America Gets Its First Ninja Warrior

Titled claimed after 7 seasons and 3,500 competitors
By Michael Harthorne,  Newser Staff
Posted Sep 15, 2015 5:07 PM CDT

After seven seasons and more than 3,500 competitors, we finally have an American Ninja Warrior champion, and he's a busboy. In fairness, 33-year-old Isaac Caldiero is also a professional rock climber and American Ninja Warrior fanatic who built a replica of part of the reality show's obstacle course in his backyard, the Hollywood Reporter notes. No one had ever completed the competition's third stage to reach the fourth and final stage—a 75-foot rope climb—until both Caldiero and fellow competitor Geoff Britten did so in yesterday's Las Vegas finale, according to the Denver Post. Both men actually bested the fourth stage, but Caldiero did it three seconds quicker to claim the $1 million prize.

“Winning this event always seemed impossible,” says Caldiero, who Us Weekly reports tried in 2013 and 2014 only to fail in the course's second stage each time. “As the first American Ninja Warrior, I want to use this opportunity to inspire the world to find your impossible and conquer it.” According to the Reporter, a record eight people defeated the "nearly impossible" second stage this season, but only Caldiero and Britten made it any further. The original Japanese version of the show has been on for 31 seasons and has only crowned four winners, Variety reports. (More reality TV stories.)

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