Annie Achen, who currently is serving as the Indiana Dairy Princess, takes a moment to pose with Carlos Muñoz during the Fastest Rookie of the Year lunch sponsored by the American Dairy Association of Indiana and Hoosier dairy farmers. Muñoz was the guest of honor this year, posting a four-lap average speed of 228.342 mph.
Annie Achen, who currently is serving as the Indiana Dairy Princess, takes a moment to pose with Carlos Muñoz during the Fastest Rookie of the Year lunch sponsored by the American Dairy Association of Indiana and Hoosier dairy farmers. Muñoz was the guest of honor this year, posting a four-lap average speed of 228.342 mph.
INDIANAPOLIS — Instead of a victory dance, drivers that get opportunity to compete in the Indianapolis 500 hope they are the one to take the victory sip of milk at the end of the race.

At the 39th Fastest Rookie of the Year lunch sponsored by the American Dairy Association of Indiana and Hoosier dairy farmers, the four rookies in the field for the year’s race were celebrated, while showing the public how the dairy and racing industries are closely related.

Vince Welch, a sports announcer for ABC and ESPN who emceed the ceremony, noted that there are many great traditions associated with the Indy 500, one of which is the winning driver drinking milk in the victory circle.

He mentioned that the two worlds of racing and dairy production have much more in common than an individual might think.

“They can merge together at the national stage,” he said.

This year, the honor for the fastest rookie was awarded to Colombia native Carlos Muñoz, who qualified with an average lap speed of 228.342 mph, which made him the youngest rookie to ever start the race from the front row. He drove the No. 26 Unistraw Chevrolet for Andretti Autosport.

Muñoz noted that all of the experiences relating to his rookie year in the Indy 500 have been all-new and a dream, which is what he has used to stay positive in the time leading up to qualifying and race day.

Joining Muñoz in the rookie class this year were A.J. Allmendinger of Los Gatos, Calif.; Conor Daly of Noblesville, Ind.; and Tristan Vautier of Corenc, France.

Welch said that every driver come race day wants to be greeted by the Indy 500 milkman after they have finished the last lap because that means they have just won the race.

This year’s milkman is Duane Hill of Fountain City. Ken Hoeing of Rushville is the rookie milkman, which means he will hand the bottle of milk to the winning driver next year.

Hoeing noted that it’s a great honor to be able to represent all people who are a part of the dairy industry.

He added that a dairyman presenting milk to the winner is a longstanding tradition, and for a few seconds, the whole world is watching the dairy industry shine.