The BBC television show, Strictly Come Dancing, commonly shortened to Strictly, has, since its first run in 2004, become a staple of British weekend viewing habits. The show is based on the format of celebrities teaming up in pairs with professional dancers in a weekly knockout contest, determined by judges and public vote. A winner is found on what the BBC term as Winners Weekend which takes place before Christmas each year. Because of the popularity of the show, Strictly Come Dancing betting, and other novelty bets, has boomed.

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The hugely popular televised dance contest Strictly Come Dancing features celebrities and professional dancers formed into pairs and required to learn before performing a series of ballroom dances. The idea is based on Come Dancing, a 1970s British TV show. In the modern TV reboot, a panel of expert judges rule over the dancing pairs before their fate is put in the hands of a public vote.

The contest is broadcast on BBC One on Saturday evenings and is followed by a results show on the following Sunday. Tess Daly and Claudia Winkleman present on both Saturday and Sunday, and the current judging team is composed by Craig Revel Horwood, Motsi Mabuse, Shirley Ballas and Bruno Tonioli; Alan Dedicoat provides the voiceover.

Dance styles are mainly ballroom and Latin based and are limited to the Waltz, Cha cha cha, Foxtrot, Cuban Salsa, Paso Doble, Rumba, Quickstep, Ballroom Tango, Jive, Samba, Argentine Tango and the Viennese Waltz.

Winners, declared on the final Sunday of the series, known as Winners Weekend when the winners of The Apprentice and BBC Sports Personality Of The Year are also announced, will receive the Glitterball trophy, while money raised goes to the BBC charity Children In Need.

The 2020 edition of the competition will begin on Saturday 24th October and finish on December 19th, less than a week before Christmas. Because of the ongoing pandemic, there are only 12 contestants taking part this year with the reduced show, which normally gets underway in September, running for a total of nine weeks instead of the usual 13. Below we have the latest betting odds and tips for this year’s edition of the BBC’s Strictly Come Dancing.

Bill Bailey10/11Betfred
Masie Smith6/1888sport
Ranvir Singh10/1Bet365
Jamie Laing33/1Betfred
JJ Chalmers80/1888sport

At either end of the betting scale for Strictly Come Dancing Betting 2020 we are talking about Mrs Smith. On the one hand, actress and singer Maisie Smith who was swiftly installed as favourite around the 7/4 mark. With the skills needed to perform on stage, the 19-year-old looks a smart bet although some might be put off by the lack of value. Her closest rival would look to be Harvey Leigh Cantwell, better known as HRVY, a pop star and TV presenter. The first few weeks should give us an indicator as to which of the pair will still be dancing come December 19.

At 200/1, ex-politician Jacqui Smith is not fancied to win. No surprises there but she is around 10/11 to leave first. Remember though, that there are no eliminations in week one. Elsewhere, Olympic boxer Nicola Adams should possess the nifty footwork required to go far.

With a TV show such as Strictly Come Dancing there are a lot of ways to utilise betting in order to raise the fun and excitement of watching the action play out. Keep reading to have a look at the bet types we’ve chosen.

Winner of Strictly Come Dancing

A straight bet on who the winner is going to be. When you first see that year’s list of who the entrants are, you might know some of the competitors from music or sport, or anywhere else where a high level of fitness or choreography are required. This could help you pick a winner.

Winning Gender

If you are not quite confident enough to pick a winner or have a hunch for a number of celebrities from the same sex, you can always 50/50 your bet and nominate a winning gender. This way if you pick either a male or female winner and the show plays off that way, you’re a winner.

First Elimination

This is a first week of elimination bet only and works by bettors correctly guessing which contestant will be the first to leave that year’s competition. A quick look through the new contenders might give you an early impression on the likely losers. Even though you haven’t yet seen them dance, competitively at least, you might be able to get an idea on people’s fitness levels, or dancing ability.

Next Elimination

With a next elimination bet, you can bet as the competition progresses as to who you believe will be the next contestant to leave the show this upcoming Sunday. Sometimes, the week before, a contestant might get a lifeline or survive by the thinnest of margins so you, as the savvy punter, may have a feeling that they will struggle once again and get voted out.

The show began life in 2004, the brainchild of Richard Hopkins and Fenia Vardanis. Once the format had been perfected, the show was first broadcast on 15 May 2004. For the first 8 years, the show, on both its Saturday and Sunday runs, was hosted and presented by Sir Bruce Forsyth and Tess Daly together. But from the eighth season onwards, Forsyth opted to just host the Saturday dances show due to old age. Claudia Winkleman has been his replacement on the Sunday results show. When Forsyth finally stepped down in 2013, Winkleman became the full-time co-presenter with Daly.

Bruno Tonioli, Arlene Phillips, Len Goodman and Craig Revel Horwood were the original judging panel. This team of judges would last until season when Alesha Dixon was brought onboard to replace the outgoing Arlene Phillips. After two seasons, Dixon left to join ITV’s Britain's Got Talent. Dixon was to be replaced by Darcey Bussell who was replaced by Motsi Mabuse in 2018.

BBC Television Centre was the original studio where the show was recorded but, following its closure in 2013, the show was taped at Elstree Studios, save for one episode a season where it broadcasts live from Tower Ballroom in Blackpool.

Past Winners of Strictly Come Dancing

2019Kelvin Fletcher Series 17
2018Stacey DooleySeries 16
2017Joe McFaddenSeries 15
2016Ore OdubaSeries 14
2015Jay McGuinessSeries 13
2014Caroline FlackSeries 12
2013Abbey ClancySeries 11
2012Louis SmithSeries 10
2011Harry JuddSeries 9
2010Kara TointonSeries 8
2009Chris HollinsSeries 7
2008Tom ChambersSeries 6
2007Alesha DixonSeries 5
2006Mark RamprakashSeries 4
2005Darren GoughSeries 3
2004Jill HalfpennySeries 2
2004Natasha KaplinskySeries 1

Strictly Come Dancing Key Stats

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    Strictly is the world's most successful reality TV format, the Guinness World Records have said.

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    In series 10, Johnny Ball took part at the age of 74 making him the oldest ever competitor on Strictly.

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    At the other end of the scale, EastEnders actress Louisa Lytton was 17 when she competed in series 4, the youngest ever contestant.

So popular has Strictly Come Dancing become for the BBC that the corporation have been able to successfully export the format to more than 60 countries worldwide. BBC Worldwide licence the show, which is more famously known as Dancing with the Stars, globally. This success has led to the Guinness Book Of World Records declaring the show to be the most successful reality television format in the world. We can certainly confirm the British love it and have made it part of their winter viewing schedules and worth a punt or two.

We believe that the best online bookmakers for betting on the competition are Betfred, Interbet and the Paddy Power bookmaker.

Strictly Come Dancing is shown on BBC One.

The show goes out live on Saturday and Sunday nights from September through December.

The winners will walk, or cha cha cha, away with the Glitterball trophy.

As we mentioned above, online bookmakers accept many kinds of bets from overall winner, first elimination, to winning gender and many more. © 2006-2024