Meet the stunning British bobsleigher who's going to be Gladiators' Ice queen
She has represented Great Britain in European competitions in two different disciplines, but now Caroline Pearce is about to achieve real fame - by appearing on the all-new TV version of Gladiators.
The gorgeous blonde first competed for her country as a heptathlete in the 2004 European Cup. A year later she represented Great Britain in the Bobsleigh at the World Championships.
Now the fitness fanatic has been picked from more than 20,000 applicants to be one of the 12 gladiators who will face off against members of the public.
Contender, ready! British bobsleigher Caroline Pearce is among the new list of Gladiators
Muscle: Caroline competed against more than 20,000 applicants for the spot
Caroline, who will be known as Ice, joins a man with a neck as thick as a tree trunk who mutters as he bangs his fists.
Another stares menacingly at the crowd, seemingly daring them to challenge him to a fight.
While a third is silently being rather ill in the corner.
It is only when a familiar voice is heard over the tannoy that the air of menace dissipates - there are even a few excited smiles.
"Contenders READY!" shouts John Anderson in his famous Scottish burr. "Gladiators READY!"
In the hit 1990s TV show, a pair of superfit male and a pair of superfit female members of the public took on the might of the gladiators in a series of combative events.
The contender who earned the most points from each pair gained a head start for the final Eliminator - a fearsome assault course which would decide who was the champion.
Revival: Kirsty Gallacher, John Anderson and Ian Wright
At its peak, Gladiators attracted 14 million viewers and made stars out of the likes of Jet, Saracen and Wolf.
Now, it has been repackaged and updated for 2008, but there are some key features that will remain the same - including Gladiators trainer and referee Anderson.
"It is going to be even better this time around," says Anderson, in between rehearsals for the latest show.
"Overall the fitness and ability is much higher than it was."
Gladiators originated in America in 1989 with its elite team of superhero characters pitted against members of the public for a range of physically challenging activities.
It came to Britain in 1992, with Ulrika Jonsson and John Fashanu as hosts, and was an instant Saturday night hit for ITV.
"Unlike the 'family viewing' of today, this really was one for the entire family," says original Gladiator Nikki Diamond, a.k.a. Scorpio.
It was unusual British fare; pumped-up beefcake in Lycra, bashing up wannabe beefcake picked from gruelling public rounds.
Blonde ambition: Caroline is said to have bleached her hair to match her Gladiator moniker Ice
Model material: the 27-year-old has appeared in campaigns for Nike, Reebok and adidas
Favourite competitions included the Atlasphere, where the rivals would do battle in metal spheres; Duel, where they'd hit each other with "pugil sticks" that looked like giant cottonbuds; and the Eliminator.
The show was a Saturday night staple for eight years until finally ratings began to wane.
However, Gladiators never totally disappeared. It is shown on satellite channel Challenge TV, with students who were children the first time around, giving it cult status.
Some of the ex-Gladiators, including Scorpio, Rhino, Hunter and Saracen, host Gladiator nights at universities, where students are encouraged to go up against them.
Little wonder then, after the success of other re-invented 1990s hits such as Take That and the Spice Girls, Sky One decided the time was right to bring back the show.
Richard Woolfe, Sky One's director of programming, says: "I realised the importance of Gladiators when one day I found my five-year-old daughter with a broom stick with cushions tied on the end about to bash her little brother, shouting: 'Contenders, ready! Gladiators, ready!'"
Then he noted the success this year of the American Gladiators' revival. "It's a real David vs Goliath event. It was a show ripe for reinvention," he says.
The British show which starts in May will be followed by airings of the American edition.
Predator: former Olympic champion Du'aine Ladejo has also signed on
More than 20,000 people applied to be on the British version, with 1,500 of them being shortlisted to attend the trials.
The new gladiators themselves include a host of top athletes. One of the biggest names is sprinter Du'aine Ladejo who won a silver at the 1996 Atlanta Olympics.
The 37-year-old, who also starred in 2005's Celebrity Love Island, will be known as Predator.
Other heptathletes include Jenny Pacey, 24, who used to host Sky One's Mission Implausible and will be known as Enigma, and Lucy Boggis, 19, who is tipped to be a star at the 2012 Olympics, will be Tempest.
Those who tried out and failed include Paul Sampson, the former rugby-playing boyfriend of new Gladiators presenter Kirsty Gallacher.
Kirsty, who is a keen athlete and the daughter of former Ryder Cup captain Bernard Gallacher, will host the show with former footballer Ian Wright.
Predator: Former Olympic champion Du'aine Ladejo is ready to go
"It was a great, glitzy Saturday night show. We have to bring that exciting atmosphere back," says Kirsty, 33.
Nobody really knew what to expect when the British show aired in 1992. Nikki Diamond, now 42, a former model who did weight-training, was the first gladiator to be signed up by producer Nigel Lythgoe - who went on to find fame as Nasty Nigel on Popstars.
She recalls: "When we did our first show the auditorium was half empty.
Nigel said to us: "I don't know how successful this show is going to be, but I can guarantee you are all about to become household names."
And how right he was. The show was an instant hit, with the 12 gladiators becoming huge stars.
But Diane Youdale, 38, better known as Jet, admits she struggled to deal with all the attention. "People project a personality onto you and I found it uncomfortable. I wouldn't want it again for any money."
Giving the gladiators a run for their money in the publicity stakes was, of course, Ulrika Jonsson who managed to have two affairs - despite being married - while she was on the show.
The TV presenter recalled in her autobiography how, even though she was dating gladiator Hunter, she found it hard to understand their dedication to their bodies.
"They sun-bedded with disturbing regularity and applied the foulest fake tan. The hotel had to start charging them for the sheets, which became soiled from the lotions," she wrote.
Ulrika was not the only one to have an affair on the show. Many gladiators conducted discreet affairs, as they had partners outside of the show, but Zodiac and Trojan - Kate Staples and Mark Griffin - had a baby girl.
Of the other former Gladiators, Blaze (Eunice Huthart) is now a stunt woman doubling for actresses Angelina Jolie and Uma Thurman.
James Crossley (Hunter) has his own fitness show on ITV2, Darren Crawford (Diesel) appeared in the James Bond film The World Is Not Enough, while, bizarrely, menacing Wolf (Michael Van Wijk) runs a children's nursery in New Zealand.
There were 34 gladiators during the show's eight-year run, but only four lasted till the end - Lightning, Cobra, Saracen and Wolf - as the violent games forced several, including Nikki and Diane, to quit because of injuries.
Olympic swimmer Sharron Davies, 45, who was Amazon on the series in 1994, injured her knee during the show and says the games were hazardous.
Anderson admits that while all of the contestants have had plenty of health and safety talks, the dangers remain as inherent as ever.
"Outside of something like the Olympics this is the toughest thing you can do. The people who have got through are as tough as nails. They are determined to be the best and Britain should be proud of them."