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    Arie Luyendyk Jr.'s Ex Applied for 'The Bachelor' Before She Knew He Was the Lead

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    For his part, Luyendyk Jr. claimed that his Bachelor gig has been in the works for a while. "I was a little skeptical just because we had been in talks for a few years about doing it, so I just kind of went in with an open heart," he said on Good Morning America on September 7 after his big casting reveal.

    "We kept in touch over the last few years but this just fit perfectly," he continued. "The timing really fit. I kind of kept things under wraps because I didn't know how this would turn out. It's been such a quick turn of events."

    A post shared by Sydney Stempfley (@sydneystempfley) on

    The race car driver was the runner-up on Emily Maynard's season 8 of The Bachelorette in 2012. The 31-year-old, who is now married and expecting her third child, sent her well wishes to Luyendyk Jr. in an exclusive statement to Us: "I can't think of a better person to be the Bachelor than Arie and I've been hoping this day would come since season 8 ended! He's a gentleman through and through and all the girls on his season are lucky to have him. I'll be wishing him nothing but the best because that's absolutely what he deserves!"

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