I failed SAS (R) selection

King Duck

Swinger
Id be keen to hear from anyone with any gen or info on the current SOPTAC. id just like to reiterate what others have stated, fantastic refreshing post, very interesting and super informative and honest. bravo OP
Obviously off limits to discuss content. Best way to articulate the course is that it is progressive but intense. Nonetheless, it’s a really high quality approach to instruction and like I said up thread the DS are not stone faced robots. No one sets you up to fail and they will put an awful lot of effort in to getting the best out of you. A lot of the training is bespoke to role but a good grounding in infantry skills makes the world of difference.
 

King Duck

Swinger
Absolutely. A number of the candidates that came to us to complete phase 1/2, had clearly read too many books. They thought it was all leaping through windows in black kit.
That should be minimised. As part of the initial expression of interest a potential candidate will be booked in for a call with a recruiter from their local Sqn. I also had the benefit of attending an open night which helped align expectations with reality. I found the entire loading process is very well structured and understood what was required.

Also, I am conscious with this thread rolling on that some may miss the original post and also my follow up at post 17. I just wanted to reiterate that the overarching advice for anyone thinking about going for it is to email the SFTC inbox that’s on the Army recruiting website. You’ll also note on the official website that the phone numbers that are so often posted on here are no longer in use. You’ll see on the official recruiting site only email addresses are available. So your initial enquiry needs to come in via that inbox.
Trust me they get plenty of EOIs and won’t blink an eye at someone genuine wanting some questions answered. Do not be intimidated to reach out. It is about an exchange of information and the more you know and understand prior to submitting your application the better for everyone. Seeking advice and information from their recruiting staff is always going to be that golden currency.
I also want to reaffirm the intention of the thread. It was just to offer some insight through a more recent lens. I attempted two times. One in 2018 and the second was just post COVID in late 2021. I’m not for one moment suggesting I am an oracle and have been intentionally careful not to offer advice on training & preparation. Ultimately I failed, twice. But I thought it useful to offer some recent insight and maybe dispel a few myths. Remember that detailed selection pathway, training, preparation and conditioning advice will be given by unit staff once you are inside the process.
Whilst I don’t mind answering general questions about my recent experience I have to drive home that my most current experience relates to a start line in the tail end 2021. As pointed out the process is still undergoing change so my posts are always caveated with my latest experience is the guts of a year ago. If you get loaded onto the selection induction weekend (SIW) you will receive your J1 and will receive all of the UKSF(R) Selection briefs. Cheers all!
 
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King Duck

Swinger
Give 21/23 a ring and see what they say.
Note the public phone numbers are no longer in use mate. Expressions of interest must come in via the central SFTC email that is listed below.

 
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I dip my hat to you for having a go at selection twice and for writing an extremely good break down.

I went for regular selection but unfortunately trashed my knee on a sodding great hill/mountain in rainy Wales. Two years latter I tried again and to my surprise got through Wales by the skin of my teeth. But unfortunately picked up a stupid injury that should not have happened. I had some amazing DS who said give it another go you are doing well which surprised me.

So back again I went Hills /Mountains pretending to be Hills was sorted thank god. How ever as I moved through the selection process I realised that my skills were up to the task but were not stela and would and that I would bring no benefit to the Regiment and the wider Army. So I withdrew myself. Do I regret pulling out most defiantly and will always do so. I tried and I failed which is a shame but there was no way in gods earth I was going to risk someone’s life on my skill set. Also the body was saying enough you will kill your self.


When I got back to my unit my CO started to call my Mr also ran which I suppose was true but deep down it really hurt.
I have kept in contact with some of the lads they were on selection with me and they are has happy can be.
 

Glad_its_all_over

ADC
Book Reviewer
I'm amazed - and admiring - that folk have the dedication and the flexibility in what is, after all, the main part of their lives - work, family, that kind of thing - to devote so much time and energy into UKSF(R).`

That level of motivation and aspiration is admirable. I just hope, for their sakes, that the reality, post-Selection and training, matches their efforts.
 
I dip my hat to you for having a go at selection twice and for writing an extremely good break down.

I went for regular selection but unfortunately trashed my knee on a sodding great hill/mountain in rainy Wales. Two years latter I tried again and to my surprise got through Wales by the skin of my teeth. But unfortunately picked up a stupid injury that should not have happened. I had some amazing DS who said give it another go you are doing well which surprised me.

So back again I went Hills /Mountains pretending to be Hills was sorted thank god. How ever as I moved through the selection process I realised that my skills were up to the task but were not stela and would and that I would bring no benefit to the Regiment and the wider Army. So I withdrew myself. Do I regret pulling out most defiantly and will always do so. I tried and I failed which is a shame but there was no way in gods earth I was going to risk someone’s life on my skill set. Also the body was saying enough you will kill your self.


When I got back to my unit my CO started to call my Mr also ran which I suppose was true but deep down it really hurt.
I have kept in contact with some of the lads they were on selection with me and they are has happy can be.

I presume your CO successfully completed selection himself, taking that attitude?
 

King Duck

Swinger
I dip my hat to you for having a go at selection twice and for writing an extremely good break down.

I went for regular selection but unfortunately trashed my knee on a sodding great hill/mountain in rainy Wales. Two years latter I tried again and to my surprise got through Wales by the skin of my teeth. But unfortunately picked up a stupid injury that should not have happened. I had some amazing DS who said give it another go you are doing well which surprised me.

So back again I went Hills /Mountains pretending to be Hills was sorted thank god. How ever as I moved through the selection process I realised that my skills were up to the task but were not stela and would and that I would bring no benefit to the Regiment and the wider Army. So I withdrew myself. Do I regret pulling out most defiantly and will always do so. I tried and I failed which is a shame but there was no way in gods earth I was going to risk someone’s life on my skill set. Also the body was saying enough you will kill your self.


When I got back to my unit my CO started to call my Mr also ran which I suppose was true but deep down it really hurt.
I have kept in contact with some of the lads they were on selection with me and they are has happy can be.
Appreciate the kind words and insight. I also appreciate the sting of hindsight but ultimately you will have made a decision that was right for you at the time and the blokes around you. I think there is a misconception that VW’ing is solely a selfish/weak move. Of course people do wrap when they hit empty but post hills, particularly when operating in small team tactics, you run the risk of impacting other blokes by your underperformance. So, sometimes, the decision to sick your head in the sand and grizz on when you know you there is very little hope of keeping up with the course is more jack. It’s a balance.
Despite arsey lines from your old CO you raise a good point mate. More fail than pass, so it’s definitely a good idea to never burn your bridges. Of course you’ll get the odd bell end that will try and take the piss but that says more about them than you.

As challenging as SOPTAC was I genuinely did enjoy it. It focused not only on refining existing skills, but also on developing new capabilities and team SOPs which were actually enjoyable to learn & drill. Which is something that probably isn’t said enough. It does manage to keep you hooked and engaged despite fragging you. Even early on when there was a particular focus on conventional core skills it was delivered in a really engaging manner and with smaller course numbers it meant the DS could offer a more tailored approach to improve each individual’s weaknesses and progress their strengths than what you will have experienced in CIC. Unlike CIC I also liked the fact that many of the valuable (and fundamental) lessons were not limited by strict boundaries. They could deliver the training using their expertise in a way that was the most effective. I always found that the DS who deliver this unglamorous but essential activity were genuinely interested in developing us. Time was the biggest issue. So there was an expectation and need for you to pick things up quickly. Even in failure at SOPTAC you do leave a better soldier I think. It doesn’t have to be all doom and gloom. Every cloud and all that!
 

glad rag

Old-Salt
Astonishingly honest and forthright write up. Even this ex-sideways runner, can appreciate what the author has to say and has my open admiration for his actions.
 

Bubbles_Barker

LE
Book Reviewer
When I got back to my unit my CO started to call my Mr also ran which I suppose was true but deep down it really hurt.
I have kept in contact with some of the lads they were on selection with me and they are has happy can be.
What kind of unit CO behaves like that?
 

Bubbles_Barker

LE
Book Reviewer
Note the public phone numbers are no longer in use mate. Expressions of interest must come in via the central SFTC email that is listed below.

Apologies for the late reply. I remembered the other bloke said somewhere he was currently a serving Bootneck, but didn't make it clear that I meant he could probably get a mil number to ring.
 

King Duck

Swinger
What a piece of shit.
Agreed. It’s very poor show from a CO to get on like that. There is banter & there is bell end behaviour. When was this @longlivethequeen out of interest? You’d like to think those type of attitudes are becoming a thing of the past! Difficult when you experience it but it’s important to regard such ribbing as nothing more than noise. The biggest critic usually lives between your own two ears so if you square that away and are happy with your own actions then that’s all that really matters.

Thankfully, I’ve not encountered any of that. Plenty know in my bn (albeit this relates to AR) that I came off and on the whole everyone has been either decent or indifferent. I think it helps that your CoC are very much involved in your application now. Even in the AR with us being sponsored out inf units your 1RO was required to comment on your performance and I think the 2RO also stuck a signature on it. Can’t imagine it’s much different in the regs. Point being enough of your top corridor are aware and have sufficient information supplied to be aware of the game ahead.
On RTU you also don’t leave empty handed. You essentially have an exit brief in which the chief DS/OC Trg wing will have a sensible discussion with you. Your CoC will have your end of course report made available to them which can be helpful. They tailor any feedback according to your performance and it definitely feels like it is designed to coach you. Particularly for those runners on their first crack. All in all a largely positive experience.
 
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