I remember Jake from the "Cobra" beer advert many many years ago, where he raised his eyebrows very provocatively... a role that seems to have followed him with his current character in the Benidorm series!
|At the pool bar when ITV "This Morning" broadcast in 2012|
|Chatting with Jake in the "Solana" reception area|
|Jake in one of his eye catching briefs!|
He "liked the challenge" was his response, plus he was a huge fan of Tom Daley and had met his father Rob before his tragic death from brain cancer.
Jake was obviously a competent swimmer but had never done any sort of diving, apart from the edge of the pool when on holiday like most of us - well I excluded myself from that statement! The contestants had just 2 weeks of training before the show - and only 2 hours per day, otherwise I suppose they would have resembled a prune had it been all day. Jake trained with Tom twice a week down in Plymouth, which is where Tom is based then the other days in Southend by Bill and Damien who are both Olympic trainers. The show took place in London so he spent more time commuting between the 3 locations than in the pool. The first day he was strapped into a harness and had to practice twirling and diving off a dry board and by the second day he was on the 3 metre board at the poolside, but still in the harness which helped to guide and control his entry into the water.
Jake is extremely fit, which was most obvious as we got up close on the sofa but he admitted that he discovered muscles and pain like never before despite being a regular gym goer - he even manages 3 sessions per week whilst here filming in Benidorm! They all suffered injuries and Jake´s was well documented when he hit the bottom of the pool, cutting the bridge of his nose open. Fortunately he didn´t break it but it had to be glued together and initially there was doubt as to whether he would be allowed to dive again as there is a health & safety policy about entering the water with an open wound. But fortunately all ended well and we saw Jake in his itsy-bitsy speedos - 2 of which he has very generously donated to auction for a children´s charity in Calcutta.... well done Jake, I hope they raise lots of money.
|Jake in character as Mateo|
But he will be back - yes next year for series 7 which is fantastic news but much sooner than that - in July to launch his 2014 calendar! Let me tell you, I have had a sneak preview and boy, will he set temperatures rising - the pictures, many taken here are by an amazing Scandinavian photographer and I assure you absolutely breathtaking. Once dates have been confirmed Jake will let me know and I will in turn publicise what is bound to be a very well attended event, which will take place at Mateos second home here - Neptune´s Bar - aka Morgans Tavern! He also has a beach towel in the pipeline - can you imagine lying on top of him in his scanty speedo trunks... a definite Christmas wish list item!
|At reception with Mateo!|
I was even lucky enough to receive a "Solana" All Inclusive wristband from Mateo....