Simon Cowell arrived late to the US 'x factor' auditions in Dallas, Texas, today (22.06.11).

The music mogul - who appears on the judging panel of the show alongside Paula Abdul, L.A. Reid and Nicole Scherzinger - blamed a helicopter falling on his car for his tardiness, and L.A. revealed the British star is often late.

He told the crowd: "We are going to star without him. We don't want you to have to wait and he's always late. This time we're going to get rolling, Simon or no Simon."

Discussing his plight with the crowd, Simon joked he had a busy morning.

He said: "I had quite a hectic day. I'm very sorry."

The 51-year-old star arrived during the middle of an audition, and when the participant turned out to be good, he took the credit.

An audience member told Digital Spy: "Simon was clearly delighted to arrive in the middle of a fantastic audition too - and naturally took full credit for it being so great. There were no complaints from him when the audience went even more crazy to see him."

The US 'X Factor' has been beset with issues since it began in May - original judge Cheryl Cole was replaced by Nicola when she reportedly failed to gel with Paula, who worked with Simon on 'American Idol'.