by Daniel Kinas
Last Sunday, NBC show ‘American Ninja Warrior’ crowned its first champion, Isaac Calidero in Las Vegas to win the $1 million grand prize.
“I was freaking out the whole time, It was an exhilarating experience!” said student Morgan Cook. This is the first time that someone has completed the full ANW course in the shows’ eight seasons.
But this year was even more special. Two people completed the rigorous course. Geoff Britten finished the course first, but Calidero beat his time by 3.6 seconds. Calidero, a former busboy, honed his skills for the event by building models of the stage three courses in his backyard.
The ‘American Ninja Warrior’ finale consists of four stages, three of which are obstacle courses continually getting more difficult as the stage number increases. The fourth stage is a challenge to climb Mt. Midoriyama, an eight story superstructure where competitors climb a 75 foot rope in 30 seconds to win the grand prize.
This is the first time that someone has won the $1 million grand prize. The past eight years, no “ninja” had gotten past the third stage of the course. To complete the course, the participants need an abundant amount of arm and leg strength, but most important, stamina. Many times, the strongest contestants fall simply because they get tired.
Mt. Midoriyama is located in the MGM Resort Village and consists of 23 total obstacles: eight in the first stage, six in the second stage, eight in the third and one on the fourth and final stage. Added together, the distance of the courses add up to ore than 1,000 linear feet.