Simper falls short at ANW
The crowd was pumped as seen on TV, and the cameras were everywhere.
It was one of those experiences Tyler Simper will never forget.
But the ex-Greenwave star can’t wait to do it again next year.
Simper, who is a full-time trainer in Reno at Evoke Fitness, participated in the American Ninja Warrior tryouts earlier this month in Venice Beach, Calif., but fell short of qualifying for the final and nationally televised round in Las Vegas later this year. Despite not finishing the course, Simper was excited and fortunate to make the trip to Southern California.
“My experience overall was a good one,” he said. “All the obstacles were tough and some I’ve never seen.”
Simper found out last month that he was 1 of 130 picked from a pool of more than 2,000 applications in the western region. Simper said he was the first one selected to run through the course and was so nervous he stumbled on the fourth obstacle. Out of the 130 participants, only seven completed the grueling course and Simper finished 34th.
“It made me nervous but I was able to stay collected and focused,” Simper said about going first. “Once I was on the course, I didn’t notice anything else — no cameras, no crowd.”
After being put in the winner’s circle, Simper said he had to stay until he was kicked out of the top 30, which happened with 20 participants left around 4:30 a.m.
American Ninja Warrior is a spin-off competition from England that has aired in the United States on NBC since 2009 and features the world’s most difficult obstacle courses in the qualifying and final rounds. The finale in Las Vegas is set on a four-stage course designed after Mount Midoriyama in Japan.
Nevertheless, Simper was pleased with the opportunity and plans on returning next year.
“It was a long night but the casting crew and all the competitors were very supportive and friendly,” Simper said.