This article was published prior to Drew Drechsel’s arrest. NBC and American Ninja Warrior have since cut ties with him.
American Ninja Warrior’s 11th season culminated in a climb-off on Stage Four of the National Finals.
Both Drew Drechsel and Daniel Gil completed Stage Three, making them only the third and fourth competitors in the show’s regular season history to do so. Daniel completed Stage Three just about one second faster than Drew. That provided him with an advantage for Stage Four.
Daniel was allowed to pick the climbing order on the 75-foot tower. He opted to go second. That would mean he would know the time he’d need to beat to take home $1 million and the title of American Ninja Warrior Champion. Drew would have to climb first, and he’d simply have to climb with everything he had and hope it held up.
That’s pretty much exactly how it all went down. Drew completed the rope climb with 0:02.54 left on the clock. Then, all he could do was wait at the top of the tower for Daniel’s climb.
Daniel ferociously started his ascent, but partway up the rope, he drastically slowed down, hitting a wall of exhaustion. In a shocking final moment, he was unable to complete the climb in the 30 seconds allowed.
That made Drew Drechsel only the second American Ninja Warrior Champion in history. You can watch those two final climbs above!