Pictures a green big-bore racecar beneath flags of participating nations: Italy, United Kingdom, United States, France, and Germany.
The Vanderbilt Cup was the first major trophy in American auto racing. Inaugurated by William K. Vanderbilt II in 1904 and discontinued upon the outbreak of World War I, it was briefly revived in 1936 and 1937 by his son George. The outbreak of World War II would again force a suspension, the Europeans represented taking opposing sides, and the United States ultimately drawn into the conflict. The flags of Nazi Germany and Fascist Italy would not fly alongside those of France, England and the U.S. for long, and their juxtaposition on this button lends a certain irony.
The 1936 cup was claimed by Tazio Nuvolari of Italy, and the 1937 cup by Bernd Rosemeyer of Germany. Rosemeyer would die only months after his American victory, thrown from his car while attempting a speed record on the Autobahn between Frankfurt and Darmstadt.