Notes: Hot Wheels commemorates 100th Indy 500 with trophy full of storied die-cast cars


INDIANAPOLIS -- Hot Wheels, the iconic maker of scale die-cast toy cars for nearly a half-century, is helping commemorate the historic 100th Running of the Indianapolis 500 presented by PennGrade Motor Oil with the unveiling today of the Hot Wheels Indy 500 Championship Trophy.

Hot Wheels TrophyBased on the famed Borg-Warner Trophy that features the likeness of every Indianapolis 500 race winner, the Hot Wheels trophy celebrates the past 99 Indy 500s with Hot Wheels vehicles that draw inspiration from the stories, colors and numbers of the winning drivers and cars from each year.

Ryan Hunter-Reay, the 2014 Indianapolis 500 champion from Andretti Autosport, introduced the Hot Wheels trophy today. It will be part of the Hot Wheels Race to Win exhibit at the Children’s Museum of Indianapolis from May 31-Aug. 13. The trophy will be at the Hot Wheels display in the Indianapolis Motor Speedway Fan Zone from May 25 through the race on May 29.

“My first experience with racing was with Hot Wheels cars. I remember zipping cars down the orange track and now I watch my two sons do the same,” Hunter-Reay said. “Sharing stories from past races with my kids opens up a conversation about hard work, competition and my passion for racing.” 

Standing approximately 9 feet tall, the Hot Wheels Indy 500 Championship Trophy has 99 one-64th scale cars representing each of the previous Indianapolis 500 races. The base of the trophy is wrapped with the famed Hot Wheels orange track representing the competition that runs through every car.

“All 99 cars featured on this trophy have an authentic Indy 500 story," said Chris Down, senior vice president and general manager, Hot Wheels. "Most of them are about the journey, not the win. For kids and adults that is exactly what Hot Wheels play is about. Everyone has a Hot Wheels story!"

Watch here to see how the Hot Wheels Indy 500 Championship Trophy was made:

Andretti wins Mario Kart showdown during rain delay

Verizon IndyCar Series drivers Conor Daly, Spencer Pigot, Alexander Rossi and Marco Andretti didn’t get to drive on the Indianapolis Motor Speedway oval today due to the rainout. That didn’t stop them from racing.

The foursome spent part of the rain delay competing in a “friendly” game of Mario Kart in the driver motorcoach area. Daly, driver of the No. 18 Dale Coyne Racing Honda, said Andretti, pilot of the Andretti Autosport No. 27 Snapple Honda, came away victorious, since “his (grandfather’s) name is on the game.”

“He is really good at it, too,” Daly added.

What’s in a name? A lot for Clauson’s dog

Bryan Clauson’s popular pup has a new name while the Dale Coyne/Jonathan Byrd’s Racing driver is competing at the Indianapolis 500.

Chevy Clauson, a Jack Russell terrier who has earned her own social media fan following at the short tracks where Clauson races regularly, “announced” on Twitter that her naming rights had been purchased for two weeks since he is driving a Honda-powered entry in his bid to race in the Indy 500 a third time.

“I’ll only respond to Honda Clauson,” the tweet from @ChevyClauson read.

Bryan Clauson said calling his dog a new name was the idea of his fiancée, Lauren Stewart.

“I’m in a Honda and we certainly didn’t want anyone to think that she was supporting the competition,” he said. “She’s definitely supporting her dad.”

From the fans