Fighting Talk, which airs on BBC Radio 5 live, received FIVE complaints to the corporation stating that the Balding part of the programme was offensive.
The joke, from comedian Bob Mills, featured in a segment called Defend the Indefensible which presenter Colin Murray introduced the round of the game, noting “no matter what I say you have to defend the indefensible”. In this edition being, “Give me 20 minutes with her and I’m sure I could turn around Clare Balding.”
In the programme which went out live at 8.30pm on Saturday panellist Mills suggested that “there is not a woman in the world who cannot be cured”, adding, “The one thing Clare appreciates is a bit of power between her thighs.” in reference to her presenter role for horse racing events on Channel 4.
Five thousand people were at Liverpool’s Echo Arena to watch the live broadcast of Fighting Talk as part of 5 live’s Big Day Out, some comments from Mills were met with booing and groans from the audience.
In a statement, a BBC spokeswoman said: “Fighting Talk is a live programme and on this occasion we got it wrong. The Defending the Indefensible item was inappropriate.” Adding, “we would like to apologise unreservedly to anyone who was offended by the live broadcast.”
The segment has also been removed from the BBC catch-up service.