2 'American Ninja Warrior' Contestants Talk About Cincinnati Episode

Jul 7, 2019

Two contestants from the American Ninja Warrior Cincinnati episode airing Monday, July 8, will talk about the show on WVXU-FM's Cincinnati Edition Monday at noon.

Bengals quarterback Andy Dalton accompanied James Wilson on stage before Wilson competed.
Credit John Kiesewetter

James Wilson, a six-time ANW competitor, and Ben Schneider, who was trying for his first time, will talk with host Michael Monks and me about the Cincinnati obstacle course to be seen on American Ninja Warrior Monday (8-10 p.m. Channel 5, NBC). They're not allowed to say how far they made it on the course until after the broadcast.

Wilson owns the Nati Ninja Obstacle Course & Training Center in Blue Ash, which sent eight people to the TV show taping – six cast by producers, plus two walk-ons.

Amanda O'Dell on the "Wing Nuts" challenge.
Credit Dennis Mong / NBCUniversal

"This is awesome. This is the hometown crowd, there's a lot of energy," Wilson told me during NBC's taping May 24. (Here's a link to "My Night With Ninja Warriors" story.) 

We'll ask Wilson to compare the Cincinnati course to those he ran in Indianapolis, Cleveland, Pittsburgh, Philadelphia and St. Louis.  And I'll ask him how he got Bengals quarterback Andy Dalton to appear on stage with him.

Drew Lachey starts the course on the "Shrinking Steps."
Credit Dennis Mong / NBCUniversal

NBC's course for the Cincinnati auditions had six elements: Shrinking Steps, Ring Swing, Spinning Bridge, Wing Nuts, Bungee Bounce and the Warped Wall.  

Fairfield native Ben Schneider in the contestants' holding pen before competing.
Credit John Kiesewetter

The 90-plus contestants included singer-actor-teacher Drew Lachey and "Reckless Ben" Schneider, a 2014 Fairfield High School graduate I knew from my sons' Boy Scout Troop 967 at Sacred Heart Church in Fairfield.

Schneider is a Los Angeles-based professional slackliner. He has performed stunts on a not-so-tight, stretchy, bouncy tightrope all over the United States, Europe and India. He competed despite recovering from dislocating his shoulder in Las Vegas the previous week.

You can call and talk to Wilson and Schneider during the live broadcast of Cincinnati Edition noon-1 p.m. Monday, July 8.