BY KATE DENNETT
Three down, 12 to see off. A bakery owner is cooking on gas and determined she will win this year’s The Apprentice and get her hands on the prize dough.
Owner of the Dough Artisan Bakery in Herne Hill, Carina Lepore, already at 5ft 1in tall dubbed the ‘Pocket Rocket’ – hopes to get a slice of success and become Lord Sugar’s next apprentice after success on the show.
The diminutive entrepreneur proved herself to be a role model for viewers as she won the ice-cream challenge in the second episode.
Carina said it was “written in the stars” that she will win the £250,000 investment money – and her view has not changed since starting the show.
But she has no plans to break the bread with her fellow contestants as she focuses on rising to the top. She told the South London Press: “I am still craving that investment.
That is why I am here and I really want to win. I am aiming high and it is a big vision that I have got but I just want to do it.
“I feel like at this stage there are only a couple of people that are any competition to me. Some of them I can tell who is in for the fame, but others have got great potential.
We are all like-minded people. It makes you step up.”
Carina’s dedication and determination has already secured her one win. The eventful second episode saw her competition come up with stale ideas and ice-cream entrepreneur Kenna Ngoma get fired.
The ice-cream challenge may have been right up Kenna’s street but the pressure proved too much for the contestant.
Carina baked her talents to perfection and managed to seal her team’s success. Carina said: “I still feel like the best team won. Unfortunately for Kenna he was going to lose.
You can’t have a task that is made for you and then lose it. If you lose you just have to take that on the chin. He had a lot of loud characters and opinions as well.
“I can imagine he is probably extremely gutted. If he is anything like me he will take that and learn from it.
There were a lot of decisions to make but letting that one decision go was where he went wrong. In the end it was awful.”
And Carina lives on to fight another week after Souleyman Bah became the former Amstrad chief’s latest victim on Wednesday.
It was fate that brought Carina to the show after she saw Lord Sugar’s motor drive past her in August. As an avid viewer of the show, she said she recognised the famous car immediately.
Carina is a big believer in signs and felt she needed to apply when the applications opened in February.
Carina described herself as an all-rounder and wants to make sure viewers see her value and do not judge her before they see her talents.
She said: “I feel like some viewers would see me and think ‘alright love, where is she going with this?’ but don’t judge a book by its cover. Just don’t, it is not worth it. I have a successful business.
“It is not arrogance, I am still keen to learn from my peers and the other people throughout the process. You have to make mistakes and learn from them. But just don’t judge me by a first appearance.”
She hopes that a creative challenge will be next on Lord Sugar’s agenda, as creativity is where she shines. Her family love her nickname and support her with ‘pocket rocket’ T-shirts.
Carina took the bakery over from her father, Carlos, with her sister, Rochelle, after their bakehouse shut down in 2015.