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Paloma's 'Apprentice' exit pulls in 7.3m

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The Apprentice Contestants 2010: Paloma Vivanco

© BBC

The Apprentice was watched by 7.3m on Wednesday evening, despite the challenge of live football on ITV1, overnight audience data has revealed.

Paloma Vivanco's tempestuous exit from the show averaged 7.3m (28.9%) for BBC One in the 9pm hour, up 1.26m week-on-week.

The programme managed to fend off live coverage of Chelsea's Champions League victory against Spartak Moscow, which pulled in 3.44m (14.4%) on ITV1 between 7.30pm and 10pm, while 253k (1.1%) watched in HD.

Earlier, The One Show grabbed 4.81m (22.2%) on BBC One from 7.30pm, before new series Wallace & Gromit's World Of Inventions debuted to 5.69m (25.7%).

Jimmy's Food Factory and Nigel Slater's Simple Suppers cooked up respective audiences of 4.41m (19.4%) and 4.38m (18.6%) on BBC One from 8pm. Later, Film 2010 With Claudia Winkleman entertained 1.34m (10.7%) from 10.45pm.

Channel 4's new series Animal House premiered to 1.16m (5%) from 8pm and 133k (0.5%) on Channel 4 +1. Grand Designs pulled in 2.59m (10.2%) in the 9pm hour and 34k (1.8%) on timeshift, before Rude Tube: Total Stunts amused 1.88m (10.2%) and 275k (2.9%) an hour later.

Over at BBC Two, Escape To The Country took 2.08m (9.5%) in the 7pm hour, before Natural World captivated 2.12m (9.2%). Horizon: Astroids - The Good, The Bad and The Ugly educated 1.49m (5.9%) in the 9pm hour.

After The Apprentice, spinoff show The Apprentice: You're Fired! pulled in 3.25m (15.8%) on BBC Two from 10pm.

Channel 5's Highland Emergency attracted 924k (4.2%) from 7.30pm. It was followed by Cowboy Builders, which brought in 1.33m (5.8%). NCIS and Law & Order: Criminal Intent then secured respective audiences of 1.28m (5.1%) and 1.28 (6.8%) from 10pm.

Overall, BBC One won primetime with 22.7% against ITV1's 15% (HD: 0.8%). BBC Two came in third with 8.8%, followed by Channel 4 with 7.2% (+1: 0.8%) and Channel 5 with 5%.

Elsewhere, the biggest multichannel audience of the night went to Peter Andre: The Next Chapter, which appealed to 789k (3.1%) on ITV2 from 9pm and 190k (1%) an hour later.

The programme was followed on ITV2 by reality show The Only Way Is Essex, which had 562k (2.7%) and 161k (1.5%) on timeshift.

BARB ratings data supplied by Attentional

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