The comedian, 41, took to Twitter on Wednesday evening to announce in a tweet and accompanying video message that he has sadly had to withdraw from the ITV skating competition.
Show bosses confirmed that Rufus and his professional partner Robin Johnstone have both been axed from Dancing On Ice and will be replaced by Matt Richardson, 29, and his pro-skater partner Vicky Ogden this weekend.
Axed! Rufus Hound, 41, will play no further part in the current series of Dancing On Ice after testing positive for COVID-19 for a second time
Rufus tweeted: ‘I will no longer be participating in @DancingOnIce. COVID is – as I’m sure we’re all well aware – a b**tard and sadly the world isn’t short of those.’
In an accompanying video from the comedian, Rufus admitted his disappointment as he said: ‘Hello it’s Rufus here, I’m going to keep this as brief as possible.
‘Lord knows this is not the first of these I’ve tried to record, they all seem to take a million years.
‘So, I just really quickly want to say two things, the first is the news I won’t be participating in Dancing On Ice.
Double ditch! A spokesperson for Dancing On Ice has confirmed Rufus and his professional partner Robin Johnstone have both been axed from the skating show
In his own words: The comedian took to Twitter on Wednesday evening to announce in a video message that he has sadly had to withdraw from the ITV skating competition
‘Unfortunately having coming into contact with someone who had COVID and then isolating, it transpired that I myself had COVID. So I have dealt with that and quarantined and the like.
‘Unfortunately, the rules in Dancing On Ice are completely… very cut and dry, very strict because they need to keep everyone on the production as safe as possible.
‘So it seemed like when I was just quarantining there might be a window of opportunity for me to get back to the show… A window I now know doesn’t exist.’
Continuing on, Rufus admitted he had been excited to achieve more with Robin with the aim of making their performances ‘as crazy as possible.’
His replacement: Rufus will be replaced by Matt Richardson this weekend
He said: ‘That’s it. That’s the reason I’m not on Dancing On Ice… is the health and safety team said that’s something they can’t allow. And that sucks.
‘It sucks, because I got to spend a big chunk of the last six months with Robin Johnstone who has been a tremendous pal throughout all this, a brilliant ice dance teacher and a human sunshine.
‘I was ready for all sorts of mad ideas about things we would do, it’s one of the things that sucks… We could have dressed as battle dwarves from Dungeons and Dragons…
Disappointed: In a video accompanying his tweet, Rufus openly confessed his disappointment
‘That was going to be one of the things, or for Valentine’s Day, do an ice rave to only love will set you free.
‘We just really were setting out to make it all as crazy as possible, and now we won’t get a chance to do that. So, for the effort Robin put into trying to make it as good as possible for me, to make me as good as possible at ice dancing, sucks.
In a statement, ITV spokesperson said: ‘We can confirm that following a positive test result, Rufus Hound is unable to return to Dancing On Ice this weekend.
‘Although Rufus and his partner Robin’s time on the ice has been all too brief, they can be truly proud of their achievements. We thank them for all their hard work and commitment to the show.’
Unexpected: Continuing on, Rufus admitted he had been excited to achieve more with Robin with the aim of making their performances ‘as crazy as possible’
With the departure of Rufus and Robin, comedian Matt Richardson and his pro-skater partner Vicky Ogden will replace them on the line up from this weekend.
It’s hoped that when the full cast reunite for the series’ final, Rufus will be able to be back in the studio with everyone.
Ahead of his axe, Rufus had already missed two live shows of the competition after isolating because he came into contact with someone with covid, before testing positive with a ‘mild case’ himself.
A possible return? It’s hoped that when the full cast reunite for the series’ final, Rufus will be able to be back in the studio with everyone
The announcement of his departure from the show comes after Dancing On Ice informed all the celebrity skaters and their professional partners that if they test positive for coronavirus they will immediately be axed from the ITV show.
An insider told The Sun of the rules: ‘Any of the celebrities or their partners going down with Covid now would mean two weeks out of the competition and training. It would leave them dangerously under-trained and it’s too risky to then have them skate.’
The insider added that the producers have to take the public vote into consideration, pointing out: ‘There’s the integrity of the public vote, which is the most important thing on the show.’
New rules: The announcement of his departure comes after Dancing On Ice informed all the skaters that if they test positive for Covid-19 they will immediately be axed from the ITV show
An ITV spokeswoman has explained to MailOnline: ‘We have stringent protocols to ensure the health and safety of all our contributors and staff which are routinely monitored and updated to reflect government guidelines.’
‘Following the guidance on isolation, a positive Covid-19 diagnosis for any of our cast at this stage would mean two weeks missed and sadly an end to their time on the show. It has always been the case that no celebrity skater has missed more than one public vote.’
Rufus revealed on Twitter on Friday night that he had Covid, explaining he had isolated as soon as coming into contact, tested five days later and is at the end of having it. He said it was a ‘very mild case’.
Another early exit: Denise Van Outen was forced to pull out of the competition early due to injury
He said: ‘I’ve had Covid. Isolated when I knew I’d come into contact with it, tested five days later, am coming to the end of having had it, luckily v mild case.’
Earlier in the week, it was reported that bosses were ‘refusing to axe Hound’ after historic tweets by the star using racist and homophobic slurs resurfaced and he was told he ‘won’t be kicked off the show’.
The news that Rufus’ Dancing On Ice journey had come to an abrupt end comes after Denise Van Outen was forced to pull out of the competition early due to injury.
Reality star Billie Shepherd was also allowed to miss last weekend’s show after the death of her grandmother.
Week out: Reality star Billie Shepherd was also allowed to miss last weekend’s show after the death of her grandmother