Champions were crowned at the first-ever in-person Canadian Ninja League (CNL) National Finals that wrapped up after three days of competition at Langley Events Centre on Sunday, Oct. 10.
Two hundred and 45 competitors – as young as six years old up and all the way to adult professional divisions – from four different provinces battled for not only national bragging rights, but also for coveted berths to the 2023 World Ninja League Championships set for Greensboro, North Carolina.
Among the top finishers, Albertans Stephen Ling and Brynn Friesen took first in the pro categories.
Ling, a top-ranked Canadian Ninja competitor and coach, finished eight obstacles with only two fails in the pro men’s event final, while Friesen, a coach and former pole vaulter on the national Canadian track and field team, completed four in the women’s event.
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Sylas Snider and Kody O’Brien were second and third among pro men, while Summer Dirckx and Meaghan Straathof took silver and bronze in the women’s.
Sharon Brown-John completed seven obstacles to take the masters women title, while Tchad Toussant won masters men with six.
It was the third year for the Canadian Ninja League, but the first time they have hosted a full national championships, and Ryan Chow was thrilled with the weekend.
“What a fantastic weekend this was,” said Chow, the co-founder of the CNL alongside his brother Michael. “This is a massive steppingstone for our sport, and we are looking to grow this even more.”
There were three different rigs for the competitors, each specially-designed for the different age groups and genders.
“Every single time you host an event, the kids surprise you. You put these meticulously hard challenges in front of them and parents tell you they are not even possible, but time after time, the kids come out and prove everybody wrong,” Chow said.
The weekend would not have been possible, however, without a massive number of volunteers.
“It takes a village to do something like this,” he said of the swarm of volunteers, which exceeded more than 100.
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RESULTS (Age group: First, second and third place)
6-8 Girls: Claire Norris, Emily Toye, Ava Sihota
6-8 Boys: Salem Steele, Thomas Pridham, Bradyn Kingma
9-10 Girls: Melody O’Brien, Kallee Elliott, Kenzi Gobhai-Rayner
9-10 Boys: Hunter Buesink, Jackson Rycroft, Zaiden Laurie
11-12 Girls: Maelle DePape, Lily Brown-John, Braylynn Mandich-Sinasac
11-12 Boys: Oliver Ashley, Jaxson Ross, Tanner Eidt
13-14 Girls: Nora Brown-John, Talya Francis, Maara Bryson
13-14 Boys: Owen Mitchelson, Rory Jago, Aidan Thomas
15-17 Girls: Nia Cherdarchuk, Emma Vaartstra, Sameera Moffatt
15-17 Boys: Zach Toussaint, Spencer O’Brien, Drew Klein
Amateur Women: Cassie Peake, Rylee Danchuk-Little, Alison Ropp
Amateur Men: Jeremy Johnson, Tyler Hamilton, Jacob Ariss
Masters Women: Sharon Brown-John, Alma Chan, Monica Micek
Masters Men: Tchad Toussaint, Lucas Rycroft, Dennis Magtoto
Pro Women: Brynn Friesen, Summer Dirckx, Meaghan Straathof
Pro Men: Stephen Ling, Sylas Snider, Kody O’Brien
For full results, click here.
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