Five Fun Facts About the Most Renowned Sporting Trophies

Lauren Deegan

Winning incredible trophies is at the heart of being a sporting champion. It takes serious effort to win a trophy award for a team or individual sports, but there’s also a lighthearted side to trophies. You may hear a basic rundown about a given trophy from commentators on TV, but there are plenty of interesting stories that they don’t broadcast on television. Here at Cristaux, we love both the prestige and fun of trophies. Here are five facts that prove that trophies can be a lot more interesting than they seem.

Goodbye, FIFA World Cup Trophy

The Jules Rimet Trophy, which is awarded to the winner of the FIFA World Cup every four years, is soccer’s biggest international honor. In 1966, it also became one of Scotland Yard’s most-sought-after objects. Several months before that year’s World Cup was slated to start in England, the trophy was stolen from an exhibition in London. The day after the theft, a ransom demand was issued. Scotland Yard attempted a ransom exchange and named a suspect in the theft. Unfortunately they didn’t recover the trophy. It was found six days later by a man walking his dog.

Goodbye Again, FIFA World Cup Trophy

After winning the World Cup for the third time in 1970, Brazil was awarded the Jules Rimet Trophy in perpetuity. In 1983, it disappeared from the Brazilian Soccer Confederation’s headquarters. While the perpetrators were found, no man walking his dog would recover the trophy this time. In fact, it’s still missing today. Many believe that the trophy was melted down into gold bars and sold by a drug trafficker shortly after it was stolen.

There’s a Bottle of Milk Awaiting Indy Winners

If you win the Indianapolis 500, your name will be added to the towering Borg-Warner trophy, and that’s not all you’ll get. Your additional award will be a bottle of milk. The tradition dates back to 1936, when winner Louis Meyer requested a fresh glass of buttermilk. The story goes that Meyer’s mother told him to drink buttermilk on hot days, and drivers in subsequent years would honor her advice with a bottle of milk. Today, the winner receives the bottle in the victory lane by a dairy industry sponsor.

…And It’s an Insult if You Don’t Drink It

Brazilian driver Emerson Fittipaldi might be widely respected in the world of racing, but he drew its ire in 1993. When he won, he drank orange juice instead of milk in the victory lane after the Indy 500. Fans began booing him for what they saw as a snuff, but it was a simple matter of business for Fittipaldi. The racer owned citrus farms in Brazil at the time and stated that he simply wanted to promote one of his country’s biggest industries.

What’s in Your Urn?

The winner of the cricket Test Series between England and Australia gains more than just prestige. The winning team is also presented with a replica of the trophy known as The Ashes. This unique trophy is a small urn. The original has been in the Cricket Museum at the Marylebone Cricket Club since 1929. While there’s nothing inside the replica urns, most believe that the ashes of a burnt cricket bail are inside the original. The joke originates from a notice in the Sporting Times in 1882. In it was a declaration that English cricket is dead after a particularly dreadful Test Series against Australia.

The world of professional sports is full of intriguing legends. There is clearly no exception when it comes to sporting trophies. Here at Cristaux, we love these legends and everything they represent. They’re part of the reason we love helping our clients create unique awards too.