WARNING: If you haven’t watch the season 11 premiere of American Ninja Warrior, stop reading. Go watch it. Then come back. There’s a huge, massive spoiler RIGHT under this...
American Ninja Warrior debuted the brand new Power Tower along with season 11. The two fastest finishers of the night raced head-to-head, 40 feet in the air for the Speed Pass. That pass guarantees the winner a spot in the National Finals, no matter what happens during the City Finals.
Three-time Ninja Warrior competitor, Hunter Guerard, ripped through the Qualifying course with such speed that he earned the fastest time even after he missed his first attempt on the Warped Wall. That put him on the Power Tower against 11-time veteran David Campbell. The race was nail-bitingly close, with Hunter pulling out narrow win, making him the first official National Finalist of season 11.
In his time on the show, Hunter hasn’t missed a trip to Las Vegas, and he hasn’t missed out on completing Stage One while there. Known as “The Lizard” for his grip and speed on the course (as well as a tongue-thing that just freaks me out) Hunter is a jovial Ninja personality. He’s part owner of the Obstacle Academy in Minnesota, alongside Sarah Schoback. They opened the gym with Kyle Soderman, who also ran the course in the LA Qualifiers.
I (Me! Nikki, the editor here!) had the chance to sit down for a long talk with Hunter while we were both in Tacoma for Ninja Warrior. If you know me, you know I’m a pretty upfront person, so I’m going to be honest here: This was supposed to be shared as an audio recording. But guess what? Circumstances didn’t go my way and the audio was crap. Seriously, you would have yelled at me and sent me angry emails if I made you listen to it.
However, what Hunter had to share was too important and interesting to just toss away. For me, it shed a whole new light on a competitor who’s seen as a light-hearted jokester, which, don’t get me wrong, he absolutely is.
Hunter is a veteran, who was raised as a “military brat” by parents who both served. His dedication to wrestling in high school and college went to profound levels. He found his way to the sport of Ninja Warrior through a series of seemingly random, but connected, coincidences that have brought him to the show.
And he should probably be studied for future vaccine research. We had a discussion about eating other people’s old gum and handfuls of dirty Las Vegas grass that still leaves me laying awake at night, worried for Hunter’s health.
Below, you’ll find the transcript of the conversation I had with Hunter. Read it, enjoy it. When you see Hunter back on the course for the LA City Finals in several week, you’ll look at him in a whole new way.
Nicole Lee: Fun fact about Hunter, he is the first Ninja of season 11 that can officially say he is going to the National Finals.
Hunter Guerard: I can say officially that I’m going to the National Finals.
Nicole Lee: You want to tell us all how you got there?
Hunter Guerard: Well, I tried really hard in the Los Angeles Qualifiers. Turns out, there’s a new rule. If you get first or second in the qualifier, you run head to head in this bonus challenge. And if you win that, then your City Finals is pressure free. So, you go to Vegas directly.
Nicole Lee: What were your first thoughts when you saw the Power Tower?
Hunter Guerard: When I saw the Power Tower, I was thinking, “Man, oh man, it sure would be nice to run City Finals and not worry about how you do,” and that’s also really really tall.
Nicole Lee: So, what were your thoughts when you got to run the Power Tower against David Campbell, correct?
Hunter Guerard: Yep. Went against David and I thought he has me on reach and height and experience, but does he have me on heart? And that was it. That was my only thought.
Nicole Lee: So you feel like you used more heart than David Campbell in that challenge?
Hunter Guerard: I might have used more heart. I had to use a little bit more heart.
Nicole Lee: It seems like Ninja is pretty much life for you at this moment. How are things at Obstacle Academy?
Hunter Guerard: Good. It’s life for me in the way that our financial livelihood depends on how well we run the show and how much emotionally invested in our programs and stuff we are.
Nicole Lee: Tell us a bit of your history with Obstacle Academy.
Hunter Guerard: Obstacle Academy was a combination of a few of us. In the beginning, Sarah Schoback wanted to build a gym a long time ago in 2016. Probably even earlier, I think the idea was conceived. And we met at this guy’s property. He had some obstacles on his dad’s property. I was just looking for an opportunity to train Ninja Warrior or find somebody who knew anything about it. And I hadn’t heard of it until 2016.
Hunter Guerard: So, I saw it on TV at a hotel in Colorado and I was like there’s got to be a way to apply or some sort of qualifier to get into Ninja Warrior or some sort of fitness test or something. And so, I looked around online and then I found that this dude just had some obstacles put together on his dad’s property, so I showed up there. I got a hold of him and I showed up there. It was this loosely sort of ... Not really a class. He didn’t really know how to run a program or run a class or anything. But then, Sarah was also there and Sarah wanted to build a gym. She wanted to build an obstacle gym and do it the right way.
Hunter Guerard: She found out that I had construction experience and that I was a rock climber. And she put two and two together. After meeting her a few times, she just came up and said, “Hey, we’re looking to build a Ninja gym. Are you interested in helping build it and come run it?” And I just dropped everything and moved.
Nicole Lee: A lot of people can say they start Ninja gyms, but you actually built your Ninja gym.
Hunter Guerard: Yeah. We built it. Me, Sarah, Kyle Soderman. We went into a warehouse and just started in one corner and built our way all the way around. And now, it’s to the point where we’re going to have to build a bigger one to keep up with demand. We have a lot of people trying to get into our youth program.
Nicole Lee: But you’re going through all this with some pretty close friends in Sarah and Kyle.
Hunter Guerard: Yeah. We’ll find a way. Kyle moved on. But everything just has a way of working out. One of our main things that we say is, “All right, this is going to suck,” and then it sucks. But over the course of years doing this, we’ve fine-tuned and the machine is oiled. We run pretty well together. We went into it not knowing really what our jobs were going to be or what we were going to be doing or anything like that. All we knew was show up every day and get this thing built as quickly and as well as you possibly can and then figure it out as you go like what to offer for a class.
Hunter Guerard: We spitballed ideas and narrowed it down until years later. What it came down to is people want structure and discipline and order. So, coming up with a legitimate youth program was the most successful thing that we could do.
Nicole Lee: Well, I find it interesting that you mentioned structure and discipline and order since, on the show, you come off as this ... You’re the lizard.
Hunter Guerard: Yeah. I’m the lizard.
Nicole Lee: And you’re wild and you go fast, obviously. So, where does that duel personality come from?
Hunter Guerard: Man. No matter what you’re doing, if you’re doing well, then you’re probably enjoying it. If you’re going to be reckless and you’re going to be free-spirited and stuff like that, as long as you’re working hard, I think that you’ll be okay. If I’m running ANW, I know I can have fun, I can go fast and I can run the way like because I really think about it, the way I really visualize doing it. But I can have fun doing it because I know that I put in the work.
Hunter Guerard: My workouts are structured. And the way I operate day to day at my job is very disciplined and very structured. But if I don’t have to be and I have the opportunity and I’m given the opportunity to wild out and be wild, then there’s no helping it. I have to. I won’t be able to help it.
Nicole Lee: One thing I was surprised to learn about you, just because we haven’t seen it before on the show, is that you are actually a military veteran.
Hunter Guerard: Yes. Yep. Yeah. It’s not brought up a whole ton on the TV show.
Hunter Guerard: Originally, when I was younger, I just thought that everybody was in the military because ... My parents were in the military, my first memories are being around service people all the time. Growing up, my first memories memories were from Europe on bases, on air force bases or army bases and constantly traveling and stuff. Everybody’s parents were in the military. That’s why we were there.
Hunter Guerard: In a weird way, when we moved to America, we came back to the States, I was a young teenager. Every once in a while, we’d go and we’d stop on base or we’d go to base for one reason or another. Things like the way that somebody holds a door for you and they’re in uniform or they that they’re orderly and they’re polite to a point where you know that there’s a reason they’re that polite. Their appreciation for life and stuff like that has a heavier gravity.
Hunter Guerard: I think I always knew that I would end up joining at one point. Not necessarily as a backup plan if things went wrong but that the military is and always was an option.
Nicole Lee: When you were a kid, where’d you live in Europe?
Hunter Guerard: Let’s see. I think right away in Germany. And then, when you’re PCS or when your parents are given orders, you spend a whole ton of time in these strange positions, especially if your family is big, where you’re looking for somewhere to actually live. So when we moved there originally, I think we bounced around these little towns. Being so young, all those memories are kind of hazy.
Hunter Guerard: But our first town in Germany, where I thought I’m alive, I exist and I’m aware that I’m a human being, was in this place called Gaukönigshofen. Right near, Würzburg, I suppose if anybody knows anything about Germany. And we were there from when I was a toddler to probably maybe eight or nine. And then from Germany, we moved to Aviano, Italy until I was a young teen maybe. Maybe I was probably 12 or 13.
Nicole Lee: Do you remember any German or Italian?
Hunter Guerard: I remember enough German to order food and I remember enough Italian to order food and part of the most important part of my life is eating.
Nicole Lee: Order something in Italian. I want to hear it.
Hunter Guerard: Oh, man. Everything that I would order is the same. Spaghetti and spaghetti al ragu or it’s spaghetti or pizza. It’s pretty much the same. Wine Vino.
Nicole Lee: So you were stretching a little bit when you said you remembered enough Italian.
Hunter Guerard: To order food, yeah. The only food I would eat would be spaghetti or pizza.
Nicole Lee: Yeah. But that sounds like a pretty formative time of your life. So, do you have any memories from Italy or Germany?
Hunter Guerard: Yeah, a whole ton actually. Germany. Maybe it wasn’t just Germany and it was small-town Germany, but I remember it being really funny to the older Germans when we would go to these little pubs and stuff like that. They always thought it was really funny to give us beer. And then in Italy, they always thought it was really funny to give us wine as American kids.
Nicole Lee: End of story?
Hunter Guerard: Yeah. That was it. Yep.
Nicole Lee: Underage drinking.
Hunter Guerard: There you go. Public underaged drinking. Well, it wasn’t really underaged. It’s way different over there. Drinking is way different over there.
Nicole Lee: How old were you when you came to the States?
Hunter Guerard: I think 12 or 13. I was young. I think a seventh grader.
Nicole Lee: And when you moved back to the States, where’d your family settle?
Hunter Guerard: We bounced around for a little bit. Something happened with our school records. The military lost our school records. I know we missed a good chunk of one of our school years. We ended up in Washington for a while. And we went to school in Newport. And then, my dad was hunting for jobs. He was a Black Hawk pilot.
Hunter Guerard: And so the jobs he was offered in the States, the best area for what they wanted for finishing and raising a family was Minnesota. It was a helicopter ambulance. So, if somebody gets injured injured and they have to go to a hospital fast, the ambulance van won’t cut it.
Nicole Lee: You’ve been in Minnesota ever since?
Hunter Guerard: Yeah. I bumped in and out of Minnesota. For the most part, that’s where we lived.
Nicole Lee: Is that where your family still is?
Hunter Guerard: Yeah.
Nicole Lee: Okay. Do you have siblings?
Hunter Guerard: Yeah. I’ve got a brother. A little bit younger than I am. He’s down in Florida. He moves around a lot for work. And then I have a sister also in Florida, an older sister and another older sister. She’s back in Minnesota now. But she was in Oregon and then came back.
Nicole Lee: How was the adjustment from growing up in Europe to coming back to the States in your teens of all times?
Hunter Guerard: We moved every few years before, so it was a whole bunch of this isn’t permanent, this isn’t permanent. Make a bunch of friendships and then you move and you never see them again. It was before Facebook and social media and all that. And then in America, we moved to this tiny town called Royalton and people knew their grandparents well. They would go hang out with their cousins. They had dozens of family members all over the town and everybody was related to everybody and stuff like that. And if somebody new showed up to a school, it was like we were foreign really. We were foreign for quite a while.
Hunter Guerard: And the Minnesotan accent was pretty ... That was pretty wild, right away.
Nicole Lee: It seems like you fought that off even though you’ve lived there for many years. I don’t pick up much of a Minnesota accent from you.
Hunter Guerard: No, not really. Had I stayed in Royalton, Minnesota, I’d probably have a thicker Minnesotan accent. If I hadn’t eventually moved to a little bit bigger of a city and then moved to the Twin Cities, I think it gets washed away in the mix of people. In the Twin Cities, people are from everywhere.
Nicole Lee: How long do you think you lived in the States before you adapted to civilian life where you didn’t move as much and you had this home base in this family-centered town?
Hunter Guerard: I would say when I started making serious friends that I’m still in contact with today. So, probably 15, 16. Something like that. Then, it was like we’ve adjusted. This is what normal life is. It’s the military family, even though there are a ton of people in the military. More than you might think. In a weird way, it’s a smaller community than you might think if you think small town Minnesota.
Nicole Lee: Was it a tough adjustment?
Hunter Guerard: Yeah, I think so. I think it was tougher for us as kids. You can throw almost anything at kids and they’re like okay, this is reality now and okay, I guess we’re doing this now. But I think it was probably harder for my parents to have this intensity and intense crazy structure. My dad was all over the planet all the time and my mom was raising four kids and my dad was gone for a year in Tunisia or was gone in Cypress or somewhere for months at a time. Sometimes, a year at a time. And then, all of a sudden, it was this quiet little town America.
Nicole Lee: Do you remember watching them go through that transition? Was it something that was visible to you and your siblings?
Hunter Guerard: Oh, yeah. Yep. If you talk to a military brat and you say, “Hey, was it always this calm, peaceful household for you?” They’re just going to look off and stare. They’ll just stare at you. They won’t be able to comprehend that.
Nicole Lee: You moved back to the States. You adjusted to a whole new life. And then high school, you took up a sport, correct?
Hunter Guerard: Yeah. That was probably the best thing I could have done because with the kind of way I think my siblings and I were raised, if we dived into something, then we sink our teeth in. So when I joined wrestling, I was a ninth grader and immediately it was this is the intensity of this, the training, movement itself ... It was cool to me.
Nicole Lee: How long did you stay in wrestling for?
Hunter Guerard: All throughout high school. And then a little bit in a college. I redshirted. We would wrestle folkstyle. We’d wrestle high school wrestling. And then we would do freestyle wrestling and then we would do camps and clinics and all kinds of stuff like that throughout the summer and stuff.
Nicole Lee: And what was your favorite part of wrestling?
Hunter Guerard: It was always cool to watch somebody do something they were good at. And then if you could find a way to replicate that, but with your style. Your shape as a person has a style to your movement. I think that learning these stylized movements was one of the coolest things.
Nicole Lee: And where you’d go to school for college?
Hunter Guerard: I went to St. John’s originally. And then I didn’t know... it was too much to not know what I was going to do. And then look at this giant debt and think I have no idea what I actually want to do. I can’t see myself in a conventional job. Should I keep doing this and go thousands and thousands and thousands of more dollars in debt or should I just pull the plug and find something that I legitimately want to do?
Nicole Lee: How long did you wrestle in the school?
Hunter Guerard: 9th, 10th, 11th, 12th.
Nicole Lee: And then in college, you said ...
Hunter Guerard: Just my first semester.
Nicole Lee: So you intended to carry wrestling through into college?
Hunter Guerard: Yeah. It was my senior year after I had lost out at State. I was thinking there’s no way that this is over. There’s no way that this is in my past now. There’s no way I’m not going to continue to be a wrestler. I just couldn’t imagine that. It wasn’t necessarily I’m super proud of my win/loss record or I have this many pins or anything like that. It was just being a wrestler on that team was entirely its own culture.
Nicole Lee: Then, if you couldn’t imagine your life without wrestling, but then you were stepping away from school, that meant you had to leave wrestling?
Hunter Guerard: Yep. Coming out of Royalton, which was this tiny town, it was suddenly... even going to school. And then going to a different school and having the military as an option, it was like the world is so much bigger than just this one decision right now.
Nicole Lee: How’d it feel to leave wrestling behind?
Hunter Guerard: Saying goodbye to it? It was tough. Other than knowing that I could eat whenever I wanted to and I can eat whatever I want, it was tough to know that I wasn’t going to wrestle anymore.
Nicole Lee: Was that a bit of an adjustment period?
Hunter Guerard: Eating whatever I wanted to?
Nicole Lee: Yeah. Was that an adjustment?
Hunter Guerard: Yeah. There’s no desperate feeling like starving. Even to this day, every once in a while, you have a bizarre nightmare about not being able to eat. I think they’re a little bit stricter on cutting weight now probably than they were then. But not being able to eat was one of those ... Really, it’s a desperate feeling as a teenager and young teen and stuff. It’s even worse because you’re trying to grow and you’re trying to concentrate in school. And all you can think about is I need food. I have to eat something.
Hunter Guerard: Sometimes, you can’t even drink anything before weigh-ins. It’s like I’m sleep deprived because I know I have this huge tournament or sections or something coming up and so you’re not going to sleep really well. And then, your body is craving calories because you need energy because you haven’t really slept. Then, you’re getting close to weigh-ins, so you’re like I’m a tenth of a pound underweight. I better not drink anything in case their scale is just a little bit different, so it’s a pretty desperate feeling.
Nicole Lee: That sounds like something really hard to cut away from.
Hunter Guerard: It sucks!
Nicole Lee: It sounds like something you still remember very distinctly.
Hunter Guerard: Yeah. Not eating was the hardest thing in the world. Just knowing now that I can eat whatever I want is comforting enough.
Nicole Lee: And you can order it in Italian.
Hunter Guerard: Yep. I can go get pizza or spaghetti.
Hunter Guerard: Well, I worked and I thought if I’m not going to school, then it’s the military. And then after the military, it was, if it’s not the military, it’s work. And I bounced around with a whole bunch of ideas. I thought I have buddies who moved out to California and they’re having success in some low-key acting roles and some comedy stuff.
Hunter Guerard: Then it was like I can go to school for something that I enjoy doing, something like animation or artwork. I kept up with learning languages. I thought maybe I can go be a Spanish teacher or something. So, I was pondering the ideas of going back to school. And I got a job laying concrete in the meantime to build up a bank account.
Hunter Guerard: I was working in concrete, working concrete and it was going well. And then, we got laid off for the winter and I was like I can’t just sit here and do nothing. After a few weeks, I was like I’m going to go get a part-time job until the season for concrete comes back around. And so, I started bartending. Well, I started hosting. And apparently at where I was hosting, they weren’t used to somebody who had worked concrete construction before. So they were like, “If you’re here to work, we’re going to give you a job with more responsibility than hosting.” So, I started bartending.
Hunter Guerard: After a month or two of bartending, I was making more money bartending than I was working concrete and I’m not destroying my body and I’m inside and it’s air-conditioned in here and I’m not at risk all the time. So, I started bartending. And then, I saw Ninja on TV and it came full circle. Saw Ninja Warrior on TV and then one thing led to another. And now, that’s what I do.
Nicole Lee: So, you’re skipping over one part of your life you haven’t mentioned yet. Adding to your jack of all trade status, you also have a clothing company.
Hunter Guerard: Yeah, that’s relatively recent. It’s almost been a year. I moved into this little studio apartment. So, I was going through my stuff and I was thinking I have to get rid of some of this stuff and what can go, so I was digging through old boxes that I haven’t opened since I’ve moved several times. And I found a sewing machine that my mom gave me and I was like I can learn how to use this thing. So, I poked around on the internet a little bit, poked through the owner’s manual a little bit and thought I’m going to make a hoodie. I wear a hooded sweatshirt all the time.
Hunter Guerard: After a couple of attempts, what I made came out looking vaguely like a sweatshirt. So, I was like what if I made this fit me better? What if I found a really cool material and a cooler design? I like the hood to be extra big, I like the sleeves to be extra long, a giant pocket on it, I want it to be kind of stretchy. And so after 25 attempts, I cut the final pattern, that I came up with, out of cardboard and kept it.
Hunter Guerard: One by one, my friends wanted one and so I was like I have to get a consistent fabric and so I had to research fabric and find out this is a knit fabric, this is woven, this is how you find the direction of your material. After deciding on a final process, now I have a seven or eight-month waiting list and I have hoodies all over the country and I have some in Europe and all over the world now.
Nicole Lee: How does one get on your hoodie waiting list?
Hunter Guerard: They send me an Instagram DM and I write it in my notebook. Then, I try and I try to get a couple done a week if I don’t have anything crazy going on. If I’m not traveling for competitions or traveling for the TV show or something crazy’s going on at the gym or working on the details for the expansion, then I can get five done a week.
Nicole Lee: I’ve seen these hoodies on other Ninjas and they all have custom illustrations on them as well.
Hunter Guerard: Yep. That’s the fun part. That’s what makes me like doing it. I like the sewing process. It’s cool, it’s therapeutic to feed material through the machine. But what I do is I gather a few details about the individual’s life. And then I draw a little cartoon with a permanent fabric market on their pocket. People won’t know this right away, I guess they’ll know now, but there’s a secret in each one of them. It could be some symbolism in the drawing or you could stretch a seam and there could be a message written. I don’t wanna give too many away or people are going to pull their hoodies apart looking for them.
Nicole Lee: I can’t decide from the look on your face if that’s sweet or if it’s really evil.
Hunter Guerard: Some of them, I made pretty tough to find. The thing is, I started making youth hoodies for our kids in our youth program and they are super super good about finding what I hid. So, for some of theirs, I made them flat out nearly impossible to find and they still find them. One of them pulled their hoodie string all the way out ... You know the string on your sweatshirt that tightens your hood down? I pulled his hoodie strong all the way out and I wrote his name in tiny print in the middle of his hoodie string where he would never find it. And he was just tugging on his string and pulling on his string and eventually end up seeing it.
Hunter Guerard: But when they get together now, they’re pretty good about digging through. There’s a few people who haven’t found them yet and it’s been months. But for the most part, people will find them.
Nicole Lee: Does Kyle know what his is?
Hunter Guerard: No.
Nicole Lee: Oh, really?
Hunter Guerard: No. Heck no.
Nicole Lee: Didn’t he have an early sweatshirt?
Hunter Guerard: Kyle’s got a bunch of them. Kyle and Sarah were early on when I was making hoodies and figuring out it should feel like this, this is a good general shape. I would use those two as tests and see what they wanted more. So, they have a bunch of them. They have the pre-actual model hoodies.
Nicole Lee: Right. Does Kyle know to look for his?
Hunter Guerard: Yeah. He’ll just either forget or do other stuff.
Nicole Lee: Now, you and Kyle have, I want to say, a unique relationship. You were telling me about a game you guys were playing the other night that I found so disturbing.
Hunter Guerard: It is bad.
Nicole Lee: That I want you to tell everyone about it.
Hunter Guerard: It’s so much worse than you guys think. I know any of you guys listening out there, you’ve seen some gnarly stuff on Instagram and you’ve seen some stuff on our Instastories that you’re like, “Wow, that’s pretty gross. I wouldn’t do that.” I promise you it’s worse because there’s stuff that we can’t post. And every once in a while, our language isn’t always ... We have a lot of youth followers, so we can’t post all of them.
Nicole Lee: That’s not so bad?
Hunter Guerard: That’s not that bad. In the grand scheme of things, it’s not that bad.
Nicole Lee: Okay.
Hunter Guerard: He would say a number in between one and 25. 25 is I’m probably going to get sick if I do this and it’s a serious sickness. And one is like I’ll just do it. So, eating gum from the underside of the table, Kyle would probably say four or five or something like that. So, let’s say he says five. We would count to three and we would both say a number at the same time. And if the numbers that we say at the same time are the same number, then he has to do it.
Hunter Guerard: So, I would say, “Kyle, what are the odds you eat this gum?” He says, “Five.” We say, “One, two, three ...” We both say a number. If it’s the same number, he eats the gum. And if we both say a number and they’re different but they add up to five, then I have to eat the gum. If we both a say a number and they’re different and they don’t add up to five, then nobody eats the gum unless they want to.
Nicole Lee: Did you guys invent this game and did you just say, “Unless they want to,”?
Hunter Guerard: Yeah. That’s free gum.
Nicole Lee: Okay. We can’t hang out.
Hunter Guerard: All right. More gum for me.
Nicole Lee: Did you guys invent this game or is this passed down from generations?
Hunter Guerard: I know we invented the rules. There are a ton of rules. It’s a blood in/blood out thing. There are variations of it. The highest number that you can say is 25. I know that we came up with that rule. And the rule back where if our numbers add up, I know we invented that rule, you get one career mulligan. You can say, “I don’t want to do that. I’m not participating in this.” And you get to do it once in your career playing and you can never do it again.
Nicole Lee: Have either of you used-
Hunter Guerard: No. Absolutely not and we’ve done some disgusting stuff to hang on to that mulligan because there will be one day that we have to use it and we don’t want to.
Nicole Lee: Your Instastory will be long gone by the time people hear this, so tell us what you did the other night in order to win. Does that make you the winner?
Hunter Guerard: No. It keeps you afloat. It keeps you in the game.
Nicole Lee: Okay, what did you have to do?
Hunter Guerard: Which one was it?
Nicole Lee: The parking lot.
Hunter Guerard: The romper. Okay, yeah. We were driving around and Kyle really wanted food but I really wanted a milkshake. So, we stopped at McDonald’s for a milkshake on our way to get pizza. We got to the McDonald’s and we were riding these scooters. You can pay for these scooters to cruise around town as transportation. And they wouldn’t serve us in the drive-through on our scooters, so we were cruising around the parking lot. And I saw this pile of clothing and I told Kyle and I got my phone out and I was like, “All right, Kyle. What are the odds you put this on?”
Hunter Guerard: So, neither of us knew what it was. He’s like, “Six,” just in case it was something really gross. There’s a reason that the clothing was in the parking lot at McDonald’s in the middle of the night. And so he’s like, “Six.” So, we were like, “One, two, three ...” And I said, “Five” and he said, “One” which means it rolls back to me, so I had to put it on. And I didn’t know what it was. So, I picked it up and we thought it was an apron.
Hunter Guerard: And I thought this is fine. It’s an apron. I can put an apron on. I’ll just take it right back off. And then I realized that it wasn’t an apron. I thought it was a dress and I was like this is getting worse. I guess I’ll put a crusty McDonald’s dress on. Then, once we got out of the middle of the parking lot and under a street light, I found out that it was a romper. So somebody had left their crusted, nasty romper in the parking lot of McDonald’s in the middle of the night in Tacoma, Washington.
Hunter Guerard: And so I had to squeeze into the romper because the odds are the odds and rules are rules.
Nicole Lee: But did the rules determine how long you had to wear it for?
Hunter Guerard: Nope. You just put it on, legitimate. You put it on, you make it legit and then you take it back off.
Nicole Lee: So, off the top of your head, can you think of a situation in which you would pull the no go?
Hunter Guerard: Oh man. I have odds-ed somebody before. But it’s tough. It depends. I wouldn’t do it. I wouldn’t use a mulligan ... If it’s illegal, you can say no. Obviously, if it’s going to cause for sure physical harm, you can say I’m not going to do it. If it’s go down the stairs in a shopping cart or something like that, you’re like, “Yeah, no, I can’t get hurt. I’m competing or whatever.”
Hunter Guerard: It would have to be pretty rough. I would have to know for sure that Kyle wouldn’t do it or it would have to be something that would ruin a friendship or hurt somebody’s feelings or really hurt somebody’s feelings or something like that.
Nicole Lee: If Kyle makes it to Vegas, will you guys continue this game there?
Hunter Guerard: Yeah. Last time, I ate a handful of Vegas grass. There’s grass, there’s normal grass and then there’s Las Vegas outside of the sushi restaurant grass. So, it was hard. I don’t think it was fake, but it didn’t taste like real grass. You know how real grass tastes? It wasn’t real grass. It was crusty, nasty, cigarette butts everywhere. I’ve had better grass.
Nicole Lee: And you feel good about yourself?
Hunter Guerard: Yeah, that wasn’t that bad.
Hunter Guerard: If you’re choosing to do something and you don’t put a legitimate effort into it or you don’t give it your all and be competitive about it, then ... I understand why people wouldn’t sometimes. But let’s say you’re competing with Ninja, I’m going to put everything into it. I’m going to train every single day. When I was a skateboarder, I would compete and I would skate and I would skate and I would train skateboarding. Or if it’s with artwork or even making hoodies, I could make a couple of sweatshirts for fun or something like that. But there’s always a next step. And if you’re not pushing it and pushing it, seeing what you’re capable of, I don’t understand.
Hunter Guerard: I wouldn’t not floor it. If I had the opportunity to floor it, I think I’ll floor it.
Nicole Lee: We saw that in your run in the LA qualifiers.
Hunter Guerard: Yeah, if you have the option to hold the pedal down and put everything out… Don’t half halfheartedly do anything, step up and see what you got.