Apprentice candidate Scott Saunders had what last year’s champion Mark Wright calls a “howler” on the second episode of The Apprentice after freezing up during their Western shampoo pitch… something Mark himself knows a lot about.
Oh yes, it’s time to dig out that terrified video again, which sees Mark struggling to get his words out while selling premium puds to Tesco last year.
It’s Mark’s favourite video, obviously. He loves that everyone remembers this moment.
In fact, he probably couldn’t care less. He won. He’s got Lord Sugar’s investment and he’s off and running with his business. Tesco, shmesco.
But Wright at least knows exactly how Scott felt last night, when the pressure of leading the pitch took over.
“The poor guy froze up, no one knows that feeling better than me,” Wright laughed to RadioTimes.com.
It didn’t help that Scott had preceded the pitch by saying he was “really confident” and liked to be “free” with his speeches, forgoing prompt cards for a more ‘natural’ delivery.
But Mark says don’t knock it until you’ve tried it.
“No one knows how hard that is. Not only are you pitching to the customer, you’ve got the camera crew and production there, so you’re pitching to probably fifty people. The show’s going out to millions of people. You know all of these things. You don’t really know the product you’re talking about. You only know what you can learn in a day and you’re selling it to experts. I felt for him.”
“It is exceptional pressure,” Mark continued. “Everyone struggles a bit. It’s all good to pass judgement, but not many people put their hand up to do the talk. The rest of the team sit down and watch on the TV and say ‘Oh it’s a very boring pitch, oh they’re struggling…’. Unless you put yourself forward to go and stand there to talk in front of experts about this product, you can’t judge.”
Luckily, the boys’ product was good – not bad or ugly – and Lord Sugar crowned them champs.
The Apprentice continues Wednesday at 9:00pm on BBC1