Indian-American Arvind Mahankali, after years of close calls, won the Scripps National Spelling Bee on 30 May 2013. It was the 86th version of the competition. Arvind who hails from Bayside Hills, New York correctly spelled knaidel, a German-derived Yiddish word for a small mass of leavened dough to win the competition.
The bee tested brain power, composure and, for the first time, knowledge of vocabulary. Arvind finished in third place in both 2011 and 2012, and both times, he was eliminated on German-derived words.
This time, he got two German-derived words in the finals, including the winning word, eliciting groans and laughter from the crowd. He spelled both with ease. Thirteen-year-old Pranav Sivakumar of Tower Lakes, Illinois, finished second.
The Scripps National Spelling Bee (formerly the Scripps Howard National Spelling Bee and commonly called the National Spelling Bee) is an annual spelling bee in the United States, with participants from the U.S., Canada, Mexico, Jamaica, New Zealand, Ghana and The Bahamas. The National Spelling Bee was formed in 1925.