After retiring from Dancing With the Stars a few weeks ago, I watched the show online last week knowing I’d be back for another bit of dancing on the final show tonight.
After spending some time in the Trinity Cycling team car in Belgium last week learning what it means to be a Director Sportif, I came back to Ireland on Monday and straight into rehearsals for our final night routine.
However, with only a quick cameo dance at the end of the show, we only had a few hours of practice on Monday and then only reunited yesterday morning, where the former contestants spent a few hours going through our group routine.
In the group dance, each of us had our own little part that we had previously danced during the show.
For me they picked the umbrella scene from mine sing in the rain Routine a few weeks ago and luckily it wasn’t too complicated which was probably as good as I had been to The Mansion House for the Olympic Ball the night before and perhaps wasn’t entirely alert.
Although I’ve ridden at four Olympics I’ve never been able to make it to the ball because it used to be in December and always clashed with my teams’ pre-season training camps so it was great to finally be a part of it.
I was spending much of the night with track cycling duo Mark Downey and Felix English before joining some of the guys from the Rugby 7s squad when Jordan popped up briefly. Since Jordan had to dance in the final today he was at his best and left early but the night was great.
Yesterday was a long day but it was great meeting people. Every other day of the show there was a lot of rushing, practicing, getting the last steps right, adjusting costumes and such, but today was more relaxed and social. After our rehearsals finished this morning we spent about an hour sitting in the sun on the grass chatting to each other which was lovely.
video of the day
On Monday, comedian Neil Delamere had told me he’d bought a bike to keep fit after the show, so this morning I brought him my spare Team Ireland jersey and shorts from last year’s World Cup to get him started to facilitate, although I don’t think he realizes that only two sets were ever made.
It was nice to be able to watch tonight’s show without any pressure.
It was great to see the judges present their stuff at the start of the show tonight. We all know they can talk but tonight they showed they can dance too and I have to say they were brilliant.
Even though I didn’t dance, it was really nerve wracking to see the finale. The standard was so high that anyone from Nina, Jordan, Erica or Ellen could be declared a winner and no one would have argued about it.
I wasn’t lying when Nicky Byrne asked me if I would have liked to have been out there tonight.
As an athlete, I wouldn’t have wanted or been able to take the place of one of these four in tonight’s final.
Only the right dancers were left tonight and it was really cool to watch.
I purposely hadn’t seen any of the routines this morning because I wanted the full audience experience of seeing it live in front of me and I have to say they were all amazing.
My favorite dance of the night was Jordan’s last hip hop dance. It’s not a style that’s usually seen on the show but I think it was dynamic, fun and really suited him and he really pulled it off, but I was also happy that Nina was able to do that this year with the Glitter Ball was awarded.
When I was first introduced to the show in December, they said, “You’re going to love this show. It will make you nervous. It will frustrate you. It will push you out of your comfort zone, but it will change your life.” I didn’t really believe them then, but I do believe them now.
It was nerve-wracking every weekend waiting for the results. I was so frustrated that at one point I literally stuck my head out the window to scream. I’ve never done that in my life! I’ve been pushed so far beyond my comfort zone, I don’t even remember where it was, but it was an incredible experience and opened me up to a whole new side of life.
This series was so intense, but I made so many friends on this show, from the people who work backstage to the celebrities, to the professional dancers and the choreographers. I really enjoyed the whole experience.
Another thing I have to be thankful for is the time I spent in Ireland. In 14 years as a professional cyclist I’ve never spent so much time at home with my family, so tomorrow it’s going to be strange to pack my bags and leave my grandparents’ house.
I really have to thank Karen Byrne again for her patience and expertise. I wasn’t the fastest learner and she took me further than I could have dreamed of.
Even though I was eliminated a few weeks ago, I knew in the back of my mind that we would all be back together for the finals and I was looking forward to it. But as of tomorrow the show is over. And not only for me. For each. It’s back to reality. We’re not in Dancing with the stars more. Everyone is back in their own different careers.
Thank you to everyone who has supported me on the journey and thank you to them Irish Independent for giving me the opportunity to write a very different kind of diary than what I’m used to.
The last show of Dancing with the stars is closing another chapter of my life, but in the next few days I’ll be sitting down to write another one as I hope to bring out a second book, a sequel to Inside The pelotonso one of my next tasks is to put together a proposal and start writing it.
But first, I’m going to the wrap party with everyone in town now. It should be a great night. Who knows, I might even get up and dance!
https://www.independent.ie/style/celebrity/celebrity-news/nicolas-roches-final-dwts-diary-they-were-right-this-show-does-change-your-life-41492918.html Nicolas Roche’s latest DWTS diary: “You were right, this show changes your life”