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American Ninja Warrior serves up obstacle after obstacle designed to put one’s grip strength to the test. So, it came as little surprise, that the first contestant to complete the Pittsburgh Finals course sports Popeye-esque forearms and a vice-like grip.

Geoff Britten, a sports cameraman for college football games, showed why he is known throughout the ninja community as one of their strongest — breezing through the course in the night’s fastest time of 6:44.81.


In March, Britten posted a mind-blowing YouTube video wherein he elevates a free floating pull-up bar (known as a Salmon Ladder) while hanging from one arm. We can only surmise that spinach is a staple of his diet.

Popeye aka Geoff Britten stars on 'American Ninja Warrior'


The only other competitor at the Pittsburgh Finals to ascend the 30-feet-high Invisible Ladder and tap the red buzzer was ANW stalwart Joe “The Weatherman” Moravsky. After losing grip on one of the two hand rings just below the portal to the platform, Moravsky completed the course in the most dramatic way possible.


Green-haired Jamie Rahn, better known as “Captain NBC,” came within inches of the finishing platform, but ultimately succumbed to every ninja’s arch nemesis — gravity. Rahn, a la Peter Parker, learned how to sew his own superhero suit after wearing out the previous one which was a gift.

Captain NBC, The Weatherman, and Popeye will all be racing again in a couple weeks time at ANW’s Vegas National Finals. Fan-favorite Michelle Warnky didn’t fare as well in Pittsburgh, but we’re confident she’s earned a wildcard slot in Vegas.