Takuma Sato, the 2020 Indianapolis 500 winner and only Japanese driver to win the race, proudly accepted his second BorgWarner Championship Driver’s Trophy, affectionately known as the Baby Borg, last Friday at a ceremony in St. Petersburg. Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing and team owners Bobby Rahal, David Letterman and Mike Lanigan also received a memento commemorating Sato’s victory: the BorgWarner Championship Team Owner’s Trophy.
“We are honored to present this replica of the iconic Borg-Warner Trophy to Takuma,” said Frederic Lissalde, President and CEO, BorgWarner Inc. “We have built a results-focused, culture of excellence at BorgWarner, believing there is always a way to achieve superior results. Like our culture, this trophy is reflective of Takuma’s history of excellence and outstanding accomplishments, including his most recent win.”
Following his 2020 victory, a hand-crafted, three-dimensional sterling silver image of Sato was affixed to the Borg-Warner Trophy, which is kept on permanent display in the Indianapolis Motor Speedway Museum. At the Baby Borg trophy ceremony, Sato was awarded with a 14-inch, five-pound sterling silver replica trophy featuring the same sculpted image along with his name, team name, average speed and year engraved on the base. Since 1988, the winner has been given a one-of-a-kind keepsake trophy, to commemorate their Indianapolis 500 win.”
“I’m honored to receive such an incredible trophy again. The Baby Borg is one of the most beautiful and prestigious trophies and I’m very pleased to see another happy face on it that makes me smile,” said Sato. “Thank you to BorgWarner and Indianapolis Motor Speedway once again for giving me such an opportunity to share this great tradition and history.”
During the 2020 race, which was pushed back to August due to COVID-19, Sato led 27 of 200 laps and averaged 157.824 mph, clinching the race for his second time; his first win took place in 2017. The 2021 race is scheduled to return to its traditional date, taking place on Memorial Day weekend.