Yamamoto Shingo (山本 進悟) is a former gas station manager from Tokyo. He is part of the SASUKE All-Stars. He is the only person to have competed in every SASUKE competition, and the only person to have attempted both the first and second version of the Final Stage. He usually competed in his gas station uniform shirt and cap (always with Esso/Mobil branding) until SASUKE 28 when he changed careers.
Much note is made of Yamamoto's career and personal successes. These include his promotions at the Hasegawa service station, where he started as a gas jockey in the 1st Competition. He became manager before the 6th and was announced as a district manager at the 17th. His personal achievements include his marriage after the 5th competition and the building of his home in Tokyo, complete with a SASUKE training course.
Of the 37 tournaments he has entered, he has passed the First Stage 16 times, the Second Stage 11 times, and the Third Stage twice. He is one of only six competitors who have reached the Final Stage more than once (the others being Omori Akira, Nagano Makoto, Urushihara Yuuji, Matachi Ryo and Morimoto Yusuke). He has worn high numbers numerous times after reaching the Final Stage in SASUKE 3. Yamamoto also competed on VIKING, failing the Swing Mast in the First Marine Stage after his feet touched the water.
In SASUKE 1, he blazed through the First Stage and finished with 29 seconds left, but in the Second Stage he came up short at the very end of the Goren Hammer. He would return in SASUKE 2 and advance all the way to the Third Stage for the first time in his career. However, on the new Pipe Slider, he ran out of gas midway across the second track. In SASUKE 3 he took his revenge on the Pipe Slider and made it to the Final Stage, running out of time about two meters short of the goal. Expectations for his performance in SASUKE 4 were high given his recent track record, but he stumbled early on the Yureru Hashi--an obstacle he had never struggled with--and dropped out on the First Stage.
Following Akiyama Kazuhiko's Kanzenseiha in the previous tournament, the First Stage saw two major additions in the Jump Hang and the Soritatsu Kabe. These obstacles played significant roles in the harsh clear drought experienced throughout the stage, but Yamamoto put up an expert performance, becoming one of just three challengers to defeat it, and even went on to be the only athlete to complete Stage 2. All eyes were on Yamamoto in the Third Stage, and while he completed the new Body Prop and redesigned Cliffhanger on his first attempt at each, the Pipe Slider attained its revenge when he was unable to make the jump to the final platform, ending the tournament. Shortly before SASUKE 6, Yamamoto had reason to hold his spirits high after being promoted to a managerial position at the gas station he was employed at. However, this positivity proved itself to be short-lived when Yamamoto shockingly lost his grip on the Rolling Maruta in Stage 1. Shingo seemed to return with a vengeance in SASUKE 7, taking down the first two stages once more and achieving victory in a rematch against the Pipe Slider, becoming the first competitor to ever attempt the second version of the Final Stage. However, shortly after beginning his climb, he dislocated his shoulder in the walls of the new Spider Climb, foreshadowing recurring issues for years to come and dropping back to the start, effectively ending his run. He battled through the slick conditions of the course in SASUKE 8, reaching the very end of Stage 1, but in his rush to reach the top of the Rope Climb, his feet slipped out from under him, causing him to fall backward as time expired. Shingo continued to push himself to improve, returning once more to the Third Stage in the next tournament, but this run, too, came up short when he dismounted the new Rumbling Dice awkwardly and fell into the water. In SASUKE 10 he overcame the significant difficulty increase of the Jump Hang only to get caught up on the Tarzan Rope, resulting in time expiring on the Rope Climb for a second time.
Another strong run in SASUKE 11 led him back to the Third Stage once again. However, facing off with the third version of the Cliffhanger for the first time, he was unable to complete the transfer to the third ledge. The Cliffhanger would catch him again in the next tournament, though a struggle on the beginning of the Lamp Grasper was likely a large factor in draining his energy. SASUKE 13's redesigned First Stage posed few issues to the veteran Yamamoto, but after getting caught up on the Chain Reaction and having to make a huge dive for the landing platform on the Balance Tank, his rush to the finish was ultimately fruitless when his foot got trapped at the end of Wall Lifting as the clock ran out. Shingo would defeat the Second Stage again, even overcoming the new Metal Spin, in SASUKE 14 to make his eighth Third Stage appearance. His lack of experience on the Curtain Cling was prevalent in this attempt, though, and he lost his grip. The brutal heat of SASUKE 15 bared its teeth in the First Stage as Yamamoto narrowly won a battle with the time limit, then went on to claim the fastest finish in Stage 2 to return to Stage 3 for the second time in a row. On the Body Prop an obstacle he had completed in his five previous attempts, Shingo began to struggle before suddenly dropping out of the walls into the water. Yamamoto returned as expected in the 16th competition, but after nearly fatal errors on the Sandan Rolling Maruta and Cross Bridge, a poor jump on the Jump Hang resulted in failure when his feet skimmed the water and ended his run. His struggles with the Body Prop returned in SASUKE 17, as he failed there again after returning to the Third Stage. Yamamoto ended the first major era of competition unable to achieve victory, and the years seemed to be creeping up on him. Still, though, his passion and love for SASUKE drove him to continue, even if his body was no longer in its prime.
Yamamoto's time with Shin-SASUKE, the era that began after Nagano Makoto's Kanzenseiha in SASUKE 17, was turbulent. His First Stage run in SASUKE 18 started strongly, but on the new Flying Chute, he never got a decent grip on the rope and tumbled into the water. SASUKE 19's notoriety affected Shingo as much as every other competitor, and after getting hung up on the Pole Maze, he was unable to overcome the significantly larger jump into the walls of the Jumping Spider.
In SASUKE 20, his run was perfect up until the Half-Pipe Attack. He reached the rope, but when landing, he failed to steady himself and fell off the side of the mat. Determined to avenge recent shortcomings, he fought back to the Flying Chute in SASUKE 21 with over a minute remaining and finally caught the rope. This time, however, he failed to commit to grabbing the net underneath the slide and got stranded on the rope without hope of recovery until he ultimately hit the water.
SASUKE 22 is home to one of Shingo's most infamous failures. Wearing the #31 bib, he ran abnormally early. In a return to the Half-Pipe Attack, he once again caught the rope and landed on the finish platform. Getting up to run across the bridge to the Soritatsu Kabe, however, he failed to take note of a modification to the angle of the ramp from previous tournaments. Because of this, he lost his balance and fell off the side of the platform. Despite his efforts to hang onto the platform and potentially hold himself up to stay dry, his legs dragged through the water, much to the frustration of his fellow All-Stars.
In SASUKE 23, Yamamoto at long last broke through, defeating the First Stage for the first time since the 17th tournament. Adding onto this success, his inexperience with the Shin-SASUKE layout of the Second Stage could not stand in his way as he completed the Salmon Ladder, Metal Spin, and everything else to finish the course narrowly within the time limit. In his tenth appearance in the Third Stage, Yamamoto was determined to get as far as he could--but as it turned out, that would not equate to a deep run. At the end of the Second Stage, he had gotten caught under the third wall of Wall Lifting, and though he had managed to make it under, his shoulder was noticeably taped up following the run. On the first obstacle of the Third Stage, the Arm Rings, Yamamoto got hung up and was almost immediately overcome with pain--his shoulder had been re-injured. Heeding his fellow competitors' advice, Shingo deemed it was in his best interest to let go and drop into the water in order to prevent further injury. This would be the last time he ever reached the Third Stage in competition.
Yamamoto had a strong run in SASUKE 24 until the Half-Pipe Attack bore down on his chances of clearing once more. Unable to commit to dismounting to the landing platform, Shingo retreated to the half-pipe twice before finally letting go of the rope and draining the clock. The timer continued to tick down further as he struggled to scale the Soritatsu Kabe, and while he was able to eventually reach the top and complete the Slider Jump, his pace was visibly affected by fatigue, and he ran out of time before reaching the Rope Ladder. Shingo ended the first segment of Shin-SASUKE having failed the First Stage eleven times in his career.
Following Urushihara Yuji's Kanzenseiha in 24, the First Stage was outfitted with numerous obstacles from tournaments past. This played greatly to the advantage of the only man to compete in every competition, as Yamamoto's struggles with the course were few, leading him to defeat the stage with almost seven seconds to spare. Progressing further into the Second Stage than even the returning champion, Yamamoto returned to the Balance Tank which had been redesigned in the previous competition. Trying to use past experience to guide him through the obstacle, he attempted to jump off the tank midway through the track. This proved itself to be a lapse in judgement, as he was unable to grab the hanging rope and fell. This would be the first time Shingo had gone the farthest of all six All-Stars since his last Final Stage attempt in SASUKE 7.
In SASUKE 25, Yamamoto did the best out of the All-Stars in that competition. He had small struggles in the First Stage, but cleared with 6.85 seconds left. In the Second Stage, He failed the redesigned Balance Tank, he tried to jump midway through the track like he had done in previous tournaments. However, he couldn't grab the rope and failed. However, this is his first time Shingo made it the furthest out of the All-Stars since SASUKE 7 and his first time failing the Second Stage since SASUKE 13.
In SASUKE 26, Yamamoto wore #94 and was one of just three All-Stars to attend. During the tournament, he cleared the first two obstacles easily. However, on the Rolling Escargot, he lost his footing and failed there..
Before SASUKE 29, there was a rumor that the All-Stars would no longer compete, but the rumor was proven to be false, as Yamamoto competed again, wearing #36 alongside his fellow former All-Stars, Nagano Makoto and Takeda Toshihiro. He managed to clear the First Stage. However, on the Second stage, he was unfamiliar with many obstacles and he fell victim of the reduced time limit. He made it to the middle of the Backstream before retreating and stopping there due to the force of the jets. Ultimately, he timed out. In his post-run interview he stated that he was surprised by the power of the Backstream's current as he is a good swimmer.
In SASUKE 30, Yamamoto cleared the First Stage despite being digested. In the Second Stage, Yamamoto tired himself out on the first four obstacles and for the second straight tournament failed the Backstream when he involuntarily sucked in some water and had to retreat to the side of the pool to catch his breath, ultimately timing out.
In SASUKE 32, Yamamoto competed with the number 99 (wore this number for the first time). His run was digested (although his full run was shown on Challenge), but he failed the Double Pendulum when he attempted to transition to the sandbag on his first swing and could not get a grip.
His streak of failing the Double Pendulum continued in SASUKE 34, as he failed the obstacle for the third consecutive time. This time he got a grip on the trapeze bar, but his right hand missed and he slipped off.
In SASUKE 37, Yamamoto wore #84 and he avenged his past two defeats by completing the Wing Slider and the Fish Bone. However he did not jump far enough on the Dragon Glider and missed the first bar with his right hand, resulting in failure.
In January of 2010, Yamamoto along with fellow SASUKE All-Stars Nagano Makoto and Takeda Toshihiro, made his debut in Pro Sportsman No. 1 with the 2010 Monster Box competition. He cleared up to the 13th level, failing on the 14th level at 2 meters, 16 centimeters.
- He is the only competitor to attempt the first two versions of Final Stage.
- He is the only competitor to have attempted and clear all four versions of the Spider Walk.
- He is the only competitor to have competed in every single SASUKE competition.
- He is the only competitor to have fail at the First Stage 20 times.
- He is the only All-Star that never failed Soritatsu Kabe in any SASUKE competition. However, he did fail this obstacle in the SASUKE 13 Trials and American Ninja Warrior: USA vs. Japan. Both of which were due to handicaps (rain on the course and losing his shoes respectively).
- He is the only All-Star to have never cleared Cliffhanger Kai, the Third version of the Cliffhanger.
- He was the first man to clear the Ugokukabe, Spider Climb, Hang Move, Version 2 of the Spider Walk, Body Prop and Version 2 of the Cliffhanger.
- He is the only competitor to wear #90, #91, #92, #93, #94, #95, #96, #97, #98 and #99.
- Yamamoto is the only All-Star to make it past the Swap Salmon Ladder.
- Yamamoto had the lowest number to reach the Final Stage in SASUKE 3, with #13.
- There is a running joke that every time Yamamoto wears his hat in the First Stage he fails.
- From competitions 11 to 23, each time Yamamoto attempted the Third Stage, he would fail at an earlier position than previously.
- He is the only All-Star to attempt the Backstream.
- From tournaments 3 to 12, he would usually do worst than before and do good the next tournament.
- He is the only All-Star to fail the Rolling Maruta, the Rumbling Dice and the Tarzan Rope.
- He and Akiyama Kazuhiko are the only All-Stars to fail the Half-Pipe Attack.
|1||7||Failed Goren Hammer (Second Stage)||Cleared all five hammers, but lost his balance and fell at the end.|
|2||20||Failed Pipe Slider (Third Stage)|
|3||13||Failed Tsuna Nobori (Final Stage)||Time Out. About 12.5 meters up.|
|4||98||Failed Yureru Hashi (First Stage)|
|5||98||Failed Pipe Slider (Third Stage)||Failed Jump. Last Man Standing.|
|6||96||Failed Rolling Maruta (First Stage)|
|7||97||Withdrew, Spider Climb (Final Stage)||Withdrew due to a recurring shoulder injury about 2.5 meters up. Last Man Standing. First competitor to clear the Third Stage following Akiyama Kazuhiko's Kanzenseiha.|
|8||98||Failed Rope Climb (First Stage)||Time Out.|
|9||98||Failed Rumbling Dice (Third Stage)||He completed the main part of the obstacle, but landed poorly on the platform and fell off. Last Man Standing.|
|10||998||Failed Rope Climb (First Stage)||Time Out.|
|11||98||Failed Cliffhanger (Third Stage)|
|12||96||Failed Cliffhanger (Third Stage)|
|13||76||Failed Wall Lifting (Second Stage)||Time Out. His left foot was trapped by the third wall.|
|14||98||Failed Curtain Cling (Third Stage)|
|15||95||Failed Body Prop (Third Stage)|
|16||97||Failed Jump Hang (First Stage)||Foot skimmed the water catching the net.|
|17||98||Failed Body Prop (Third Stage)|
|18||61||Failed Flying Chute (First Stage)|
|19||81||Failed Jumping Spider (First Stage)|
|20||1981||Failed Half-Pipe Attack (First Stage)||Failed Landing.|
|21||71||Failed Flying Chute (First Stage)||He caught the rope at the end of the obstacle, but came to a dead stop. His foot skimmed the water while trying to gain momentum.|
|22||31||Failed Half-Pipe Attack/Soritatsu Kabe (First Stage)||Completed obstacle but lost his balance running across the bridge leading to the Soritatsu Kabe and hit the water.|
|23||93||Withdrew, Arm Rings (Third Stage)||Withdrew due to injury.|
|24||96||Failed Tarzan Rope (First Stage)||Time Out.|
|25||90||Failed Balance Tank (Second Stage)||Failed when jumping to the rope.|
|26||94||Failed Rolling Escargot (First Stage)|
|27||81||Failed Spin Bridge (First Stage)|
|28||98||Failed Spin Bridge (First Stage)|
|29||36||Failed Backstream (Second Stage)||Time Out.|
|30||2992||Failed Backstream (Second Stage)||Time Out. Began to have difficulty breathing.|
|31||92||Failed Rolling Hill (First Stage)||Jumped off the top of the obstacle and missed the landing platform.|
|32||99||Failed Double Pendulum (First Stage)||Digest. Full run shown on Challenge.|
|33||91||Failed Double Pendulum (First Stage)||Missed the trapeze after jumping from the trampoline.|
|34||92||Failed Double Pendulum (First Stage)|
|35||74||Failed Fish Bone (First Stage)|
|36||81||Failed Wing Slider (First Stage)|
|37||84||Failed Dragon Glider (First Stage)||Trampoline jump to first bar.|
|2||72||Swing Mast (First Marine Stage)||His foot skimmed the water.|
|2010||N/A||Failed 14th level (2m16cm)||50 competitor Monster Box competition.|