Archive for the ‘Northwest Region’ Category

West Coast & Venice Beach on Deck

Thursday, April 4th, 2013

Mad love and respect to the West Coast ninjas who are hitting the ground and lining up to take their crack at American Ninja Warrior 5 for the next two days starting tomorrow (Friday) night. The 6 region structure of American Ninja Warrior 4 has been replaced with a 4 city structure that serve as proxies for the regions: Venice (NW and SW), Denver (Mountain & Midsouth), Baltimore (Midwest & NE), and Miami (South & SE). Rumor is that there were over 2,000 video submissions for the Venice competition, and with probably only around 150 run spots that means many worthy ninjas got left out in the cold this year.

The Venice competition is stacked with some of the best ninjas America has to offer. Below is a reminder of the National Finalists from both the Southwest and Northwest regions that will mostly be competing in Venice this weekend. Run hard!

Southwest
Evan Dollard
Jesse La Flair
Kole Stevens
Remi Bakkar
Brent Steffenson
Chad Simpson
Derek Nakamoto
Dorian Cedars
Dan Mast
Paul Darnell
Sedderick Bassett
Ryan Thompson
Dylan Curry
Ronnie Shalvis Jr
Michael “Frosti” Zernow

Northwest
James McGrath
Travis Furlanic
David Campbell
Sean Noble
Kyle Cochrane
Justin Sweeney
Josh Horsley
Nathan Sausedo
Justin Walcker
J.B. Douglas
Kevan Reoli
Ben Snead
Brian Kretsch
Gunner Bahn
Patrick McGrath

American Ninja Warrior 4 Compilation Season Schedule

Sunday, January 20th, 2013

The first episode of the “American Ninja Warrior 4 Compilation” series to air on NBC on Saturday nights from 8-9 pm Eastern will be a recap of “some of the best scenes” from the Southwest region. I assume this means both the opening regional round as well as the regional finals. This is in line with my expectations that of the 8 one-hour episodes of this “season”, the first 6 will be one-hour treatments of each region, and then the last 2 one-hour episodes will cover the National Finals in Las Vegas.

The February 9th episode will cover the Northeast region.

The February 16th episode will cover the Southeast Region. I don’t have visibility for later episodes. If you learn the schedule per the regions beyond that, please let me know and I will re-post it!

Airing Schedule
Feb 2nd – Southwest Region
Feb 9th – Northeast Region
Feb 16th – Southeast Region
Feb 23rd – ?
March 2nd – ?
March 9th – ?
March 16th – National Finals in Las Vegas
March 23rd – National Finals in Las Vegas

I’ll also say more broadly that the fact NBC is doing this compilation season is a great signal about their commitment to the franchise. This will build a bigger audience for the show in advance of American Ninja Warrior 5 to air the summer of 2013, and most likely is secondarily being done to drum up more competitors to compete in American Ninja Warrior 5 that is likely to go down in late March and April this year.

National Finalists in American Ninja Warrior 4

Saturday, June 30th, 2012

Here is a list of the 90 national finalists in American Ninja Warrior 4 who advanced to Las Vegas to compete on the Mt. Midoriyama replica uber-course that was built there. There will be 10 wildcards added to these 90 competitors to make an even 100 runners, which is the traditional number that competed in the original Ninja Warrior Japan (Sasuke) for many years. The identity of these wildcards will be revealed when the show airs.

15 finalists from each of the 6 regions (listed below in order of finish) fought their way through their respective regional rounds and then the regional finals to advance to the first finals of American Ninja Warrior held in the US. Mad props to all these competitors, and hit LIKE to applaud them and share this list to spread the word of their awesomeness!

Southwest
Evan Dollard
Jesse La Flair
Kole Stevens
Remi Bakkar
Brent Steffenson
Chad Simpson
Derek Nakamoto
Dorian Cedars
Dan Mast
Paul Darnell
Sedderick Bassett
Ryan Thompson
Dylan Curry
Ronnie Shalvis Jr
Michael “Frosti” Zernow

Midwest
Matthew Derouen
Andrew Karsen
Jack Morgan
Stephen Volcko
Arthur Skov
Michael Silenzi
Nick ‘Lovin’ Stephforn
Johnathan Morin
Scott Robinson
Will Dodd
Joshua Grant
Andrew Lowes
Nate Aye
Nick Kostner
Cade Halada

Northeast
Tim Shieff
Luis Moco
Dan Galiczynski
Chris Wilczewski
Elet Hall
Travis Graves
Jesse Villareal
Christopher DiGangi
Andrew Wood
Danny Johnson
Bradley Smith Jr.
Phillip Pirollo
John Sapinoso
Matt Mings
Michael Pericoloso

Northwest
James McGrath
Travis Furlanic
David Campbell
Sean Noble
Kyle Cochrane
Justin Sweeney
Josh Horsley
Nathan Sausedo
Justin Walcker
J.B. Douglas
Kevan Reoli
Ben Snead
Brian Kretsch
Gunner Bahn
Patrick McGrath

Midsouth
Paul Kasemir
Brandon Douglass
Brian Arnold
Jaret Salas
Kevin Klein
Sat Khalsa
Ahmed Toure
Josh Lobeck
Lorin Ball
Jake Smith
Bob Pondrom
Nathaniel Spencer
James Wyatt
Tremayne Dortch
Alan Connealy

Southeast
David “Flip” Rodriguez
Drew Dreschel
Travis Rosen
Jared “J.J.” Woods
Michael Ekhert
Bull Bullard
Sean Morris
William Brown
Thomas Hall
Brendan Kelly
Andy Taylor
Adam Grossman
Niko Bogucki
Tony Reddick
Paul O’Connor

Stacked Northwest on Deck

Sunday, June 10th, 2012

The absolutely stacked Northwest region is on deck for this Sunday night on G4 and Monday night on NBC. Whenever discussion is had about the strongest region in ANW4, serious consideration has to be given to the Northwest as the creme de la creme. It has arguably 5 of the top 10 competitors in it, and inarguably 5 of the top 20 competitors.

David Campbell – Everybody who competes in ANW or watches ANW and/or Ninja Warrior knows David, and recognizes him as a top 3 runner year-in-year-out. He is a fierce competitor who is extremely consistent and focused. He made it farther than any American competitor in Sasuke 27 (Sasuke is the proper term for Ninja Warrior Japan), and has competed in Sasuke three or four times.
Travis Furlanic – David’s nephew and a stud on his own, Travis was the only American Ninja Warrior competitor to make the finals and compete in Sasuke all three seasons. He is always a threat for getting the fastest time on any course he steps on.
Brian Orosco – Brian Orosco is a superstar of American Ninja Warrior, has competed in Sasuke a bazillion times (disclaimer: not actual count), and is a member of Tempest Freerunning.
James McGrath – James is the patron saint of all American Ninja Warrior walkons, having walked on in American Ninja Warrior 3 after having slept in his van, and then making it all the way to the third stage in Japan for Sasuke 27 where he absolutely destroyed the course until he failed at the infamous Ultimate Cliffhanger, getting as far as any American.
Brian Kretsch – Brian is not as well known as these other four competitors, but has competed in all four American Ninja Warriors and made the semi-finals in ANW1. He trains with David Campbell and Travis Furlanic in Northern California, and anybody who has ever trained on the course with him knows he is a threat to win the whole thing. Check out our recent video interview with him.

Let me add the caveat that I don’t always know ahead of time which competitors competed where, so there is a good possibility that I am overlooking somebody terribly deserving who should be on this list! Give me a holler if you think there is a particularly egregious absence.

American Ninja Warrior Profile – Brian Kretsch

Saturday, June 9th, 2012

Good buddy and all-around ninja stud Brian Kretsch took some time to answer some questions from me about his experience training for and competing in American Ninja Warrior. Brian has competed in all four American Ninja Warrior competitions, and is a founding member of “Team Butter” out of Northern California with other well-known ninja warrior stars like David Campbell and Travis Furlanic. Along with David and Travis he also helped build the famous Death Sasuke course (RIP) where they have generously hosted fellow competitors to train over the years (I was there a month ago myself for Warped Wall training!).

On a personal note Brian has always been a great friend and supporter of mine in my unlikely ninja aspirations, so not only is he one of the top 20 competitors in my unbiased assessment, but he’s also one of the guys I root hardest for. Brian has a Facebook fan page, so go like him!