'American Ninja Warrior' National Finals Night 1: 5 Best Runs (VIDEO)
The national finals have begun in American Ninja Warrior Season 11, and the first half of the competitors attempted to conquer Stage 1 in Monday's episode.
Much of the course has remained the same from previous years, with a couple changes. The eight obstacles leading up to the climb up the cargo net and the buzzer are: Archer Alley, Spin Your Wheels, Double Dipper, Jumping Spider, Tire Run, Warped Wall, Diving Boards, and Twist & Fly.
And what makes the national finals stand out from the previous rounds is that the ninjas only have two minutes and 30 seconds to complete Stage 1.
Check out the highlights below from the first night in Las Vegas.
Nate Burkhalter Was the First Finisher of Stage 1
It was his first time qualifying for the national finals in three years, and the last time he was in Las Vegas, he fell on the first obstacle. He not only made it past Archer Alley, he also completed Stage 1.
Ryan Stratis Was Running for the Win — and His Beard
Stratis is one of only four athletes to compete in all 11 seasons of the show (and all four made it to Las Vegas this year). He not only went further than Brett Simms — which meant he got to keep his beard as per the terms of their bet — he also got past the obstacle (Tire Run) that took him out in 2018. He hit the buzzer with less than 10 seconds on the clock.
Chris DiGangi's Best Season Yet Continued
After hitting his first city finals buzzer in seven years (and his fiancée Jesse Labreck then doing the same), DiGangi followed that up by making it past the obstacle that took him out last season (Double Dipper). He completed the course, and he's moving on to Stage 2 for the first time in his ANW career.
Flip Rodriguez Made His Second Chance Count
Rodriguez had the Safety Pass, so when he fell on his first attempt at Stage 1 (on the Diving Boards), he had another opportunity to make it to the next course. And though he was playing hurt, he still hit the buzzer and is moving on.
Daniel Gil Continued to Speed Through the Course
Gil had the top times in his region the last three years in a row, and he once again sped through the obstacles. He had the fastest time of the night on Stage 1, finishing with over 40 seconds still on the clock.
American Ninja Warrior, Mondays, 8/7c, NBC