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Morimoto Yūsuke (森本 裕介) is an IDEC Software Engineer who began competing on SASUKE when he was just 15. He has since become one of the most successful competitors of the show's history, achieving Kanzenseiha in SASUKE 31 and SASUKE 38, one of only two people to achieve the feat twice. He also posted a record of 425m on the Skywalker Monkey Bars Challenge in 2011, a record that stood for more than 10 years. He started watching the show since SASUKE 3 at the age of 7, watching Yamada Katsumi's near miss on the Final Stage, and he was hooked ever since then.


Early Appearances

After watching Nagano Makoto's Kanzenseiha on TV in 2006, he made his debut in SASUKE 18 where he performed well in the race, finishing in the top half and as a result, was able to pick a high number, #91. As the tournament's youngest, he climbed up to the start line in a white T-Shirt with "in training" written on it, stating "I will be the youngest clear!" during his introduction. During the tournament, he displayed strong speed. Although he got caught on the Pole Maze, he was able to pass it in good time. When he reached the Jumping Spider, he jumped on the trampoline accurately but failed to get his legs up to the walls.

He returned in SASUKE 19, wearing #71. He wore all black (resembling Nagano Makoto) with a shirt caption "I'm still in training". At the Pole Maze, he lost a lot of time due to the pole being stuck, but was eventually able to clear it with 50 seconds left. Despite the increased difficulty on the Jumping Spider, Morimoto was able to stick the landing and become one of few that day to clear the obstacle. With little time left, he made it to the new Half-Pipe Attack, but lost his footing and was unable to grab onto the rope.

He has applied for SASUKE 20, but had broke his leg whilst training for the Soritatsu Kabe just one week before the tournament, meaning he was unable to compete.

He was able to compete in SASUKE 21, wearing the #52, but was unable to complete the Jumping Spider in an all cut performance, as he had a good jump on the trampoline but had bad timing whilst sticking the landing, falling onto the black mat below the trampoline.

In SASUKE 22, with the #27, he put on his best performance to date at the time. After his fail in the last tournament, he sent in another application, this time featuring him clearing the Jumping Spider 100 times straight. His training paid off, as he was able to get his revenge on both the Jumping Spider and Half-Pipe Attack, but was unable to scale the Soritatsu Kabe. Like the previous tournament, this run was also cut, but both were revealed by him through interviews, and eventually through his own YouTube channel.

He continued to apply from SASUKE 23 to SASUKE 26, but was not accepted each time. Finally, at the age of 19, Morimoto would return to SASUKE again, this time in SASUKE 27 with the #84. Although he was digested, he finally cleared the First Stage as many did for their first time that day. In the Second Stage, Morimoto would fail the Metal Spin.


SASUKE RISING

He was unable to compete in SASUKE 28, but was able to compete in SASUKE 29 as part of the SASUKE 29 Trials, in which he placed 7th. He wore #79 in the actual tournament, and cleared the First Stage for the second straight time, with 9.69 seconds left. Morimoto then broke the streak of 10 straight Second Stage failures before him by barely clearing the stage with just 0.81 seconds remaining. His clear would not be possible if he lifted the third wall of the Passing Wall, as he only slipped under the third wall (due to the one foot gap placed under the wall) without lifting it. The Third Stage was timed to identify the competitor, if any, that cleared the stage in the fastest time. He struggled for over a minute on the Iron Paddler. However, because of the timer, he was allowed to rest for as long as he wanted, unlike in other competitions where a competitor can only rest for 30 seconds. After resting for over 5 minutes, he became the first person to beat the Crazy Cliffhanger. He cleared the next two obstacles, the Curtain Cling and the Vertical Limit with ease. However, on the Pipe Slider, he kept struggling to keep the bar even on the tracks, and eventually came up just short on the dismount.

He went the farthest in the tournament, which led him to be selected as Japan's representative in SASUKE ASEAN Open Cup 2014, which was held in February 2014 in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. There, he put on a strong showing for Team Japan in multiple categories. In the Jump Stage, he completed it in 18.32 seconds, placing fourth and missing out on the Bronze medal. In the Power Stage, he completed it within 15.12 seconds placing 20th. But in the Hang Stage, he completed it in 40.27 seconds, the second fastest time that only bested by Drew Drechsel. This run gained him the Silver medal in the event. He also participated in the Group Event, where along with Asa Kazuma, Kanno Hitoshi, Takahashi Kenji, and Yamamoto Shingo, they grabbed the Silver medal.

Due to this performance, he was invited back to SASUKE 30 with the coveted #3000 (#100 in regular tournaments, the first competitor since SASUKE 18 to wear the number who wasn't a former Champion). He cleared the First Stage with 11.16 seconds left on the clock. However, in the Second Stage, Morimoto had faced a lot of pressure, and despite seemingly going smoothly, he struggled on the Wall Lifting, sandwiching himself between the third wall as his attempt came to a close.

Morimoto also competed in American Ninja Warrior: USA vs. The World. He first competed in the Second Stage of the first heat against Brian Arnold and Stefano Ghisolfi. Morimoto started strong, but due to his height he was unable to catch the Butterfly Wall and failed the match after Brian Arnold cleared Stage 2. On Stage 3, Morimoto competed in the second heat with Joe Moravsky and Stefano Ghisolfi. Morimoto managed to clear the stage and according to sources should've won his match as he finished a few seconds faster than Ghisolfi, however, NBC used cutaways to the crowd to add time to his run that he didn't take, thus making it seem as if he went slower than Ghisolfi.


Kanzenseiha

Morimoto achieving Kanzenseiha in SASUKE 31

Morimoto donned the #91 bib for SASUKE 31, the same starting position as the tournament he debuted in. He beat the First Stage with little trouble, clearing with 9.26 seconds left. In the Second Stage, he got revenge on the Wall Lifting and cleared with 19.41 seconds, the fastest time of the day. He put up a strong performance in the Third Stage, clearing the Iron Paddler, which he struggled two years ago, with ease. He cleared the Crazy Cliffhanger a second time, becoming the only man to ever do so. He then struggled with the Vertical Limit Kai, but passed it and got his revenge on the Pipe Slider, landing with both feet on the mat. He made it to the Final Stage for the first time, becoming the only competitor to do so in that tournament. After his Third Stage clear, he had admitted that he had wanted to scale the Final Stage tower for his grandfather, who had said he wanted to see a Kanzenseiha "whilst I'm still alive." In the Final Stage, watched faithfully by his parents and sister, Morimoto showed great speed. He finished the Spider Climb at a great pace, reaching the Tsuna Nobori with around 20 seconds left. He climbed with blistering speed but ended up having to push his body to reach the final button. This did not cause him any trouble as he achieved Kanzenseiha with 2.59 seconds left, becoming the fourth person in history to achieve Kanzenseiha, and the first competitor to beat the Final Stage in his first attempt since All-Star Akiyama Kazuhiko sixteen years ago.

After this, Morimoto graduated from his college and got a job at IDEC in Osaka in April 2016, meaning he would miss out on SASUKE 32.


Post-SASUKE RISING

In a Nico Nico broadcast with the Director of SASUKE Inui Masato, it was confirmed that Morimoto would return for SASUKE 33, where he would wear #100. His first run back would be a little bit messy, tripping in front of the Tie Fighter and losing his balance on the opposite bank of the Fishbone, missing the water by just a few inches. Still, Morimoto marked his return with a First Stage clear with 6.60 seconds left. Then, in the Second Stage, he cleared the Backstream and Reverse Conveyor combo that had felled almost everyone else with ease, clearing with 16.51 seconds remaining - a time faster than anybody else. In the Third Stage, with the other competitors already eliminated, Morimoto carried out his attempt as the Last Man Standing. He got past the Drum Hopper Kai, but was unable to beat the Flying Bar as he overshot the bar to the second cradle. The tournament ended with no Third Stage clears.

Because of his close call on the Fishbone in the previous tournament, he would train for the Fishbone using four vinyl rope cases as pedestals. Once again wearing #100, this training would pay off in SASUKE 34. He would get his revenge on the Fishbone, show amazing speed on the Lumberjack Climb (clearing it in just four seconds), and clear the First Stage with 8.24 seconds remaining. Then, he once again cleared the Second Stage with 13.47 seconds left. In the Third Stage, he would clear the now modified Flying Bar and went on to become the second competitor to clear the Ultra Crazy Cliffhanger. Unfortunately, when he attempted the Vertical Limit Kai, he lost his grip halfway through the first section of the obstacle when he ran out of stamina. He did however, for the third time in his career, progress further than any other competitors.

In SASUKE 35, even with the course having new modifications, he would return to the Third Stage. Now with a green resting bar added between the Ultra Crazy Cliffhanger and Vertical Limit Kai (called simply as Vertical Limit in that tournament), he would became the first person to clear the obstacle and the stage, becoming the first person in SASUKE history to attempt the Final Stage after his own Kanzenseiha. In the Final Stage, the Salmon Ladder Jūgo Dan was newly added. He had difficulty completing the obstacle and would eventually time out six meters up the Tsuna Nobori.


Morimoto returned in SASUKE 36, wearing #100 for the fourth straight time. In the tournament, he once again cleared the First Stage, this time with 8.97 seconds left, two seconds quicker than he was in the previous tournament. He also cleared the unchanged Second Stage with 12.83 seconds left. He then went on to face the Third Stage, once again as the last man standing with all others being defeated. Morimoto cleared the Third Stage and became the first person to attempt Final Stage in front of a live crowd on New Year's Eve. Morimoto started off strong and cleared the Spider Climb quickly. He was then back onto the Salmon Ladder Jūgo Dan. Despite making a small error shortly after beginning, he recovered and flew up the ladder with strong pace, showing that his training had paid off. However, once he reached the top of the Salmon Ladder, the rope of Tsuna Nobori moved out of his reach. Morimoto was left hanging for several precious seconds, before the rope finally came back into his reach. Exhausted by the Salmon Ladder, Morimoto was unable to ascend the rope as fast he had hoped. He kept climbing but ultimately ran out of time 0.5 metres away from victory, with him being close enough to touch the button from where his run ceased.

He then competed in SASUKE 37, once again wearing #100. He was expected to reach the Final Stage for a third straight time (matching Ōmori Akira and Nagano Makoto's three consecutive Final Stage attempts record), however, he shocked everyone when he timed out on the Soritatsu Kabe that had caused particular damage that tournament due to the wet weather. This was the first time he failed the Soritatsu Kabe and the First Stage since SASUKE 22, ten years ago.


Second Kanzenseiha

Morimoto achieving Kanzenseiha in SASUKE 38

Returning in SASUKE 38 donning #100 once more, Morimoto would avenge his defeat on Soritatsu Kabe which took him out in the previous tournament and clear the First Stage. He would then beat the Second Stage with 11.21 seconds remaining, the second fastest time in that tournament. On the Third Stage, he would clear the Cliffhanger Dimension on his very first attempt as well as the Vertical Limit Kai and Pipe Slider, clearing the Third Stage for the fourth time. His clear placed him as the competitor with the second most number of Third Stage clears in SASUKE history, behind only Nagano Makoto with five. On the Final Stage, despite bad weather conditions that causing him to slip up on the Salmon Ladder Jugo Dan, he would breeze through the Tsuna Nobori and beat the stage with 2.52 seconds remaining, becoming the second person to achieve Kanzenseiha twice, after Urushihara Yuuji in SASUKE 27. After his Final Stage run, he would be tossed into water as a celebration for his accomplishment, recreating Nagano's famous movement in SASUKE 17, as well as recreating Akiyama and Yamada's hugging scene from SASUKE 4 with Nagano when Nagano was later tossed into the water.

SASUKE Re:BORN

Due to his second kanzenseiha in SASUKE 38, many competitors, including himself, expected he would made it back to the Third and possibly even the Final Stage. However, due to the bad weather in SASUKE 39, Morimoto faced slip ups throughout the course, almost missing the dismount off of the Rolling Hill and even slipping on the Tackle. Ultimately, he was unable to scale the second wall on the Ni Ren Soritatsu Kabe, marking only his third ever fail at the obstacle not moving onto the Second Stage for the first time since SASUKE 37

Trivia

  • In SASUKE 31, Morimoto wore a white watch on his left wrist while attempting the Final Stage.
  • Morimoto is the youngest person to achieve Kanzenseiha, at the age of 23.
    • Coincidentally, the bib number 91 he worn achieving kanzenseiha is the very same bib number he worn at his first appearance in SASUKE.
  • Morimoto, Takeda Toshihiro, Takahashi Kenji, Urushihara Yuuji, and Kanno Hitoshi are the only five people who attempted the most Salmon Ladder variations at five.
    • In addition, everyone except Takeda completed the most Salmon Ladder variations at five.
    • Out of the five competitors, Morimoto is the only one who attempted and cleared the Salmon Ladder Jūgo Dan, but has never attempted the first version of the Salmon Ladder.
  • Morimoto is one of three competitors (the others being Kawaguchi Tomohiro and Matachi Ryo) to clear both the Crazy Cliffhanger and Ultra Crazy Cliffhanger.
    • Morimoto is the only person to clear the Crazy Cliffhanger, Ultra Crazy Cliffhanger and Cliffhanger Dimension.
  • Morimoto is the only person to attempt and clear all versions of Vertical Limit.
  • He is the first person in SASUKE to attempt the Final Stage after his own Kanzenseiha.
  • Morimoto, along with Nagano Makoto, Ōmori Akira, Matachi Ryo, Urushihara Yuuji, and Yamamoto Shingo are the only six competitors to reach the Final Stage more than once.
    • Morimoto, Ōmori, and Nagano are the only ones to have reached the Final Stage in consecutive tournaments.
  • Morimoto finished SASUKE 36 as the competitor who went the furthest once again, thus becoming the second competitor to go the furthest three competitions in a row, after Nagano Makoto.
  • He and Nagano Makoto are the only ones to be Last Man Standing four times in a row (Nagano from SASUKE 11 to SASUKE 14, Morimoto from SASUKE 33 to SASUKE 36).
  • Morimoto is the only Grand Champion to have never used a prop with him at the start of the First Stage (Urushihara entered showing some of his Haruta shoes in SASUKE 22, Nagano in 27 entered with a Japanese flag with messages about the 2011 Tōhoku Earthquake, and Akiyama entered with a string of crabs every time he competed).
  • Morimoto has worn #100 for the highest number of times consecutively, at seven, from SASUKE 33 to SASUKE 39.
    • He also currently second for wearing the same number in consecutive tournaments (wearing #100 in seven consecutive tournaments), only behind Torisawa Katsuhide who wore #3 for eight consecutive tournaments, from SASUKE 30 to SASUKE 37.
  • Morimoto held the record for the second most consecutive First Stage clears, with eight (SASUKE 27, SASUKE 29 to SASUKE 31, and SASUKE 33 to SASUKE 36, being absent in SASUKE 28 and 32, tied with Takeda Toshihiro and Nagano who both did it from SASUKE 11 to SASUKE 18).
  • With his Kanzenseiha in SASUKE 38, he became the first competitor in SASUKE history to achieve Kanzenseiha while wearing #100.
  • He is the second competitor to achieve Kanzenseiha twice in SASUKE, after Urushihara Yuuji in SASUKE 27.
  • As of SASUKE 39, he has the longest tournament span between his first Kanzenseiha in SASUKE 31 and his second Kanzenseiha in SASUKE 38, with seven tournaments.

SASUKE Results

SASUKE # Result Notes
18 91 Failed Jumping Spider (First Stage)
19 71 Failed Half-Pipe Attack (First Stage)
21 52 Failed Jumping Spider (First Stage) All-Cut.
22 27 Failed Soritatsu Kabe (First Stage) All-Cut. Time Out.
27 84 Failed Metal Spin (Second Stage) Digest.
29 79 Failed Pipe Slider (Third Stage) Failed Jump.
30 3000 Failed Wall Lifting (Second Stage) Time Out. Third Wall.
31 91 Kanzenseiha 02.59 seconds left. Last Man Standing.
33 100 Failed Flying Bar (Third Stage) Misjudged the distance of transition from first to second rung. Last Man Standing.
34 100 Failed Vertical Limit Kai (Third Stage) Last Man Standing.
35 100 Failed Tsuna Nobori (Final Stage) Time Out. 20 metres up. First person to attempt Final Stage after his own Kanzenseiha. Last Man Standing.
36 100 Failed Tsuna Nobori (Final Stage) Time Out by 0.5 seconds, 50 cm from the Goal. Last Man Standing.
37 100 Failed Soritatsu Kabe (First Stage) Time Out. Rain made the wall very slick.
38 100 Kanzenseiha 02.52 seconds left. Last Man Standing.
39 100 Failed Ni Ren Soritatsu Kabe (First Stage) Time Out. Rain made the wall very slick.

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