TV Recap: S13E01 – American Ninja Warrior Season 13 Qualifying Round 1 2021

American Ninja Warrior Season 13 2021: Qualifying Round 1 Season 13 Episode 1

Welcome to Season 13 of American Ninja Warrior!!!

And welcome to a show returning to a more normal format.

No, ANW hasn’t returned to its six-city tour of cities leading to the national finals or brought the live audience back. But Vegas does return this season!!!

This season, all 5 rounds of qualifying will take place in Tacoma, Washington. Those who make it past qualifying will then head to Los Angeles for one of four semi-final rounds. And those who make it past the semi-final round will head to Las Vegas for the National Finals.

Added this season are the addition of select teen competitors ages 15-18 who’ve been dominating ANW Jr. And something I’m looking forward to is the “Split Decision” obstacle. The “Split Decision” is a point on the course where ninjas are given two obstacles on the same point of the course and must choose one of them.

And of course, a now ANW staple, the Mega Wall, is back for another season!!!

Here’s the course:

Shrinking Steps, Overpass (new obstacle), Split Decision (Domino Effect or Spinning Log), Tipping Point (new obstacle), V Formation (new obstacle), Warped Wall

Kid Owhadi, 22-year-old College Student

It’s hard to believe the ‘Kid’ is now a veteran.

Overpass is a brand new obstacle, but Owhadi had no issue with it.

But Split Decision didn’t take long to claim a victim as Owhadi shockingly fell on Spinning Log.

Sophie Shaft, 16-year-old High School Sophomore

Our first teen of the night also plays classical piano and deadlifts 315 pounds!!! ( I get it universe, I need to be accomplishing more!!!)

The bar passed for Shaft, but she completed the long leap on Overpass.

And Domino Effect was no issue at all for Shaft.

But Shaft fell at the transition on the Tipping Point.

During the break…

Victor Huff fell on Overpass.

Chynna Hart fell on Domino Effect.

Ernesto Perez, 26-year-old Warehouse Worker

Perez makes YouTube videos as the character “Flybird,” a superhero who fights against bullying.

Perez needed three swings to make the platform on Shrinking Steps.

After a slight struggle on the first obstacle, Perez had little issue making it to Tipping Point.

But just like Shaft (though it took a little longer for him to fall), Perez fell on the first transition of Tipping Point.

Sam Sann, 53-year-old Gym Owner

Sann is back for the first time in three years.

But after the first two obstacles, Sann looked like he had never left.

And after flipping a coin to determine which obstacle he would try, Sann successfully completed Spinning Log.

Then, Sann became the first competitor of the night to complete Tipping Point.

And despite no one having ever attempted it, Sann was performing great on V Formation before falling on the last V.

During the break…

Emmanuel Aouad fell on Domino Effect.

Ken Singletary fell on Spinning Log.

Wade Lopp fell on V Formation.

Adam Naids, 32-year-old NASA Aerospace Engineer

Naids is developing what astronauts will use to bring back rocks from the moon (so they need a special container for those???)

Naids moved quickly through the first two obstacles.

Naids then held onto the platform to complete Spinning Log.

But after completing Tipping Point, Naids fell on the second part of V Formation.

During the break…

Tom Mortimer fell on Tipping Point.

Gloria Orta fell on Overpass.

Cody McCloud fell on Domino Effect.

Elijah Browning, 16-year-old Sophomore

Browning is already an entrepreneur at 16, buying and selling sports cards like they are stocks and training others for ninja in his backyard.

The former semi-finalist from ANW Jr. moved quickly through the first two obstacles.

After completing the first half of the course, Browning lost his hat as he made his way past Tipping Point.

And after becoming the first ninja to complete V Formation, Browning climbed the Wall and hit the buzzer, becoming the youngest ninja ever to complete a ninja course.

Elijah Browning completes the course in 2:19.19.

During the break…

Evan Perperis fell on Shrinking Steps.

Mallory Simpson fell on Spinning Log.

Jade Buford fell on Tipping Point.

Jonathan Horton, 35-year-old Gymnast

It’s an Olympic year, but the former Olympian wants to qualify for his first ever National Finals in this, his 7th time competing on ANW.

Horton took a quick approach in completing the first two obstacles.

Horton might need to get past Tipping Point to be in contention tonight.

But Horton came up just short of the platform on the fourth obstacle.

We will see if Horton’s run is enough to get to the semifinals.

Isabella Wakeham, 17-year-old Junior

Wakeham thanks her brother Isaiah for getting her into ninja.

Wakeham became the first ninja tonight to catch the moving bar on Overpass.

After a near miss in the middle of Tipping Point, Wakeham held on and finished the fourth obstacle.

But she slipped and fell on the second part of V Formation.

Wakeham’s run was enough to currently hold the top spot on the female leaderboard.

During the break…

Isaiah Wakeham , Nate Pardo, and Christian Youst all fell at V Formation.

Barclay Stockett, 26-year-old Gymnastics Coach

Stockett missed last season while she mourned her mom, who died of cancer last year.

Stockett established a quick pace, but she overswung and lost the grip on Overpass.

During the break…

Ben Wilson fell on Domino Effect.

Christie Brophy fell on Domino Effect.

Wes Meador fell on Spinning Log.

Jonathan Godbout, 16-year-old Junior

Godbout plays the drums and plays in a band called PB and J with his brother.

The third-place finisher from ANW Jr. glided quickly over the third obstacle he chose, Domino Effect.

Godbout continued his strong work on the course has he moved past Tipping Point.

Godbout needed a few extra pushes to get to the end of the first part of V Formation.

But after making it past, Godbout found the platform.

And Godbout made it up the Warped Wall, becoming the night’s second finisher.

Jonathan Godbout completed the course in 3:02.24.

During the break…

Ruthie Bolton fell on Shrinking Steps.

Vinnie Castranova hit the buzzer!!!!

Caleb Dowden, 31-year-old Dairy Farmer

Dowden is competing on ANW to help pay off what’s owed on his dairy farm.

And Dowden moved quickly through the first part of the course.

Dowden’s strong run continued through Tipping Point.

But Dowden slipped and fell at the top of V Formation.

During the break…

John Loobey (after telling these young teen ninjas to get off his lawn) fell on Shrinking Steps.

Jeri D’Aurielo fell on Domino Effect.

Lindsay Eskildsen, 39-year-old Graphic Designer

Eskildsen is running for the first time in a few seasons after taking time off to have children.

Eskildsen had her second child three months before this run.

And if she can make it past Domino Effect, she’ll qualify for the Semi-Finals.

After landing with half her back on the platform, Eskildsen rolled onto the platform and kept her run going.

And Eskildsen wasn’t done there.

After finishing Tipping Point, Eskildsen made it halfway through V Formation before falling (and advancing to the Semi-Finals!!!)

During the break…

Lane Saling fell on Overpass.

Thomas Stillings fell on fell on Spinning Log.

Jeremy Clark fell on V Formation (but he’s going to the Semi-Finals!!!)

Isaiah Thomas, 15-year-old Sophomore

Thomas cites his mom as the biggest influence in his ninja career.

Thomas got off to a solid start as he caught the moving bar on Overpass.

Thomas was to the fourth obstacle in under 40 seconds!!!

Thomas hit V Formation with more than a minute to spare to score the night’s fastest time.

And Thomas likely had it locked up, except he decided to go for the Mega Wall.

Thomas missed, but he still got up the regular wall and hit the buzzer with the night’s fastest time anyway!!!

Isaiah Thomas completes the course in 2:16.69.

During the break…

Nate Burkhalter fell on Overpass.

Abel Gonzalez fell on V Formation (but he’s going to the semifinals!!!).

Jody Avila hit the buzzer with the night’s third fastest finish!!!

Daniel Gil, 27-year-old Worship Leader

Having never fallen on a qualifying course (foreshadowing???), Gil takes his aim at the teens on top of the leaderboard.

And last year’s champ got off to a quick start completing the first half of the course in 30 seconds.

The flawless run continued as Gil as he approached V Formation with just minute gone on the clock.

But shockingly, Gil fell for the first time ever on a qualifying course when the V on V Formation didn’t lock, causing Gil’s fingers to slip when he tried to move it.

Top Ninja Qualifiers from Season 13 Qualifier 1 advancing to the Semifinals for 2021:

Completed Course

  1. Isaiah Thomas
  2. Elijah Browning
  3. Jody Avila
  4. Vinnie Castranova
  5. Jonathan Godbout

Fell at V Formation

  1. Nate Pardo
  2. Daniel Gil
  3. Christian Youst
  4. Brian Burkhardt
  5. Alex Blick
  6. Caleb Dowden
  7. Ryan Meeks
  8. Isaiah Wakeham
  9. Cole Verble
  10. Isabella Wakeham
  11. Josh Norton
  12. Caleb Benson
  13. Wade Lopp
  14. Karman Selby
  15. Dan Wentworth
  16. Bryan Billigmeier
  17. Adam Naids
  18. Jeremy Clark
  19. Abel Gonzalez
  20. Lindsay Eskildsen
  21. Sam Sann

Fell at Tipping Point

  1. Sophie Shaft
  2. Jonathan Horton
  3. Jade Buford
  4. Cody Torkelson

Top 5 Women advancing to the Semifinals:

Fell at V Formation

  1. Isabella Wakeham
  2. Lindsay Eskildsen

Fell at Tipping Point

  1. Sophie Shaft

Fell at Domino Effect

  1. Chynna Hart
  2. Christie Brophy

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