A Blackpool zookeeper ran headfirst into ‘the world’s most difficult obstacle course’ in a national TV show to find the country’s most daring athlete.
Father-of-one Adam Kenyon, 31, battled his way to ninth place on ITV’s high-energy reality show Ninja Warrior UK on Saturday before falling at the final hurdle.
He sped across the Quintuple Steps, where contestants must jump across five slanted platforms over a pool of water, before keeping his balance on the Spinning Log and maintaining a solid grip on the Pole Slider, where contestants must cling to a zipwire which drops suddenly towards the end.
But the last obstacle before the semi-final proved too much for Blackpool Zoo’s mammal expert, as he failed to swing from a horizontal bar onto a cargo net and plunged into the water below.
Adam said: “I was a bit disappointed but some of the other contestants did really well and they just had that bit more luck and ability to see them through.” Adam applied for Ninja Warrior UK in Spring last year. He had to undergo a series of fitness tests along with other applicants before being selected for the show, which is filmed in Manchester.
He said: “I think they chose me because I’m an interesting person in terms of my job - it’s something that’s a bit out of the ordinary. It certainly helps that the zoo keeps you active every day moving food sacks around, pushing wheelbarrows filled with dung, and even moving animals themselves if they have to see a vet!”
Now Adam is planning on putting his training to use in a gruelling five-day trek across freezing Iceland to raise money for the NSPCC’s childline initiative alongside World Superbike Champion Carl Fogarty and TV personality Jake Quickenden next month.
He added that he has not given up on the hope of being the first British person to complete Ninja Warrior’s challenging obstacle course, which ends with a 75ft rope climb.
He said: “People have been asking me if I’ll apply again, and watching it back I think I could have done better.
“There’s been a lot of banter from my workmates that’s all in good fun but everybody’s been really supportive and proud of how I did. I still think I’ve got it in me to be the UK’s first Ninja Warrior!”