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Ritchie joins Nova for brekkie

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Kate Ritchie re-joins Nova

November 16, 2007 - 10:51AM

Daily Telegraph

Home and Away star Kate Ritchie will be joining Merrick and Rosso on the Nova breakfast show next year.

The Gold Logie winner had a taste of radio last year when she joined Akmal Saleh on the Nova drive show for a few months in place of actor Matthew Newton.

At the time, it appeared Ritchie was exploring career opportunities for life after Home and Away.

It came as no surprise when a few months later she announced she was leaving the Channel Seven show after playing Sally Fletcher for 20 years. She films her last scenes in mid-December.

Nova executives will be hoping Ritchie's high profile will give the Merrick and Rosso breakfast show the added boost needed to challenge 2Day's Kyle and Jackie O for top spot in the FM breakfast market.


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Ritchie finds radio tough

November 17th

SHE played good girl Sally Fletcher on TV for 20 years, but radio recruit Kate Ritchie has told Confidential she plans to play up this summer as "homework" for her new role on The Merrick and Rosso Show.

The 29-year-old will join the naughty boys of radio from January but admits she'll have to "spice up" her social life if she's to have fodder ready to share on air.

"For 20 years I've told someone else's story and been given a script every day," the retiring Home and Away star said.

"What I found the hardest at first (on radio) is in some ways exposing yourself a little bit and telling your own story."

Ritchie said her work experience on The Akmal Show in January had proved the perfect test for her and her family, who were "exposed" along with the TV star.

"My mother was forever sending me text messages saying 'I can't believe you're saying that about our family on the radio'," she laughed.

"But Rosso (Tim Ross) has told me to go home, enjoy Christmas with my family, because it could be my last."

As for skater boyfriend Corbin Harris, who she began dating nine months ago, "he'll have to be on his best behaviour", Ritchie says, or else end up the butt of her brekky show jokes.

The Gold Logie winner will make her dramatic exit from the Channel 7 soap next Friday, pleased with the way she's been written out of the show.

"I am actually happy with it, it's very fitting," she said, coyly.

While not revealing whether Sally lives or dies, she won't rule out reappearing on the program in the future.

"Even if you die on a show like Home and Away it doesn't mean you can't come back," she laughed.

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  • 4 months later...

Merrick and Rosso's RTA warning

The Daily Telegraph

April 13, 2008

BREAKFAST show buffoons Merrick Watts and Tim Ross have been warned by police and the Roads and Traffic Authority for giving prizes to motorists who deliberately disrupt peak-hour traffic by running out of fuel.

The Nova team brought radio competitions to a new low last week by offering a year's worth of fuel to listeners who ran out of petrol on Sydney's busy roads.

The winners were a Mona Vale couple, identified only as Katie and Daniel, who created havoc on the Sydney Harbour Bridge when their car ground to a halt in one of the eight lanes at 7am on Tuesday.

RTA emergency crews, including a tow truck, had to be dispatched to remove the vehicle safely.

Another driver, who ran out of fuel in the Lane Cove Tunnel on Tuesday evening in response to the competition, also had to be towed and was given a night's accommodation for two in a city hotel by Nova.

The stunt by the struggling FM comedians, who have recently been joined by former soap star Kate Ritchie, was inspired by model Lara Bingle's recent mishap in running out of fuel by mistake.

"Run out of fuel and you could win a year's worth of fuel for free,'' Merrick gleefully told his audience.

But it backfired badly, because many of their listeners were affected by the traffic chaos as they tried to drive to work.

The RTA and police were inundated with complaints from irate drivers claiming the stunt was dangerous and irresponsible.

"We've raised our concerns privately but firmly,'' a spokesman for the RTA said.

Chief Superintendent John Hartley warned the station it could face charges if it tried the stunt again.

Nova general manager Mandi Wicks later offered an apology for the competition.

"We genuinely didn't believe anyone would willingly run out of fuel during peak hour in Sydney, let alone on the Harbour Bridge, and we apologise for any inconvenience caused to drivers,'' she said.

Nova's breakfast show has lost listeners recently, surveys show.

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