SAS: Who Dares Win’s new hardman Rudy Reyes is being abused by Ant Middleton’s fans — but says it’s nothing compared to the death threats he received when fighting the Taliban.
The former US marine is the new chief instructor on the Channel 4 adventure show, which was the role Ant held until March 2021 when he was fired for his “personal conduct”.
But despite Rudy’s impressive resume, some viewers aren’t convinced he can fill Middleton’s boots.
In an exclusive chat, Rudy told the Sun: “I’ve heard the negative opinions already. And you know what, I think there’s a lot of negative opinions.
“But I am very curious to hear what people say once they watch the programme.
“I guess Ant has a big following and you know, if he did his work, and earned that reputation then good on him.
“A matter of fact, I didn’t learn what happened with Ant until after they asked me to be chief instructor. And I said why? And then they said they sent me to the stories.”
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While he is relatively unknown in the UK, Rudy has appeared on telly before in Generation Kill – where he played himself – and James Blumenthal’s Once Upon a Time in Iraq.
He’ll now appear on Channel 4 alongside SAS: Who Dares Wins originals ex-SAS Mark ‘Billy’ Billingham, Jason ‘Foxy’ Fox plus another new American recruit; former Navy Seal Remi Adeleke.
Rudy said: “I didn’t have an agent or manager or anything like that but there’s only one Rudy Reyes so they can just get a hold of me right. So SAS: Who Dares Wins got a hold of me. And it was off of the strength of Once Upon a Time in Iraq.”
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“In that I was just doing my duty to express my experiences honestly, about this very powerful time in history. I had no idea that it would be received so well, and I would make an impact.
“But the negative part is that I had death threats also from Muslim extremists.
“I mean, you know, I stand behind my life.”
The challenge show returns with its toughest training course yet, against the backdrop of the Jordanian desert.
The initial 21 recruits are sent on an intense journey to their base through searing heat in the first episode.
Once they have made it back to safety, their ability to work as a team is tested when they cross a ravine by balancing on a rope suspended 165 feet above the ground.
Then they will have to keep their head while being gassed in a chamber.
Watch SAS: Who Dares Wins on Sunday at 9pm on Channel 4.
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