'Covfefe' stumps 2017 National Spelling Bee Champion Ananya Vinay

Solenn Plantier
Juin 5, 2017

A 12-year-old speller from Fresno, California, Ananya Vinay was declared champion of the 2017 Scripps National Spelling Bee, held at the Gaylord Resort and Convention Centre at National Habour Maryland, USA and presented by Kindle. After failing to break into the top 50 last year she came back this year with a vengeance and a fool-proof strategy. Ananya is taking home over $40,000 in cash and prizes. "She's just so dedicated, spelling is her life, I'm just so glad for her", said Mia Uller, friend.

Even though she knew countless people were tuning in - and even though marocain was all that stood between her and the trophy - Vinay didn't do what we would have done (which, of course, is curl up in a ball and sing "Amazing Grace" as we rock back and forth in panic).

It was at that moment Ananya's winning streak came to a screeching halt.

"She panicked. It was not a hard word", said her father, Vinay Sreekumar. Now, she'll return only in a ceremonial role to help present the trophy to next year's victor.

Still holding the trophy, the Golden State Warriors fan wished her team good luck in the ongoing National Basketball Association finals.

Running up to Vinay was Rohan Rajeev of Edmond, Oklahoma, also an Indian-American. "She definitely has a procedure, a method she uses, she even used it at the district test- all those things", said Ken Engel, Spelling Team Advisor. Rohan's close call was even more heartbreaking.

Ananya is the 13th consecutive Indian-American to win the bee and the 18th of the past 22 winners with Indian heritage, a run that began in 1999 with Nupur Lala's victory, which was featured in the documentary "Spellbound".

Mira Dedhia, trying to become the first offspring of a past competitor to win, finished third. Her mother, Lekshmi Nair, competed in 1988, 1989 and 1990. "20 championship rounds is enough, you're both winners!" "That's the only good answer we've heard about that word in days", he added.

"I was honestly, absolutely shocked". "Shourav is one of the greatest spellers of all time and he's probably the best speller that never won".

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