7.23.14 (via Driver of the Year Foundation) – Indy 500 winner, Ryan Hunter-Reay, was named winner of the second quarter Driver of the Year Award 2014.
The 2012 Verizon IndyCar series champion won the voting by an elite panel of American broadcasters and journalists.
Hunter-Reay, 33, won the iconic race in his seventh attempt. The Florida resident also won the Honda Indy Grand Prix in Alabama and was runner-up in the inaugural Indianapolis Grand Prix in the second quarter which ended at the at Pocono IndyCar 500 on July 6th.
“Seems like the good news keeps rolling in after winning the Indy 500,” said a delighted Hunter-Reay just a few days after winning his second-straight ESPY. “It is a tremendous honor to be named the 2nd quarter Driver Of The Year. I want to thank the panel members made up of the top journalists in motorsports who voted for me. I believe this is a testament to IndyCar’s continued growth and momentum. This also speaks volumes as to what a phenomenal race this year’s Indy 500 really was. It is being called one of the best finishes in history, and from the driver’s seat, I couldn’t agree more.”
Barry Schmoyer, President of the DRIVER OF THE YEAR Foundation, said “Ryan’s story of a driver who never gives up is the prototypical American success story. Watching his career and his triumphs makes him a great role model.”
In the voting, Hunter-Reay, who drives the No. 28 DHL Dallara-Honda for Andretti Autosport, had eight first-place ballots and totaled 102 points according to the DRIVER OF THE YEAR points system. Jimmie Johnson, who drives the No. 48 Lowe’s Chevrolet SS in NASCAR, garnered six first-place votes and totaled 84 points. Antron Brown, who drives the Matco Tools Top Fuel dragster in the NHRA, was third in the balloting with 45 points.
NASCAR’s Brad Keselowski, who finished fourth in the voting, also received one first place vote.
Coincidentally, Hunter-Reay’s team owner, Michael Andretti, won the overall DRIVER OF THE YEAR title in 1991 in an Indy car. Michael’s father, Mario, was the inaugural DRIVER OF THE YEAR in 1967 (and in 1978 and 1984).
A total of 20 drivers scored points in the second quarter voting.
In its’ 48th year, the DRIVER OF THE YEAR title is unique. A panel of 17 leading journalists and broadcasters from across the U.S. determines the winner. Two panelists didn’t vote this time. In quarterly voting, points are awarded on a declining 9, 6, 4,3,2,1 basis. Hunter-Reay will receive a trophy and a Tissot wristwatch to be presented later.
President of the DRIVER OF THE YEAR Foundation is Barry Schmoyer, businessman and sportsman of Sarasota, Florida.