One rose up, dozens more to go. It was only minutes later Zach ShallcrossHe was named the newest Bachelor and one of his contestants received a First Impression Rose.
“I was telling you there were women from all over America who were coming to see you. In fact, some of those women have flown here and they’re going to meet you here tonight on this stage,” host Jesse Palmer told season 27’s leading man during the Bachelorette after the Final RoséSeptember 20 is special. “One of these women will be receiving a First Impression Rose. … For the first time in the history of this show, we’re going to be awarding America’s First Impression Rose.”
Zach then met five women who will be competing to win his heart in the upcoming season. The BachelorIncluding New Jersey resident BriannaHe took a selfie in front the Bachelor Mansion backdrop with Alicia. “I wanted to do something special for us so we would always remember this,” she told Zach, before they snapped the sweet photo. “It’s a little something for you to remember me by, and I’ll see you at the mansion soon.”
Her touching move won over the tech executive — who kept the photo in his suit pocket — and the rest of America, earning Brianna the very first rose of the season. She and the other women will be safe from elimination on the first night at the Bachelor Mansion.
Zach revealed that he was excited about meeting more women after the introductions. “Everyone impressed me. That was incredible,” he said. “Everyone [is] obviously beautiful, but everyone had their own way to make an impression.”
One week before the ATFR special, Us WeeklyReports indicated that Zach was the frontrunner to be the next Bachelor. He competed for Rachel Recchia‘s affections on Season 19 of The BacheloretteHe reached the Final 2 before he was forced to leave the show.
“It was just her and I talking, and it felt like she was just, like, not showing her true self. It was very inauthentic sometimes,” he told Palmer at the time. Zach added that he felt “blindsided” by Rachel’s actions, which included her focus on their six-month age difference and not believing that he was ready to propose. “One of the things I fell in love with was she made me feel, like, special. And I cared for her, and I question if any of that was real or if that was just an act,” he said during his emotional exit.
Once the pair reunited during the live finale, Zach apologized for questioning the pilot’s authenticity during their breakup. “I just want to say that I do apologize for ever making you feel like I called you out for your character,” he said. “That’s the last thing I wanted. I was in shock and disbelief at what was happening between us. I am so sorry.”
One week later, Zach told Palmer that his split from Rachel “didn’t change how ready I was” to find The One. “[I want to] find my best friend, fall in love with my best friend, and really walk away with someone for the rest of my life,” he added.
Continue reading to learn more about The Bachelor’s next season.