Ex-Baywatch star Nicole Eggert – back in a red bathing suit – stole the show on Tuesday’s edition of ABC’s diving competition Splash with an emotional plunge into the water predicated by a speech in which she admitted her hesitance to participate after years of scrutiny over her expanded waistline.
“This is way out of my comfort zone for so many reasons,” the Charles In Charge star said. “So here I am going to be in a bathing suit in front of the whole world again, then throw myself off a high platform.”
The 41-year-old mother-of-two, who previously appeared on VH1′s Celebrity Fit Club, said she was inspired to take the plunge to set a good example for her daughters.
“We have had highs and lows and struggles, and if at my age, I can go and win something like this, [I can] show them that if you want something you can do it,” she said.
During rehearsals earlier, Eggert struggled, falling awkwardly from the 16-foot board, which left her in tears. But the temporary low was offset by the high of Tuesday’s triumphant dive.
Judge David Boudia told her, “You are giving every mom in America hope they can get back in their swimsuit,” with a strong accompanying score of an eight. “For you to do something like that shows courage and that you are fearless and a player in the game. That was unbelievable, great job.”
Judge Steve Foley gave Nicole a 7.5 score, lauding her resiliency after the earlier setback.
“I have seen people crash and burn before and they never get back up,” Foley told her. “If you look up the word courage in the dictionary it has your picture next to it.”
Elsewhere Tuesday, NFL underachiever Ndamukong Suh was eliminated, while Chelsea Handler sidekick Chuy Bravo withdrew from the show after a freak injury to his foot. Chuy’s replacement was soccer star Brandi Chastain.