Exclusive: American Ninja Warrior season 15 winner Vance Walker interview

AMERICAN NINJA WARRIOR -- Photo by: NBC -- Acquired via NBC Media Village
AMERICAN NINJA WARRIOR -- Photo by: NBC -- Acquired via NBC Media Village /

For only the third time in 15 seasons of American Ninja Warrior the show crowned a winner last night. We saw eight ninjas battle it out in Stage 4 of Finals, and Vance Walker walked away victorious. We had a chance to catch up with Walker to discuss his victory.

During season 15 of American Ninja Warrior, we saw over 200 ninjas compete to win the big prize. For the first time in show history, we had eight ninjas make it to Stage 4 Finals. For the ninjas to win the million-dollar prize, you must finish all four stages of the finals AND be the fastest person to climb up the 75-foot rope named MT. Midoriyama.

One of the more impressive things about Vance Walker is that he was the first competitor in the show’s history to compete with cerebral palsy. In between his preparation for the American Ninja Warrior course, he has to participate in physical therapy and stretching to manage his condition. In the final, Vance Walker edged out ANW veteran Daniel Gil by one second to win the show.

Hidden Remote sat down to talk to American Ninja Warrior season 15 winner Vance Walker about training for the show, his big win and what his first purchase might be. 

Hidden Remote: Take us behind the mindset as you head into Stage 4?

Vance Walker: So Stage 4 was the 75-foot rope climb in 30 seconds. I have done similar ropes like that in the past, and I’ve gotten really fast times. I knew that I just needed to get there, and once I got there, I was very excited.

Hidden Remote: This season saw the most Ninjas make it to Stage 4 with eight. Did that add any more pressure to the plate?

Walker: Having eight people on Stage 4 was definitely terrifying, especially because I had people running after me. Luckily, many people ran before me, and I had the fastest time when I did the rope. But there were two super strong competitors after me that were faster than me in the previous stages, and it was just absolutely terrifying having multiple people have to go after me.

Hidden Remote: What was it like finding out that you won? 

Walker: Yeah, I was surprised I won by one second because I’m usually very good at the rope. I knew that I had the fastest time at that point because when the 10-second countdown started, you could see the red lights flashing. And I remember as I was climbing up, I was counting the number of red lights, and I knew how much time I had left, and I knew Daniel’s time. So I got up there, and they said it was just over a second. And I was cutting it a little closer than I wanted to, especially with the two guys going after me.

Hidden Remote: What is the first thing you want to do with your million-dollar prize?

Walker: I’m investing all my money being wise with it. I’ve been brought up to be very good with money. I’m hoping to turn it into as much as I can and possibly buy a nice car for myself.

American Ninja Warrior finale is available on NBC and Peacock

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