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Talking with Cara Poalillo from Ninjababes about ANW season 11

American Ninja Warrior - Season 11 Photo by: William Gray/NBC/NBCU Photo Bank via Getty Images

At the top of the long list of things we love about American Ninja Warrior is the camaraderie. Countless Ninjas praise the community for its inclusiveness, acceptance, and all-around positive vibes. Cara Poalillo experienced this for herself when she competed in season 10 in Philadelphia and season 11 in Baltimore. She was so inspired, in fact, that she started Ninjababes, a “dynamic outlet to further unify and support the female ninja warrior community.” Their mission is simple: “to cultivate a community of strength, positive self-love, and encouragement.” Who wouldn’t be on board for that?

Besides a website and inspiring Instagram account, Cara also hosts a podcast in which she interviews Ninjas and Obstacle Course Racers, and speaks about her own injuries, motivation, and more.

We caught up with Cara via email to get her thoughts on season 11.

ANWN: Let’s start with a simple one—what was your favorite new obstacle this season?
CP: The Power Tower.

ANWN: What did you think of the Safety Pass?
CP: I thought it was an interesting component to the competition. The Power Tower and the Safety Pass added more sophistication to the competition and I liked that. I felt that those who won it deserved to have that chance for a re-do.

ANWN: What was your favorite moment?
CP: Seeing both Daniel Gil and Drew Drechsel make it to Stage 4. They are both incredibly strong competitors and to see them both attempt Mt. Midoriyama was exhilarating. Then when Drechsel won, it put the icing on the cake. It was awesome to see him beat Mt. Midoriyama this season!

ANWN: What was the biggest surprise?
CP: My biggest surprise was that no one completed Angry Birds in Baltimore!

ANWN: Who are you excited to see again next year?
CP: I am excited to see Sandy Zimmerman again next year. I thought she had an outstanding season and I am curious to see how she evolves next season.

ANWN: Any other thoughts about season 11 that you’d like to share?
CP: I loved seeing so many amazing women rise up and go far on the course this season. It was awesome to see new women, like Mady Howard and Taylor Amann... and then to see veterans like Jesse Labreck and Michelle Warnky complete City Finals.