Apprentice hopeful Sanjay Sood-Smith has left Leeds for London after being given his marching orders by Lord Sugar in tonight’s episode of the hit BBC show.
The 27-year-old - who has been working as assistant manager at the city’s Meat Liquor restaurant since August - found himself back in the boardroom with Team Tenacity after losing a task to create a range of premium puddings.
Project manager Katie Bulmer-Cooke was first for the chop before Lord Sugar also admitted he had “no confidence” in Sanjay’s business plan - a social media site for gym fans - and sent him packing.
Eagle-eyed Apprentice fans may have spotted Sanjay in Leeds over the past three-and-a-half months while he helped a friend set up the trendy Meat Liquor restaurant in the city.
Now back in London where he plans to set up an eatery - bolstered by his experience in Leeds - he spoke to the YEP about his hopes to return to the city.
He said: “I love Leeds, it’s a fantastic city. We were living in Armley which is good fun. Meat Liquor’s right in the centre, at Trinity Leeds and it was great going around talking to people in the different bars around there. Everyone is so friendly. It has that really Yorkshire, northern vibe. It’s fantastic.”
He added: “I did get recognised at the restaurant a few times and I had a couple of nights out in Manchester where I got mobbed.”
Sanjay said he had no regrets entering the BBC show, despite having a couple of “shaky weeks” before last night’s departure. “I’m delighted I took part. I had such a great time - I’ve done so many things and met some really inspirational, lovely people.”
He said with hindsight, he felt he hadn’t chosen the right tasks to volunteer project manager (PM) for.
In week five, the former banker put himself forward as PM for the coach tours task because he felt it was his turn, but told the YEP: “It wasn’t the best for my skills. And then in week nine (discount buying task) I put myself forward because I had had a bit of a hammering in the boardroom.”
He said: “If I could do it again I would have chosen the tasks I was PM for differently. I think I would have been more selective. I really fancied being PM for the soft drinks task.”
Sanjay now hopes to see a Solomon Akhtar and Roisin Hogan final and admitted his least favourite contestant is Daniel Lassman: “I’m not a big fan. I think there are nicer individuals around than him.”
Sanjay said favourite moments were the candle-making and board game tasks but a highlight was designing a billboard for New York’s Times Square. “That was the biggest thing and the most exciting,” he said.