Wednesday, July 09, 2008

Alexandra 'Ally' Evans crowned Britain's Next Top Model 2008

Public school girl Alexandra Evans has been crowned Britain's Next Top Model.
The 19-year-old beat her friend, red-head Catherine Thomas, 18, in the final judging session in Cape Town, South Africa.

Evans wowed the judges in the last task, which saw her and Catherine strut their stuff in a catwalk show in front of a packed crowd.

She also wins the chance to front a £100,000 campaign for cosmetics brand Max Factor, as well as a photo shoot (below) that will appear on the front cover of Company magazine in August.

In the early stages of the 12-week competition, Alex had been criticised for her inability to walk like a model but she so impressed one of the panel with her catwalk performance that he said she was better than the professionals.

The winner, from Cranleigh, Surrey, says she will turn to journalism if her modelling dream does not turn out.

But there is little chance of that now that she has bagged the top prize of a contract with modelling agency Models 1, who also represent Twiggy, Linda Evangelista and Amber Valletta.

A thrilled and shocked Alex said: 'Never in my wildest dreams did I ever think I could achieve anything like this... but now I have proved myself wrong.'

Judge Lisa Snowdon was full of praise for the winner, saying: 'This girl blossomed before my eyes.

'She's always been one of the most interesting girls. She's very special looking and all her pictures are fierce - the fashion world is her oyster.'

Curvy brunette Stefanie Wilson, 22, who the judges had earlier criticised for being 'too Playboy', was the first to be kicked off the last round of the show.

Broadcast last night, it showed the three finalists battle it out on a photoshoot in the wilds of South Africa.

Catherine had to pose in a skimpy gold outfit while 'wearing' a yellow python as a stole.

Alex had the slightly easier job of lying on a rock alongside an Iguana - which she appeared delighted by when it was presented to her at the start of her shoot.

Stefanie, meanwhile, was completely horrified to be given a tarantula to pose with but manage to pull off some fabulous pictures as it crawled over her back.

The show, running over 12 weeks on Living TV, saw 13 contestants battle it out for the top prize.

The girls, mentored at times by designers including Zandra Rhodes, Sadie Frost and her partner Jemima French, faced tough challenges along the way to test every aspect of their modelling ability.

The final decision was made by the judging panel, made up of British model Snowdon, Icelandic model-turned photographer Huggy Ragnarsson and stylist to the stars, Gerry DeVeaux.

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