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Friday 20th September 2019

Strictly Come Dancing: James Cracknell reveals real reason for his divorce

The rower and ex-wife Beverley split earlier this year

New Strictly Come Dancing star James Cracknell has given a candid interview about the reason behind his marriage break down, saying he was a different person after his devastating brain injury.

The double Olympic gold medalist and Beverley Turner announced their split in March after nearly 17 years together. Their divorce was finalised in July.

He has since moved on with new girlfriend, American finance student Jordan Connell, who he is thought to have met while studying at Cambridge University.

Bev had it really hard. She had one husband for the first eight years we were married and a very, very different one for the rest.
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Early morning bike ride, 3wks dissertation writing doesn’t do your legs any favours & there’s always a bloody headwind. I had the the whole of Cambridgeshire to explore & ended up cycling out to the boathouse in Ely #pavlovsdog

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Opening up about his marriage to Beverley, the 47-year-old said their relationship had been strained for some time as his brain injury led to huge changes in his behaviour.

In 2010 he was left with a fractured skull after a truck hit his bike while he was filming a documentary in the US for the Discovery Channel.

Read more: Strictly Come Dancing: Anneka Rice suffers injury ahead of series return

"Bev had it really hard. She had one husband for the first eight years we were married and a very, very different one for the rest," he said.

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"The reality is that when I started to think, 'OK, I really need to do something here,' Bev had already put so much effort in that she was understandably done."

Read more: James Cracknell involved in a road accident just weeks before Strictly starts

The rower added to The Mail On Sunday: "It's difficult when you've got three children. It's difficult to find the time to talk and if you don't open up and show how you're really feeling – which is what I was doing – then it's hard to live in that situation."

James, who shares Croyde, 15, Kiki, ten, and eight-year-old Trixie with Beverley, said they were both ultimately responsible for the split. Despite them both putting in the effort, it came at different times.

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"We put in the effort, nobody more than her, but unfortunately they didn't coincide. That was bad planning on my part."

The rower has spoken out as he gears up for Strictly Come Dancing, which kicks off on the 7th September.

Other stars competing in this year's series of Strictly include TV legend Anneka Rice, comedian Chris Ramsey and EastEnders actress Emma Barton.

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