Ryan Hunter-Reay, John Green & David Letterman Cross Paths in NYC

Indy 500 winner joins novelist at his movie premiere after taping The Late Show

Life isn’t slowing down yet for newly crowned Indy 500 winner Ryan Hunter-Reay, and on Monday, he met up with a guy who knows the feeling: hyperpopular novelist John Green. They found themselves in Midtown Manhattan a few blocks away from each other last night, when The Fault in Our Stars premiered at the Ziegfeld Theater and Hunter-Reay was in the neighborhood to film that evening’s episode of The Late Show with David Letterman. The two have more in common than their Indiana connection: Hunter-Reay advocates for cancer research (his fundraiser over race weekend raised money for several foundations), and, of course, Green’s story centers on cancer patients. “This movie means a lot to me because of the story,” Hunter-Reay says. “It looks like a lot of eyes are going to be on the screen, and that’s good news for the fight against cancer.”

Off-camera at the Ed Sullivan Theater, Andretti Racing’s Hunter-Reay gifted rival IndyCar team owner Letterman with his winning car’s turbocharger. Ouch. Then Letterman asked the new champ why he didn’t bring home the Borg-Warner Trophy when he drove for Rahal Letterman Racing in 2007 and 2008. Double ouch. But Hunter-Reay reminded him that he did deliver the Rookie of the Year award for the host’s team, and the two man-hugged it out.

For his part, Green, an IndyCar fan and pretty much the center of the pop-culture universe right now, seemed plenty excited to meet the racecar driver even after hobnobbing with celebrities all day: