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It's been a season full of ups and downs for Captain Jason Chambers and Jamie Sayed on Below Deck Down Under. Things started off a bit tense between the Thalassa crew members as Captain Jason told Jamie and his deck team to step it up. Jamie also disagreed with some of Captain Jason's decisions throughout the season.
But they ultimately found their rhythm in working together this season of Below Deck Down Under, and in the Season 1 finale, now available to stream on Peacock, the yachties actually shared a touching moment as they said their goodbyes. "You worked hard in bringing the team together. You were my support, and if I didn't have your support, I'm nothing," Captain Jason told Jamie as the charter season came to a close. "I needed you, and you were there. I can't thank you enough."
Jamie expressed his gratitude for Captain Jason's kind words in an interview during the episode. "He did see what was happening and appreciated it. Well, like I've said all season long, I appreciated Jason's guidance," the bosun shared. "He's a good guy. Working with him has been a really cool experience."
After ending on a positive note with Captain Jason, Jamie recently told The Daily Dish that his camaraderie with the Below Deck Down Under boss continued after the charter season. "So, after the season, we stayed in touch, and we were actually in touch quite a bit, to be honest, especially leading up to the premiere of the first episode," Jamie shared during an exclusive interview over the phone on Tuesday, June 21. "And, you know, I would sort of hear from him on a weekly basis. So, yeah, no, that was all good after the fact."
The occasional conflict with your colleagues, as Jamie and Captain Jason experienced this season, just comes with the territory of working in yachting, according to the bosun. "You get your frustrations at people, you know? Yes, we had our frustrations, but, no, it just happens in this industry," he said. "It's not uncommon."
Looking back at this season of Below Deck Down Under, there are still some things Jamie said he would have done differently than Captain Jason. Jamie notably did not agree with the decision to keep Benny Crawley as part of the crew, and he said he "a hundred percent" still believes the deckhand should have been let go. "Ben should've been fired right at the start. He should've been let go within the first week or two, under two weeks of being in that season," Jamie said, explaining that he believed Benny was not living up to his responsibilities as deckhand.
There was also the "disrespect" on Benny's part, according to Jamie. "He wouldn't listen. He wouldn't pay attention," Jamie said. "If you can't do your job properly and safely, then you shouldn't be here. And time and time again, Ben would say how much he was just here on holidays. He was just here for a good time. We're all here for a good time, but we all have a job to do as well. And at the end of the day, if we can't do the job properly, we shouldn't be there."
Jamie said that if he could change one thing about his Below Deck Down Under experience, it would be for Benny to have been let go. But to Jamie, it seemed like Captain Jason had a soft spot for the deckhand. "Jason just wouldn't have it," Jamie said. "Every time I mentioned Ben, he would basically turn a blind eye to it and turn the heat back onto Culver [Bradbury], and I was sick of it, 'cause Culver was a good deckhand, you know? A hundred percent. He carried the team. He carried Ben through the thick of it."
Though Jamie and Benny actually ended the season in a good place, a new rift formed between them after the show began streaming. Benny has said in recent interviews that he was taken aback by what Jamie has said about him on Below Deck Down Under and in the press, and the two are no longer on speaking terms.
In response, Jamie told The Daily Dish that he "had no problems with him as a person" and that he and Benny actually did get together after filming this season of Below Deck Down Under while visiting Ryan McKeown. "I always said from the very start, I've got no problems with this guy, and I can have beers with him off, like, outside of work. But him, Ben as a deckhand, I had no time for. He wasn't there to be a deckhand. He was there to have a laugh and try and basically be a guest," Jamie said. "Even if I saw him on the street tomorrow, go, 'Hey, Ben, what's up, bro?' If he's holding grudges against me because of these little conversations that we have, interviews after the fact when they ask me questions like, 'Hey, dude, how does Ben go on deck?' I'm telling them the truth. I'm not gonna change. Like, this is how Ben was in the past. We all saw it on TV. How is Ben as a deckhand? He wasn't very good as a deckhand, you know?"
Jamie confirmed that he and Benny are no longer speaking, although he does keep in contact with most of the Thalassa crew these days, including Culver, Ryan, Magda Ziomek, Nate Post, Taylor Dennison, occasionally Tumi Mhlongo, and, as previously mentioned, Captain Jason.
However, Jamie said that he has lost touch with Aesha Scott and Brittini Burton, especially in the wake of the drama surrounding the bosun being called "a bitch" this season of Below Deck Down Under. Jamie said that he was "caught off guard" when Brittini first called him that word during one of the crew's nights out. "I was her supervisor and manager or bosun or boss, whatever you wanna call it, and as far as I'm concerned, whether you're working or not working, you don't go and call your superior 'a bitch' on camera," Jamie said.
Even though Brittini and Aesha have said that they were just joking and some of the Thalassa crew members have since noted how the yachties threw the word around lovingly at each other during the charter season, Jamie said that he felt like there was something more behind calling him "a bitch" specifically. "I don't care who you are, you don't go around doing that sorta s--t. Whether it's kids, adults, males, females, I don't care. And at the end of the day, it should never happen in a workplace, and if someone says, 'Stop, don't do that, I don't like it,' don't continue it," he said. "So, the maturity levels of this crew were very low, as far as I'm concerned. Most of them. Not all of them. Most of them."
For Jamie, it didn't matter what the word was. "It's not about the [word] 'bitch;' it's about the whole continuation of 'let's just pick on this person because they said not to,'" he said. "I've got no time for that."
Jamie said that he knew he needed to talk to Aesha and Brittini after they came into conflict during the season. "I just needed to know the best way to go about it, and at the end of the day, I needed help," he explained. "I needed help and advice from someone who I could chat to, just, you know, off the record, and just give me some help and how to go about this situation."
So when Jamie told Captain Jason about what had been going on, the bosun said that he didn't intend to get his crewmates in trouble; rather, he was seeking guidance on how to best handle the situation. "I can fight my own battles. I've fought my own battles, and I'll fight other people's battles for them," Jamie recalled. "Jason, his words were, 'I've got trigger words, too, and I don't like to be disrespected in certain ways as well, so I'm gonna talk to them.' And I said, 'No, Jase. I actually wanna talk to them. I just want your advice about it.' And he was like, 'No, I'm gonna do it. That's cool. I'm gonna come down hard on them.' And there's nothing more I could've done. I was just like, 'All right, mate, thanks, mate.' There's nothing more I could've done."
"He wants to take the lead, so he's taking the lead. He's just literally taken it out of my hands," Jamie continued. "And to be honest, I really, really do think he was trying to do the best thing for me. Like, that's what I really think he was trying to do."
With his first charter season as bosun now behind him, Jamie stands by the way he led his team, even if some of his crew members and viewers have been critical of his management style. "Love me or hate me, at the end of the day, like, I did my best as a bosun. It was my first time as bosun, but it wasn't my first time to lead people, you know? And when it comes to safety and all those different things that play out whilst working on a boat, on a yacht, you know, people can lose limbs, lose fingers, and lose their lives if they're not careful," he said. "So, when I've gotta control the team that's on the exterior of the boat and they're not competent in their duties or they're walking over chains when there're anchors dropping, things like that, I've gotta be very serious about it. I take my job quite serious, you know what I mean?"
Jamie explained that, with Brittini "being extremely green" in yachting and Benny having a "not-wanting-to-listen-to-anyone sort of attitude," he had to be stern with his crew. His background also influenced how he went about leading his team. "My management style was, yes, quite firm, and quite direct during the season because I didn't have much room for error with these crew. With Culver, he knew what he was doing. He'd been on boats before, a big boat as well, and their style of management is much higher than mine, much more stricter than mine. So, the bigger boats you're on, the management style is much stricter," Jamie said. "I've come from big boats as well, so I've taken on that same management style that I was trained in on bigger boats. On top of that, yes, it comes down to the law enforcement and, you know, all the safety jobs and stuff that I've had in my past. I've also taken that style with management 'cause that's all I was trained in, you know? And it worked. And it worked well."
He noted that the deck crew did have a lot of fun together throughout the season as well. "But don't get me wrong, I joked a lot, laughed a lot, and had fun a lot with a bunch of guys," Jamie said. "I did have a joke, I did have a laugh with the guys, constantly."
The successful results of the charter season speak for themselves, according to Jamie. "At the end of the day, none of my deck team got fired. All of my deck team were safe, including the interior, including the captain, and the yacht wasn't damaged. All guests were safe, everyone was safe, no one got injured, no one died. We all made it through the season alive. But most importantly, regardless if they wanna pick on my management style, look at Brittini from the very beginning, look at Ben from the very beginning, and look at how they turned out in the end of the season," Jamie said. "They started from zero, and they came out as heroes. At the end of the day, I did what I had to do to get my team sorted, to be ready for anything, and if we had another 10 charters after that, they'd be even better and I'd keep that management style."
All in all, Jamie said that he has "no regrets" about his work as bosun this season of Below Deck Down Under. "That's how it happens on big boats. That's how it happens in big industries," he said. "There's no time to f--k around. There's no time to mess around, you know? You just gotta get the job done, and people get fired left, right, and center in this industry."
Jamie is still working in yachting today, and he is putting what he learned in his first bosun job on Below Deck Down Under to good use as a bosun slash first mate on a 57-meter boat, a vessel that is even bigger than the Thalassa.
He's also still working toward obtaining his helicopter pilot's license, a goal that Jamie spoke about on Below Deck Down Under. As of the time of this interview, Jamie was about halfway through the course, which he began in Australia after the charter season ended. Jamie is continuing to study remotely while he's working in Florida to earn some money and resume his training.
Jamie said that he had always dreamed of being a pilot, but he never really thought he could become one until he spoke to the helicopter pilots on the crew during a previous yachting job. He recalled one of the pilots encouraging him to get into the trade after seeing how much control Jamie had while driving the tender. After the pilots walked Jamie through the whole process, he made a plan for how to accomplish this goal.
With hopes of maybe purchasing his own helicopter someday and traveling the world, Jamie said that he would like to become an instructor training new pilots in the future. Not only is it important for Jamie to go after his own goals, but he also loves to inspire others to do the same. "I just always like to challenge myself, and I really, like, anyone can do this sort of stuff, too. Like, if they wanna join the yachting industry, they can. I wrote an e-book on how to get in the yachting industry," he said. "I want people to understand that they can get into the yachting industry — but not just that. They can achieve their goals. Whatever goal they wanna achieve, they can do it."
Below Deck Down Under Season 1 premieres on Bravo for an encore run starting on Monday, July 11 at a special time of 9:15/8:15c. Episodes will air at their regular time on Tuesdays at 9/8c starting on Tuesday, July 12.
All episodes are available to stream on Peacock now.
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