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Dan Champagne has deliberately chased his Ninja Warrior goals for years

In a season focused on youth, Dan Champagne proves not all the impressive rookies are teenagers.

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Elizabeth Morris/NBC

You can’t talk about season 13 of American Ninja Warrior without almost immediately using the word “rookie.” The young teens have blazed a new path through the competition.

But the word “rookie” doesn’t apply just to those teens. On night two of the Qualifiers, the first buzzer went to another impressive rookie, but one with a few more years of experience under his belt.

Elizabeth Morris/NBC

Dan Champagne spent about six years preparing for his big Ninja Warrior debut. After the audience learned about his friendship with Julius Ferguson, Dan showed us what this rookie could do.

And in a season where there’s so much focus on youth, Dan wants the viewers to know that you can make your dreams come true at any stage of life.

“I see all too often, people will use their careers, use their busy work life as an excuse to not pursue those personal passions or fitness or anything like that. I want people to understand that it is possible. You just have to be deliberate about it and not let the hectic nature or busyness of it prevent you from just doing it.

All of my friends and co-competitors out there are full-time Ninja coaches or own gyms and that is their life. I want them to know that I’m coming for them. From now-Ninja standards, I’m the older guy that works a desk job. I can still keep up. That’s what I hope people see.

I know I’m capable of it. I know I can complete the obstacles. It’s just a matter of going and executing and just doing it. I am comfortable with my practice. I’ve done so many different things in my life that are challenging that I don’t necessarily get nervous. I know I’m capable of it. I know I just have to execute correctly and I just love it. I just want to go have fun and enjoy the process, enjoy the experience.”

Dan will have another chance to prove himself when he returns for the American Ninja Warrior Semifinals.