Eurovision loser Michael Rice has claimed Brexit was responsible for him placing last, saying even Gary Barlow or Elton John would have flopped at the contest.
The UK’s entrant, who has previously competed in The X Factor, finished last out of 26 countries at the Eurovision Song Contest in Tel Aviv on Saturday night (May 18), but reckoned he’d always known he was in for a rough ride because of the UK’s political situation.
Rice told The Sun: “I always knew I was going to come in this position because of Brexit.
“Do you know what? If it was Gary Barlow or Elton John, they still probably would have come last, too.”
His song, Bigger Than Us, scored just 13 points from the country jury vote and three from the public vote.
That was in stark contrast to competition winner Duncan Laurence who bagged a total of 492 points for the Netherlands with his track Arcade.
But Rice added: “I’ve still had so much fun and I’ve not once doubted my talent or my singing.”
Read more: Michael Rice finishes last at Eurovision
It was a different story for Rice the last time he took part in a TV singing contest - he was the winner of the first series of BBC show All Together Now.
Keen reality TV viewers may also have recognised him from his 2014 appearance on The X Factor, where he made it to the bootcamp stage.
Eurovision is known for its politically influenced voting system, with countries often voting for their allies or neighbours year after year.
— graham norton (@grahnort) May 18, 2019
However, Rice didn’t let the disappointment get to him too much, as he kept travellers entertained at the airport on the way home by giving them a rendition of Bigger Than Us in the terminal.
Later, he posted on social media: “We absolutely f***ing smashed it last night regardless of the result!
“I’m so happy, I’ve made memories for a lifetime that I will treasure and made some really good friendships from this!
“Let’s keep climbing that chart we are number 16! This has honestly been a dream come true.”
Next year’s Eurovision Song Contest will take place in the Netherlands in May 2020.