The Chase's Jenny Ryan was secretly working away from the cameras before becoming a Chaser

THE Chase star Jenny 'The Vixen' Ryan is best known for outsmarting contestants on the ITV show with her quick wit and extensive knowledge.

But before shooting to fame, Jenny, 40, had a crucial job on the popular game show before becoming a Chaser.

"When I first started I had a test run, a bit of a screen test in the studio with Brad hosting," she told Lorraine Kelly.

"Just as a chemistry kind of test really. And I had my hair in this big ponytail.

"The producers had been trying to work out what my nickname should be, and they wanted something animal-y because I like a lot of animal print.

"And they suggested 'The Cougar', and I said, 'no, because I'm too young to be a cougar'."


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Jenny revealed that Bradley Walsh gave her the nickname The Vixen, who said, "vixens are notoriously clever and cunning".

Jenny is no stranger when it comes to making appearances on quiz shows, having also worked on The Weakest Link and Fifteen to One.

The redhead from Bolton also starred in University Challenge in a bid to help the University of Leeds reach the semi-finals in 2003.

Her big break, however, came in 2009, after being approached to write questions for the pilot episode of The Chase.

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She didn’t join the show until 2015, when she made her debut appearance on September 2 – and it was all thanks to fellow chaser Anne Hegerty, who recommended producers to hire her to be on the show.

Jenny is better known as The Vixen, which is in reference to her red hair and the former ponytail she sported.

Others have also referred to as The Bolton Brainiac, given that she has proven to contestants that she’s not easy to beat.

In 2019, it was announced that Jenny was set to star on the 14th series of Celebrity Masterchef.

And later that year, it was revealed that she was taking part in the The X Factor: Celebrity.

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