Libby is a star on ITV’s The Chase

The Asburn Hotel owner Paul McConaghy, Chef Micky McLaughlin with star of ITV's The Chase Libby Magill and Susan Harbinson, head of human resources
The Asburn Hotel owner Paul McConaghy, Chef Micky McLaughlin with star of ITV's The Chase Libby Magill and Susan Harbinson, head of human resources

Normally Libby Magill is hard at work in The Asburn Hotel’s kitchen washing dishes but last Friday she was the star on ITV quiz show The Chase.

The 52-year-old catering assistant, though clearly nervous, out-shone her three fellow contestants and scooped £7k for the team.

Single-mum Libby appeared on the popular show last Friday - a secret she had kept from her colleagues at The Asburn Hotel.

“I was shaking like a leaf on the show,” she said.

But Libby held her own against The Chaser - Jenny ‘The Vixen’ Ryan - even though the contestant who went before her was ousted. And she scooped a fantastic £7,000 for the pot.

Libby, who has had her eye on taking part in The Chase for many years, described the show’s host, comedian Bradley Walsh as ‘so charming and funny’.

Even though he nearly got her into hot water with The Ashburn’s chef Micky McLaughlin.

Laughing she said Bradley had asked her on the show if Micky was like Gordon Ramsay.

“There was a lot said about Micky on the show but some of it was cut out,” she revealed.

The show was filmed last October and Libby said it was hard to keep it from her workmates.

Her daughter Chloe, who works part time as floor staff in the restaurant, knew about it but was sworn to secrecy.

“I thought I had to pre-warn chef Micky as he was mentioned on the show but didn’t tell him how I got on,” said the Kilwilkie woman.

A former pupil at Tannaghmore PS and St Mary’s Junior High School, Libby puts down her ability for quizzes to her avid book reading.

She watches quiz shows regularly and takes part in a lot of radio quizzes.

She told Bradley Walsh that if she won the money she would renovate a spare room into a library for all her books and as a craft room for her crochet hobby.

Asked why she had applied for the show, she said: “It was on my bucket list. I always wanted to go on a quiz show. Then I hit 40 and hadn’t done it and then I did 50 and I was determined to do it.

“I applied and went for an audition in Belfast and got on the show,” she said.

And she isn’t stopping there with plans afoot to hopefully take part in The Tipping Point.

She has plenty more things on her bucket list to achieve including a bungee jump and sky diving, plus a trip to Australia to see her three nieces.

Though he didn’t appear on The Chase, Lurgan chef Micky McLaughlin is now known by the millions who watch the show.

The 41-year-old chef said: “We are all very proud of her. The rest of the team did nothing. She was the one who got the £7,000 cashbuilder.”

Paul McConaghy, owner of The Ashburn Hotel, said everyone was ‘very proud of her’.

“She was unreal. What she did for the cash builder was fantastic,” he said.