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MasterChef Australian – Contestant Tidbits

TV Week is proving to be a font of information on MasterChef Australia this week and they have some extra information on some of the contestants.

I will summarise what they said:

Lucas:

Lucas is a father of three and was a professional golfer. The 39 year-old golfing career came to an end after he broke a couple of bones in his back during a fishing accident in crocodile-infested waters in Queensland.

“It was just one of those freak things,”

“I never really recovered, so my golf struggled.”

Lucas opened a cafe in Randwick, Sydney and he jumped at the chance to appear on MasterChef.
“It’s been such a whirlwind.” he say. “But it’s so rewarding when you get it right. I’ve learnt so much from the show. Now I’d love to open a little tapas bar – that’s my dream.”

Lucas who has a two-year-old daughter, Lucia, with wife Simone, as well as two older daughter – Phoebe 12, and Torrey, 10 – from his first marriage, admits it’s been tough being separated from his family during the competition.

“I miss my girls so much,” he says. “Simone is fantastic. She’s happy with whatever I do, as long as I’m happy with it.”

Sandra:

Brisbane mother Sandra has revealed her children are not coping without her while she chases the MasterChef title.

Sandra says she discovered just how seriously her absence was affecting Alexander, five, and Isabella, two and a half, during a quick visit home over Easter. “Isabella was waking up in the middle of the night yelling Mummy! Mummy!” Sandra says. “And Alexander was becoming aloof and disorientated at school.”

She say her husband kept her in the dark about the children’s problems because he didn’t want to worry her, but now she’s questioning her place in the competition. “It’s so hard,” she admits. “I’m trying to pretend  that everything is fine when in fact I’m really, really distressed inside.”

What keeps Sandra going is the end goal. “I remind myself that this for them as much as it is for me,” she says. “It will open up a lot of opportunities and will be something they’ll benefit from in the future.”

Julie:

TV Week gave her a make over and some pampering, and to be honest I think she looked better in the before shots.

Julie is struggling to cope with the separation from her husband, Mick, and their three boys – Joe 13, Tom 12, and Paddy 10.

“I miss them so much that it really hurts,” Julie confesses. “Only last night I wished I was back at home, cooking dinner for the boys.”

Although Julie finds being alone “scary”, she hasn’t considered leaving the competition because she wants to set a good example for her children. “There have been days that have been crushingly hard,” she admits, “but I’ve never reached the point of actually wanting to walk away. I’m not a quitter and I don’t want to teach my kids that when the going gets tough, you can pack your bags and leave.”

Before entering MasterChef, she worked with Mick at their IT company on NSW’s Central Coast.

Tom:

Lawyer Tom became a victim of the global financial crisis last year when he was unexpectedly made redundant. But after coming to terms with the loss of his job, Tom began to see it as his destiny. “Things happen for a reason,” Tom says. “My approach to it is,it was fate for me to be made redundant and it was fate for me to be chosen to audition for MasterChef. Fate has brought me this far, and if I’m here to the very end and win this, its actually saying to me that I should seriously consider it as a career.”

Tom’s philosophy wasn’t shared by his long-term partner, Tony, however, who encouraged him to pursue his law career instead of food. “Tony didn’t want me to do MasterChef because I think he didn’t see it as a valid thing,” Tom explains. ” He was pushing me in terms of law, saying ‘You’re a good lawyer – get back into it.”

Although Tony now supports his partner 100 per cent, it wasn’t until Tom was accepted into the top 50 that he let go of his concerns. Meanwhile, Tom says if he doesn’t win, he’ll see it as a sign he’s meant to return to law and use his qualifications to help the indigenous community.

5 comments

1 CG { 06.09.09 at 9:10 am }

George should shut his gob. Everything he says about who his favourites are is consistent with the favouritism we have seen in voting. “Poh is gorgeous” confirms why she has hung in so long. His comments about Chris also confirm why his raw chicken and other flubs have gone unpunished. And the knives are out for Sandra. I’ll continue to watch the show because I am somewhat addicted but this bald admission of bias has really spoiled things.

2 Wurstsemmel { 06.09.09 at 2:36 pm }

It’s great to hear Tom’s partner now supports his choice to chase his dream. I think it’s a shame he left the series now – a total crock in fact that he left in the croquembouche challenge. I hope he does well ‘on the outside’.

3 reality raver { 06.09.09 at 4:36 pm }

CG – It would be very difficult for the judges to stay neutral as they are actually tasting the food. But yes does confirm that does have a not so secret crush on Poh…

Wurstsemmel I was sad to see Tom go as he has such dignity, calm and grace about him. Particularly with Sam, and Sandra still in the comp. I reckon knives will come out in the Thurs night elimination now that it is top ten and they can sniff the money.

4 Injera { 06.09.09 at 7:29 pm }

Sandra’s comments do put her recent attitude into context, I think. She has come across recently as a snappy cow, but she’s probably trying to hold it together.

Do I feel sorry for her? Well, not really, since she knew she’d be separated from her family when she got through to final 20, but at least I can put the bitchface into perspective…

5 Reality Raver { 06.10.09 at 1:08 am }

Injera – I don’t think Sandra is bitchy I think she is defensive. Probably coming from the fact she must be feeling underseige being picked last and being close to being eliminated by both her peers and the judges.