Verizon IndyCar Series stars Tony Kanaan, Helio Castroneves and Josef Newgarden participated in NBC’s American Ninja Warrior this week, when the competition series held its Season 8 Indianapolis regionals. Race fans can check out photos of the three drivers tackling the obstacle course now by using the slideshow viewer included with this article.
The trio are known for their fitness outside of a race car – Kanaan is a well-established marathon runner who just competed in an Ironman with colleague Scott Dixon this off-season, while Castroneves won ABC’s Dancing with the Stars and Newgarden is one of the best young drivers in the sport. Now they’re hoping tackling a huge challenge like the vaunted Ninja Warrior course will prove that IndyCar drivers are, in fact, athletes.
“The discussion is always athleticism and racing and is that a thing, and for us it very much is,” Newgarden said in a league statement after they competed. “You have to be really prepared mentally and physically to drive an IndyCar, but that doesn’t mean we can go be NFL wide receivers. And I think that applies a little bit to this, too. I thought we did all right representing, getting through it and showing that we do have a good bit of athleticism.”
Several other IndyCar drivers and families turned up to support the trio. Kanaan’s colleagues Dixon and Charlie Kimball were in attendance, as was Newgarden’s teammate and boss Ed Carpenter with his family, and fellow drivers James Hinchcliffe and Conor Daly.
NASCAR driver Ricky Stenhouse Jr. was also drafted to compete, and his girlfriend and fellow Sprint Cup Series racer Danica Patrick was on hand as well.
Use the slideshow viewer above to check out photos of the Verizon IndyCar Series drivers on and off the Indianapolis obstacle course. The American Ninja Warrior episode featuring Kanaan, Castroneves and Newgarden will air June 13 on NBC.
For more on the Verizon IndyCar Series, visit the league website.