“I’m filming right now,” the reality star, 41, told Backgrid cameras in West Hollywood on Thursday, July 6. When asked whether he was in touch with Raquel, 28, Sandoval replied, “I can’t comment on that.”
He did, however, promise fans that the new episodes would be worth watching. “It’s gonna be interesting no matter what,” he explained. “It always is.”
Sandoval went on to claim that he and BFF Tom Schwartz are “cool” after rumors of tension between the pair in the aftermath of Scandoval. “I just saw him today,” Sandoval said. (The business owners were seen filming what appeared to be a tense conversation at TomTom on Thursday.)
Last month, Schwartz, 40, hinted that the duo’s friendship was on the rocks after Sandoval got caught having an affair with Raquel while he was still dating longtime girlfriend Ariana Madix. “He made a big mess and he left it for us to clean up back at [TomTom and Schwartz & Sandy’s],” Schwartz told Jax Taylor and Brittany Cartwright during a June 7 episode of the couple’s “When Reality Hits with Jax and Brittany” podcast. “It’s hard for me not to be resentful of him, I’m definitely taking a break from Tom right now. I haven’t seen him in a while.”
When news of Raquel and Sandoval’s affair broke in March, Schwartz initially showed support for his business partner, but he told Jax, 43, and Brittany, 34, that he felt “used” and “exploited” by Sandoval in the aftermath of the drama.
“I do love Tom. I took to heart everything he told me about Ariana,” Schwartz recalled. “Now that I’ve heard her side of the story … she [has] vehemently denied all this stuff.”
During a now-infamous interview with Howie Mandel, Sandoval claimed that he tried to break up with Ariana, 38, multiple times before the affair became public, but Ariana refused to accept the split. She later denied those claims during the Pump Rules reunion and in an interview on Watch What Happens Live With Andy Cohen.
Ariana also slammed Schwartz for his involvement in the situation, telling Andy Cohen she thought her friend was “actively participating in” her “downfall.”
Schwartz, for his part, later admitted that he felt “complicit” in the affair because he didn’t tell anyone what he knew about Sandoval and Raquel. “It’s become a huge source of just angst in my life. I’ve been in this extended funk,” he explained during a June episode of Stars on Mars. “It’s horrible and I feel complicit because I didn’t cover for him, but I had his back. He came to me and confided in me that he was in love with someone else.”
He went on to say that he was “stepping away” from the drama “permanently” going forward. “Any sort of version of [Sandoval’s] side of the story has become obsolete because of the way he handled it,” Schwartz continued. “And ultimately, that’s his life. I did not have an affair. I am not him. And it’s just so strange that I’ve been absolutely mired in this.”
Vanderpump Rules also stars Lala Kent, James Kennedy, Scheana Shay, Katie Maloney and Lisa Vanderpump. Last month, an insider exclusively told Us Weekly that “nothing has been decided yet” regarding Raquel’s potential return to the series. “It’s all still up in the air,” the source explained. “Both sides are hoping they can work something out so that Raquel gets the treatment she needs, and she’s still able to be included in the show.”