Gareth Gates has successfully completed the Celebrity SAS: Who Dares Wins training course.
On Sunday, Channel 4 viewers finally discovered which of the sixteen celebrity recruits, who joined the course seven weeks ago, got through to the final.
Chief Instructor, Billy Billingham MBE QCB and his team of Directing Staff (DS), Foxy (Jason Fox), Rudy Reyes and Chris Oliver decided that Gareth was the only celebrity who had the mental and physical strength and resilience to pass the course.
As the episode concluded, only three celebrity recruits remained – Matt Hancock (1), Gareth Gates (7) and Danielle Lloyd (11).
Foxy said: ‘Selection is the hardest thing these celebrities could choose to do in their lives. It’s all about trust. I look at the people that are stood in front of us, and I ask myself, in the darkest of dark places, would I have that person stood next to me?’
Congratulations: Gareth Gates has successfully completed the Celebrity SAS: Who Dares Wins training course
Triumphant: On Sunday, Channel 4 viewers finally discovered which of the sixteen celebrity recruits, who joined the course seven weeks ago, got through to the final
At the end of the course, the DS line the final three recruits up and Billy tells them: ‘F**king good effort. All of you. Now you chose to come on what is, without a shadow of a doubt, the most brutal course in the world. So stand proud.’
He then announces: ‘Congratulations, Number 7 (Gareth). You passed… this course.’
Gareth is shocked and responds: ‘Thank you, staff. Wow. Thank you.’
His fellow final recruit Matt and Danielle give him a hug and congratulation him on the win.
Gareth has now talked about what it means to pass this very special, condensed version of SAS selection: ‘It was a really crazy experience.
‘I think winning, or, passing was amazing but being the only one really meant a lot to me. Realising that this is real for these DS, was really eye opening.
‘We’re just here creating a TV show but this is what they’ve had to do for real. I just had huge respect for them, that they have to go through this for real whilst protecting our country.’
When asked what made him stronger than all the others, he responded: ‘In the end, I think I was just mentally strong as well. You can train as hard as you can for the physical element of it. But I think it’s the mental resilience really gets people through to the end.
The end: As the episode concluded, only three celebrity recruits remained – Matt Hancock (1), Gareth Gates (7) and Danielle Lloyd (11)
Speaking on where the mental resilience came from, he said: ‘I think I have become mentally strong, and able to cope with being stretched mentally, the difficulties I went through as a child and with my speech.’
On what surprised him about the series, he said: ‘It shocked me how fully immersive it is. I was expecting them to yell ‘cut’, and I thought there would be some downtime, a little bit of time to get my breath back up.
‘But from the moment you arrive, to the moment you leave, the DS treat you like it’s an actual selection process. And it’s tough, they stretch you in every way. Physically, mentally, emotionally, and they really push you to your limits.
‘I think that’s what they were after – those who made it to the end, proved that as people, they are tougher on the inside than they are on the outside.
Speaking on where the mental resilience came from, he said: ‘I think I have become mentally strong, and able to cope with being stretched mentally, the difficulties I went through as a child and with my speech.
‘Being at school was tough. I was badly bullied. And I think that helped me handle the difficult circumstances I was put in on the course. It was tough and my speech was at its worst there. I’m not great at confrontation or being put on the spot but I just had to somehow dig deep and I managed to tap into that. And I think that’s what got me through it.
‘I’m also very, very competitive, but mostly competitive against myself. I’m always trying to become better and stronger. I train hard in the gym, but I’m also very driven in life. I think all that comes from having had that drive to get myself out of the traumatic situations I faced with bullies when I was a kid.’
When asked if this experience has changed him, Gareth said: ‘Yes, hugely. It’s definitely made me a much stronger person.
‘And that fact that I passed, so effectively won the whole thing, proved to myself that I am strong and that I’m not that same, cowering young boy who used to hide in the corner. I have actually grown into a man now and I can handle anything.’
Gareth and 15 other celebrities faced one of the toughest experiences of their lives as they travelled to Thung Ui, north Vietnam, to be put through the most gruelling stages of SAS selection
Gareth and 15 other celebrities faced one of the toughest experiences of their lives as they travelled to Thung Ui, north Vietnam, to be put through the most gruelling stages of SAS selection.
Across seven one-hour episodes, famous faces including Matt, Michelle Heaton, Danielle Lloyd and Matt Hancock will attempt to survive in the unforgiving jungle.
Also joining them on the show, set to return to screens on September 26, will be The Wanted’s Siva Kaneswaran, Melinda Messenger, footballer Jermaine Pennant, Gareth Thomas and reality stars James ‘Arg’ Argent, Amber Turner and Montana Brown.
Other stars making up the group include Love Island’s Teddy Soares, Amber Turner, comedian Zoe Lyons, Kirsty-Leigh Porter, Olympian Perri Shakes-Drayton and Paralympian Jon-Allan Butterworth.
Danielle said of her time on the show: ‘This experience was just life changing. It’s made me positive and ready to take on the world.’
While TOWIE’s Amber said: ‘Celebrity SAS: Who Dares Wins It was the Hardest thing I’ve ever done in my life, the most physically and emotionally demanding experience I’ve ever but the best experience all in one.
‘I loved every moment of it (except having that bag over my head) and wouldn’t think twice about doing it again!’
And Teddy added: ‘The whole experience was overwhelming, but for me, it was one of the experiences that I will never, ever be able to live down.’
Taking about the celebrity recruits, chief instructor Billy said there were no special treatment or allowances for the stars as they were pushed ‘beyond anything they have ever experienced’.
‘The standards will never drop but most of the recruits will!!! No concessions, No excuses !! Only results,’ he added.
The demanding reality show will return to screens on September 26 and it remains to be seen which celebrities will make it to the end of the gruelling training course.