The series comes to a close this evening on Channel 4.
The final episode of the current series of SAS: Who Dares Wins airs tonight at 9pm on Channel 4. This episode will reveal who has got what it takes to pass this condensed version of SAS selection. Over 48 hours, the remaining seven recruits – Myles, Elouise, Nicola, Carla, Kim, James and Chris – continue the interrogation phase which takes a sinister turn when interrogators discover revealing paperwork on one of the recruits, blowing the cover story for the entire team.
The punishing conditions and continued mental pressure proves too much for some recruits. Not all will make it through to the final phase. Those who do survive discover that their plight is far from over and a day of brutal sickeners awaits them, aimed at pushing the recruits to breaking point and forcing them to quit.
The ones who make it to the final stage face one of the most dangerous underwater tasks ever featured in the series – ‘drownproofing’ – a technique used in Navy Seals Special Forces training. In the freezing Scottish waters, the drownproofing will test recruits’ mental resolve by simulating drowning and assessing their ability to follow instruction. Only the physically and mentally elite will make it to the end.
As the series nears the end, Chief Instructor, Ant Middleton looks back at the series and the show finale.
We’re at the end of the series. What does the remaining episode have in store?
Lots of pain and suffering. However, this is where we as DS can really invest our time and experience into them.
How did you find this new location like and how does it compare to previous locations?
It’s in our backyard so it was like a homecoming. We know the terrain well so we could fully use it to our advantage. Water-borne exercises played a big part in this series making it different to others.
Did you ever serve in a similar location?
I did my escape and evasion in Scotland and multiple mountain training packages… Brutal!
We’ve brought the series home to Scotland, to the birthplace of David Stirling – the founder of the SAS. Was there something special about filming the series back home in Scotland?
It was great to be on home turf. We know the place like the back of our hand and it was really special to have the authenticity.
Recruits may have expected an easier course being on home territory in the UK. Were they shocked by the harsh Scottish weather conditions? Did it make it a tougher course?
It doesn’t matter where it is… we will break the recruits and if we don’t I guarantee it will be the hardest 11 days of their life.
How did having tasks on the water change the training? Did it make it harder?
Add water to any task and it will amplify it tenfold! Scotland is full of the stuff so for those who don’t like being cold and wet… they were screwed.
Also you added some weapons training to selection this year – how did that go? Were you surprised how the recruits did there?
The recruits were useless with the weapons, exactly how you would expect someone to be if they are handling a weapon for the first time.
How do you think the recruits fared this series? Were they a good bunch and did they really embrace the challenge?
I take my hat off to anyone who comes on the course.
Were you surprised by who lasted the distance and who didn’t?
I’ve seen all sorts of shapes, sizes and characters pass selection so I never judge someone on their appearance. It’s all in the head.
Are you as tough in real life as you are on the programme?
When it comes to work, I have very high standards and like things to be done without distractions! I never mix business with pleasure – it’s a recipe for disaster! I’m a relaxed, easy going father and husband, the polar opposite to my work-life persona.
SAS: Who Dares Wins, Sunday 9th February, 9pm on Channel 4