Lightning Cup

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The Lightning Cup logo in Mario Kart 8.

The Lightning Cup is a cup in the Mario Kart series. Its first appearance is in Mario Kart: Super Circuit where it was placed between the Flower Cup and Star Cup. It is absent in Mario Kart: Double Dash!!, but it makes a reappearance in Mario Kart DS, Mario Kart Wii, Mario Kart 7, and Mario Kart 8 as a cup with tracks from past Mario Kart games. The emblem of the cup is the Lightning. It mainly features tracks from the Star Cup and the Special Cup, though Mario Kart DS featured a sole track from the Mario Kart: Super Circuit Lightning Cup and Mario Kart Wii featured a sole Flower Cup course. The length and difficulty of the courses in the cup tend to be on par with those in the Special Cup. As of Mario Kart 7, the final track of the Lightning Cup is a past Rainbow Road, very similar to how Special Cup's final course is a new Rainbow Road. The table below lists every track in the Lightning Cup by course order and game installment.


Game Course 1 Course 2 Course 3 Course 4
Mario Kart: Super Circuit Luigi circuit icon.png
Luigi Circuit
Sky Garden
Cheep-Cheep Island
Sunset Wilds
Mario Kart DS ChocoIsland2ds.PNG
SNES Choco Island 2
N64 Banshee Boardwalk
GBA Sky Garden
GCN Yoshi Circuit
Mario Kart Wii SNESMarioCircuit3-MKWii.png
SNES Mario Circuit 3
MKWii Peach Gardens.png
DS Peach Gardens
DK Mountain.PNG
GCN DK Mountain
N64 Bowser's Castle
Mario Kart 7 KoopaCapeMK7.png
Wii Koopa Cape
GCN Dino Dino Jungle
DS Airship Fortress
SNES MK7.png
SNES Rainbow Road
Mario Kart 8 MK8-Course-DS Tick-TockClock.jpg
DS Tick-Tock Clock
MK8-Course-3DS PiranhaPlantSlide.jpg
3DS Piranha Plant Slide
MK8-Course-Wii GrumbleVolcano.jpg
Wii Grumble Volcano
MK8-Course-N64 RainbowRoad.jpg
N64 Rainbow Road


Names in other languages[edit]

Language Name Meaning
Japanese サンダーカップ
Sandā Kappu
Thunder Cup
Spanish Copa Centella Spark Cup
French Coupe Éclair Lightning Cup
Dutch Bliksembeker Lightning Cup
German Blitz-Cup Lightning Cup
Italian Trofeo Fulmine Lightning Trophy
Portuguese Taça Relâmpago Lightning Cup
Russian Кубок молнии
Kubok molnii
Lightning Cup
Korean 번개 컵
Beongae Keop
Lightning Cup


  • In the Mario Kart: Super Circuit and Mario Kart 7 manuals, the Lightning Cup is called the Thunder Cup.
  • Sky Garden is the only course to appear in the same cup in two different games. This is due to the Lightning Cup being a nitro cup in Mario Kart: Super Circuit (where Sky Garden first appeared in) and a retro cup in Mario Kart DS (where it appeared as a retro course).
  • The Mario Kart Wii's Lightning Cup Trophy uses a Thunder Cloud instead of Lightning.
  • Mario Kart 7 is the only game where the Lightning Cup, as retro cup, didn't have at least one course from Mario Kart 64. In fact, it is the only Retro Cup yet that does not feature a single track from Mario Kart 64.
    • Likewise, Mario Kart 8 is the only game where the Lightning retro Cup didn't have at least one course from Super Mario Kart and Mario Kart: Double Dash!!.
  • Since Mario Kart DS:
    • The first race in the Lightning Cup is a second Star Cup course (except Mario Kart Wii);
    • The second race is a Special Cup course (except in Mario Kart 8);
    • The third race of this cup is from 2 games ago. Also since Mario Kart Wii, that race is always a final Star Cup course.