Sasuke related updates - ANW4, Singapore, Malaysia, Maguro Festival

ANW4 also had the Cannonball Run from Viking... er..  Spin Bridge スピンブリッジ (making a return from Sasuke 27) ©Las Vegas Sun

As I mentioned in the last post, the finals to the American Ninja Warrior 4 (ANW4) were completed in Las Vegas, Nevada.  The final was comprised of the 90 competitors that survived a month-long regionals competition that took place in Los Angeles, Dallas and Miami.  Joining them in the finals were 10 more wildcard spots that were awarded to round out the competition (mostly women, costumed people.. that sort of thing).

All-Star Makoto Nagano 長野誠 laughing at the demise of an ANW4 competitor ©Las Vegas Sun

As a guest (not a competitor), All-Star Makoto Nagano 長野誠 watched from the sidelines of the ANW4 final.  Flying in at the last moment, a week before the Maguro Festival in Japan (of which he is part of the organizing committee for the mock Sasuke course they hold every year at that event, Nagano was a welcome sight.  Although he had minimal contact with the audience (unlike ANW2 where he even had a chance to sign autographs) it was still good to see him participate and be visible in the sidelines of ANW4.

Overhead view of the ANW4 course modeled by TBS to represent a tweaked version of Sasuke 27 ©Las Vegas Sun

Standing in the shadow of the Mandalay resort on the Las Vegas strip, the towering  4 stage replica of Midoriyama's Sasuke 27 course was repainted into a red/black/blue (and a cubic boatload of arrows) and lit up as the entire competition took place at night-time.  Sacrificing the authentic one day consecutive taping that Sasuke is famous for, ANW took a different approach by taping on 2 separate nights (breaking up the Stage 1 and Stage 2 events by a full 24 hours) to keep the entire event taped under lights.

ANW4 Correspondent Angela Sun with All-Star Makoto Nagano 長野誠 ©Angela Sun

I spent the few days searching Twitter and whatnot for photos of Nagano for the blog.  My favorite of course is the one from Matt Iseman that I posted on my previous blog (I re-posted below because it's all kinds of awesome-sauce...)

All-Star Makoto Nagano 長野誠 and ANW4 Announcer Matt Iseman ©Matt Iseman
(... they are holding a sign saying hello to me! LOL)
All-Star Makoto Nagano 長野誠 with 1998 Olympic Gold Medalist Jonny Moseley (and ANW4 announcer) ©Jonny Moseley

All-Star Makoto Nagano 長野誠 and Ryoga Vee ©Ryoga Vee

For most of the pics with fans it was obvious that a lot of hunting went on to find and be able to get access to Nagano.  Some of the pics were taken at the hotel if they were lucky to find him while others were in the parking lot just before he got to the cordoned off areas.  Still, I am happy people were able to see him.. but I am thoroughly disappointed at how limited his exposure was to the general audience. I just wish more planning took place in showcasing him.  Then again, from all accounts, this was a very much last minute addition to ANW4. I guess I have to pick my battles.

All-Star Makoto Nagano 長野誠 and Mike Bernardo ©Mike Bernardo

ANW4 premieres on 2 channels (Cable station G4 and Network station NBC) starting on May 20, 2012.  The entire airing schedule is still listed on a previous blog.

Latest recruitment poster for Sasuke Singapore ©MediaCorp

In awesome news.. Sasuke Singapore is gearing up for their inaugural season!  As I mentioned before, Singapore is the latest country to have their own trials.  Also worth noting that they are very much legitimate and the first country to confirm the existence of Sasuke 28!  ANW4 took place in April, Sasuke Malaysia is taking place in May, 2012, Sasuke Singapore is taking place sometime in June, 2012 and they mention that Sasuke 28 will take place in Japan sometime during the Summer, 2012.

All-Star Toshihiro Takeda 竹田敏浩, All-Star Shingo Yamamoto 山本進悟, All-Star Makoto Nagano 長野誠 and Mister Sasuke All-Star Katsumi Yamada 山田勝己 ©Konpiramal
(Photo from the 2011 Maguro Festival)

Finally, as I mentioned before, this weekend is the 2012 Maguro Festival.  There's a small list of participants already lined up to fly to Kagoshima for this annual event but until I see pics of the event I can't verify exactly who will be there this year as part of the demonstrations.  Check back next week as I hope to have photos of the event!

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