – we’ve had a great time and the opportunity to dance on the biggest show out there in Great Britain. I’m going to keep dancing. I want to say thank you to a lot of people, my family here at Strictly, everyone back on Hollyoaks who helped us out – the press team, Vicky, Rachel, Lucy, Anne. Natalie (Lowe) who has been absolutely amazing! My Mum and Dad who are here, my friends, my family.’
In the climax to a thrilling seventh series, both couples performed their highest scoring Ballroom and Latin dances plus a group Lindy Hop and a ‘no holds barred’ show dance in a bid to be titled Strictly champion 2009.
There was a special performance by Strictly’s very own Bruce Forsyth and Alesha Dixon, singing a sparkling rendition of ‘Something’s Gotta Give’.
The final also saw the return of many of this series’ eliminated couples who took to the floor one final time, performing their most memorable dance from the show.
In a poignant moment, athlete Jade Johnson who was forced to withdraw from the competition because of injury, returned to the dance floor with her professional partner Ian Waite to dance the Tango – the fateful dance they never got to perform in the live show.
As an added treat, last years finalists, singer Rachel Stevens and model & presenter Lisa Snowden paired up with their professional partners from last series; Brendan Cole and Vincent Simone to dance a Cha Cha/Tango to ‘Sister’s are doin’ it for themselves’ by Aretha Franklin/The Eurhythmics. As one final Brucie bonus Strictly Professional dancers Kristina Rihanoff and Brian Fortuna dazzled the audience with a magnificent Cha Cha Cha to Lady Gaga’s ‘Just dance’.
Strictly Come Dancing returns for a one off festive Christmas special, featuring previous celebrities’ Rachel Stevens, Austin Healey and Gethin Jones plus this year’s semi finalists Ali Bastian, Ricky Whittle and 2009 Strictly Champion Chris Hollins. Tune in BBC One 7.00pm Christmas Day.