Seven Indian-Americans Rishik Gandhasri of California, Saketh Sundar of Maryland, Sohum Sukhatankar, Abhijay Kodali and Rohan Raja of Texas, Shruthika Padhy and Christopher Serrao of New Jersey and an American Erin Howard of Alabama made history by jointly winning the 2019 Spelling Bee Championship.
2019 National Spelling Bee Champions
This is the first time that eight youngsters have jointly won the Spelling Bee.
The Octo-champs and their Winning Words
1) Rishik Gandhasri (13) was the first champion. Auslaut was the winning word of this seventh grader from Chaboya Middle School in San Jose, CA
2) The winning word of second champion Erin Howard (14) of Huntsville, AL was Erysipelas. Erin Howard is an eighth grader from Mountain Gap P-8 School.
3) Saketh Sundar, (13) was the third champion. The winning word of this eighth grader from Clarksville Middle School, MD is Bougainvillea.
4) Cherry Hill, New Jersey Indian kid Shruthika Padhy (13) was the fourth one to join the 2019 Spelling Bee Octo-champs. Aiguillette was the winning word of this eighth grade student from Rosa International Middle School.
5) Sohum Sukhatankar (13), of Dallas, TX spelled Pendeloque correctly to become the fifth champion. Sohum is a seventh grader from St. Mark’s School of Texas.
6) Abhijay Kodali (12) who finished third last year spelled Palama correctly to become the sixth champion. Abhijay is a sixth grader from McKamy Middle School in Flower Mound, TX.
7) Whitehouse Station, NJ seventh grader Christopher Serrao (13) spelled Cernuous correctly to join the 2019 Spelling Bee Octo-champs.
8) Rohan Raja (13), of Irving, TX spelled Odylic correctly to become the eighth champion. Rohan is a seventh grader from Coppell Middle School West.
And, this is the fifteenth year in a row that Indian-Americans are taking the Spelling Bee cup home.
Other Indian-American Spelling Bee Champions
Indian-Americans have been basically competing against each other in recent years.
Here’s a list of Indian-American Spelling Bee champions since 2000:
2018 – Karthik Nemmani
2017 – Ananya Vinay
2016 – Jairam Hathwar & Nihar Janga
2015 – Gokul Venkatachalam & Vanya Shivashankar
2014 – Ansun Sujoe & Sriram Hathwar
2013 – Arvind Mahankali
2012 – Snigdha Nandipati
2011 – Sukanya Roy
2010 – Anamika Veeramani
2009 – Kavya Shivashankar
2008 – Sameer Mishra
2005 – Anurag Kashyap
2003 – Sai R.Gunturi
2002 – Pratyush Buddiga
2000 – George Abraham Thampy