Miss Teen contestant explains meltdown

Last updated 00:00 28/08/2007
ONLINE HIT: Miss South Carolina Teen USA Lauren Caitlin Upton, left, has become a YouTube sensation - for all the wrong reasons.

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A Miss Teen USA contestant has appeared on The Today Show to explain her bumbling answer during a live question-and-answer session at the beauty pageant.
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During last week's pageant, Miss Teen South Carolina Lauren Caitlin Upton was asked why one-fifth of Americans couldn't find USA on a map.

"I personally believe that US Americans are unable to do so because some people out there in our nation don't have maps," she said tentatively.

She also made random references to South Africa, "Asian countries" and "the Iraq", and said they needed support from the American educational system.

A video of the incident has become a YouTube hit, with almost three million hits since last week's pageant.

Despite the fumble, Upton placed third runner-up in the Miss Teen USA competition.

Upton had a second chance to answer the question when she appeared on The Today Show.

She said she "went into complete shock" when she was asked the question.

"Everything came at me at once. I was overwhelmed and I made a mistake."

"I am sitting here laughing at myself because I feel like 'is that really me standing up there answering that question?'

"It's like I'm not in my actual body."

  • You can watch Upton's performance below:

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